39 research outputs found

    Targeted therapy for breast cancer prevention.

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    With a better understanding of the etiology of breast cancer, molecularly targeted drugs have been developed and are being testing for the treatment and prevention of breast cancer. Targeted drugs that inhibit the estrogen receptor (ER) or estrogen-activated pathways include the selective ER modulators (tamoxifen, raloxifene, and lasofoxifene) and aromatase inhibitors (AIs) (anastrozole, letrozole, and exemestane) have been tested in preclinical and clinical studies. Tamoxifen and raloxifene have been shown to reduce the risk of breast cancer and promising results of AIs in breast cancer trials, suggest that AIs might be even more effective in the prevention of ER-positive breast cancer. However, these agents only prevent ER-positive breast cancer. Therefore, current research is focused on identifying preventive therapies for other forms of breast cancer such as human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive and triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC, breast cancer that does express ER, progesterone receptor, or HER2). HER2-positive breast cancers are currently treated with anti-HER2 therapies including trastuzumab and lapatinib, and preclinical and clinical studies are now being conducted to test these drugs for the prevention of HER2-positive breast cancers. Several promising agents currently being tested in cancer prevention trials for the prevention of TNBC include poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase inhibitors, vitamin D, and rexinoids, both of which activate nuclear hormone receptors (the vitamin D and retinoid X receptors). This review discusses currently used breast cancer preventive drugs, and describes the progress of research striving to identify and develop more effective preventive agents for all forms of breast cancer

    Analysis of phosphatases in ER-negative breast cancers identifies DUSP4 as a critical regulator of growth and invasion.

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    Estrogen receptor (ER)-negative cancers have a poor prognosis, and few targeted therapies are available for their treatment. Our previous analyses have identified potential kinase targets critical for the growth of ER-negative, progesterone receptor (PR)-negative and HER2-negative, or "triple-negative" breast cancer (TNBC). Because phosphatases regulate the function of kinase signaling pathways, in this study, we investigated whether phosphatases are also differentially expressed in ER-negative compared to those in ER-positive breast cancers. We compared RNA expression in 98 human breast cancers (56 ER-positive and 42 ER-negative) to identify phosphatases differentially expressed in ER-negative compared to those in ER-positive breast cancers. We then examined the effects of one selected phosphatase, dual specificity phosphatase 4 (DUSP4), on proliferation, cell growth, migration and invasion, and on signaling pathways using protein microarray analyses of 172 proteins, including phosphoproteins. We identified 48 phosphatase genes are significantly differentially expressed in ER-negative compared to those in ER-positive breast tumors. We discovered that 31 phosphatases were more highly expressed, while 11 were underexpressed specifically in ER-negative breast cancers. The DUSP4 gene is underexpressed in ER-negative breast cancer and is deleted in approximately 50 % of breast cancers. Induced DUSP4 expression suppresses both in vitro and in vivo growths of breast cancer cells. Our studies show that induced DUSP4 expression blocks the cell cycle at the G1/S checkpoint; inhibits ERK1/2, p38, JNK1, RB, and NFkB p65 phosphorylation; and inhibits invasiveness of TNBC cells. These results suggest that that DUSP4 is a critical regulator of the growth and invasion of triple-negative breast cancer cells

    Distinguishing mechanisms underlying EMT tristability

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    Abstract Background The Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition (EMT) endows epithelial-looking cells with enhanced migratory ability during embryonic development and tissue repair. EMT can also be co-opted by cancer cells to acquire metastatic potential and drug-resistance. Recent research has argued that epithelial (E) cells can undergo either a partial EMT to attain a hybrid epithelial/mesenchymal (E/M) phenotype that typically displays collective migration, or a complete EMT to adopt a mesenchymal (M) phenotype that shows individual migration. The core EMT regulatory network - miR-34/SNAIL/miR-200/ZEB1 - has been identified by various studies, but how this network regulates the transitions among the E, E/M, and M phenotypes remains controversial. Two major mathematical models – ternary chimera switch (TCS) and cascading bistable switches (CBS) - that both focus on the miR-34/SNAIL/miR-200/ZEB1 network, have been proposed to elucidate the EMT dynamics, but a detailed analysis of how well either or both of these two models can capture recent experimental observations about EMT dynamics remains to be done. Results Here, via an integrated experimental and theoretical approach, we first show that both these two models can be used to understand the two-step transition of EMT - E→E/M→M, the different responses of SNAIL and ZEB1 to exogenous TGF-β and the irreversibility of complete EMT. Next, we present new experimental results that tend to discriminate between these two models. We show that ZEB1 is present at intermediate levels in the hybrid E/M H1975 cells, and that in HMLE cells, overexpression of SNAIL is not sufficient to initiate EMT in the absence of ZEB1 and FOXC2. Conclusions These experimental results argue in favor of the TCS model proposing that miR-200/ZEB1 behaves as a three-way decision-making switch enabling transitions among the E, hybrid E/M and M phenotypes

    Nuclear functions of dynein light chain 1 in hormone action

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    It is widely accepted that the process of breast cancer tumorigenesis involves estrogen receptor-alpha (ER)-regulated stimulatory pathways, which feed into survival, cell cycle progression and proliferative response. Recent data from Kumar laboratory indicate that dynein light chain 1 (DLC1) plays a role in survival, motility and invasiveness, all of which are required for a successful tumorigenesis process. In the present research, we have discovered a mechanistic bidirectional regulatory link between the DLC1 and ER. We found that DLC1 facilitates ligand-induced ER transactivation involving the recruitment of the DLC1-ER complex to ER-target genes. To gain insights into the mechanism by which DLC1 regulates the ER pathway, we set out to identify novel DLC1-interacting proteins. Among other proteins, we identified KIBRA and Ciz1 as two novel DLC1-interacting proteins. We found that the KIBRA-DLC1 complex is recruited to ER-responsive promoters, and that KIBRA-DLC1 interaction is needed for the recruitment of ER to its targets as well as for ER\u27s transactivation function. Finally, we found that KIBRA utilizes its histone H3interacting glutamic acid-rich region to regulate the transactivation activity of ER. During the course of this work, we also discovered that DLC1 interacts with Cdk2 and Ciz1, and such interactions play a direct accelerating role in the G1-S transition of breast cancer cells. While delineating the role of Ciz1 in hormone-responsive cancer cells, we found that Ciz1 is an estrogen-responsive gene, and acts as a co-regulator of ER. Accordingly, Ciz1 overexpression in breast cancer cells conferred estrogen hypersensitivity, promoted the growth-rate, anchorage-independency and tumorigenic properties. Collectively, findings made during the course of the present dissertation research introduced two new molecular players in the action of ER in breast cancer cells, with a particular focus on cell cycle progression and ER-chromatin target regulation. In addition, findings presented here provide novel mechanistic insight about the contribution of DLC1 and its interacting proteins in amplifying the hormone action and promoting the process of breast cancer tumorigenesis

    Targeted therapy for breast cancer prevention.

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    The Epigenetic Regulation of Mesenchymal and Stem Cell Like Properties

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    https://openworks.mdanderson.org/sumexp21/1064/thumbnail.jp
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