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Free radical biology & medicine

CUL4B impedes stress-induced cellular senescence by dampening a p53-reactive oxygen species positive feedback loop.


PMID 25464270

Abstract

Tumor suppressor p53 is known to regulate the level of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS). It can either alleviate oxidative stress under physiological and mildly stressed conditions or exacerbate oxidative stress under highly stressed conditions. We here report that a p53-ROS positive feedback loop drives a senescence program in normal human fibroblasts (NHFs) and this senescence-driving loop is negatively regulated by CUL4B. CUL4B, which can assemble various ubiquitin E3 ligases, was found to be downregulated in stress-induced senescent cells, but not in replicative senescent cells. We observed that p53-dependent ROS production was significantly augmented and stress-induced senescence was greatly enhanced when CUL4B was absent or depleted. Ectopic expression of CUL4B, on the other hand, blunted p53 activation, reduced ROS production, and attenuated cellular senescence in cells treated with H2O2. CUL4B was shown to promote p53 ubiquitination and proteosomal degradation in NHFs exposed to oxidative stress, thus dampening the p53-dependent cellular senescence. Together, our results established a critical role of CUL4B in negatively regulating the p53-ROS positive feedback loop that drives cellular senescence.

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