TM7SF3, a novel p53-regulated homeostatic factor, attenuates cellular stress and the subsequent induction of the unfolded protein response

Roi Isaac, Ido Goldstein, Noa Furth, Neta Zilber, Sarina Streim, Sigalit Boura-Halfon, Eytan Elhanany, Varda Rotter, Moshe Oren, Yehiel Zick*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Earlier reported small interfering RNA (siRNA) high-throughput screens, identified seven-transmembrane superfamily member 3 (TM7SF3) as a novel inhibitor of pancreatic β-cell death. Here we show that TM7SF3 maintains protein homeostasis and promotes cell survival through attenuation of ER stress. Overexpression of TM7SF3 inhibits caspase 3/7 activation. In contrast, siRNA-mediated silencing of TM7SF3 accelerates ER stress and activation of the unfolded protein response (UPR). This involves inhibitory phosphorylation of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2α activity and increased expression of activating transcription factor-3 (ATF3), ATF4 and C/EBP homologous protein, followed by induction of apoptosis. This process is observed both in human pancreatic islets and in a number of cell lines. Some of the effects of TM7SF3 silencing are evident both under basal conditions, in otherwise untreated cells, as well as under different stress conditions induced by thapsigargin, tunicamycin or a mixture of pro-inflammatory cytokines (tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin-1 beta and interferon gamma). Notably, TM7SF3 is a downstream target of p53: activation of p53 by Nutlin increases TM7SF3 expression in a time-dependent manner, although silencing of p53 abrogates this effect. Furthermore, p53 is found in physical association with the TM7SF3 promoter. Interestingly, silencing of TM7SF3 promotes p53 activity, suggesting the existence of a negative-feedback loop, whereby p53 promotes expression of TM7SF3 that acts to restrict p53 activity. Our findings implicate TM7SF3 as a novel p53-regulated pro-survival homeostatic factor that attenuates the development of cellular stress and the subsequent induction of the UPR.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)132-143
Number of pages12
JournalCell Death and Differentiation
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2017
Externally publishedYes

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