Increased T-cell apoptosis and terminal B-cell differentiation induced by inactivation of the Ets-1 proto-oncogene

Nature. 1995 Oct 19;377(6550):635-8. doi: 10.1038/377635a0.


The Ets-1 proto-oncogene is a member of a transcription factor family characterized by homology to the v-ets oncogene. In adult mice, Ets-1 is expressed predominantly in lymphoid cells where it has been implicated in regulating transcription of lymphocyte-specific genes. Following T-cell activation, the specific DNA binding activity of Ets-1 is inactivated by transient phosphorylation, suggesting a function in the transition from the resting to activated state. Ets-1 has also been suggested to cooperate with the AP-1 transcription factor complex to mediate cellular growth factor responses. Here we show, by using RAG-2-deficient blastocyst complementation, that Ets-1 deficiency has dramatic, but different, effects on development and function of T- and B-lineage cells. Ets-1-deficient T cells were present in reduced numbers and were highly susceptible to cell death in vitro. In contrast, Ets-1-deficient B cells were present in normal numbers but a large proportion were IgM plasma cells. Our data demonstrate that Ets-1 is essential for maintenance of the normal pool of resting T- and B-lineage cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / genetics
  • Apoptosis / physiology*
  • B-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • B-Lymphocytes / physiology*
  • Blastocyst / cytology
  • Cell Differentiation / genetics
  • Cell Differentiation / physiology*
  • Cell Line
  • Chimera
  • DNA-Binding Proteins*
  • Mice
  • Proteins / physiology
  • Proto-Oncogene Mas
  • Proto-Oncogene Protein c-ets-1
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / deficiency
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / physiology*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-ets
  • Proto-Oncogenes
  • Spleen / cytology
  • Stem Cells
  • T-Lymphocytes / physiology*
  • Transcription Factors / deficiency
  • Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / physiology*


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • ETS1 protein, human
  • Ets1 protein, mouse
  • MAS1 protein, human
  • Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Mas
  • Proto-Oncogene Protein c-ets-1
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-ets
  • Rag2 protein, mouse
  • Transcription Factors
  • V(D)J recombination activating protein 2