Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.
HTLV-I is a human retrovirus which is the etiological agent for adult T-cell leukemia. The virus encodes a 40 kDa oncoprotein, Tax, which has no cellular counterpart. Findings from several laboratories over the past decade have shown that over-expression of the Tax oncoprotein is wholly sufficient to transform animal cells. Emerging evidence supports that Tax transforms cells through dysregulation of several cell cycle checkpoints. Here, we review extant data on how Tax targets cyclins, inhibitors of cyclin dependent kinase, as well as cellular sentries for DNA-damage.