c-MYC oncogene is deregulated in most human tumours. Histone marks associated with transcriptionally active genes define high-affinity c-MYC targets. The mechanisms involved in their recognition by c-MYC are unknown. Here we report that c-MYC interacts with BPTF, a core subunit of the NURF chromatin-remodelling complex. BPTF is required for the activation of the full c-MYC transcriptional programme in fibroblasts. BPTF knockdown leads to decreased c-MYC recruitment to DNA and changes in chromatin accessibility. In Bptf-null MEFs, BPTF is necessary for c-MYC-driven proliferation, G1-S progression and replication stress, but not for c-MYC-driven apoptosis. Bioinformatics analyses unveil that BPTF levels correlate positively with c-MYC-driven transcriptional signatures. In vivo, Bptf inactivation in pre-neoplastic pancreatic acinar cells significantly delays tumour development and extends survival. Our findings uncover BPTF as a crucial c-MYC co-factor required for its biological activity and suggest that the BPTF-c-MYC axis is a potential therapeutic target in cancer.
Richart, L., Carrillo-De Santa Pau, E., Río-Machín, A., De Andrés, M. P., Cigudosa, J. C., Lobo, V. J. S. A., & Real, F. X. (2016). BPTF is required for c-MYC transcriptional activity and in vivo tumorigenesis. Nature Communications, 7. https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms10153