J Cancer 2020; 11(6):1457-1467. doi:10.7150/jca.35479

Research Paper

p16 promotes proliferation in cervical carcinoma cells through CDK6-HuR-IL1A axis

Mingzhe Li1*, Jiong Yang2*, Kaiyu Liu1, Jianming Yang3, Xiangwen Zhan1, Le Wang1, Xiaomeng Shen1, Jing Chen1, Zebin Mao1,✉

1. Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing, China
2. Department of Gastroenterology, Peking University Third Hospital, Beijing, China
3. Department of Immunology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin, China
* Mingzhe Li and Jiong Yang contributed equally to this work

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Li M, Yang J, Liu K, Yang J, Zhan X, Wang L, Shen X, Chen J, Mao Z. p16 promotes proliferation in cervical carcinoma cells through CDK6-HuR-IL1A axis. J Cancer 2020; 11(6):1457-1467. doi:10.7150/jca.35479. Available from https://www.jcancer.org/v11p1457.htm

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The Cyclin-Dependent Kinase Inhibitor p16 (p16) acts as a tumor suppressor in most cells, but for HPV transformed cervical cancer, in which oncoprotein E7 expressed by human papillomavirus (HPV) mediates the degradation of retinoblastoma protein (Rb), p16 exhibits oncogenic activity. Our study was conducted to study the mechanism underling p16 mediated promoting effect of cell proliferation in cervical cancer cell lines. CCK8 assay and EdU incorporation were conducted to evaluate cell proliferation. Loss-of-function assay was used to silence p16 in Ca Ski and SiHa cells. Next, western blot, qPCR, RNA silencing, luciferase activity assay, run-on assay, mRNA stability assay, RNA immunoprecipitation, co-immunoprecipitation Immunofluorescence were performed to examine the interaction between CDK6, HuR, and IL1A mRNA in p16 mediated proliferation promoting effect. Our results showed that: (1) Silencing p16 inhibited the proliferation of cervical cancer cells by decreasing the half-life of IL1A mRNA in CDK6 dependent manner; (2) The stabilization of IL1A mRNA was regulated by HuR which could be inactivated by p16/CDK6 mediated phosphorylation at Ser202; (3) IL1A mediated the oncogenic activity of p16 in cervical carcinoma cell lines. In conclusion, p16 promotes proliferation in cervical carcinoma cells through CDK6-HuR-IL1A axis.

Keywords: Cervical carcinoma, Cyclin-Dependent Kinase Inhibitor p16, Cyclin-Dependent Kinase 6, ELAV-Like Protein 1, Interleukin-1alpha.