Induction of MHC class I-related chain B (MICB) by 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2008 Jun 13;370(4):578-83. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2008.03.131. Epub 2008 Apr 4.


5-Aza-2'-deoxycytidine (5-aza-dC), a DNA methyltransferase inhibitor, exerts antitumor activity through induction of cell cycle arrest, apoptosis and DNA damage. In this study, we showed that MHC class I-related chain B (MICB), a ligand of the NKG2D receptor expressed by natural killer cells and activated CD8(+) T cells, was upregulated following 5-aza-dC treatment. The upregulation of MICB was accompanied by promoter DNA demethylation and DNA damage. Furthermore, the upregulation of MICB was partially prevented by pharmacological or genetic inhibition of ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) kinase. Our results suggest that promoter DNA demethylation, in combination with DNA damage, contribute to the upregulation of MICB induced by 5-aza-dC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Azacitidine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Azacitidine / pharmacology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / drug effects
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Cell Line
  • Cytotoxicity, Immunologic / drug effects
  • DNA Damage
  • DNA Methylation / drug effects
  • DNA Modification Methylases / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Decitabine
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class I / genetics
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class I / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Killer Cells, Natural / drug effects
  • Killer Cells, Natural / immunology
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • NK Cell Lectin-Like Receptor Subfamily K
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic / drug effects
  • Receptors, Immunologic / metabolism
  • Receptors, Natural Killer Cell
  • Transcription, Genetic / drug effects


  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class I
  • KLRK1 protein, human
  • MICB antigen
  • NK Cell Lectin-Like Receptor Subfamily K
  • Receptors, Immunologic
  • Receptors, Natural Killer Cell
  • Decitabine
  • DNA Modification Methylases
  • Azacitidine