Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a leading cause of chronic hepatitis C (CHC), liver cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Immunohistochemistry of archived HCC tumors showed abundant FBP1 expression in HCC tumors with the CHC background. Oncomine data analysis of normal versus HCC tumors with the CHC background indicated a 4-fold increase in FBP1 expression with a concomitant 2.5-fold decrease in the expression of p53. We found that FBP1 promotes HCV replication by inhibiting p53 and regulating BCCIP and TCTP, which are positive and negative regulators of p53, respectively. The severe inhibition of HCV replication in FBP1-knockdown Huh7.5 cells was restored to a normal level by downregulation of either p53 or BCCIP. Although p53 in Huh7.5 cells is transcriptionally inactive as a result of Y220C mutation, we found that the activation and DNA binding ability of Y220C p53 were strongly suppressed by FBP1 but significantly activated upon knockdown of FBP1. Transient expression of FBP1 in FBP1 knockdown cells fully restored the control phenotype in which the DNA binding ability of p53 was strongly suppressed. Using electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) and isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC), we found no significant difference in in vitro target DNA binding affinity of recombinant wild-type p53 and its Y220C mutant p53. However, in the presence of recombinant FBP1, the DNA binding ability of p53 is strongly inhibited. We confirmed that FBP1 downregulates BCCIP, p21, and p53 and upregulates TCTP under radiation-induced stress. Since FBP1 is overexpressed in most HCC tumors with an HCV background, it may have a role in promoting persistent virus infection and tumorigenesis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science