The interferon consensus sequence binding protein (Icsbp/ Irf8) is required for termination of emergency granulopoiesis

Liping Hu, Weiqi Huang, Elizabeth E. Hjort, Ling Bei, Leonidas C. Platanias, Elizabeth A. Eklund*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Emergency granulopoiesis occurs in response to infectious or inflammatory challenge and is a component of the innate immune response. Some molecular events involved in initiating emergency granulopoiesis are known, but termination of this process is less well defined. In this study, we found that the interferon consensus sequence binding protein (Icsbp/Irf8) was required to terminate emergency granulopoiesis. Icsbp is an interferon regulatory transcription factor with leukemia suppressor activity. Expression of Icsbp is decreased in chronic myeloid leukemia, and Icsbp-/- mice exhibit progressive granulocytosis with evolution to blast crisis, similar to the course of human chronic myeloid leukemia. In this study, we found aberrantly sustained granulocyte production in Icsbp-/-mice after stimulation of an emergency granulopoiesis response. Icsbp represses transcription of the genes encoding Fas-associated phosphatase 1 (Fap1) and growth arrest-specific 2 (Gas2) and activates genes encoding Fanconi C and F. After stimulation of emergency granulopoiesis, we found increased and sustained expression of Fap1 and Gas2 in bone marrow myeloid progenitor cells from Icsbp-/- mice in comparison with the wild type. This was associated with resistance to Fas-induced apoptosis and increased β-catenin activity in these cells. We also found that repeated episodes of emergency granulopoiesis accelerated progression to acute myeloid leukemia in Icsbp-/- mice. This was associated with impaired Fanconi C and F expression and increased sensitivity to DNA damage in bone marrow myeloid progenitors. Our results suggest that impaired Icsbp expression enhances leukemogenesis by deregulating processes that normally limit granulocyte expansion during the innate immune response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4107-4120
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number8
StatePublished - Feb 19 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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