The E6 oncoproteins encoded by the cancer-associated human papillomaviruses (HPVs) can associate with and promote the degradation of wild-type p53 in vitro. To gain further insight into this process, the ability of HPV-16 E6 to complex with and promote the degradation of mutant forms of p53 was studied. A correlation between binding and the targeted degradation of p53 was established. Mutant p53 proteins that bound HPV-16 E6 were targeted for degradation, whereas those that did not complex HPV-16 E6 were not degraded. Since the HPV-16 E6-promoted degradation involves the ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis pathway, specific mutations were made in the amino terminus of p53 to examine whether the E6 targeted degradation involved the N-end rule pathway. No requirement for destabilizing amino acids at the N terminus of p53 was found, nor was evidence found that HPV-16 E6 could provide this determinant in trans, indicating that the N-terminal rule pathway is not involved in the E6-promoted degradation of p53.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science