N-Terminal Truncated Myb with New Transcriptional Activity Produced Through Use of an Alternative MYB Promoter in Salivary Gland Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma

Cancers (Basel). 2019 Dec 21;12(1):45. doi: 10.3390/cancers12010045.


Adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC) is an aggressive salivary gland tumor that frequently displays perineural invasion and is often associated with translocations or overexpression of the MYB oncogene. Detailed analyses of MYB transcripts from ACC patient samples revealed that ACC tumors utilize an alternative MYB promoter, which is rarely used in normal cells or other tumor types. The alternative promoter transcripts produce N-terminally truncated Myb proteins lacking a highly conserved and phosphorylated domain, which includes the pS11 epitope that is frequently used to detect Myb proteins. In RNA-seq assays, Myb isoforms lacking the N-terminal domain displayed unique transcriptional activities, regulating many genes differently than full-length Myb. Thus, a regulatory pathway unique to ACC activates the alternative MYB promoter, leading to the production of a truncated Myb protein with altered transcriptional activities. This could provide new therapeutic opportunities for ACC patients.

Keywords: 5’RLM-RACE; 9); alternative transcription start site; promoter switch; t(6; transcriptional regulation.