Six1 promotes proliferation of pancreatic cancer cells via upregulation of cyclin D1 expression.
ABSTRACT: Six1 is one of the transcription factors that act as master regulators of development and are frequently dysregulated in cancers. However, the role of Six1 in pancreatic cancer is not clear. Here we show that the relative expression of Six1 mRNA is increased in pancreatic cancer and correlated with advanced tumor stage. In vitro functional assays demonstrate that forced overexpression of Six1 significantly enhances the growth rate and proliferation ability of pancreatic cancer cells. Knockdown of endogenous Six1 decreases the proliferation of these cells dramatically. Furthermore, Six1 promotes the growth of pancreatic cancer cells in a xenograft assay. We also show that the gene encoding cyclin D1 is a direct transcriptional target of Six1 in pancreatic cancer cells. Overexpression of Six1 upregulates cyclin D1 mRNA and protein, and significantly enhances the activity of the cyclin D1 promoter in PANC-1 cells. We demonstrate that Six1 promotes cell cycle progression and proliferation by upregulation of cyclin D1. These data suggest that Six1 is overexpressed in pancreatic cancer and may contribute to the increased cell proliferation through upregulation of cyclin D1.
Project description:Homeobox genes constitute a large family of transcription factors that are essential during normal development and are often dysregulated in cancer. However, the molecular mechanisms by which homeobox genes influence cancer remain largely unknown. Here we show that the tissue-restricted cyclin A1 is a transcriptional target of the Six1 homeoprotein. Both genes are expressed in the embryonic but not the terminally differentiated mammary gland, and Six1-knockout mice show a dramatic reduction of cyclin A1 in the embryonic mammary gland. In addition, both genes are reexpressed in breast cancers. Six1 overexpression increases cyclin A1 mRNA levels and activity, cell proliferation, and tumor volume, whereas Six1 down-regulation decreases cyclin A1 mRNA levels and proliferation. Overexpression of Six1 in wild-type mouse embryonic fibroblasts, but not in knockout variants lacking the cyclin A1 gene, induces cell proliferation. Furthermore, inhibition of cyclin A1 in Six1-overexpressing mammary carcinoma cells decreases proliferation. Together these results demonstrate that cyclin A1 is required for the proliferative effect of Six1. We conclude that Six1 overexpression reinstates an embryonic pathway of proliferation in breast cancer by up-regulating cyclin A1.
Project description:Fewer than 30% of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) are eligible to receive curative therapies, and so a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms of HCC is needed to identify potential therapeutic targets. The role of microRNA (miRNA) in modulating tumour progression has been demonstrated, and therapies targeting miRNA appear promising. miR-204-5p has been shown to function in numerous types of cancer, but its role in HCC remains unclear. In this study, we found that miR-204-5p expression was downregulated in cancerous HCC tissues compared to nontumour tissues. Kaplan-Meier survival curve analysis also showed that low expression of miR-204-5p predicted worse outcomes of HCC patients. In addition, miR-204-5p expression was significantly lower in HCC cell lines. The function of miR-204-5p was also assessed both in vitro and in vivo. We demonstrated that ectopic expression of miR-204-5p in HCC cell lines inhibited HCC cell proliferation and clonogenicity using CCK8, BrdU and colony-forming assays, while the inhibition of miR-204-5p enhanced proliferation and clonogenicity. Further in vivo studies in mice further confirmed the proliferation capacity of miR-204-5p. We also identified sine oculis homeobox homologue 1 (SIX1) as a direct target of miR-204-5p and showed that it was inversely correlated with miR-204-5p in both human and mouse HCC tissues. Transfection of miR-204-5p mimics in BEL-7404 cells blocked the cell cycle by inhibiting the expression of cyclin-D1 and cyclin-A1, cell cycle-related factors regulated by SIX1. More importantly, overexpression of the 3'UTR mutant SIX1 but not the wild-type SIX1 abolished the suppressive effect of miR-204-5p, and downregulated SIX1 in BEL-7402 cells that transfected with miR-204 inhibitors could partly block the inhibitory effect of miR-204-5p on proliferation. Thus, we have demonstrated that miR-204-5p suppresses HCC proliferation by directly regulating SIX1 and its downstream factors.
Project description:Six1 is a developmentally regulated homeoprotein with limited expression in most normal adult tissues and frequent misexpression in a variety of malignancies. Here we demonstrate, using a bitransgenic mouse model, that misexpression of human Six1 in adult mouse mammary gland epithelium induces tumors of multiple histological subtypes in a dose-dependent manner. The neoplastic lesions induced by Six1 had an in situ origin, showed diverse differentiation, and exhibited progression to aggressive malignant neoplasms, as is often observed in human carcinoma of the breast. Strikingly, the vast majority of Six1-induced tumors underwent an epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and expressed multiple targets of activated Wnt signaling, including cyclin D1. Interestingly, Six1 and cyclin D1 coexpression was found to frequently occur in human breast cancers and was strongly predictive of poor prognosis. We further show that Six1 promoted a stem/progenitor cell phenotype in the mouse mammary gland and in Six1-driven mammary tumors. Our data thus provide genetic evidence for a potent oncogenic role for Six1 in mammary epithelial neoplasia, including promotion of EMT and stem cell-like features.
Project description:It is universally accepted that aberrant metabolism facilitates tumor growth. However, how cancer cells coordinate glucose metabolism and tumor proliferation is largely unknown. Sine oculis homeobox homolog 1 (SIX1) is a transcription factor that belongs to the SIX family and is believed to play an important role in the regulation of the Warburg effect in tumors. However, whether the role of SIX1 and the molecular mechanisms that regulate its activity are similar in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) still needs further investigation. Methods: Western blotting was performed to determine the levels of SIX1 and O-linked ?-N-acetylglucosaminylation (O-GlcNAcylation) in HCC tissues. Cell Counting Kit 8 (CCK8), colony formation and mouse tumor model assays were used to establish the role of SIX1 and O-GlcNAcylation in HCC processes. Mass spectrometry, immunoprecipitation and site-directed mutagenesis were performed to confirm the O-GlcNAcylation of SIX1. Results: Here, we demonstrated that SIX1, the key transcription factor regulating the Warburg effect in cancer, promotes HCC growth in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, we revealed that SIX1 could also enhance the levels of a posttranslational modification called O-GlcNAcylation. Importantly, we found that SIX1 was also highly modified by O-GlcNAcylation and that O-GlcNAcylation inhibited the ubiquitination degradation of SIX1. In addition, site-directed mutagenesis at position 276 (T276A) decreased the O-GlcNAcylation level and reversed the protumor effect of SIX1. Conclusions: We conclude that O-GlcNAcylation of SIX1 enhances its stability and promotes HCC proliferation. Our findings illustrate a novel feedback loop of SIX1 and O-GlcNAcylation and show that O-GlcNAcylation of SIX1 is an important way to coordinate glucose metabolism and tumor progression.
Project description:Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and cancer stem cells (CSC) contribute to tumour progression and metastasis. Assessment of transcription factors involved in these two mechanisms can help to identify new targets for an oncological therapy. In this study, we focused on the evaluation of the transcription factor Six1 (Sine oculis 1). This protein is involved in embryologic development and its contribution to carcinogenesis has been described in several studies.Immunohistochemistry against Six1 was performed on a tissue microarray containing specimens of primary pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDAC) of 139 patients. Nuclear and cytoplasmic expression was evaluated and correlated to histopathological parameters. Expression of Six1 was inhibited transiently by siRNA in Panc1 and BxPc3 cells and stably by shRNA in Panc1 cells. Expression analysis of CDH1 and Vimentin mRNA was performed and cell motility was tested in a migration assay. Panc1 cells transfected with Six1 shRNA or scrambled shRNA were injected subcutaneously into nude mice. Tumour growth was observed for four weeks. Afterwards, tumours were stained against Six1, CD24 and CD44.Six1 was overexpressed in the cytoplasm and cellular nuclei in malignant tissues (p < 0.0001). No correlation to histopathological parameters could be detected. Six1 down-regulation decreased pancreatic cancer cell motility in vitro. CDH1 and vimentin expression was decreased after inhibition of the expression of Six1. Pancreatic tumours with impaired expression of Six1 showed significantly delayed growth and displayed loss of the CD24+/CD44+ phenotype.We show that Six1 is overexpressed in human PDAC and that its inhibition results in a decreased tumour progression in vitro and in vivo. Therefore, targeting Six1 might be a novel therapeutic approach in patients with pancreatic cancer.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the deadliest and most common form of malignant primary brain tumor in humans. However, until now, little is known about the glioma genesis and progression at the molecular level. Here we report that overexpression of sine oculis homeobox homolog 1 (Six1), a developmental transcription factor implicated in tumor onset and progression, can significantly promote glioblastoma cell proliferation and invasion by upregulating connective tissue growth factor (CTGF). Our results revealed that expression of Six1 mRNA was increased and small hairpin RNAi silencing of Six1 could dramatically inhibit cell proliferation and invasion in GBM. Moreover, it was found that CTGF gene could be transcriptionally regulated by Six1. Its overexpression induced CTGF up-regulation in GBM at both the mRNA and protein level, and significantly enhanced the activity of CTGF promoter in these tumor cells, while decreasing CTGF expression impeded Six1-induced cell proliferation and invasion, revealing that CTGF is required for Six1-mediated GBM growth and metastasis. Collectively, these findings suggest that Six1 overexpression may contribute to cell proliferation and invasion via upregulation of CTGF in GBM. Our study provides new insights into the important roles of Six1 and CTGF in tumor regulation, suggesting that Six1 might be a potential therapeutic target for preventing proliferation and metastasis of GBM.
Project description:TMPRSS4 is a novel type II transmembrane serine protease found at the cell surface that is highly expressed in pancreatic, colon, and other cancer tissues. Previously, we demonstrated that TMPRSS4 mediates tumor cell invasion, migration, and metastasis. We also found that TMPRSS4 activates the transcription factor activating protein-1 (AP-1) to induce cancer cell invasion. Here, we explored TMPRSS4-mediated cellular functions and the underlying mechanisms. TMPRSS4 induced Slug, an epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT)-inducing transcription factor, and cyclin D1 through activation of AP-1, composed of c-Jun and activating transcription factor (ATF)-2, which resulted in enhanced invasion and proliferation of PC3 prostate cancer cells. In PC3 cells, not only c-Jun but also Slug was required for TMPRSS4-mediated proliferation and invasion. Interestingly, Slug induced phosphorylation of c-Jun and ATF-2 to activate AP-1 through upregulation of Axl, establishing a positive feedback loop between Slug and AP-1, and thus induced cyclin D1, leading to enhanced proliferation. Using data from The Cancer Genome Atlas, we found that Slug expression positively correlated with that of c-Jun and cyclin D1 in human prostate cancers. Expression of Slug was positively correlated with that of cyclin D1 in various cancer cell lines, whereas expression of other EMT-inducing transcription factors was not. This study demonstrates that TMPRSS4 modulates both invasion and proliferation via Slug and cyclin D1, which is a previously unrecognized pathway that may regulate metastasis and cancer progression.
Project description:The aim of this study was to assess the biological consequences of cyclin D1 silencing in pancreatic cancer cells. A replication-defective lentivirus based small hairpin RNA (shRNA) system targeting cyclin D1 caused a marked reduction in cyclin D1 protein levels in ASPC-1 and BxPC3 pancreatic cancer cell lines in conjunction with decreased cell growth and invasiveness in vitro. Moreover, a single intratumoral injection of the recombinant lentivirus targeting cyclin D1 attenuated the growth of pre-existing tumors arising from two distinct cell lines. This attenuated growth correlated with decreased proliferation and angiogenesis, as well as attenuated vascular endothelial growth factor expression. It is concluded that lentivirus-delivered shRNA targeting cyclin D1 suppresses the growth, invasiveness, tumorigenicity and pro-angiogenic potential of human pancreatic cancer cells, thereby raising the possibility that intratumoral injections of viruses targeting cyclin D1 could provide a new therapeutic approach in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma.
Project description:The Six1 homeodomain protein is a developmental transcription factor that has been implicated in tumor onset and progression. Recently, it's reported that overexpression of Six1 is sufficient to induce epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and metastasis of colorectal cancer. Moreover, its expression is significantly associated with poorer overall survival probability in advanced-stage colorectal cancer. To address whether Six1 could serve as a therapeutic target for human colorectal cancer, we used a lentivirus-mediated short hairpin RNA (shRNA) gene knockdown method to suppress the expression of Six1 in colorectal cancer cells. We showed that lentivirusmediated shRNA targeted to Six1 gene efficiently reduced its expression in colorectal cancer cells at both mRNA and protein levels. In vitro functional assays revealed that knockdown of Six1 significantly suppressed cell proliferation, and inhibited cell migration and invasion of colorectal cancer cells. Furthermore, tumor xenograft model demonstrated that downregulation of Six1 dramatically inhibited colorectal cancer growth in vivo. In conclusion, these findings suggest that lentivirus-mediated Six1 inhibition may represent a novel therapeutic approach for treatment of colorectal cancer.
Project description:Pancreatic cancer is highly malignant and characterised by rapid and uncontrolled growth. While some of the important regulatory networks involved in pancreatic cancer have been determined, the cancer relevant genes have not been fully identified.We screened genes that may control proliferation in pancreatic cancer in seven pairs of matched pancreatic cancer and normal pancreatic tissue samples. We examined KIF15 expression in pancreatic cancer tissues and the effect of KIF15 on cell proliferation in vitro and in vivo. The mechanisms underlying KIF15 promotion of cell proliferation were investigated.mRNA microarray and functional analysis identified 22 genes that potentially play an important role in the proliferation of pancreatic cancer. High-content siRNA screening evaluated whether silencing these 22 genes affected proliferation of pancreatic cancer. Notably, silencing KIF15 exhibited the most potent inhibition of proliferation compared with the rest of the 22 genes. KIF15 was upregulated in human pancreatic cancer tissues, and higher KIF15 expression levels correlated with shorter patient survival times. Upregulation KIF15 promoted pancreatic cancer growth. KIF15 upregulated cyclin D1, CDK2, and phospho-RB and also promoted G1/S transition in pancreatic cancer cells. KIF15 upregulation activated MEK-ERK signalling by increasing p-MEK and p-ERK levels. MEK-ERK inhibitors successfully inhibited cell cycle progression, and PD98059 blocked KIF15-mediated pancreatic cancer proliferation in vivo and in vitro.This study identified KIF15 as a critical regulator that promotes pancreatic cancer proliferation, broadening our understanding of KIF15 function in tumorigenesis.