Gene Summary

Gene:BCL2A1; BCL2 related protein A1
Aliases: GRS, ACC1, ACC2, BFL1, ACC-1, ACC-2, HBPA1, BCL2L5
Summary:This gene encodes a member of the BCL-2 protein family. The proteins of this family form hetero- or homodimers and act as anti- and pro-apoptotic regulators that are involved in a wide variety of cellular activities such as embryonic development, homeostasis and tumorigenesis. The protein encoded by this gene is able to reduce the release of pro-apoptotic cytochrome c from mitochondria and block caspase activation. This gene is a direct transcription target of NF-kappa B in response to inflammatory mediators, and is up-regulated by different extracellular signals, such as granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), CD40, phorbol ester and inflammatory cytokine TNF and IL-1, which suggests a cytoprotective function that is essential for lymphocyte activation as well as cell survival. Alternatively spliced transcript variants encoding different isoforms have been found for this gene. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:bcl-2-related protein A1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 31 August, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 31 August 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

Tag cloud generated 31 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (5)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: BCL2A1 (cancer-related)

Wei Y, Jin X, Kong T, et al.
The endocytic pathways of carbon dots in human adenoid cystic carcinoma cells.
Cell Prolif. 2019; 52(3):e12586 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: This study aimed at investigating cellular uptake pathways of carbon dots (CDs) in human adenoid cystic carcinoma cell line ACC-2.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We synthesized CDs using a hydrothermal method with citric acid and polyethylenimine (PEI, Mw = 25 000). The CDs incubated with the ACC-2 cells showed their bioimaging capabilities using a confocal microscopy test. Flow cytometry was used to analyse cellular uptake pathways of CDs in ACC-2 cells.
RESULTS: Our findings indicated that CDs possessed good biocompatibility in ACC-2 cells. CDs were endocytosed mainly via micropinocytosis and energy-dependent pathways.
CONCLUSIONS: In general, these findings suggested that CDs had excellent biomedical imaging properties for ACC-2 cells and there was a potential opportunity to develop biomedical applications.

Aird D, Teng T, Huang CL, et al.
Sensitivity to splicing modulation of BCL2 family genes defines cancer therapeutic strategies for splicing modulators.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):137 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Dysregulation of RNA splicing by spliceosome mutations or in cancer genes is increasingly recognized as a hallmark of cancer. Small molecule splicing modulators have been introduced into clinical trials to treat solid tumors or leukemia bearing recurrent spliceosome mutations. Nevertheless, further investigation of the molecular mechanisms that may enlighten therapeutic strategies for splicing modulators is highly desired. Here, using unbiased functional approaches, we report that the sensitivity to splicing modulation of the anti-apoptotic BCL2 family genes is a key mechanism underlying preferential cytotoxicity induced by the SF3b-targeting splicing modulator E7107. While BCL2A1, BCL2L2 and MCL1 are prone to splicing perturbation, BCL2L1 exhibits resistance to E7107-induced splicing modulation. Consequently, E7107 selectively induces apoptosis in BCL2A1-dependent melanoma cells and MCL1-dependent NSCLC cells. Furthermore, combination of BCLxL (BCL2L1-encoded) inhibitors and E7107 remarkably enhances cytotoxicity in cancer cells. These findings inform mechanism-based approaches to the future clinical development of splicing modulators in cancer treatment.

Gou XN, Li J, Wang XC, et al.
[Clinicopathologic features and prognosis of adenoid cystic carcinoma of external auditory meatus].
Zhonghua Bing Li Xue Za Zhi. 2018; 47(9):691-695 [PubMed] Related Publications

Mazzio EA, Soliman KFA
Whole-transcriptomic Profile of SK-MEL-3 Melanoma Cells Treated with the Histone Deacetylase Inhibitor: Trichostatin A.
Cancer Genomics Proteomics. 2018 Sep-Oct; 15(5):349-364 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Malignant melanoma cells can rapidly acquire phenotypic properties making them resistant to radiation and mainline chemotherapies such as decarbonize or kinase inhibitors that target RAS-proto-oncogene independent auto-activated mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK)/through dual specificity mitogen-activated protein kinase (MEK). Both drug resistance and inherent transition from melanocytic nevi to malignant melanoma involve the overexpression of histone deacetylases (HDACs) and a B-Raf proto-oncogene (BRAF) mutation.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this work, the effects of an HDAC class I and II inhibitor trichostatin A (TSA) on the whole transcriptome of SK-MEL-3 cells carrying a BRAF mutation was examined.
RESULTS: The data obtained show that TSA was an extremely potent HDAC inhibitor within SK-MEL-3 nuclear lysates, where TSA was then optimized for appropriate sub-lethal concentrations for in vitro testing. The whole-transcriptome profile shows a basic phenotype dominance in the SK-MEL-3 cell line for i) synthesis of melanin, ii) phagosome acidification, iii) ATP hydrolysis-coupled proton pumps and iv) iron transport systems. While TSA did not affect the aforementioned major systems, it evoked a dramatic change to the transcriptome: reflected by a down-regulation of 810 transcripts and up-regulation of 833, with fold-change from -15.27 to +31.1 FC (p<0.00001). Largest differentials were found for the following transcripts: Up-regulated: Tetraspanin 13 (TSPAN13), serpin family i member 1 (SERPINI1), ATPase Na+/K+ transporting subunit beta 2 (ATP1B2), nicotinamide nucleotide adenylyl transferase 2 (NMNAT2), platelet-derived growth factor receptor-like (PDGFRL), cytochrome P450 family 1 subfamily A member 1 (CYP1A1), prostate androgen-regulated mucin-like protein 1 (PARM1), secretogranin II (SCG2), SYT11 (synaptotagmin 11), rhophilin associated tail protein 1 like (ROPN1L); down-regulated: polypeptide N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferase 3 (GALNT3), carbonic anhydrase 14 (CAXIV), BCL2-related protein A1 (BCL2A1), protein kinase C delta (PRKCD), transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily M member 1 (TRPM1), ubiquitin associated protein 1 like (UBAP1L), glutathione peroxidase 8 (GPX8), interleukin 16 (IL16), tumor protein p53 (TP53), and serpin family H member 1 (SERPINH1). There was no change to any of the HDAC transcripts (class I, II and IV), the sirtuin HDAC family (1-6) or the BRAF proto-oncogene v 599 transcripts. However, the data showed that TSA down-regulated influential transcripts that drive the BRAF-extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2 oncogenic pathway (namely PRKCD and MYC proto-oncogene which negatively affected the cell-cycle distribution. Mitotic inhibition was corroborated by functional pathway analysis and flow cytometry confirming halt at the G
CONCLUSION: TSA does not alter HDAC transcripts nor BRAF itself, but down-regulates critical components of the MAPK/MEK/BRAF oncogenic pathway, initiating a mitotic arrest.

Messeha SS, Zarmouh NO, Mendonca P, et al.
The inhibitory effects of plumbagin on the NF-қB pathway and CCL2 release in racially different triple-negative breast cancer cells.
PLoS One. 2018; 13(7):e0201116 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Breast cancer (BC) is the second leading cause of death among women in the US, and its subtype triple-negative BC (TNBC) is the most aggressive BC with poor prognosis. In the current study, we investigated the anticancer effects of the natural product plumbagin (PL) on racially different TNBC cells. The PL effects were examined in two TNBC cell lines: MDA-MB-231 (MM-231) and MDA-MB-468 (MM-468), representing Caucasian Americans and African Americans, respectively. The results obtained indicate that PL inhibited cell viability and cell proliferation and induced apoptosis in both cell lines. Notably, MM-468 cells were 5-fold more sensitive to PL than MM-231 cells were. Testing PL and Taxol® showed the superiority of PL over Taxol® as an antiproliferative agent in MM-468 cells. PL treatment resulted in an approximately 20-fold increase in caspase-3 activity with 3 μM PL in MM-468 cells compared with an approximately 3-fold activity increase in MM-231 cells with 8 μM PL. Moreover, the results indicate a higher sensitivity to PL in MM-468 cells than in MM-231 cells. The results also show that PL downregulated CCL2 cytokine expression in MM-468 cells by 30% compared to a 90% downregulation in MM-231 cells. The ELISA results confirmed the array data (35% vs. 75% downregulation in MM-468 and MM-231 cells, respectively). Moreover, PL significantly downregulated IL-6 and GM-CSF in the MM-231 cells. Indeed, PL repressed many NF-қB-regulated genes involved in the regulation of apoptosis, proliferation, invasion, and metastasis. The compound significantly downregulated the same genes (BIRC3, CCL2, TLR2, and TNF) in both types of cells. However, PL impacted five more genes in MM-231 cells, including BCL2A1, ICAM1, IKBKE, IL1β, and LTA. In conclusion, the data obtained in this study indicate that the quinone compound PL could be a novel cancer treatment for TNBC in African American women.

Liu YD, Ji CB, Li SB, et al.
Toll-like receptor 2 stimulation promotes colorectal cancer cell growth via PI3K/Akt and NF-κB signaling pathways.
Int Immunopharmacol. 2018; 59:375-383 [PubMed] Related Publications
Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2 is a key regulator of innate immune responses and has been shown to play an important role in inflammation-associated cancers. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the role of TLR2 in colorectal cancer (CRC). We demonstrated that TLR2 mRNA and protein expression was significantly upregulated in tumors from CRC patients and indicated poor prognosis. Using the TLR2 agonist Pam3Cys (P3C) to activate TLR2 signaling in human CRC cell lines, we showed that TLR2 drives cellular proliferation, which was dependent upon PI3K/Akt and NF-κB signaling pathways and was associated with the upregulation of anti-apoptotic genes BCL2A1, WISP1 and BIRC3. Likewise, pharmacological blockade of PI3K/Akt and NF-κB pathways mitigated the CRC pro-survival effects of TLR2 stimulation. Furthermore, genetic ablation of TLR2 using CRISPR/Cas9 suppressed CRC cell proliferation, invasion and migration. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that TLR2 plays an important role in colorectal tumorigenesis and may represent a promising therapeutic target in CRC.

Wang S, Zhang L, Shi P, et al.
Genome-wide profiles of metastasis-associated mRNAs and microRNAs in salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2018; 500(3):632-638 [PubMed] Related Publications
Salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma (SACC) is often accompanied with poor prognosis due to local recurrence, distant metastasis, and perineural invasion. The mechanism involved in SACC metastasis is not yet fully understood. In this study, we profiled the expression of messenger RNA (mRNA) and microRNA (miRNA) in a SACC cell line, ACC-2, and a highly metastatic SACC cell line, ACC-M, using high-throughput sequencing. We discovered that: (1) differentially expressed (DE) mRNAs and DE miRNAs are potentially involved in SACC metastasis; (2) multiple regulatory interactions between DE miRNAs and DE mRNAs exist; and (3) miR-338-5p/3p target LAMC2 to impair motility and invasion of ACC-M and MDA-MB-231 cells. In conclusion, our study integrated the regulatory effects of miRNAs and mRNAs on SACC metastasis and provided a potential application for miRNAs in future therapeutic intervention.

D de Araujo A, Lim J, Wu KC, et al.
Bicyclic Helical Peptides as Dual Inhibitors Selective for Bcl2A1 and Mcl-1 Proteins.
J Med Chem. 2018; 61(7):2962-2972 [PubMed] Related Publications
A 26-residue peptide BimBH3 binds indiscriminately to multiple oncogenic Bcl2 proteins that regulate apoptosis of cancer cells. Specific inhibition of the BimBH3-Bcl2A1 protein-protein interaction was obtained in vitro and in cancer cells by shortening the peptide to 14 residues, inserting two cyclization constraints to stabilize a water-stable α-helix, and incorporating an N-terminal acrylamide electrophile for selective covalent bonding to Bcl2A1. Mass spectrometry of trypsin-digested bands on electrophoresis gels established covalent bonding of an electrophilic helix to just one of the three cysteines in Bcl2A1, the one (Cys55) at the BimBH3-Bcl2A1 protein-protein interaction interface. Optimizing the helix-inducing constraints and the sequence subsequently enabled electrophile removal without loss of inhibitor potency. The bicyclic helical peptides were potent, cell permeable, plasma-stable, dual inhibitors of Bcl2A1 and Mcl-1 with high selectivity over other Bcl2 proteins. One bicyclic peptide was shown to inhibit the interaction between a pro-apoptotic protein (Bim) and either endogenous Bcl2A1 or Mcl-1, to induce apoptosis of SKMel28 human melanoma cells, and to sensitize them for enhanced cell death by the anticancer drug etoposide. These approaches look promising for chemically silencing intracellular proteins.

Tuzlak S, Haschka MD, Mokina AM, et al.
Differential effects of Vav-promoter-driven overexpression of BCLX and BFL1 on lymphocyte survival and B cell lymphomagenesis.
FEBS J. 2018; 285(8):1403-1418 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Overexpression of BCLX and BFL1/A1 has been reported in various human malignancies and is associated with poor prognosis and drug resistance, identifying these prosurvival BCL2 family members as putative drug targets. We have generated transgenic mice that express human BFL1 or human BCLX protein throughout the haematopoietic system under the control of the Vav gene promoter. Haematopoiesis is normal in both the Vav-BFL1 and Vav-BCLX transgenic (TG) mice and susceptibility to spontaneous haematopoietic malignancies is not increased. Lymphoid cells from Vav-BCLX TG mice exhibit increased resistance to apoptosis in vitro while most blood cell types form Vav-BFL1 TG mice were poorly protected. Both transgenes significantly accelerated lymphomagenesis in Eμ-MYC TG mice and, surprisingly, the Vav-BFL1 transgene was the more potent. Unexpectedly, expression of transgenic BFL1 RNA and protein is significantly elevated in B lymphoid cells of Vav-BFL1/Eμ-MYC double-transgenic compared to Vav-BFL1 mice, even during the preleukaemic phase, providing a rationale for the potent synergy. In contrast, Vav-BCLX expression was not notably different. These mouse models of BFL1 and BCLX overexpression in lymphomas should be useful tools for the testing the efficacy of novel human BFL1- and BCLX-specific inhibitors.

Esteve-Arenys A, Valero JG, Chamorro-Jorganes A, et al.
The BET bromodomain inhibitor CPI203 overcomes resistance to ABT-199 (venetoclax) by downregulation of BFL-1/A1 in in vitro and in vivo models of MYC+/BCL2+ double hit lymphoma.
Oncogene. 2018; 37(14):1830-1844 [PubMed] Related Publications
High-grade B-cell lymphoma with MYC and BCL2 and/or BCL6 rearrangements, mostly known as double-hit lymphoma (DHL), is a rare entity characterized by morphologic and molecular features between Burkitt lymphoma and the clinically manageable diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). DHL patients usually undergo a rapidly progressing clinical course associated with resistance to standard chemo-immunotherapy. As a consequence, the prognosis of this entity is particularly poor with a median overall survival inferior to 1 year. ABT-199 (venetoclax) is a potent and selective small-molecule antagonist of BCL-2 recently approved for the treatment of a specific subtype of lymphoid neoplasm. In this study, we demonstrate that single-agent ABT-199 efficiently displaces BAX from BCL-2 complexes but fails to maintain a significant antitumor activity over time in most MYC+/BCL2+DHL cell lines and primary cultures, as well as in a xenograft mouse model of the disease. We further identify the accumulation of the BCL2-like protein BFL-1 to be a major mechanism involved in acquired resistance to ABT-199. Noteworthy, this phenomenon can be counteracted by the BET bromodomain inhibitor CPI203, since gene expression profiling identifies BCL2A1, the BFL-1 coding gene, as one of the top apoptosis-related gene modulated by this compound. Upon CPI203 treatment, simultaneous downregulation of MYC and BFL-1 further overcomes resistance to ABT-199 both in vitro and in vivo, engaging synergistic caspase-mediated apoptosis in DHL cultures and tumor xenografts. Together, these findings highlight the relevance of BFL-1 in DH lymphoma-associated drug resistance and support the combined use of a BCL-2 antagonist and a BET inhibitor as a promising therapeutic strategy for patients with aggressive DHL.

Belani M, Deo A, Shah P, et al.
Differential insulin and steroidogenic signaling in insulin resistant and non-insulin resistant human luteinized granulosa cells-A study in PCOS patients.
J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2018; 178:283-292 [PubMed] Related Publications
Insulin resistance (IR) is one of the significant aberrations in polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), however is only observed in 70%-80% of obese PCOS and 20%-25% of lean PCOS. Hyperinsulinemia accompanies PCOS-IR along with hyperandrogenemia against normal insulin and androgen levels in PCOS-non insulin resistance (NIR). This could possibly be due to defects in the downstream signaling pathways. The study thus aims to unravel insulin and steroidogenic signaling pathways in luteinized granulosa cells isolated from PCOS-IR and NIR vs matched controls. Luteinized granulosa cells from 30 controls and 39 PCOS were classified for IR based on a novel method of down regulation of protein expression of insulin receptor-β (INSR- β) as shown in our previous paper. We evaluated expression of molecules involved in insulin, steroidogenic signaling and lipid metabolism in luteinized granulosa cells followed by analysis of estradiol, progesterone and testosterone in follicular fluid. Protein expression of INSR- β, pIRS (ser 307), PI(3)K, PKC-ζ, pAkt, ERK1/2, pP38MAPK and gene expression of IGF showed differential expression in the two groups. Increased protein expression of PPAR-γ was accompanied by up regulation in SREBP1c, FAS, CPT-1 and ACC-1 genes in PCOS-IR group. Expression of StAR, CYP19A1, 17 β- HSD and 3 β- HSD demonstrated significant decrease along with increase in CYP11A1, FSH-R and LH-R in both the groups. Follicular fluid testosterone increased and progesterone decreased in PCOS-IR group. This study shows how candidate molecules that were differentially expressed, aid in designing targeted therapy against the two phenotypes of PCOS.

Rios Garcia M, Steinbauer B, Srivastava K, et al.
Acetyl-CoA Carboxylase 1-Dependent Protein Acetylation Controls Breast Cancer Metastasis and Recurrence.
Cell Metab. 2017; 26(6):842-855.e5 [PubMed] Related Publications
Breast tumor recurrence and metastasis represent the main causes of cancer-related death in women, and treatments are still lacking. Here, we define the lipogenic enzyme acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) 1 as a key player in breast cancer metastasis. ACC1 phosphorylation was increased in invading cells both in murine and human breast cancer, serving as a point of convergence for leptin and transforming growth factor (TGF) β signaling. ACC1 phosphorylation was mediated by TGFβ-activated kinase (TAK) 1, and ACC1 inhibition was indispensable for the elevation of cellular acetyl-CoA, the subsequent increase in Smad2 transcription factor acetylation and activation, and ultimately epithelial-mesenchymal transition and metastasis induction. ACC1 deficiency worsened tumor recurrence upon primary tumor resection in mice, and ACC1 phosphorylation levels correlated with metastatic potential in breast and lung cancer patients. Given the demonstrated effectiveness of anti-leptin receptor antibody treatment in halting ACC1-dependent tumor invasiveness, our work defines a "metabolocentric" approach in metastatic breast cancer therapy.

Pei N, Mao Y, Wan P, et al.
Angiotensin II type 2 receptor promotes apoptosis and inhibits angiogenesis in bladder cancer.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2017; 36(1):77 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Bladder cancer (BCa) is the ninth most common form of cancer in the world. There is a continuing need not only for improving the accuracy of diagnostic markers but also for the development of new treatment strategies. Recent studies have shown that the renin-angiotensin system (RAS), which include the angiotensin type 1 (AT1R), type 2(AT2R), and Mas receptors, play an important role in tumorigenesis and may guide us in meeting those needs.
RESULTS: In this study, we first observed that AT1R and Mas expression levels were significantly upregulated in BCa specimens while AT2R was significantly downregulated. Viral vector mediated overexpression of AT2R induced apoptosis and dramatically suppressed BCa cell proliferation in vitro, suggesting a therapeutic effect. Investigation into the mechanism revealed that the overexpression of AT2R increases the expression levels of caspase-3, caspase-8, and p38 and decreases the expression level of pErk. AT2R overexpression also leads to upregulation of 2 apoptosis-related genes (BCL2A1, TNFSF25) and downregulation of 8 apoptosis-related genes (CASP 6, CASP 9, DFFA, IGF1R, PYCARD, TNF, TNFRSF21, TNFSF10, NAIP) in transduced EJ cells as determined by PCR Array analysis. In vivo, we observed that AT2R overexpression caused significant reduction in xenograft tumors sizes by downregulation VEGF and induction of apoptosis.
CONCLUSIONS: Taken together, the data suggest that AT1R, AT2R or Mas could be used as a diagnostic marker of BCa and AT2R is a promising novel target gene for BCa gene therapy.

Akasaka T, Kishimori C, Fukutsuka K, et al.
The novel double-hit, t(8;22)(q24;q11)/MYC-IGL and t(14;15)(q32;q24)/IGH-BCL2A1, in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.
Cancer Genet. 2017; 214-215:26-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
An 82-year-old woman presented with generalized lymphadenopathy and skin involvement. Lymph node biopsy revealed diffuse large B-cell lymphoma with a high proliferation index. G-banding and fluorescence in situ hybridization showed a hypertetraploid karyotype with two copies of t(8;22)(q24;q11), generating the fusion of MYC and the immunoglobulin λ chain gene (IGL), and two copies of the novel immunoglobulin heavy chain gene (IGH) translocation, t(14;15)(q32;q24). A long-distance inverse polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using nested primer combinations designed for each constant gene of IGH showed that Cγ4 was juxtaposed to the downstream sequence of the BCL2A1 (BCL2-related protein A1) gene through the Sγ4 switch region. As a result of t(14;15)(q32;q24), BCL2A1 and IGH Sγ4-Cγ4 were aligned in the same transcriptional orientation at a distance of 64 kb. Reverse transcriptase-mediated PCR showed high BCL2A1 mRNA levels in a lymphoma specimen. Since BCL2A1, mapped at 15q24.3 or 15q25.1, encodes a protein that is an anti-apoptotic member of the BCL2 protein family, we herein described the novel double-hit, t(8;22)(q24;q11)/MYC-IGL and t(14;15)(q32;q24)/IGH-BCL2A1, in which BCL2A1 is considered to play a role equivalent to that of BCL2 in the most frequent double-hit, MYC/BCL2.

Xu X, Yokoyama S, Hayakawa Y, Saiki I
Coptidis Rhizoma induces intrinsic apoptosis through BAX and BAK activation in human melanoma.
Oncol Rep. 2017; 38(1):538-544 [PubMed] Related Publications
Malignant melanoma has exhibited a rising incidence in recent years worldwide. Although various molecular targeted drugs are being researched and developed for melanoma patients, their efficacy appears to be unsatisfactory. Over the past few years, several reports have demonstrated that Coptidis Rhizoma water extracts (CR) or its major active chemical component, berberine, has anticancer activities in various types of cancer, including melanoma. However, their underlying mechanisms have not been well understood. In the present study, we determined that CR suppressed melanoma cell viability, which was mainly mediated through apoptosis. In addition, the expression levels of anti-apoptotic proteins, BCL2A1, MCL1 and BCL-w, were strongly suppressed by CR treatment. Furthermore, multi-domain pro-apoptotic proteins BAX and BAK were activated by CR treatment and were also required for the CR-induced apoptosis. Collectively, CR or some formulations containing CR, may be effective safe treatment strategies for human melanoma.

West AC, Tang K, Tye H, et al.
Identification of a TLR2-regulated gene signature associated with tumor cell growth in gastric cancer.
Oncogene. 2017; 36(36):5134-5144 [PubMed] Related Publications
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are key regulators of innate immune responses, and their dysregulation is observed in numerous inflammation-associated malignancies, including gastric cancer (GC). However, the identity of specific TLRs and their molecular targets which promote the pathogenesis of human GC is ill-defined. Here, we sought to determine the clinical utility of TLR2 in human GC. TLR2 mRNA and protein expression levels were elevated in >50% of GC patient tumors across multiple ethnicities. TLR2 was also widely expressed among human GC cell lines, and DNA microarray-based expression profiling demonstrated that the TLR2-induced growth responsiveness of human GC cells corresponded with the up-regulation of six anti-apoptotic (BCL2A1, BCL2, BIRC3, CFLAR, IER3, TNFAIP3) and down-regulation of two tumor suppressor (PDCD4, TP53INP1) genes. The TLR2-mediated regulation of these anti-apoptotic and tumor suppressor genes was also supported by their increased and reduced expression, respectively, in two independent genetic GC mouse models (gp130

Lewis LS, Hernon J, Clark A, Saxton JM
Validation of the IPAQ Against Different Accelerometer Cut-Points in Older Cancer Survivors and Adults at Risk of Cancer.
J Aging Phys Act. 2018; 26(1):34-40 [PubMed] Related Publications
The present study investigated the convergent validity of an interview-administered IPAQ long version (IPAQ-L) in an older population by comparison with objective accelerometry movement data. Data from 52 participants (mean age 67.9 years, 62% male) were included in the analysis. Treadmill derived (TM-ACC: 1,952-5,724 cpm) and free-living physical activity (PA) derived (FL-ACC: 760-5,724 cpm) accelerometer cut-points were used as criterion. IPAQ-L measures (total PA, leisure-time, walking-time, sedentary time) were significantly correlated with accelerometry (P ≤ .05). Differences in sex were observed. Bland-Altman Limits of Agreement analysis showed that the IPAQ-L overestimated PA in relation to accelerometry. Our results show that an interview-administered IPAQ-L shows low to moderate convergent validity with objective PA measures in this population but there may be differences between males and females which should be further investigated.

Locati LD, Collini P, Imbimbo M, et al.
Immunohistochemical and molecular profile of salivary gland cancer in children.
Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2017; 64(9) [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Pediatric salivary gland carcinomas (SGCs) are very rare. They differ from the adult SGCs in terms of epidemiologic and clinical behavior, being generally limited only to selected histotypes (e.g. low-grade mucoepidermoid [LG-MEC] and acinic cell cancer [AcCC]) and characterized by very good outcome. Our aim was to investigate therapeutic targets on a series of pediatric SGCs by immunohistochemical and molecular analysis.
METHODS: A retrospective analysis was performed to search for cases of pediatric SGCs in the database of the Pediatric Oncology Unit at the Istituto Nazionale Tumori and in the Pathology database at the Gerhard-Seifert-Reference-Centre. The expressions of the most common tyrosine-kinase receptors (TKRs) reported in adult SGCs as EGFR, HER2, KIT and hormonal receptors (HRs) (estrogen α and β, progesterone as well as androgen receptors) were investigated. CRTC1/MAML2 and MYB/NFIB were also analyzed in MEC and adenoid cystic carcinoma cases, respectively.
RESULTS: Twenty-nine cases were identified: 22 MECs, 4 AcCCs, 1 adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC), 1 adenocarcinoma not otherwise specified and 1 sialoblastoma. EGFR was the most expressed TKR, whilst HRs were negative in all cases except for ER-β in four cases of MEC. CRTC1/MAML2 was present in 15 out of 17 evaluable MEC cases and MYB/NFIB was identified in the ACC case.
CONCLUSIONS: The immunohistochemical and molecular profiles of pediatric SGCs analyzed in our series are similar to that observed in adults, especially for MEC, supporting a common biological background.

Altieri B, Sbiera S, Della Casa S, et al.
Livin/BIRC7 expression as malignancy marker in adrenocortical tumors.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(6):9323-9338 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Livin/BIRC7 is a member of the inhibitors of apoptosis proteins family, which are involved in tumor development through the inhibition of caspases. Aim was to investigate the expression of livin and other members of its pathway in adrenocortical tumors and in the adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) cell line NCI-H295R.The mRNA expression of livin, its isoforms α and β, XIAP, CASP3 and DIABLO was evaluated by qRT-PCR in 82 fresh-frozen adrenal tissues (34 ACC, 25 adenomas = ACA, 23 normal adrenal glands = NAG). Livin protein expression was assessed by immunohistochemistry in 270 paraffin-embedded tissues (192 ACC, 58 ACA, 20 NAG). Livin, CASP3 and cleaved caspase-3 were evaluated in NCI-H295R after induction of livin overexpression.Relative livin mRNA expression was significantly higher in ACC than in ACA and NAG (0.060 ± 0.116 vs 0.004 ± 0.014 and 0.002 ± 0.009, respectively, p < 0.01), being consistently higher in tumors than in adjacent NAG and isoform β more expressed than α. No significant differences in CASP3, XIAP and DIABLO levels were found among these groups. In immunohistochemistry, livin was localized in both cytoplasm and nuclei. The ratio between cytoplasmic and nuclear staining was significantly higher in ACC (1.51 ± 0.66) than in ACA (0.80 ± 0.35) and NAG (0.88 ± 0.27; p < 0.0001). No significant correlations were observed between livin expression and histopathological parameters or clinical outcome. In NCI-H295R cells, the livin overexpression slightly reduced the activation of CASP3, but did not correlate with cell viability.In conclusion, livin is specifically over-expressed in ACC, suggesting that it might be involved in adrenocortical tumorigenesis and represent a new molecular marker of malignancy.

Sagara A, Igarashi K, Otsuka M, et al.
Intrinsic Resistance to 5-Fluorouracil in a Brain Metastatic Variant of Human Breast Cancer Cell Line, MDA-MB-231BR.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(10):e0164250 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Although drug resistance is often observed in metastatic recurrence of breast cancer, little is known about the intrinsic drug resistance in such metastases. In the present study, we found, for the first time, that MDA-MB-231BR, a brain metastatic variant of a human breast cancer cell line, was refractory to treatment with 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) even without chronic drug exposure, compared to its parent cell line, MDA-MB-231, and a bone metastatic variant, MDA-MB-231SCP2. Both the mRNA and protein levels of COX-2 and BCL2A1 in MDA-MB-231BR were significantly higher than those in MDA-MB-231 or MDA-MB-231SCP2. Neither the COX-2 inhibitor celecoxib nor the NF-κB inhibitor BAY11-7082 could sensitize MDA-MB-231BR to 5-FU, indicating that COX-2 plays little, if any, role in the resistance of MDA-MB-231BR to 5-FU. Although BCL2-family inhibitor ABT-263 failed to sensitize MDA-MB-231BR to 5-FU at a dose at which ABT-263 is considered to bind to BCL2, BCL2-xL, and BCL2-w, but not to BCL2A1, ABT-263 did sensitize MDA-MB-231BR to 5-FU to a level comparable to that in MDA-MB-231 at a dose of 5 μM, at which ABT-263 may disrupt intracellular BCL2A1 protein interactions. More importantly, BCL2A1 siRNA sensitized MDA-MB-231BR to 5-FU, whereas the overexpression of BCL2A1 conferred 5-FU-resistance on MDA-MB-231. These results indicate that BCL2A1 is a key contributor to the intrinsic 5-FU-resistance in MDA-MB-231BR. It is interesting to note that the drug sensitivity of MDA-MB-231BR was distinct from that of MDA-MB-231SCP2 even though they have the same origin (MDA-MB-231). Further investigations pertinent to the present findings may provide valuable insight into the breast cancer brain metastasis.

Sochalska M, Schuler F, Weiss JG, et al.
MYC selects against reduced BCL2A1/A1 protein expression during B cell lymphomagenesis.
Oncogene. 2017; 36(15):2066-2073 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Rearrangements of MYC or ABL proto-oncogenes lead to deregulated expression of key-regulators of cell cycle and cell survival, thereby constituting important drivers of blood cancer. Members of the BCL-2 family of apoptosis regulators contribute to oncogenic transformation downstream of these oncogenes, but the role of anti-apoptotic BCL2A1/A1 in transformation and drug resistance caused by deregulation of these oncogenes remains enigmatic. Here we analyzed the role of A1 in MYC as well as ABL kinase-driven blood cancer in mice, employing in vivo RNAi. We report that overexpression of either oncogene leads to a significant increase in A1 protein levels in otherwise A1-negative B cell progenitors, indicating a key role downstream of these oncogenes to secure survival during transformation. Knockdown of A1 by RNAi, however, did not impact on tumor latency in v-Abl-driven pre-B-ALL. In contrast, A1 knockdown in premalignant Eμ-MYC mice caused a significant reduction of transgenic pre-B cells without impacting on tumor latency as the emerging lymphomas escaped silencing of A1 expression. These findings identify A1 as a MYC target that can be induced prematurely during B cell development to aid expansion of otherwise cell-death-prone MYC transgenic pre-B cells. Hence, A1 should be considered as a putative drug target in MYC-driven blood cancer.

Kim HS, Jung M, Choi SK, et al.
Different Biological Action of Oleic Acid in ALDHhigh and ALDHlow Subpopulations Separated from Ductal Carcinoma In Situ of Breast Cancer.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(9):e0160835 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The mechanisms underlying breast cancer progression of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) associated with fatty acids are largely unknown. In the present study, we compared the action of oleic acid (OA) on two human DCIS cell lines, MCF10DCIS.COM (ER/PR/HER2-negative) and SUM225 (HER2 overexpressed). OA led to a significant increase in proliferation, migration, lipid accumulation and the expression of lipogenic proteins, such as SREBP-1, FAS and ACC-1, in MCF10DCIS.COM cells but not SUM225 cells. The ALDHhigh subpopulation analyzed by the ALDEFLUOR assay was approximately 39.2±5.3% of MCF10DCIS.COM cells but was small (3.11±0.9%) in SUM225 cells. We further investigated the different biological action of OA in the distinct ALDHlow and ALDHhigh subpopulations of MCF10DCIS.COM cells. OA led to an increase in the expression of ALDH1A1, ALDH1A2 and ALDH1A3 in MCF10DCIS.COM cells. SREBP-1 and ACC-1 were highly expressed in ALDHhigh cells relative to ALDHlow cells, whereas FAS was higher in ALDHlow cells. In the presence of OA, ALDHhigh cells were more likely to proliferate and migrate and displayed significantly high levels of SREBP-1 and FAS and strong phosphorylation of FAK and AKT relative to ALDHlow cells. This study suggests that OA could be a critical risk factor to promote the proliferation and migration of ALDHhigh cells in DCIS, leading to breast cancer progression.

Iyer D, Vartak SV, Mishra A, et al.
Identification of a novel BCL2-specific inhibitor that binds predominantly to the BH1 domain.
FEBS J. 2016; 283(18):3408-37 [PubMed] Related Publications
The antiapoptotic protein BCL2 is overexpressed in several cancers and contributes to prolonged cell survival and chemoresistance, lending itself as an excellent target for cancer therapy. Here, we report the design, synthesis, and characterization of Disarib, a novel BCL2 inhibitor. Disarib showed selective cytotoxicity in BCL2 high cancer cell lines, and CLL patient primary cells, as compared to BCL2 low cell lines. BCL2 knockdown in cells rendered remarkable resistance to Disarib, while sensitivity was regained upon its ectopic expression, establishing target specificity. In silico, biochemical and biophysical studies demonstrated strong affinity of Disarib to BCL2, but not to other antiapoptotic BCL2 family members viz., BCL-xL, BCL2A1 etc. Interestingly, biophysical studies showed that BH1 domain deletion mutant demonstrated ~ 67-fold reduction in BCL2-Disarib interaction, while it was only ~ 20-fold in the case of BH3 deletion mutant, suggesting predominant involvement of the BH1 domain for Disarib binding. Thus, we report identification of a novel BCL2 inhibitor with a unique mechanism of BCL2 inhibition, as opposed to the well-studied BH3 domain targeting.

Hao Z, Lü W, Cheng X, Zhou C
Immunohistochemical Expression and Clinical Significance of Wnt11 and BCL2A1 in Complete Moles.
Anal Quant Cytopathol Histpathol. 2016; 38(2):79-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To investigate Wnt11 and BCL2A1 immunohistochemical expression in complete moles and normal villi.
STUDY DESIGN: The expression of Wnt11 and BCL2A1 in 84 complete moles and 30 normal first-trimester villi were detected by Envision immunohistochemistry. Quantitative evaluation according to color deconvolution and immunoreactive score was performed. Data was analyzed using Kruskal-Wallis test, Pearson test, and ROC curve.
RESULTS: Of 84 complete moles, 14 developed to post-molar gestational trophoblastic neoplasia, and the others regressed spontaneously. Both proteins showed cytoplasmic pattern, whereas the DAB wt% of BCL2A1 and Wnt11 expression was highest in moles that developed to GTN, gradually reduced in spontaneously regressed moles and normal villi (all p < 0.01). We considered a 23.17% cutoff valuefor Wnt11 DAB wt% and 16.31% for BCL2A1 DAB wt% to assess molar progression to GTN. There was positive correlation between expressions of the 2 proteins (r = 0.403).
CONCLUSION: Our findings demonstrated immunohistochemical expression of Wnt11 and BCL2A1 in complete moles and normal villi. Both proteins may be included as part of an immunohistochemical panel to identify postmolar outcome when other trophoblastic markers yield ambiguous results.

Bell D, Bell AH, Bondaruk J, et al.
In-depth characterization of the salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma transcriptome with emphasis on dominant cell type.
Cancer. 2016; 122(10):1513-22 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC), 1 of the most common salivary gland malignancies, arises from the intercalated ducts, which are composed of inner ductal epithelial cells and outer myoepithelial cells. The objective of this study was to determine the genomic subtypes of ACC with emphasis on dominant cell type to identify potential specific biomarkers for each subtype and to improve the understanding of this disease.
METHODS: A whole-genome expression study was performed based on 42 primary salivary ACCs and 5 normal salivary glands. RNA from these specimens was subjected to expression profiling with RNA sequencing, and results were analyzed to identify transcripts in epithelial-dominant ACC (E-ACC), myoepithelial-dominant ACC (M-ACC), and all ACC that were expressed differentially compared with the transcripts in normal salivary tissue.
RESULTS: In total, the authors identified 430 differentially expressed transcripts that were unique to E-ACC, 392 that were unique to M-ACC, and 424 that were common to both M-ACC and E-ACC. The sets of E-ACC-specific and M-ACC-specific transcripts were sufficiently large to define and differentiate E-ACC from M-ACC. Ingenuity pathway analysis identified known cancer-related genes for 60% of the E-ACC transcripts, 69% of the M-ACC transcripts, and 68% of the transcripts that were common in both E-ACC and M-ACC. Three sets of highly expressed candidate genes-distal-less homeobox 6 (DLX6) for E-ACC; protein keratin 16 (KRT16), SRY box 11 (SOX11), and v-myb avian myeloblastosis viral oncogene homolog (MYB) for M-ACC; and engrailed 1 (EN1) and statherin (STATH), which are common to both E-ACC and M-ACC)-were further validated at the protein level.
CONCLUSIONS: The current results enabled the authors to identify novel potential therapeutic targets and biomarkers in E-ACC and M-ACC individually, with the implication that EN1, DLX6, and OTX1 (orthodenticle homeobox 1) are potential drivers of these cancers. Cancer 2016;122:1513-22. © 2016 American Cancer Society.

Lu W, Ning H, Gu L, et al.
MCPIP1 Selectively Destabilizes Transcripts Associated with an Antiapoptotic Gene Expression Program in Breast Cancer Cells That Can Elicit Complete Tumor Regression.
Cancer Res. 2016; 76(6):1429-40 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The ability of cancer cells to evade apoptosis is dictated by a shift in the balance between proapoptotic and antiapoptotic gene expression programs. Monocyte chemotactic protein-induced protein 1 (MCPIP1) is a zinc-finger RNA binding protein with important roles in mediating inflammatory responses. Overexpression of MCPIP1 in different cancer cell types has been implicated in eliciting an antitumor response, but a direct role of MCPIP1 in apoptosis has not been established. In this study, we demonstrate that MCPIP1 functions as a potent tumor suppressor that induces apoptosis of breast tumor cells by selectively enhancing mRNA decay of antiapoptotic gene transcripts, including Bcl2L1, Bcl2A1, RelB, Birc3, and Bcl3. Mechanistically, MCPIP1 physically interacted with a stem-loop structure in the 3' untranslated region of these transcripts through its PIN domain, causing mRNA destabilization. Furthermore, we found that MCPIP1 expression was repressed in breast tumor cells, and overexpression of MCPIP1 induced apoptosis, whereas its depletion enhanced cancer cell proliferation. Moreover, MCPIP1 induction in vivo resulted in complete regression of established tumors and a significant reduction in metastatic disease. Notably, low MCPIP1 expression in tumor samples from breast cancer patients was strongly associated with poor survival over 13 years of follow-up. Collectively, our results highlight that MCPIP1 is a new tumor suppressor in breast cancer that induces cell death by tipping the balance in favor of proapoptotic gene expression.

Huang Z, Liu Y, Huang Z, et al.
1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D3 alleviates salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma progression by suppressing GPX1 expression through the NF-κB pathway.
Int J Oncol. 2016; 48(3):1271-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25D3) is the active form of vitamin D with antineoplastic effects. The glutathione peroxidase-1 (GPX1) gene is associated with tumour progression. The present study aimed to explore the role of GPX1 in 1,25D3-mediated progression of salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma (SACC). Downregulating GPX1 expression inhibited SACC cell proliferation, chemoresistance, motility, and uPA secretion, but promoted apoptosis via the NF-κB pathway. Pre-processing 1,25D3 inhibited expression of NF-κB/GPX1/uPA, which subsequently suppressed cell motility and cisplatin-resistance in ACC-2 cells. In conclusion, 1,25D3 works as a modifier of NF-κB/GPX1/uPA expression, inhibiting cisplatin-resistance and cell invasive ability of SACC cells. The present study comprehensively elucidated the potential mechanism underlying the effects of vitamin D on chemoresistance and invasive potential in SACC.

Comba A, Almada LL, Tolosa EJ, et al.
Nuclear Factor of Activated T Cells-dependent Down-regulation of the Transcription Factor Glioma-associated Protein 1 (GLI1) Underlies the Growth Inhibitory Properties of Arachidonic Acid.
J Biol Chem. 2016; 291(4):1933-47 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Numerous reports have demonstrated a tumor inhibitory effect of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). However, the molecular mechanisms modulating this phenomenon are in part poorly understood. Here, we provide evidence of a novel antitumoral mechanism of the PUFA arachidonic acid (AA). In vivo and in vitro experiments showed that AA treatment decreased tumor growth and metastasis and increased apoptosis. Molecular analysis of this effect showed significantly reduced expression of a subset of antiapoptotic proteins, including BCL2, BFL1/A1, and 4-1BB, in AA-treated cells. We demonstrated that down-regulation of the transcription factor glioma-associated protein 1 (GLI1) in AA-treated cells is the underlying mechanism controlling BCL2, BFL1/A1, and 4-1BB expression. Using luciferase reporters, chromatin immunoprecipitation, and expression studies, we found that GLI1 binds to the promoter of these antiapoptotic molecules and regulates their expression and promoter activity. We provide evidence that AA-induced apoptosis and down-regulation of antiapoptotic genes can be inhibited by overexpressing GLI1 in AA-sensitive cells. Conversely, inhibition of GLI1 mimics AA treatments, leading to decreased tumor growth, cell viability, and expression of antiapoptotic molecules. Further characterization showed that AA represses GLI1 expression by stimulating nuclear translocation of NFATc1, which then binds the GLI1 promoter and represses its transcription. AA was shown to increase reactive oxygen species. Treatment with antioxidants impaired the AA-induced apoptosis and down-regulation of GLI1 and NFATc1 activation, indicating that NFATc1 activation and GLI1 repression require the generation of reactive oxygen species. Collectively, these results define a novel mechanism underlying AA antitumoral functions that may serve as a foundation for future PUFA-based therapeutic approaches.

Wong SJ, Karrison T, Hayes DN, et al.
Phase II trial of dasatinib for recurrent or metastatic c-KIT expressing adenoid cystic carcinoma and for nonadenoid cystic malignant salivary tumors.
Ann Oncol. 2016; 27(2):318-23 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC) is a subtype of malignant salivary gland tumors (MSGT), in which 90% of cases express cKIT. Dasatinib is a potent and selective inhibitor of five oncogenic protein tyrosine kinases (PTKs)/kinase families including cKIT. We conducted a phase II study to determine the antitumor activity of dasatinib in ACC and non-ACC MSGT.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: In a two-stage design, patients with progressive, recurrent/metastatic ACC (+cKIT) and non-ACC MSGT (separate cohort) were treated with dasatinib 70 mg p.o. b.i.d. Response was assessed every 8 weeks using RECIST.
RESULTS: Of 54 patients: 40 ACC, 14 non-ACC (1, ineligible excluded); M:F = 28 : 26, median age 56 years (range 20-82 years), ECOG performance status 0 : 1 : 2 = 24 : 28 : 2, prior radiation: 44, prior chemotherapy: 21. The most frequent adverse events (AEs) (as % of patients, worst grade 2 or higher) were: fatigue (28%), nausea (19%), headache (15%), lymphopenia (7%), dyspnea (11%), alanine aminotransferase increased (7%), anorexia (7%), vomiting (7%), alkaline phosphatase increased (6%), diarrhea (6%), neutropenia (6%), and noncardiac chest pain (6%). No grade 4 AE occurred, 15 patients experienced a grade 3 AE, primarily dyspnea (5) and fatigue (4), and cardiac toxicity (1 prolonged QTc). Among ACC patients, best response to dasatinib: 1 patient (2.5%) had partial response, 20 patients (50%) had stable disease (SD) (3-14 months), 12 patients (30%) had PD, 2 withdrew, 3 discontinued therapy due to AE, and 2 died before cycle 2. Median progression-free survival was 4.8 months. Median overall survival was 14.5 months. For 14 assessable non-ACC patients, none had objective response, triggering early stopping rule. Seven had SD (range 1-7 months), 4 PD, 2 discontinued therapy due to AE, and 1 died before cycle 2.
CONCLUSION: Although there was only one objective response, dasatinib is well tolerated, with tumor stabilization achieved by 50% of ACC patients. Dasatinib demonstrated no activity in non-ACC MSGT.

Palam LR, Gore J, Craven KE, et al.
Integrated stress response is critical for gemcitabine resistance in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma.
Cell Death Dis. 2015; 6:e1913 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is an aggressive cancer with marked chemoresistance and a 5-year survival rate of 7%. The integrated stress response (ISR) is a cytoprotective pathway initiated in response to exposure to various environmental stimuli. We used pancreatic cancer cells (PCCs) that are highly resistant to gemcitabine (Gem) and an orthotopic mouse model to investigate the role of the ISR in Gem chemoresistance. Gem induced eIF2 phosphorylation and downstream transcription factors ATF4 and CHOP in PCCs, and these effects occurred in an eIF2α-S51 phosphorylation-dependent manner as determined using PANC-1 cells, and wild type and S51 mutant mouse embryo fibroblasts. Blocking the ISR pathway in PCCs with the ISR inhibitor ISRIB or siRNA-mediated depletion of ATF4 resulted in enhanced Gem-mediated apoptosis. Polyribosomal profiling revealed that Gem caused repression of global translation and this effect was reversed by ISRIB or by expressing GADD34 to facilitate eIF2 dephosphorylation. Moreover, Gem promoted preferential mRNA translation as determined in a TK-ATF4 5'UTR-Luciferase reporter assay, and this effect was also reversed by ISRIB. RNA-seq analysis revealed that Gem upregulated eIF2 and Nrf2 pathways, and that ISRIB significantly inhibited these pathways. Gem also induced the expression of the antiapoptotic factors Nupr1, BEX2, and Bcl2a1, whereas ISRIB reduced their expression. In an orthotopic tumor model using PANC-1 cells, ISRIB facilitated Gem-mediated increases in PARP cleavage, which occurred in conjunction with decreased tumor size. These findings indicate that Gem chemoresistance is enhanced by activating multiple ISR-dependent pathways, including eIF2, Nrf2, Nupr1, BEX2, and Bcl2A1. It is suggested that targeting the ISR pathway may be an efficient mechanism for enhancing therapeutic responsiveness to Gem in PDAC.

Further References

D'Sa-Eipper C, Subramanian T, Chinnadurai G
bfl-1, a bcl-2 homologue, suppresses p53-induced apoptosis and exhibits potent cooperative transforming activity.
Cancer Res. 1996; 56(17):3879-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
The bcl-2 family of genes code for proteins that contain anti-apoptotic or pro-apoptotic activity. The human bfl-1 gene contains an open reading frame for a 175-amino acid Bcl-2 family protein. Among the various Bcl-2 family members, the Bfl-1 protein shares the highest homology with the mouse A1 protein. These two proteins share three conserved domains, Bcl homology (BH)1, BH2, and BH3, with other Bcl-2 family proteins. Unlike other Bcl-2 family members, Bfl-1 contains a GIn-rich NH2-terminal region and lacks an NH (19K homology) domain 1. We demonstrate that the Bfl-1 protein suppresses apoptosis induced by the p53 tumor suppressor protein in a manner similar to other Bcl-2 family members such as Bcl-2, Bcl-xL and EBV-BHRF1. In addition, the bfl-I gene cooperates efficiently with the Ela oncogene in transformation of primary rodent epithelial cells. Our results suggest that the human bfl-1 gene may play an important role in carcinogenesis.

Choi SS, Park IC, Yun JW, et al.
A novel Bcl-2 related gene, Bfl-1, is overexpressed in stomach cancer and preferentially expressed in bone marrow.
Oncogene. 1995; 11(9):1693-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Programmed cell death (apoptosis) is an active process which is genetically encoded and plays an important role in several cellular activities such as embryonic development, deletion of autoreactive T-cells and homeostasis. Several genes regulating apoptosis have been reported, including p53, one of the tumor suppressor genes, c-myc, one of the proto-oncogenes, and various kinds of Bcl-2 related genes. A new cDNA clone which is homologous to Bcl-2, named as Bfl-1 were isolated from a human fetal liver at 22 week of gestation. This clone was identified by computer analysis of random cDNA sequences that were obtained in an effort to expand the expressed sequence tag (EST) databases to be used for human genome analysis. The homology was recognized by 72% amino acid identity to the murine A1 gene, a member of the Bcl-2-related genes. The homology to the BH1 and BH2 domains of Bcl-2 was especially significant, suggesting that Bfl-1 is a new member of the Bcl-2-related genes. Bfl-1 is abundantly expressed in the bone marrow and at a low level in some other tissues. Interestingly, a correlation was noted between the expression level of Bfl-1 gene and the development of stomach cancer in eight sets of clinical samples. It is conceivable that Bfl-1 is involved in the promotion of the cell survival in the stomach cancer development or progression.

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