Oncogenic WIP1 phosphatase attenuates the DNA damage response and sensitizes p53 mutant Jurkat cells to apoptosis

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KILIÇ EREN M., Kartal N. B., Pilevneli H.

ONCOLOGY LETTERS, vol.21, no.6, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 21 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.3892/ol.2021.12740
  • Journal Name: ONCOLOGY LETTERS
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, EMBASE
  • Keywords: p53-induced phosphatase 1, p53, Jurkat, senescence, apoptosis, etoposide, doxorubicin, PHOSPHORYLATES HISTONE H2AX, IONIZING-RADIATION, DOWN-REGULATION, TUMOR, STRESS, MDM2, ATM, PK
  • Dokuz Eylül University Affiliated: Yes


Wild-type (wt) p53-induced phosphatase 1 (Wip1), encoded by the protein phosphatase, Mg2+/Mn2+ dependent 1D (PPM1D) gene, is a serine/threonine phosphatase induced upon genotoxic stress in a p53-dependent manner. Wip1/PPM1D is frequently overexpressed, amplified and mutated in human solid tumors harboring wt p53 and is thus currently recognized as an oncogene. Oncogenic Wip1 dampens cellular stress responses, such as cell cycle checkpoints, apoptosis and senescence, and consequently increases resistance to anticancer therapeutics. Targeting Wip1 has emerged as a therapeutic strategy for tumors harboring wt p53. However, little is known about the efficacy of Wip1-targeted therapies in tumors lacking p53. The present study aimed to investigate the potential role of oncogenic Wip1 in p53 mutant (mt) Jurkat cells. In the present study, it was demonstrated that p53 mt Jurkat cells exhibited PPM1D/Wip1 gene amplification and expressed relatively high levels of Wip1, as confirmed by gene copy number and RNA expression analysis. In addition, Jurkat cells underwent G2 cell cycle arrest, apoptotic cell death and senescence in response to etoposide and doxorubicin, although the phosphorylation levels of DNA damage response (DDR) elements, including ataxia-telangiectasia mutated, ataxia-telangiestasia and Rad3-related, checkpoint kinase (Chk)1 and Chk2 were significantly low. Accordingly, the targeting of Wip1 phosphatase by RNA interference increased the phosphorylation of DDR elements, but decreased the rate of apoptosis in response to etoposide or doxorubicin in Jurkat cells. The induction of senescence or cell cycle arrest was not affected by the knockdown of Wip1. The results suggest that increased Wip1 expression enhances the apoptotic sensitivity of Jurkat cells in response to chemotherapeutic agents by attenuating DDR signaling. The present study highlights the possible pro-apoptotic role of Wip1 in a p53 mt T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia cell line. The data suggest the careful consideration of future treatment strategies aiming to manipulate or target Wip1 in human cancers lacking p53.