Rsf-1, a chromatin remodeling protein, induces DNA damage and promotes genomic instability

Jim Jinn Chyuan Sheu, Bin Guan, Jung Hye Choi, Athena Lin, Chia Huei Lee, Yi Ting Hsiao, Tian Li Wang, Fuu Jen Tsai, Ie Ming Shih

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Rsf-1 (HBXAP) has been reported as an amplified gene in human cancer, including the highly aggressive ovarian serous carcinoma. Rsf-1 protein interacts with SNF2H to form an ISWI chromatin remodeling complex, RSF. In this study, we investigated the functional role of Rsf-1 by observing phenotypes after expressing it in nontransformed cells. Acute expression of Rsf-1 resulted in DNA damage as evidenced by DNA strand breaks, nuclear γH2AX foci, and activation of the ATM-CHK2-p53-p21 pathway, leading to growth arrest and apoptosis. Deletion mutation and gene knockdown assays revealed that formation of a functional RSF complex with SNF2H was required for Rsf-1 to trigger DNA damage response (DDR). Gene knock-out of TP53 alleles, TP53 mutation, or treatment with an ATM inhibitor abolished up-regulation of p53 and p21 and prevented Rsf-1-induced growth arrest. Chronic induction of Rsf-1 expression resulted in chromosomal aberration and clonal selection for cells with c-myc amplification and CDKN2A/B deletion. Co-culture assays indicated Rsf-1-induced DDR as a selecting barrier that favored outgrowth of cell clones with a TP53 mutation. The above findings suggest that increased Rsf-1 expression and thus excessive RSF activity, which occurs in tumors harboring Rsf-1 amplification, can induce chromosomal instability likely through DDR.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)38260-38269
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number49
StatePublished - Dec 3 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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