Cyclooxygenase (COX-2) is overexpressed in human papillomavirus (HPV)-induced diseases, including cervical cancer. Although HPV E6 and E7 oncoproteins have been causally linked to cervical carcinogenesis, their effects on COX-2 gene expression are unknown. Increased levels of COX-2 mRNA, protein, and prostaglandin E2 synthesis were detected in HPV16 E6- and E7-expressing cervical cancer cells (CaSki and SiHa) compared with an uninfected cervical cancer cell line (C33A). HPV16 E6 and E7 oncoproteins induced COX-2 transcription by activating the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)→Ras→mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway. Interestingly, HPV16 oncoproteins stimulated EGFR signaling, in part, by inducing the release of amphiregulin, an EGFR ligand. The inductive effects of HPV16 E6 and E7 were mediated by enhanced binding of activator protein-1 to the cyclic AMP (cAMP)-responsive element (-59/-53) of the COX-2 promoter. The potential contribution of coactivators and corepressors to HPV16 E6- and E7-mediated induction of COX-2 was also investigated. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays indicated that E6 and E7 oncoproteins induced the recruitment of phosphorylated c-Jun, c-Fos, UbcH5, and cAMP-responsive element binding protein-binding protein/p300 to the COX-2 promoter. In contrast, E6 and E7 inhibited the binding of the histone deacetylase 3-nuclear receptor corepressor (NCoR) complex to the COX-2 promoter. Moreover, overexpression of NCoR blocked E6- and E7-mediated stimulation of the COX-2 promoter. Taken together, these results indicate that HPV16 E6 and E7 oncoproteins stimulated COX-2 transcription by inducing a corepressor/coactivator exchange. To our knowledge, this study also provides the first evidence that NCoR can function as a repressor of COX-2 gene expression.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research