Lung resistance-related protein (LRP) has roles in multi-drug resistance of tumor cells. Understanding the mechanisms that regulate LRP expression in tumor cells is an important research area. A putative p53 response element in the LRP promoter has been found. Thus, p53-related regulation of LRP expression was explored in this study. We first demonstrated that p53 overexpression inhibited LRP expression both at the protein and mRNA levels. Then, using a dual-luciferase reporter assay, we located the p53 response element to the Y-box (−263∼−407) of the LRP promoter, the YB-1 binding site, but not the putative p53 response element. Furthermore, coimmunoprecipitation and chromatin immunoprecipitation showed p53 could bind to the Y-box of the LRP promoter through interaction of p53 with YB-1. YB-1 coexpression with p53 facilitated p53-induced suppression of endogenous LRP expression in MCF-7 cells. HDAC2, a corepressor of p53, was found to also interact with YB-1, and this interaction was mediated by p53. These results showed that the p53-HDAC2 transcriptional repressor complex can bind to the Y-box of the LRP promoter and repress LRP expression through interaction with YB-1. p53-related suppression of LRP expression was completely reversed by doxorubicin treatment and Adr, whereas CP and VP-16 treatment induced LRP expression increased significantly. Inhibition of LRP expression by siRNA facilitated Adr induced apoptosis of MCF-7 cells. All these findings indicated that loss of p53-related suppression of LRP may be the reason for LRP expression increase, and, therefore, chemotherapy resistance in tumor cells. J. Cell. Physiol. 226: 3433–3441, 2011. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.