c-Cbl tyrosine phosphorylation and subcellular localization in human primary leukemic cells

M. F. Brizzi, A. Rosso, P. Dentelli, D. Ferrero, L. Lanfrancone, L. Pegoraro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Several studies indicate that a number of signal-transducing molecules involved in the proliferation, differentiation, and functional activation of normal hemopoietic cells may be constitutively activated in primary leukemic cells and play a role in the outcome or in the progression of these neoplastic disorders. In this study we show that the product of the proto- oncogene c-Cbl, whose function is still unknown, is constitutively tyrosine phosphorylated not only in cells from chronic myelogenous leukemias (CMLs) in the blast phase, but also in cells from acute myeloblastic leukemias (AMLs), Ph-negative acute T-lymphoblastic leukemias (T-ALLs), and Ph-negative pre-B lymphoblastic leukemias (pre-B ALL). Moreover, in acute leukemia cells, c- Cbl was not stably complexed with the tyrosine-phosphorylated adaptor protein CrkL. The analysis of Grb2/c-Cbl interaction demonstrated that, in both acute leukemia and CML blasts, c-Cbl was stably complexed with the N-terminal Src homology (SH) 3 domain of Grb2 and, in blasts from ALL patients, with the Grb2 SH2 domain. The analysis of c-Cbl subcellular distribution showed that in all cases of leukemia tested, as well as in growth factor-stimulated M- 07e cells, c-Cbl was present in the cytosolic, in the membrane, and in the detergent-insoluble fractions. Finally, in polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs) from CML patients, c-Cbl was found stably associated with the detergent-insoluble fraction, whereas in PMNs from normal donors, it was detected only in the cytosolic fraction. Our findings that c-Cbl is constitutively tyrosine phosphorylated and associated with the detergent- insoluble fraction in AML and ALL blasts and in PMNs from CML patients suggest that this event represents a common step in the neoplastic transformation of both myeloid and lymphoid progenitor cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1229-1239
Number of pages11
JournalExperimental Hematology
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 1998


  • Acute leukemia
  • c-Cbl
  • Chronic myelogenous leukemia
  • Subcellular distribution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Cell Biology
  • Genetics
  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Transplantation


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