Vav1 fine tunes p53 control of apoptosis versus proliferation in breast cancer.
ABSTRACT: Vav1 functions as a signal transducer protein in the hematopoietic system, where it is exclusively expressed. Vav1 was recently implicated in several human cancers, including lung, pancreatic and neuroblasoma. In this study, we analyzed the expression and function of Vav1 in human breast tumors and breast cancer cell lines. Immunohistochemical analysis of primary human breast carcinomas indicated that Vav1 is expressed in 62% of 65 tumors tested and is correlated positively with estrogen receptor expression. Based on published gene profiling of 50 breast cancer cell lines, several Vav1-expressing cell lines were identified. RT-PCR confirmed Vav1 mRNA expression in several of these cell lines, yet no detectable levels of Vav1 protein were observed due to cbl-c proteasomal degradation. We used two of these lines, MCF-7 (Vav1 mRNA negative) and AU565 (Vav1 mRNA positive), to explore the effect of Vav1 expression on breast cell phenotype and function. Vav1 expression had opposite effects on function in these two lines: it reduced proliferation and enhanced cell death in MCF-7 cells but enhanced proliferation in AU565 cells. Consistent with these findings, transcriptome analysis revealed an increase in expression of proliferation-related genes in Vav1-expressing AU565 cells compared to controls, and an increase in apoptosis-related genes in Vav1-expressing MCF-7 cells compared with controls. TUNEL and ?-H2AX foci assays confirmed that expression of Vav1 increased apoptosis in MCF-7 cells but not AU565 cells and shRNA experiments revealed that p53 is required for this pro-apoptotic effect of Vav1 in these cells. These results highlight for the first time the potential role of Vav1 as an oncogenic stress activator in cancer and the p53 dependence of its pro-apoptotic effect in breast cells.
Project description:The ErbB2/3 heterodimer plays a critical role in breast cancer genesis and progression. EBP1, an ErbB3 binding protein, inhibits breast cancer growth but its effects on ErbB3 ligand mediated signal transduction or ErbB receptors is not known. We report here that ectopic expression of EBP1 in MCF-7 and AU565 breast cancer cell lines inhibited HRG-induced proliferation. ErbB2 protein levels were substantially decreased in EBP1 transfectants, while ErbB3 levels were unchanged. HRG-induced AKT activation was attenuated in EBP1 stable transfectants and transfection of a constitutively activated AKT partially restored the growth response to HRG. Down-regulation of EBP1 expression in MCF-7 cells by shRNA resulted in increased cell growth in response to HRG and increased cyclin D1 and ErbB2 expression. These results suggest that EBP1, by down-regulating ErbB signal transduction, attentuates HRG-mediated growth of breast cancer cells.
Project description:Chronic inflammation is a well-known precursor for cancer development and proliferation. We have recently demonstrated that high salt (NaCl) synergizes with sub-effective interleukin (IL)-17 to induce breast cancer cell proliferation. However, the exact molecular mechanisms mediating this effect are unclear. In our current study, we adopted a phosphoproteomic-based approach to identify salt modulated kinase-proteome specific molecular targets. The phosphoprotemics based binary comparison between heavy labelled MCF-7 cells treated with high salt (?0.05 M NaCl) and light labelled MCF-7 cells cultured under basal conditions demonstrated an enhanced phosphorylation of Serine-493 of SIK3 protein. The mRNA transcript and protein expression analysis of SIK3 in MCF-7 cells demonstrated a synergistic enhancement following co-treatment with high salt and sub-effective IL-17 (0.1 ng/mL), as compared to either treatments alone. A similar increase in SIK3 expression was observed in other breast cancer cell lines, MDA-MB-231, BT20, and AU565, while non-malignant breast epithelial cell line, MCF10A, did not induce SIK3 expression under similar conditions. Biochemical studies revealed mTORC2 acted as upstream mediator of SIK3 phosphorylation. Importantly, cell cycle analysis by flow cytometry demonstrated SIK3 induced G0/G1-phase release mediated cell proliferation, while SIK3 silencing abolished this effect. Also, SIK3 induced pro-inflammatory arginine metabolism, as evidenced by upregulation of the enzymes iNOS and ASS-1, along with downregulation of anti-inflammatory enzymes, arginase-1 and ornithine decarboxylase. Furthermore, gelatin zymography analysis has demonstrated that SIK3 induced expression of tumor metastatic CXCR4 through MMP-9 activation. Taken together, our data suggests a critical role of SIK3 in mediating three important hallmarks of cancer namely, cell proliferation, inflammation and metastasis. These studies provide a mechanistic basis for the future utilization of SIK3 as a key drug discovery target to improve breast cancer therapy.
Project description:Tumor cells express programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) and is a key immune evasion mechanism. PD-L1 expression in multiple breast cancer cell lines was evaluated to identify intrinsic differences that affect their potential for immune evasion.PD-L1 expression was analyzed in six breast cancer cell lines: AU565&MCF7 (luminal), BT20&HCC1143 (basal A), MDA231&HCC38 (basal B). Surface and intracellular PD-L1 expression +/- interferon ? for 48 hours was measured by flow cytometry. PD-L1 gene expression data for all breast cancer cell lines in the Comprehensive Cell Line Encyclopedia (CCLE) was analyzed. Correlation between PD-L1 levels and clinicopathologic parameters was analyzed within Oncomine datasets. A tissue microarray containing 61 invasive breast cancer primary tumor cores was stained for PD-L1 expression and analyzed.Basal breast cancer cells constitutively express the highest levels of PD-L1. All cell lines increased PD-L1 expression with interferon ?, but basal B cells (MDA-231 and HCC38) demonstrated the largest increases. There were no differences in protein localization between cell lines. In the CCLE data, basal cell lines demonstrated higher mean PD-L1 expression compared to luminal cell lines. High PD-L1 expressing basal cell lines over-express genes involved in invasion, proliferation, and chemoresistance compared to low PD-L1 basal cell lines. High PD-L1 basal cell lines had lower expression of IRF2BP2 and higher STAT1 levels compared to low PD-L1 expressing cell lines. Within Oncomine datasets PDL1 mRNA levels were higher in basal type tumors. The TMA analysis demonstrated that lymph node positive cases had higher levels of PD-L1 protein expression compared to lymph node negative cases.Basal type breast cancer (especially basal B) express greater levels of PD-L1 constitutively and with IFN ?. High PD-L1 basal cells over-express genes involved in invasion, motility, and chemoresistance. Targeting PD-L1 may enhance eradication of aggressive breast cancer cells by the immune system.
Project description:Vav proteins are guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEF) for Rho family GTPases and are activated following engagement of membrane receptors. Overexpression of Vav proteins enhances lamellipodium and ruffle formation, migration, and cell spreading, and augments activation of many downstream signaling proteins like Rac, ERK and Akt. Vav proteins are composed of multiple structural domains that mediate their GEF function and binding interactions with many cellular proteins. In this report we examine the mechanisms responsible for stimulation of cell migration by an activated variant of Vav1 and identify the domains of Vav1 required for this activity.We found that expression of an active form of Vav1, Vav1Y3F, in MCF-10A mammary epithelial cells increases cell migration in the absence or presence of EGF. Vav1Y3F was also able to drive Rac1 activation and PAK and ERK phosphorylation in MCF-10A cells in the absence of EGF stimulation. Mutations in the Dbl homology, pleckstrin homology, or cysteine-rich domains of Vav1Y3F abolished Rac1 or ERK activation in the absence of EGF and blocked the migration-promoting activity of Vav1Y3F. In contrast, mutations in the SH2 and C-SH3 domains did not affect Rac activation by Vav1Y3F, but reduced the ability of Vav1Y3F to induce EGF-independent migration and constitutive ERK phosphorylation. EGF-independent migration of MCF-10A cells expressing Vav1Y3F was abolished by treatment of cells with an antibody that prevents ligand binding to the EGF receptor. In addition, conditioned media collected from Vav1Y3F expressing cells stimulated migration of parental MCF-10A cells. Lastly, treatment of cells with the EGF receptor inhibitory antibody blocked the Vav1Y3F-induced, EGF-independent stimulation of ERK phosphorylation, but had no effect on Rac1 activation or PAK phosphorylation.Our results indicate that increased migration of active Vav1 expressing cells is dependent on Vav1 GEF activity and secretion of an EGF receptor ligand. In addition, activation of ERK downstream of Vav1 is dependent on autocrine EGF receptor stimulation while active Vav1 can stimulate Rac1 and PAK activation independent of ligand binding to the EGF receptor. Thus, stimulation of migration by activated Vav1 involves both EGF receptor-dependent and independent activities induced through the Rho GEF domain of Vav1.
Project description:Breast cancer is the second leading cause of death among women globally. The existing treatment options for breast cancer are largely associated with severe toxicities, and lower efficacies. Therefore, there is an urgent need for the development of non-toxic effective drugs against breast cancer. For this purpose, drug repositioning strategy was used to evaluate the anti-cancer potential of a library of heterocyclic drugs. The major advantage of drug repurposing is that the pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic, and toxicity profiles of drugs are well documented. In the current study, we screened 97 drugs of different chemical classes, and among them aripiprazole, an antipsychotic drug, was found to be sufficiently active against breast cancer cell line MCF-7. Aripiprazole showed a cytotoxicity (IC50 = 12.1 ± 0.40 ?M) to MCF-7 cells, comparable to the standard anticancer drug doxorubicin (IC50 = 1.25 ± 0.34 ?M). Aripiprazole was also found to be active against other cancer cell lines, including MDA-MB-231 (IC50 = 19.83 ± 0.27 ?M), AU565 (IC50 = 18.02 ± 0.44 ?M), and BT-474 (IC50 = 36.42 ± 0.12 ?M). Aripiprazole significantly inhibited the cell cycle progression at subG0G1 phase, and enhanced apoptosis in MCF-7 breast cancer cells. The drug was also able to significantly increase the nuclear condensation, and modulated the expression of certain genes involved in breast cancer, such as caspases 3, and 9, BAK-1, C-MYC, BCL2L1, BCL-10, and BCL-2. Further studies are needed to explore the effect of aripiprazole on intrinsic and extrinsic pathways of apoptosis in cancer cells.
Project description:Vav1, a guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) for Rho family GTPases, is a hematopoietic protein involved in a variety of cellular events. In recent years, aberrant expression of Vav1 has been reported in non-hematopoietic cancers including human breast cancer. It remains to be answered how Vav1 is expressed and what Vav1 does in its non-resident tissues. In this study, we aimed to explore the mechanism for Vav1 expression in breast cancer cells in correlation with estrogen-ER pathway. We not only verified the ectopic expression of Vav1 in human breast cancer cell lines, but also observed that Vav1 expression was induced by 17?-estradiol (E2), a typical estrogen receptor (ER) ligand, in ER-positive cell lines. On the other hand, Tamoxifen, a selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM), and ICI 182,780, an ER antagonist, suppressed the expression of Vav1. The estrogen receptor modulating Vav1 expression was identified to be ? form, not ?. Furthermore, treatment of E2 increased the transcription of vav1 gene by enhancing the promoter activity, though there was no recognizable estrogen response element (ERE). Nevertheless, two regions at the vav1 gene promoter were defined to be responsible for E2-induced activation of vav1 promoter. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) and co-immunoprecipitation (Co-IP) analyses suggested that ER? might access to the vav1 promoter via interacting with transcription factors, c-Myb and ELF-1. Consequently, the enhanced expression of Vav1 led to the elevation of Cyclin D1 and the progression of cell cycle. The present study implies that estrogen-ER modulates the transcription and expression of Vav1, which may contribute to the proliferation of cancerous cells.
Project description:The purpose of this study was to determine the role of long-chain fatty acyl-CoA synthetase 4 (ACSL4) in breast cancer. Public databases were utilized to analyze the relationship between ACSL4 mRNA expression and the presence of steroid hormone and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) in both breast cancer cell lines and tissue samples. In addition, cell lines were utilized to assess the consequences of either increased or decreased levels of ACSL4 expression. Proliferation, migration, anchorage-independent growth and apoptosis were used as biological end points. Effects on mRNA expression and signal transduction pathways were also monitored. A meta-analysis of public gene expression databases indicated that ACSL4 expression is positively correlated with a unique subtype of triple negative breast cancer (TNBC), characterized by the absence of androgen receptor (AR) and therefore referred to as quadruple negative breast cancer (QNBC). Results of experiments in breast cancer cell lines suggest that simultaneous expression of ACSL4 and a receptor is associated with hormone resistance. Forced expression of ACSL4 in ACSL4-negative, estrogen receptor ? (ER)-positive MCF-7 cells resulted in increased growth, invasion and anchorage independent growth, as well as a loss of dependence on estrogen that was accompanied by a reduction in the levels of steroid hormone receptors. Sensitivity to tamoxifen, triacsin C and etoposide was also attenuated. Similarly, when HER2-positive, ACSL4-negative, SKBr3 breast cancer cells were induced to express ACSL4, the proliferation rate increased and the apoptotic effect of lapatinib was reduced. The growth stimulatory effect of ACSL4 expression was also observed in vivo in nude mice when MCF-7 control and ACSL4-expressing cells were utilized to induce tumors. Our data strongly suggest that ACSL4 can serve as both a biomarker for, and mediator of, an aggressive breast cancer phenotype.
Project description:Transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) is a potent inhibitor of growth and proliferation of breast epithelial cells, and loss of sensitivity to its effects has been associated with malignant transformation and tumorigenesis. The biological effects of TGF-beta are mediated by the TGF-beta receptor complex, a multimer composed of TGF-beta receptor type I (TbetaR-I) and TGF-beta receptor type II (TbetaR-II) subunits. Evidence suggests that loss of expression of Tbeta3R-II is implicated in the loss of sensitivity of tumorigenic breast cell lines to TGF-beta-mediated growth inhibition. A panel of human breast cell lines, including the immortalized MCF-10F and tumorigenic MCF-7, ZR75-1, BT474, T47-D, MDA-MB231, BT20, and SKBR-3 cell lines, was characterized for responsiveness to TGF-beta-induced G1 growth arrest. Only the nontumorigenic MCF-10F and the tumorigenic MDA-MB231 cell lines demonstrated a significant inhibitory response to TGF-beta1 and a significant binding of 125I-labeled TGF-beta ligand. While expression of TbetaR-I mRNA was similar across the panel of cell lines, TbetaR-II mRNA expression was decreased significantly in all seven tumorigenic cell lines in comparison with the nontumorigenic MCF- 10F cell line. When total cellular protein was fractionated by centrifugation, TbetaR-I protein was observed in both the cytosolic and membrane fractions at similar levels in all cell lines; however, TbetaR-II protein was present in the cytosolic fraction in all cell lines, but was observed in the membrane fraction of only the TGF-beta-responsive MCF-10F and MDA-MB231 cells. Thus, lack of membrane-bound TbetaR-II protein appears to be an important determinant of resistance to TGF-beta-mediated growth inhibition in this group of breast cell lines.
Project description:Previous phase I DNA-vaccine based clinical trials using Mammaglobin-A (Mam-A), a human breast tumor associated antigen (TAA), demonstrated that this agent was safe and efficient at treating patients with stage IV breast cancer. The long-term success of cancer vaccines is limited by the diminished expression of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I molecules in the tumor microenvironment. The current study assessed the impact of various selenocompounds on the expression of HLA class I molecules in THP-1 cells, an apparent proficient antigen that presents a human monocyte-like cell line, and their eventual activation of MamA2.1 (HLA-A2 immunodominant epitope of Mam-A) specific cytotoxic CD8+ T lymphocytes (CTLs). The results revealed that, following treatment with methylselenol producing compounds [methylselenic acid (MSA) and dimethylselenide (DMDSe)], the expression of HLA class-I was increased and components involved with the antigen presentation machinery of THP-1 cells were upregulated. Furthermore, CTLs activated by MamA2.1 peptide presenting THP-1 cells, pre-treated with MSA and DMDSe, demonstrated an enhanced cytotoxicity in HLA-A2+/Mam-A+ AU565 and UACC-812 breast cancer cell lines when compared with CTLs activated by THP-1 cells without drug treatment. However, no significant cytotoxicity was observed under similar conditions in HLA-A2+/Mam-A- MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell lines. The results indicated that treatment with methylselenol producing compounds retained antigen-dependent activation of CD8+ T cells. The data of the current study demonstrated that MSA and DMDSe potentiated effector cytotoxic responses following TAA specific activation of CTLs, indicating their future role as vaccine adjuvants in cancer immunotherapy.
Project description:Epigenetic changes associated with promoter DNA methylation results in silencing of several tumor suppressor genes that lead to increased risk for tumor formation and for progression of the cancer.Methylation specific PCR (MSP) and bisulfite sequencing were used for determination of proapoptotic gene Caspase 8 (CASP8) and the tumor suppressor gene maspin promoter methylation in four breast cancer and two non-tumorigenic breast cell lines. Involvement of histone H3 methylation in those cell lines were examined by CHIP assay.The CpG sites in the promoter region of CASP8 and maspin were methylated in all four breast cancer cell lines but not in two non-tumorigenic breast cell lines. Demethylation agent 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine (5-aza-dc) selectively inhibits DNA methyltransferases, DNMT3a and DNMT3b, and restored CASP8 and maspin gene expression in breast cancer cells. 5-aza-dc also reduced histone H3k9me2 occupancy on CASP8 promoter in SKBR3cells, but not in MCF-7 cells. Combination of histone deacetylase inhibitor Trichostatin A (TSA) and 5-aza-dc significant decrease in nuclear expression of Di-methyl histone H3-Lys27 and slight increase in acetyl histone H3-Lys9 in MCF-7 cells. CASP8 mRNA and protein level in MCF-7 cells were increased by the 5-aza-dc in combination with TSA. Data from our study also demonstrated that treatment with 5-FU caused a significant increase in unmethylated CASP8 and in CASP8 mRNA in all 3 cancer lines.CASP8 and maspin expression were reduced in breast cancer cells due to promoter methylation. Selective application of demethylating agents could offer novel therapeutic opportunities in breast cancer.