Cellular transformation by the HTLV-I Tax protein, a jack-of-all-trades

Michael L. Gatza, Julie C. Watt, Susan J. Marriott

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


The human T-cell leukemia virus type I (HTLV-I) is an oncogenic retrovirus that is responsible for adult T-cell leukemia and a neurological disease, HTLV-I-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis. HTLV-I encodes an oncogenic protein, Tax, which affects a variety of cellular functions prompting it to be referred to as a jack-of-all trades. The ability of Tax to both transcriptionally regulate cellular gene expression and to functionally inactivate proteins involved in cell-cycle progression and DNA repair provide the basis for Tax-mediated transformation and leukemogenesis. This review will concentrate on the effects of Tax on the dysregulation of the G1/S and Gz/M checkpoints as well as the suppression of DNA damage repair leading to cellular transformation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5141-5149
Number of pages9
Issue number33 REV. ISS. 2
StatePublished - Aug 11 2003
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


  • Cell cycle
  • Cellular transformation
  • DNA repair
  • HTLV-I
  • Tax


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