Shp2E76K mutant confers cytokine-independent survival of TF-1 myeloid cells by up-regulating Bcl-XL

Yuan Ren, Zhengming Chen, Liwei Chen, Nicholas T Woods, Gary W Reuther, Jin Q Cheng, Hong-gang Wang, Jie Wu
Journal of Biological Chemistry 2007 December 14, 282 (50): 36463-73
Shp2 has been known to mediate growth factor-stimulated cell proliferation, but its role in cell survival is less clear. Gain-of-function Shp2 mutants such as Shp2E76K are associated with myeloid leukemias. We found that Shp2E76K could transform cytokine-dependent human TF-1 myeloid cells into cytokine independence and further characterized the Shp2E76K-induced cell survival mechanism in this study. Expression of Shp2E76K suppressed the cytokine withdrawal-induced intrinsic/mitochondrial apoptosis pathway, which is controlled by the Bcl-2 family proteins. Analysis of Bcl-2 family proteins showed that Bcl-XL and Mcl-1 were up-regulated in Shp2E76K-transformed TF-1 (TF-1/Shp2E76K) cells. Knockdown of Bcl-XL but not Mcl-1 with short hairpin RNAs prevented Shp2E76K-induced cytokine-independent survival. Roscovitine, which down-regulated Mcl-1, also did not prevent cytokine-independent survival of TF-1/Shp2E76K cells, whereas the Bcl-XL inhibitor HA14-1 did. Ras and mitogen-activated protein kinases Erk1 and Erk2 (Erk1/2) were constitutively activated in TF-1/Shp2E76K cells, whereas little active Akt was detected under cytokine-free conditions. Shp2E76K-induced Bcl-XL expression was suppressed by Mek inhibitors and by a dominant-negative Mek1 mutant but not by the phosphoinositide 3-phosphate inhibitor LY294002 and the Akt inhibitor API-2. Inhibition of Erk1/2 blocked cytokine-independent survival of TF-1/Shp2E76K cells, whereas inhibition of Akt had a minimal effect on cytokine-independent survival of TF-1/Shp2E76K cells. These results show that Shp2E76K can evoke constitutive Erk1/2 activation in TF-1 cells. Furthermore, Shp2E76K induces cytokine-independent survival of TF-1 cells by a novel mechanism involving up-regulation of Bcl-XL through the Erk1/2 pathway.

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