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Sci. Signal., 14 December 2010
Vol. 3, Issue 152, p. pe49
[DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.3152pe49]


Myc-Nick: The Force Behind c-Myc

Kambiz Mousavi and Vittorio Sartorelli*

Laboratory of Muscle Stem Cells and Gene Regulation, National Institute of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, National Institutes of Health, 50 South Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.

Abstract: In the field of molecular oncology, the Myc basic helix-loop-helix family of transcription factors has been extensively studied. The Myc proto-oncogene c-Myc binds DNA, activates or represses gene transcription, and consequently affects cellular proliferation. However, emerging evidence presents the existence of c-Myc variants that lack transcriptional activity. A cytoplasmic variant of c-Myc called "Myc-nick," which arises from calpain-mediated cleavage of c-Myc, assists in stable microtubule assembly. Furthermore, Myc-nick promotes MyoD-mediated myogenic differentiation, thus antagonizing its precursor. These results provide exciting new opportunities in formulating molecular approaches for treatment of cancer and in our understanding of cell differentiation.

* Corresponding author. E-mail, sartorev{at}

Citation: K. Mousavi, V. Sartorelli, Myc-Nick: The Force Behind c-Myc. Sci. Signal. 3, pe49 (2010).

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