Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 9921651
Differentiation 1998 Nov;64(1):33-44
The structural alterations of the LAZ3 (BCL6) gene are one of the most frequent events found in non-Hodgkin lymphoma. LAZ3 encodes a transcriptional repressor with a POZ/zinc finger structure similar to several Drosophila development regulators and to the human promyelocytic leukemia-associated PLZF gene. Consistent with the origin of LAZ3-associated malignancies, LAZ3 is expressed in mature B-cells and required for germinal center formation. However, its ubiquitous expression, with predominant levels in skeletal muscle, suggests that it may act outside the lymphoid system. To study how LAZ3 could be involved in skeletal muscle differentiation, we examined its expression in the C2 muscle cells. We report here that LAZ3 is upregulated at both mRNA and protein levels during the differentiation of proliferating C2 myoblasts into post-mitotic myotubes. This rise in LAZ3 expression is both precocious and sustained, and is not reversed when myotubes are re-exposed to mitogen-rich medium, suggesting that irreversible evens occurring upon myogenic terminal differentiation contribute to lock LAZ3 upregulation. In addition, using two different models, we found that a “simple” growth-arrest upon serum starvation is not sufficient to induce LAZ3 upregulation which rather appears as a feature of myogenic commitment and/or differentiation. Finally, BrdU incorporation assays in C2 cells entering the differentiation pathway indicate that “high” LAZ3 expression strongly correlates with their exit from the cell cycle. Taken as a whole, these findings suggest that LAZ3 could play a role in muscle differentiation. Together with some results reported in other cell types, we propose that LAZ3 may contribute to events common to various differentiation processes, possibly the induction and stabilization of the withdrawal from the cell cycle.