p53, Bax and Bcl-2 in vivo expression in the murine thymus after apoptogenic treatments

Anticancer Res. Sep-Oct 1998;18(5A):3315-21.


Background: Neoplasia can results from a lack of cell elimination by apoptosis. In order to determine if mechanisms controlling apoptosis are disturbed during neoplastic transformation in a model of murine radio-induced thymic lymphomas, we have assessed the kinetics of p53, Bax and Bcl-2 in situ expression after induction of thymic apoptosis by irradiation or glucocorticoids at first in normal mice.

Materials and methods: TUNEL method was used for in situ detection of apoptosis and protein expression was determined by indirect immunohistochemistry.

Results: After hydrocortisone injection, levels of p53 and Bax, but not Bcl-2, expression were raised. A whole body sublethal irradiation led to an increase of p53 and Bcl-2, but not Bax, expression.

Conclusions: This is the first in vivo report of in situ protein expression in the thymus after apoptogenic treatments of mice. The results suggest that Bax could be involved in glucocorticoid-mediated apoptosis. The increased levels of Bcl-2 expression are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology
  • Apoptosis*
  • Female
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect
  • Hydrocortisone / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / metabolism*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-2 / metabolism*
  • Thymus Gland / drug effects
  • Thymus Gland / metabolism*
  • Thymus Gland / radiation effects
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53 / metabolism*
  • bcl-2-Associated X Protein


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Bax protein, mouse
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-2
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53
  • bcl-2-Associated X Protein
  • Hydrocortisone