c-Fos but not v-Fos protein induces programmed cell death of v-myb-transformed monoblasts
c-Fos and v-Fos belong to a group of proteins forming the transcription factor AP-1 that is important for regulation of proliferation, differentiation and programmed cell death in multiple cell types. In this study, we examined the role of c-Fos and v-Fos proteins in v-myb-transformed BM2 monoblasts. We show that while the v-Fos protein prolongs the G0G1 phase of the BM2 cell cycle, c-Fos leaves the cell cycle unaffected and, rather, induces programmed cell death. The apoptosis-promoting activity of the c-Fos protein is markedly enhanced in cells cultivated under serum-free conditions. c-Fos-induced apoptosis of BM2 cells occurred in the presence of Bcl-2 and was not dependent on the transcription activation function of the c-Fos protein. No differentiation-promoting activity of the Fos proteins was observed. The effects of Fos proteins on BM2 cells differ from those induced by Jun proteins, suggesting differential roles of individual components of the AP-1 transcription factor in regulation of essential cellular processes.