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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 229

of 'Cellular and molecular biology of chronic myeloid leukemia'

Expression of p210bcr/abl by metallothionein promoter induced T-cell leukemia in transgenic mice.
Honda H, Fujii T, Takatoku M, Mano H, Witte ON, Yazaki Y, Hirai H
Blood. 1995;85(10):2853.
The p210bcr/abl chimeric protein is considered to be implicated in the pathogenesis of Philadelphia chromosome-positive human leukemias. To investigate its biologic function in vivo, we generated transgenic mice expressing p210bcr/abl driven by the metallothionein enhancer/promoter. Two of six founder mice and the transgenic progeny developed leukemias several months after birth. In the leukemic tissues, the expression of the p210bcr/abl transgene product was detected and the increased tyrosine-phosphorylation of cellular proteins was observed. The expressed p210bcr/abl transgene product was shown to possess an enhanced kinase activity. The leukemic cells showed rearrangements in the T-cell receptor loci, indicating that the leukemic cells were monoclonal and committed to the T-cell lineage. Polymerase chain reaction analysis for tissue distribution of p210bcr/abl expression showed that, in the transgenic line that reproducibly developed leukemias, p210bcr/abl was expressed in the hematopoietic tissues such as thymus and spleen; on the other hand, in the transgenic lines that have not developed leukemias, p210bcr/abl expression was detected only in the nonhematopoietic tissues such as the brain and kidney. These results suggest that the tumorigenicity of the p210bcr/abl chimeric protein is restricted to the hematopoietic tissues in vivo and that an event enhancing p210bcr/abl expression contributed a proliferative advantage to hematopoietic precursor cells and eventually developed T-cell leukemia in transgenic mice.
Department of Molecular Biology, Jichi Medical School, Tochigi-ken, Japan.