Identification of the HPV-16 E6 protein from transformed mouse cells and human cervical carcinoma cell lines.

E. J. Androphy, N. L. Hubbert, J. T. Schiller, D. R. Lowy

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162 Scopus citations


Human cervical carcinoma cell lines that harbor human papillomavirus (HPV) have been reported to retain selectively and express HPV sequences which could encode viral E6 and E7 proteins. The potential importance of HPV E6 to tumors is suggested further by the observation that bovine papillomavirus (BPV) E6 can induce morphologic transformation of mouse cells in vitro. To identify HPV E6 protein, a polypeptide encoded by HPV-16 E6 was produced in a bacterial expression vector and used to raise antisera. The antisera specifically immunoprecipitated the predicted 18-kd protein in two human carcinoma cell lines known to express HPV-16 RNA and in mouse cells morphologically transformed by HPV-16 DNA. The 18-kd E6 protein was distinct from a previously identified HPV-16 E7 protein. The HPV-16 E6 antibodies were found to be type specific in that they did not recognize E6 protein in cells containing HPV-18 sequences and reacted weakly, if at all, to BPV E6 protein. The results demonstrate that human tumors containing HPV-16 DNA can express an E6 protein product. They are consistent with the hypothesis that E6 may contribute to the transformed phenotype in human cervical cancers that express this protein.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)989-992
Number of pages4
JournalThe EMBO journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)

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