p63 regulates the caspase-8-FLIP apoptotic pathway in epidermis

S. Borrelli, E. Candi, D. Alotto, C. Castagnoli, G. Melino, M. A. Viganò, R. Mantovani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The transcription factor p63, member of the p53 family, is crucial for epithelial development. An RNAi screening identified the apoptotic gene Procaspase-8 as a target activated by p63. The caspase-8 inhibitor FLIP is also under p63 control. We analysed and detailed the direct transactivation through the use of RNAi, reporter assays, ChIPs, western blots, confocal studies in HaCat, as well as in primary human keratinocytes. The direct ΔNp63 regulation of these targets was confirmed in vivo using transgenic ΔNp63 mice under the K5 promoter, as compared with p63 knockout mice, and in vitro in normal human primary keratinocytes following UV irradiation. Lowering the steady state of p63 protein levels changes the relative ratio of FLIP isoforms, causing the activation of the expressed, inactive Procaspase-8, into the active isoform thus triggering the proapoptotic cascade. Therefore, p63 fine-tunes the Procaspase-8-FLIP pro- and antiapoptotic pathway in keratinocytes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-263
Number of pages11
JournalCell Death and Differentiation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology


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