Stathmin is overexpressed and regulated by mutant p53 in oral squamous cell carcinoma.
ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to investigate the oncogenic function and regulatory mechanism of stathmin in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC).Two-dimensional electrophoresis and liquid chromatography-tandem mass chromatography were applied to screen differentiated proteins during carcinogenesis in OSCC. Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK-8) assays, colony formation, migration, flow cytometry, immunofluorescence and a xenograft model were used to detect the function of stathmin. The correlation between stathmin and p53 expression was analyzed using immunohistochemistry. Mutant/wild type p53 plasmids and small interfering RNA were used to examine the regulation of stathmin. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays and luciferase assays were performed to detect the transcriptional activation of stathmin by p53.Overexpression of stathmin was screened and confirmed in OSCC patients and cell lines. Silencing expression of stathmin inhibited proliferation, colony formation and migration and promoted apoptosis. Poly ADP ribose polymerase (PARP) and cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (cdc2) were activated after silencing the expression of stathmin. Suppression of tumorigenicity was also confirmed in vivo. Mutant p53 transcriptionally activated the expression of stathmin in HN6 and HN13 cancer cells, but not in HN30 cells harboring wild type p53.These results suggest that stathmin acts as an oncogene and is transcriptionally regulated by mutant p53, but not by wild-type p53. Stathmin could be a potential anti-tumor therapeutic target in OSCC.
Project description:The influence of autophagy inhibition on radiation sensitivity was studied in human breast, head and neck, and non-small cell lung cancer cell lines, in cell lines that were either wild type or mutant/null in p53, and in cells where p53 was inducible or silenced. Whereas ionizing radiation promoted autophagy in all tumor cell lines studied, pharmacological inhibition of autophagy and/or genetic silencing of autophagy genes failed to influence sensitivity to radiation in p53 mutant Hs578t breast tumor cells, HN6 head and neck tumor cells, and H358 non-small cell lung cancer cells. The requirement for functional p53 in the promotion of cytoprotective autophagy by radiation was confirmed by the observation that radiation-induced autophagy was nonprotective in p53 null H1299 cells but was converted to the cytoprotective form with induction of p53. Conversely, whereas p53 wild-type HN30 head and neck cancer cells did show sensitization to radiation upon autophagy inhibition, HN30 cells in which p53 was knocked down using small hairpin RNA failed to be sensitized by pharmacological autophagy inhibition. Taken together, these findings indicate that radiation-induced autophagy can be either cytoprotective or nonprotective, a functional difference related to the presence or absence of function p53. Alternatively, these findings could be interpreted to suggest that whereas radiation can induce autophagy independent of p53 status, inhibition of autophagy promotes enhanced radiation sensitivity through a mechanism that requires functional p53. These observations are likely to have direct implications with respect to clinical efforts to modulate the response of malignancies to radiation through autophagy inhibition.
Project description:Background: Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is considered to be vital during chemotherapy resistance in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). Recently, eukaryotic initiation factor 5A-2 (eIF5A-2), a potential oncogene, has been reported to be involved in chemotherapy resistance in human cancers. Materials and Methods: N1-guanyl-1,7-diaminoheptane (GC7, a novel eIF5A-2 inhibitor) or siRNA on responses to doxorubicin were examined in OSCC cells. Cytotoxicity and protein expression were evaluated by CCK-8 and EdU incorporation assay and western blotting. Tca8113 cells were used for establishment and treatment of tumor xenografts in vivo. Results: Low concentration of GC7 (5??) significantly enhanced doxorubicin cytotoxicity in both epithelial phenotype OSCC cells (Cal27) and mesenchymal phenotype OSCC cells (HN30 and Tca8113). EMT process promoted by doxorubicin in Cal27 cells could be reversed by GC7. Additionally, GC7 induced mesenchymal-epithelial transition (MET) in HN30 and Tca8113 cells. Silencing of eIF5A-2 by specific siRNA exhibited the similar effects. The synergistic cytotoxicity of doxorubicin/GC7 combination was not induced in Twist-1, an EMT driving factor, silenced Cal27, HN30, and Tca8113 cells. GC7 also synergized doxorubicin to inhibit tumor growth in vivo treatment. Conclusions: Our study strongly proved that combined treatment with GC7 may boost the therapeutic effect of doxorubicin in OSCC by inhibiting the EMT.
Project description:The survival benefit from docetaxel, cisplatin and 5-fluorouracil (TPF) induction chemotherapy in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) patients is not satisfactory. Previously, we identified that stathmin, a microtubule-destabilizing protein, is overexpressed in OSCC. Here, we further investigated its role as a biomarker that impacts on OSCC chemosensitivity. We analyzed the predictive value of stathmin on TPF induction chemotherapy and its impact on OSCC cell chemosensitivity. Then, we further investigated the therapeutic effects of the combination therapy of TPF chemotherapy and PI3K-AKT-mTOR inhibitors in vitro and in vivo. We found that OSCC patients with low stathmin expression benefited from TPF induction chemotherapy, while OSCC patients with high stathmin expression could not benefit from TPF induction chemotherapy. Stathmin overexpression promoted cellular proliferation and decreased OSCC cell sensitivity to TPF treatment. In addition, inhibition of the PI3K-AKT-mTOR signaling pathway decreased stathmin expression and phosphorylation. The combination therapy of TPF chemotherapy and PI3K-AKT-mTOR inhibitors exhibited a potent antitumor effect both in vitro and in vivo. Therefore, stathmin can be used as a predictive biomarker for TPF induction chemotherapy and a combination therapy regimen based on stathmin expression might improve the survival of OSCC patients.
Project description:Stathmin is a p53-target gene, frequently overexpressed in late stages of human cancer progression. Type II High Grade Epithelial Ovarian Carcinomas (HG-EOC) represents the only clear exception to this observation. Here, we show that stathmin expression is necessary for the survival of HG-EOC cells carrying a p53 mutant (p53(MUT) ) gene. At molecular level, stathmin favours the binding and the phosphorylation of p53(MUT) by DNA-PKCS , eventually modulating p53(MUT) stability and transcriptional activity. Inhibition of stathmin or DNA-PKCS impaired p53(MUT) -dependent transcription of several M phase regulators, resulting in M phase failure and EOC cell death, both in vitro and in vivo. In primary human EOC a strong correlation exists between stathmin, DNA-PKCS , p53(MUT) overexpression and its transcriptional targets, further strengthening the relevance of the new pathway here described. Overall our data support the hypothesis that the expression of stathmin and p53 could be useful for the identification of high risk patients that will benefit from a therapy specifically acting on mitotic cancer cells.
Project description:Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is the most common type of oral cancer worldwide and in the United States. OSCC remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with head and neck cancers. Tobacco and alcohol consumption alone or with chewing betel nut are potential risk factors contributing to the high prevalence of OSCC. Multimodality therapies, including surgery, chemotherapy, biologic therapy, and radiotherapy, particularly intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT), are the current treatments for OSCC patients. Despite recent advances in these treatment modalities, the overall survival remains poor over the past years. Recent data from whole-exome sequencing reveal that TP53 is commonly mutated in human papillomavirus-negative OSCC patients. Furthermore, these data stressed the importance of the TP53 gene in suppressing the development and progression of OSCC. Clinically, TP53 mutations are largely associated with poor survival and tumor resistance to radiotherapy and chemotherapy in OSCC patients, which makes the TP53 mutation status a potentially useful molecular marker prognostic and predictive of clinical response in these patients. Several forms of DNA damage have been shown to activate p53, including those generated by ionizing radiation and chemotherapy. The DNA damage stabilizes p53 in part via the DNA damage signaling pathway that involves sensor kinases, including ATM and ATR and effector kinases, such as Chk1/2 and Wee1, which leads to posttranscriptional regulation of a variety of genes involved in DNA repair, cell cycle control, apoptosis, and senescence. Here, we discuss the link of TP53 mutations with treatment outcome and survival in OSCC patients. We also provide evidence that small-molecule inhibitors of critical proteins that regulate DNA damage repair and replication stress during the cell cycle progression, as well as other molecules that restore wild-type p53 activity to mutant p53, can be exploited as novel therapeutic approaches for the treatment of OSCC patients bearing p53 mutant tumors.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Long intergenic noncoding RNA p21 (lincRNA-p21) is considered a target of wild-type p53, but little is known about its regulation by mutant p53 and its functions during the progression of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). METHODS:RNAscope was used to detect the expression and distribution of lincRNA-p21. Chromatin immunoprecipitation and electrophoretic mobility shift assays were performed to analyze the transcriptional regulation of lincRNA-p21 in HNSCC cells. The biological functions of lincRNA-p21 were investigated in vitro and in vivo. RNA immunoprecipitation and pull-down assays were used to detect the direct binding of lincRNA-p21. RESULTS:Lower lincRNA-p21 expression was observed in HNSCC tissues and indicated worse prognosis. Both wild and mutant type p53 transcriptionally regulated lincRNA-p21, but nuclear transcription factor Y subunit alpha (NF-YA) was essential for mutant p53 in the regulation of lincRNA-p21. Ectopic expression of lincRNA-p21 significantly inhibited cell proliferation capacity in vitro and in vivo and vice versa. Moreover, the overexpression of lincRNA-p21 induced G1 arrest and apoptosis. Knockdown NF-YA expression reversed tumor suppressor activation of lincRNA-p21 in mutant p53 cells, not wild-type p53 cells. A negative correlation was observed between lincRNA-p21 and the phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (p-STAT3) in HNSCC tissues. High lincRNA-p21 expression inhibited Janus kinase 2 (JAK2)/STAT3 signal activation and vice versa. Further, we observed direct binding to STAT3 by lincRNA-p21 in HNSCC cells, which suppressed STAT3-induced oncogenic potential. CONCLUSIONS:Our results revealed the transcriptional regulation of lincRNA-p21 by the mutant p53/NF-YA complex in HNSCC. LincRNA-p21 acted as a tumor suppressor in HNSCC progression, which was attributed to direct binding to STAT3 and blocking of JAK2/STAT3 signaling.
Project description:The development of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is a multistep process that requires the accumulation of genetic alterations. To identify genes responsible for OSCC development, we performed high-density single nucleotide polymorphism array analysis and genome-wide gene expression profiling on OSCC tumors. These analyses indicated that the absent in melanoma 2 (AIM2) gene and the interferon-inducible gene 16 (IFI16) mapped to the hematopoietic interferon-inducible nuclear proteins. The 200-amino-acid repeat gene cluster in the amplified region of chromosome 1q23 is overexpressed in OSCC. Both AIM2 and IFI16 are cytoplasmic double-stranded DNA sensors for innate immunity and act as tumor suppressors in several human cancers. Knockdown of AIM2 or IFI16 in OSCC cells results in the suppression of cell growth and apoptosis, accompanied by the downregulation of nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells activation. Because all OSCC cell lines have reduced p53 activity, wild-type p53 was introduced in p53-deficient OSCC cells. The expression of wild-type p53 suppressed cell growth and induced apoptosis via suppression of nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells activity. Finally, the co-expression of AIM2 and IFI16 significantly enhanced cell growth in p53-deficient cells; in contrast, the expression of AIM2 and/or IFI16 in cells bearing wild-type p53 suppressed cell growth. Moreover, AIM2 and IFI16 synergistically enhanced nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells signaling in p53-deficient cells. Thus, expression of AIM2 and IFI16 may have oncogenic activities in the OSCC cells that have inactivated the p53 system.
Project description:Functional reactivation of p53 pathway, although arduous, can potentially provide a broad-based strategy for cancer therapy owing to frequent p53 inactivation in human cancer. Using a phosphoprotein-screening array, we found that Benzyl Isothiocynate, (BITC) increases p53 phosphorylation in breast cancer cells and reveal an important role of ERK and PRAS40/MDM2 in BITC-mediated p53 activation. We show that BITC rescues and activates p53-signaling network and inhibits growth of p53-mutant cells. Mechanistically, BITC induces p73 expression in p53-mutant cells, disrupts the interaction of p73 and mutant-p53, thereby releasing p73 from sequestration and allowing it to be transcriptionally active. Furthermore, BITC-induced p53 and p73 axes converge on tumor-suppressor LKB1 which is transcriptionally upregulated by p53 and p73 in p53-wild-type and p53-mutant cells respectively; and in a feed-forward mechanism, LKB1 tethers with p53 and p73 to get recruited to p53-responsive promoters. Analyses of BITC-treated xenografts using LKB1-null cells corroborate in vitro mechanistic findings and establish LKB1 as the key node whereby BITC potentiates as well as rescues p53-pathway in p53-wild-type as well as p53-mutant cells. These data provide first in vitro and in vivo evidence of the integral role of previously unrecognized crosstalk between BITC, p53/LKB1 and p73/LKB1 axes in breast tumor growth-inhibition.
Project description:The microtubule-destabilizing protein stathmin is highly expressed in several types of tumor, thus deserving the name of oncoprotein 18. High levels of stathmin expression and/or activity favor the metastatic spreading and mark the most aggressive tumors, thus representing a realistic marker of poor prognosis. Stathmin is a downstream target of many signaling pathways, including Ras-MAPK, PI3K and p53, involved in both tumor onset and progression. We thus hypothesized that stathmin could also play a role during the early stages of tumorigenesis, an issue completely unexplored. In order to establish whether stathmin expression is necessary for tumor initiation, we challenged wild type (WT), stathmin heterozygous and stathmin knock-out (KO) mice with different carcinogens. Using well-defined mouse models of carcinogenesis of skin, bladder and muscle by the means of 7,12-dimethylbenz[?]antracene (DMBA)/12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA), N-butyl-N-(4-hydroxybutyl) nitrosamine (BBN) and 3-methylcholanthrylene (3MC) treatments, respectively, we demonstrated that knock-out of stathmin has no impact on the onset of cancer in mice. No significant difference was noticed either when the Ras oncogene was mutated (skin carcinogenesis model) or when the p53 pathway was inactivated (bladder carcinomas and fibrosarcomas). Finally, we concomitantly impinged on p53 and Ras pathways, by generating WT and stathmin KO mouse embryo fibroblasts transformed with papilloma virus large T antigen (LgTAg) plus the K-Ras(G12V) oncogene. In vivo growth of xenografts from these transformed fibroblasts did not highlight any significant difference depending on the presence or absence of stathmin. Overall, our work demonstrates that stathmin expression is dispensable for tumor onset, at least in mice, thus making stathmin a virtually exclusive marker of aggressive disease and a promising therapeutic target for advanced cancers.
Project description:The p53 DNA-binding domain harbors a conformationally flexible multiprotein binding site that regulates p53 ubiquitination. A novel phosphorylation site exists within this region at Ser(269), whose phosphomimetic mutation inactivates p53. The phosphomimetic p53 (S269D) exhibits characteristics of mutant p53: stable binding to Hsp70 in vivo, elevated ubiquitination in vivo, inactivity in DNA binding and transcription, increased thermoinstability using thermal shift assays, and ?(max) of intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence at 403 nm rather than 346 nm, characteristic of wild type p53. These data indicate that p53 conformational stability is regulated by a phosphoacceptor site within an exposed flexible surface loop and that this can be destabilized by phosphorylation. To test whether other motifs within p53 have similarly evolved, we analyzed the effect of Ser(215) mutation on p53 function because Ser(215) is another inactivating phosphorylation site in the conformationally flexible PAb240 epitope. The p53(S215D) protein is inactive like p53(S269D), whereas p53(S215A) is as active as p53(S269A). However, the double mutant p53(S215A/S269A) was transcriptionally inactive and more thermally unstable than either individual Ser-Ala loop mutant. Molecular dynamics simulations suggest that (i) solvation of phospho-Ser(215) and phospho-Ser(269) by positive charged residues or solvent water leads to local unfolding, which is accompanied by local destabilization of the N-terminal loop and global destabilization of p53, and (ii) the double alanine 215/269 mutation disrupts hydrogen bonding normally stabilized by both Ser(215) and Ser(269). These data indicate that p53 has evolved two serine phosphoacceptor residues within conformationally flexible epitopes that normally stabilize the p53 DNA-binding domain but whose phosphorylation induces a mutant conformation to wild type p53.