Structural basis for the inactivation of retinoblastoma tumor suppressor by SV40 large T antigen

Hye Yeon Kim, Byung Yoon Ahn, Yunje Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

140 Citations (Scopus)


Inactivation of the retinoblastoma (Rb) tumor suppressor by Simian virus 40 (SV40) large T antigen is one of the central features of tumorigenesis induced by SV40. Both the N-terminal J domain and the LxCxE motif of large T antigen are required for inactivation of Rb. The crystal structure of the N-terminal region (residues 7-117) of SV40 large T antigen bound to the pocket domain of Rb reveals that large T antigen contains a four-helix bundle, and residues from helices α2 and α4 and from a loop containing the LxCxE motif participate in the interactions with Rb. The two central helices and a connecting loop in large T antigen have structural similarities with the J domains of the molecular chaperones DnaJ and HDJ-1, suggesting that large T antigen may use a chaperone mechanism for its biological function. However, there are significant differences between large T antigen and the molecular chaperones in other regions and these differences are likely to provide the specificity needed for large T antigen to inactivate Rb.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-304
Number of pages10
JournalEMBO Journal
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2001 Jan 15


  • Chaperone mechanism
  • Rb tumor suppressor
  • SV40 large T antigen
  • Viral oncogene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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