Fbxw7 contributes to tumor suppression by targeting multiple proteins for ubiquitin-dependent degradation

Cancer Sci. 2006 Aug;97(8):729-36. doi: 10.1111/j.1349-7006.2006.00239.x.


Fbxw7 (also known as Sel-10, hCdc4 or hAgo) is the F-box protein component of a Skp1-Cul1-F-box protein (SCF) ubiquitin ligase. Fbxw7 contributes to the ubiquitin-mediated degradation of cyclin E, c-Myc, Aurora-A, Notch and c-Jun, all of which appear to function as cell-cycle promoters and oncogenic proteins. Loss of Fbxw7 results in elevated expression of its substrates, which may lead to oncogenesis. However, it remains largely unclear which accumulating substrate is most related to cancer development in Fbxw7-mutant cancer cells. In the present study, we examined the abundance of cyclin E, c-Myc and Aurora-A in seven cancer cell lines, which harbor wild-type (three lines) or mutant (four lines) Fbxw7. Although these three substrates accumulated in the Fbxw7-mutant cells, the extent of increase in the expression of these proteins varied in each line. Forced expression of Fbxw7 reduced the levels of cyclin E, c-Myc and Aurora-A in the Fbxw7-mutant cells. In contrast, a decrease in the expression of cyclin E, c-Myc or Aurora-A by RNA interference significantly suppressed the rate of proliferation and anchorage-independent growth of the Fbxw7-mutant cells. These findings thus suggest that the loss of Fbxw7 results in accumulation of cyclin E, c-Myc and Aurora-A, all of which appear to be required for growth promotion of cancer cells. Fbxw7 seems to regulate the levels of multiple targets to suppress cancer development.

MeSH terms

  • Aurora Kinases
  • Breast Neoplasms / genetics
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / genetics
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / physiology*
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cyclin E / genetics
  • Cyclin E / metabolism
  • F-Box Proteins / genetics
  • F-Box Proteins / physiology*
  • F-Box-WD Repeat-Containing Protein 7
  • Humans
  • Mutation
  • Neoplasm Proteins / genetics
  • Neoplasm Proteins / metabolism*
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / genetics
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc / metabolism
  • RNA Interference
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / genetics
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / physiology*
  • Ubiquitin / metabolism*
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / genetics
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / physiology*


  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • Cyclin E
  • F-Box Proteins
  • F-Box-WD Repeat-Containing Protein 7
  • FBXW7 protein, human
  • MYC protein, human
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • Ubiquitin
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases
  • Aurora Kinases
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases