The American Journal of Pathology, 1999, Vol.155(1), pp.285-292
Thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) is a potent inhibitor of angiogenesis. It has been shown that promoter sequences of the TSP-1 gene can be transactivated by the wild-type tumor suppressor protein p53. As human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) infection inactivates wild-type p53 of various cell types, we investigated whether HCMV infection is associated with reduced TSP-1 production. We found, in conjunction with accumulated p53, that TSP-1 mRNA and protein expression was significantly reduced in HCMV-infected cultured human fibroblasts. To determine whether the observed TSP-1 suppression depends on p53 inactivation, the p53-defective astrocytoma cell line U373MG was infected with HCMV. In these cells TSP-1 expression was also significantly reduced by HCMV infection whereas expression of the p53 mutant variant remained unaltered. In both cell lines the decreased expression of TSP-1 mRNA occurred early after infection (4 hours), indicating that HCMV inhibits TSP-1 transcription during the immediate-early phase of infection before HCMV DNA replication. Inhibition of HCMV DNA synthesis by ganciclovir did not influence TSP-1 reduction whereas the antisense oligonucleotide ISIS 2922, complementary to HCMV immediate-early mRNA, completely prevented the HCMV-mediated TSP-1 suppression. These findings strongly suggest a novel role for HCMV in the modulation of angiogenesis due to p53-independent down-regulation of TSP-1 expression.
View record in ScienceDirect (Access to full text may be restricted)