Earlier studies have shown that PTEN regulated p53 protein stability both in a phosphatase-dependent manner through antagonizing Akt-Mdm2 pathway and in a phosphatase-independent manner through interacting with p53. In this study, we report that PTEN forms a complex with p300 in the nucleus and plays a role in maintenance of high p53 acetylation in response to DNA damage. Furthermore, p300 is required for nuclear PTEN-regulated cell cycle arrest. Interestingly, however, p53 acetylation was found to promote PTEN-p53 interaction. To investigate the molecular mechanisms, we show that acetylation promotes p53 tetramerization, which, in turn, is required for the PTEN-p53 interaction and subsequent maintenance of high p53 acetylation. Taken together, our results suggest a physiological role for the PTEN tumor suppressor in the nucleus and provide a molecular explanation for our previous observation that PTEN controls p53 protein levels independent of its phosphatase activity.