BCL2A1

Gene Summary

Gene:BCL2A1; BCL2 related protein A1
Aliases: GRS, ACC1, ACC2, BFL1, ACC-1, ACC-2, HBPA1, BCL2L5
Location:15q25.1
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:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:bcl-2-related protein A1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 11 March, 2017

Ontology:

What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 11 March 2017 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 11 March, 2017 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)

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] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 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] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 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] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 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] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 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.

Wang R, Geng N, Zhou Y, et al.
Aberrant Wnt-1/beta-catenin signaling and WIF-1 deficiency are important events which promote tumor cell invasion and metastasis in salivary gland adenoid cystic carcinoma.
Biomed Mater Eng. 2015; 26 Suppl 1:S2145-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study investigates whether Wnt components play a role in carcinogenesis, or the invasion and metastasis of salivary glands, also referred to as adenoid cystic carcinoma (sAdCC). Several sAdCC cell lines with low invasive potential (ACC-2), high metastatic potential (ACC-M), and higher invasive potential (T-ACC-M) were examined to determine whether Wnt components correlate with tumors' invasive and metastatic behavior. Immunohistochemistry was performed in a sAdCC tissue array. ACC-M expressed higher levels of Wnt-1, beta-catenin and lower WIF-1 compared to ACC-2 (P<0.05). T-ACC-M exhibited increased mRNA of Wnt-1 and beta-catenin, and decreased WIF-1 compared to ACC-2 and ACC-M. Immuno-histochemistry showed up-regulation of Wnt-1 and down-regulation of WIF-1 in sAdCC compared with normal salivary glands. Beta-catenin was found in the cytoplasm and nuclei of sAdCC. Dislocation of E-cadherin in sAdCC was observed. These results suggest that sAdCC exhibits diverse expressions of Wnt components. It has an important relationship with the invasive phenotype of these cells.

Wouters J, Hunger RE, Garrod T, et al.
First-in-Human Proof-of-Concept Study: Intralesional Administration of BQ788, an Endothelin Receptor B Antagonist, to Melanoma Skin Metastases.
Oncologist. 2015; 20(10):1121-2 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: This first-in-human proof-of-concept study aimed to check whether safety and preclinical results obtained by intratumoral administration of BQ788, an endothelin receptor B (EDNRB) antagonist, can be repeated in human melanoma patients.
METHODS: Three patients received a single intralesional BQ788 application of 3 mg. After 3-7 days, the lesions were measured and removed for analysis. The administered dose was increased to a cumulative dosage of 8 mg in patient 4 (4 × 2.0 mg, days 0-3; lesion removed on day 4) and to 10 mg in patient 5 (3 × 3.3 mg, days 0, 3, and 10; lesion removed after 14 days). Control lesions were simultaneously treated with phosphate-buffered saline (PBS). All samples were processed and analyzed without knowledge of the clinical findings.
RESULTS: No statistical evaluation was possible because of the number of patients (n = 5) and the variability in the mode of administration. No adverse events were observed, regardless of administered dose. All observations were in accordance with results obtained in preclinical studies. Accordingly, no difference in degree of tumor necrosis was detected between BQ788- and PBS-treated samples. In addition, both EDNRB and Ki67 showed decreased expression in patients 2 and 5 and, to a lesser extent, in patient 1. Similarly, decreased expression of EDNRB mRNA in patients 2 and 5 and of BCL2A1 and/or PARP3 in patients 2, 3, and 5 was found. Importantly, semiquantitatively scored immunohistochemistry for CD31 and CD3 revealed more blood vessels and lymphocytes, respectively, in BQ788-treated tumors of patients 2 and 4. Also, in all patients, we observed inverse correlation in expression levels between EDNRB and HIF1A. Finally, in patient 5 (the only patient treated for longer than 1 week), we observed inhibition in lesion growth, as shown by size measurement.
CONCLUSION: The intralesional applications of BQ788 were well tolerated and showed signs of directly and indirectly reducing the viability of melanoma cells.

Fang J, Bao YY, Zhou SH, Fan J
Apigenin inhibits the proliferation of adenoid cystic carcinoma via suppression of glucose transporter-1.
Mol Med Rep. 2015; 12(5):6461-6 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Apigenin is a natural phyto-oestrogen flavonoid, which exerts various biological effects, including anti‑oxidative, anti‑inflammatory and anticancer activities. In addition, apigenin has recently been reported to target hypoxic markers; however, there are currently no studies regarding the association between apigenin and glucose transporter‑1 (GLUT‑1) in adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC). The present study investigated whether apigenin inhibits the proliferation of ACC cells or suppresses the expression of GLUT‑1 in ACC cells. The results of the present study demonstrated that apigenin inhibits ACC‑2 cell growth in a dose‑ and time‑dependent manner. Treatment with apigenin also induced apoptosis and G2/M‑phase arrest in a dose‑ and time‑dependent manner. Corresponding with the above results, the expression levels of GLUT‑1 were significantly decreased following treatment in a dose- and time-dependent manner. These results suggest that the inhibition of ACC-2 cell growth by apigenin may be due to the decreased expression of GLUT-1.

Hu YW, Chen ZP, Hu XM, et al.
The miR-573/apoM/Bcl2A1-dependent signal transduction pathway is essential for hepatocyte apoptosis and hepatocarcinogenesis.
Apoptosis. 2015; 20(10):1321-37 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most common malignant tumors with an increasing incidence worldwide. Apolipoprotein M (apoM) is a novel apolipoprotein that is mainly expressed in liver and kidney tissues. However, the anti-tumor properties of apoM remain largely unknown. We evaluated the anti-tumor activities and mechanisms of apoM in HCC both in vivo and in vitro. Bioinformatic analysis and luciferase reporter assay results showed that apoM was a potential target of hsa-miR-573 and was downregulated after transfection with hsa-miR-573 mimics. Overexpression of apoM suppressed migration, invasion, and proliferation of hepatoma cells in vitro. Overexpression of hsa-miR-573 in hepatoma cells reduced apoM expression, leading to promotion of the invasion, migration, and proliferation of hepatoma cells in vitro. In addition, hsa-miR-573 markedly promoted growth of xenograft tumors in nude mice with an accompanying reduction in cell apoptosis. ApoM markedly inhibited growth of xenograft tumors in nude mice and promoted cell apoptosis. Moreover, Bcl2A1 mRNA and protein levels were inhibited by apoM overexpression and an increase in apoptosis rate by apoM was markedly compensated by Bcl2A1 overexpression in HepG2 cells. These results provide evidence that hsa-miR-573 promoted tumor growth by inhibition of hepatocyte apoptosis and this pro-tumor effect might be mediated through Bcl2A1 in an apoM-dependent manner. Therefore, our findings may be useful to improve understanding of the critical effects of hsa-miR-573 and apoM in HCC pathogenesis.

Yoo JY, McCoy KL, Carty SE, et al.
Adrenal Imaging Features Predict Malignancy Better than Tumor Size.
Ann Surg Oncol. 2015; 22 Suppl 3:S721-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: In adrenal tumors, size ≥ 4 cm has been an indication for adrenalectomy due to concern for malignancy. We compared mass size to imaging features (ImF) for accuracy in diagnosing adrenal malignancy.
METHODS: Data were retrieved for 112 consecutive patients who had adrenalectomy from January 2011 to August 2014. ImF was classified as nonbenign if HU > 10 on unenhanced CT scan or if loss of signal on out-of-phase imaging was absent on chemical-shift MRI. Indications for resection included hormonal hypersecretion, nonbenign ImF, and/or size ≥ 4 cm.
RESULTS: Of 113 resected adrenals, 37 % were functional. Histologic malignancy occurred in 18 % (20/113) and included 3 adrenocortical carcinomas (ACC), 1 epithelioid liposarcoma, 1 lymphoma, 1 malignant nerve sheath tumor, and 14 adrenal metastases. Patients with malignancies were older (mean age, 60 ± 13 vs. 51 ± 14 years, p = 0.01). Malignant tumors were larger on preoperative imaging (mean 5.3 ± 3.2 vs. 3.9 ± 2.4 cm, p = 0.03). All 20 malignant masses had nonbenign ImF. In predicting malignancy, the sensitivity, specificity, NPV, and PPV of nonbenign ImF was 100, 57, 100, and 33 %, respectively. Size ≥ 4 cm was less predictive with sensitivity, specificity, NPV, and PPV of 55, 61, 86, and 23 %, respectively. If size ≥ 4 cm had been used as the sole criterion for surgery, 45 % of malignancies (9/20) would have been missed including 8 metastases and an ACC.
CONCLUSIONS: In resected adrenal tumors, the presence of nonbenign ImF is more sensitive for malignancy than mass size (100 vs. 55 %) with equivalent specificity. Regardless of mass size, adrenalectomy should be strongly considered when non-benign ImF are present.

Fukuhara S, Chang I, Mitsui Y, et al.
Functional role of DNA mismatch repair gene PMS2 in prostate cancer cells.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(18):16341-51 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
DNA mismatch repair (MMR) enzymes act as proofreading complexes that maintains genomic integrity and MMR-deficient cells show an increased mutation rate. MMR has also been shown to influence cell signaling and the regulation of tumor development. MMR consists of various genes and includes post-meiotic segregation (PMS) 2 which is a vital component of mutL-alpha. In prostate, the functional role of this gene has never been reported and in this study, our aim was to investigate the effect of PMS2 on growth properties of prostate cancer (PCa) cells. Previous studies have shown PMS2 to be deficient in DU145 cells and this lack of expression was confirmed by Western blotting whereas normal prostatic PWR-1E and RWPE-1 cells expressed this gene. PMS2 effects on various growth properties of DU145 were then determined by creating stable gene transfectants. Interestingly, PMS2 caused decreased cell proliferation, migration, invasion, and in vivo growth; and increased apoptosis as compared to vector control. We further analyzed genes affected by PMS2 expression and observe the apoptosis-related TMS1 gene to be significantly upregulated whereas anti-apoptotic BCL2A1 was downregulated. These results demonstrate a functional role for PMS2 to protect against PCa progression by enhancing apoptosis of PCa cells.

Niu P, Zhao XX, Yan F, et al.
[Influence of Ginkgo biloba extract on proliferation of ACC-2 cell, Survivin and TIP30 gene expression in adenoid cystic carcinoma of lacrimal gland].
Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 2014; 39(24):4860-4 [PubMed] Related Publications
Exploring the influence of extract of Ginkgo biloba (EGB) on the proliferation, apoptosis of ACC-2 cell in lacrimal adenoid cystic carcinoma and analyzing the influence of EGB on the gene expression of Survivin and TIP30 based on the levels of the gene and protein. ACC-2 cell in human with ACC of lacrimal gland disposed by EGB of different concentration was in vitro cultured. MTT method was used for cell proliferation detection. Annexin V/PI double-staining flow cytometer was used to detect cell apoptosis and cell cycle. Survivin and TIP30 gene expression together with protein expression were analyzed by RT-PCR and Western blotting. And it is indicated that EGB has inhibitory effect on the proliferation of ACC-2 cell in vitro. Furthermore, the dose-effect relationship was significant. Compared with the control group, it had statistical difference (P <0.01). The inhibitory concentration 50% (ICso) is 88 mg . L-1. By flow cytometer examination, it was indicated that EGB can gradually increase ACC-2 cell in G0-G1 stage and decrease it in G2-M and S stage. With the increase of dose, the apoptosis rate of ACC-2 cell obviously increased (P <0.05 or P <0.01). Both of the expression results of RT-PCR and Western hybrid proteins have showed that the concentration of EGB increased, it could be seen a significant decrease in Survivin gene expression (P <0.01). Meanwhile, the TIP30 gene expression got a significant increase. Therefore, EGB can effectively inhibit ACC-2 cell Survivin gene expression in human with adenoid cysistic carcinoma of larcrimal gland as well as promoting TIP30 gene expression, inducing the ACC-2 cell apoptosis and inhibiting tumor cell proliferation, which provided a certain theoretical and experimental basis for the application of Chinese herbal medicinal ingredient in the treatment of tumors.

Chien WW, Le Beux C, Rachinel N, et al.
Differential mechanisms of asparaginase resistance in B-type acute lymphoblastic leukemia and malignant natural killer cell lines.
Sci Rep. 2015; 5:8068 [PubMed] Related Publications
Bacterial L-asparaginase (ASNase), hydrolyzing L-asparagine (Asn), is an important drug for treating patients with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) and natural killer (NK) cell lymphoma. Although different native or pegylated ASNase-based chemotherapy are efficient, disease relapse is frequently observed, especially in adult patients. The neo-synthesis of Asn by asparagine synthetase (AsnS) following ASNase treatment, which involves the amino acid response and mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase/extracellular signal-regulated kinase pathways, is believed to be the basis of ASNase-resistance mechanisms. However, AsnS expression has not emerged as an accurate predictive factor for ASNase susceptibility. The aim of this study was to identify possible ASNase sensitivity/resistance-related genes or pathways using a new asparaginase, namely a pegylated r-crisantaspase, with a focus on classic Asn-compensatory responses and cell death under conditions of Asn/L-glutamine limitation. We show that, for B-ALL cell lines, changes in the expression of apoptosis-regulatory genes (especially NFκB-related genes) are associated with ASNase susceptibility. The response of malignant NK cell lines to ASNase may depend on Asn-compensatory mechanisms and other cellular processes such as cleavage of BCL2A1, a prosurvival member of the Bcl-2 protein family. These results suggest that according to cellular context, factors other than AsnS can influence ASNase susceptibility.

Ettl T, Viale-Bouroncle S, Hautmann MG, et al.
AKT and MET signalling mediates antiapoptotic radioresistance in head neck cancer cell lines.
Oral Oncol. 2015; 51(2):158-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Induction of apoptosis is a major mechanism of radiosensitivity in different types of cancer. In contrast, EGFR/PI3K/AKT signalling and recently the presence of so-called cancer stem cells are discussed as reasons for radioresistance.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study investigates mechanisms of apoptosis, key oncogenes of the PI3K/AKT pathway and the presence of cancer cells with stem cell properties during irradiation in two cell lines (PCI-9A, and PCI-15) of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. WST-1-tests, qRT-PCR, western blots and FACS analysis were performed for analysis.
RESULTS: The two cell lines presented different degrees of cell death upon irradiation. The radiosensitive cell line PCI-9A showed increased apoptosis after irradiation measured by expressed cleaved caspases 3 and 7 while the radioresistant cell line PCI-15 upregulated antiapoptotic Survivin and BCL2A1 mRNA. Besides, increased PI3K/AKT- and ERK1/2-signalling was associated with radioresistance accompanied by loss of PTEN function through phosphorylation on S380. Blockade of pAKT increased radiation-induced cell death, and moreover, led to an upregulation of pMET in the radioresistant cell line. The percentage of ALDH-positive tumour cells was markedly decreased after irradiation in the radiosensitive cell line.
CONCLUSIONS: Functional apoptosis is mandatory for sensitivity to irradiation in head neck cancer cells. Upregulation of the AKT-pathway seems to be one reason for poor radioresponse. Activated MET may also predict radioresistance, possibly through ERK1/2 signalling. Moreover MET may indicate the presence of cancer stem cells facilitating radioresistance as shown by increased ALDH expression.

Hind CK, Carter MJ, Harris CL, et al.
Role of the pro-survival molecule Bfl-1 in melanoma.
Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2015; 59:94-102 [PubMed] Related Publications
Bfl-1 is a pro-survival Bcl-2 family member overexpressed in a subset of chemoresistant tumours, including melanoma. Here, we characterised the expression and regulation of Bfl-1 in normal and malignant melanocytes and determined its role in protecting these cells from chemotherapy-induced apoptosis. Bfl-1 was mitochondrially resident in both resting and apoptotic cells and experienced regulation by the proteasome and NFκB pathways. siRNA-mediated knockdown enhanced sensitivity towards various relevant drug treatments, with forced overexpression of Bfl-1 protective. These findings identify Bfl-1 as a contributor towards therapeutic resistance in melanoma cells and support the use of NFκB inhibitors alongside current treatment strategies.

Humphrey KL, Saksena MA, Freer PE, et al.
To do or not to do: axillary nodal evaluation after ACOSOG Z0011 Trial.
Radiographics. 2014 Nov-Dec; 34(7):1807-16 [PubMed] Related Publications
Methods of axillary evaluation in invasive breast cancer continue to evolve. The recent American College of Surgeons Oncology Group Z0011 Trial is a prospective, randomized, multicenter trial that compared the survival and locoregional recurrence rates after complete axillary lymph node dissection (ALND) versus sentinel node biopsy (SNB) alone in women with a positive sentinel node in an effort to avoid the complications associated with ALND. As the results of this trial are implemented clinically, affecting surgical management of axillary metastatic disease, radiologists may need to redefine their role in the preoperative assessment of the axilla. Before the Z0011 trial, breast imagers worked to identify axillary metastases preoperatively, allowing appropriate patients to proceed directly to ALND and avoiding the need for SNB. However, the Z0011 trial concluded that ALND may not be necessary in women with metastatic axillary disease who meet the trial criteria. In the Z0011 trial, after 6 years of median follow-up there was no difference in either locoregional recurrence or survival among the women who underwent SNB alone compared with those who underwent ALND, suggesting that ALND is unnecessary in a subset of women with a positive node at SNB. These results raise questions about how aggressively radiologists should pursue percutaneous sampling of axillary nodes, as some practitioners conclude that, in an otherwise eligible woman, positive results from imaging-guided percutaneous biopsy preclude a Z0011 trial-directed pathway. Debate about the best way to implement the results of the Z0011 trial into daily clinical practice exists. It is important for breast imagers to work closely with breast surgeons to provide the most appropriate treatment course for each patient.

Beach JA, Nary LJ, Hovanessian R, Medh RD
Correlation of glucocorticoid-mediated E4BP4 upregulation with altered expression of pro- and anti-apoptotic genes in CEM human lymphoblastic leukemia cells.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2014; 451(3):382-8 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
In Caenorhabditiselegans, motorneuron apoptosis is regulated via a ces-2-ces-1-egl-1 pathway. We tested whether human CEM lymphoblastic leukemia cells undergo apoptosis via an analogous pathway. We have previously shown that E4BP4, a ces-2 ortholog, mediates glucocorticoid (GC)-dependent upregulation of BIM, an egl-1 ortholog, in GC-sensitive CEM C7-14 cells and in CEM C1-15mE#3 cells, which are sensitized to GCs by ectopic expression of E4BP4. In the present study, we demonstrate that the human ces-1 orthologs, SLUG and SNAIL, are not significantly repressed in correlation with E4BP4 expression. Expression of E4BP4 homologs, the PAR family genes, especially HLF, encoding a known anti-apoptotic factor, was inverse to that of E4BP4 and BIM. Expression of pro- and anti-apoptotic genes in CEM cells was analyzed via an apoptosis PCR Array. We identified BIRC3 and BIM as genes whose expression paralleled that of E4BP4, while FASLG, TRAF4, BCL2A1, BCL2L1, BCL2L2 and CD40LG as genes whose expression was opposite to that of E4BP4.

Champa D, Russo MA, Liao XH, et al.
Obatoclax overcomes resistance to cell death in aggressive thyroid carcinomas by countering Bcl2a1 and Mcl1 overexpression.
Endocr Relat Cancer. 2014; 21(5):755-67 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Poorly differentiated tumors of the thyroid gland (PDTC) are generally characterized by a poor prognosis due to their resistance to available therapeutic approaches. The relative rarity of these tumors is a major obstacle to our understanding of the molecular mechanisms leading to tumor aggressiveness and drug resistance, and consequently to the development of novel therapies. By simultaneously activating Kras and deleting p53 (Trp53) in thyroid follicular cells, we have generated a novel mouse model that develops papillary thyroid cancer invariably progressing to PDTC. In several cases, tumors further progress to anaplastic carcinomas. The poorly differentiated tumors are morphologically and functionally similar to their human counterparts and depend on MEK/ERK signaling for proliferation. Using primary carcinomas as well as carcinoma-derived cell lines, we also demonstrate that these tumors are intrinsically resistant to apoptosis due to high levels of expression of the Bcl2 family members, Bcl2a1 (Bcl2a1a) and Mcl1, and can be effectively targeted by Obatoclax, a small-molecule pan-inhibitor of the Bcl2 family. Furthermore, we show that Bcl2 family inhibition synergizes with MEK inhibition as well as with doxorubicin in inducing cell death. Thus, our studies in a novel, relevant mouse model have uncovered a promising druggable feature of aggressive thyroid cancers.

Othman RT, Kimishi I, Bradshaw TD, et al.
Overcoming multiple drug resistance mechanisms in medulloblastoma.
Acta Neuropathol Commun. 2014; 2:57 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Medulloblastoma (MB) is the most common malignant paediatric brain tumour. Recurrence and progression of disease occurs in 15-20% of standard risk and 30-40% of high risk patients. We analysed whether circumvention of chemoresistance pathways (drug export, DNA repair and apoptotic inhibition) can restore chemotherapeutic efficacy in a panel of MB cell lines.
RESULTS: We demonstrate, by immunohistochemistry in patient tissue microarrays, that ABCB1 is expressed in 43% of tumours and is significantly associated with high-risk. We show that ABCB1, O6-methylguanine-DNA-methyltransferase (MGMT) and BCL2 family members are differentially expressed (by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, Western blotting and flow cytometry) in MB cell lines. Based on these findings, each pathway was then inhibited or circumvented and cell survival assessed using clonogenic assays. Inhibition of ABCB1 using vardenafil or verapamil resulted in a significant increase in sensitivity to etoposide in ABCB1-expressing MB cell lines. Sensitivity to temozolomide (TMZ) was MGMT-dependent, but two novel imidazotetrazine derivatives (N-3 sulfoxide and N-3 propargyl TMZ analogues) demonstrated ≥7 fold and ≥3 fold more potent cytotoxicity respectively compared to TMZ in MGMT-expressing MB cell lines. Activity of the BAD mimetic ABT-737 was BCL2A1 and ABCB1 dependent, whereas the pan-BCL2 inhibitor obatoclax was effective as a single cytotoxic agent irrespective of MCL1, BCL2, BCL2A1, or ABCB1 expression.
CONCLUSIONS: ABCB1 is associated with high-risk MB; hence, inhibition of ABCB1 by vardenafil may represent a valid approach in these patients. Imidazotetrazine analogues of TMZ and the BH3 mimetic obatoclax are promising clinical candidates in drug resistant MB tumours expressing MGMT and BCL2 anti-apoptotic members respectively.

Lee SY, Choi HC, Choe YJ, et al.
Nutlin-3 induces BCL2A1 expression by activating ELK1 through the mitochondrial p53-ROS-ERK1/2 pathway.
Int J Oncol. 2014; 45(2):675-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
Nutlin-3 which occupies the p53 binding pocket in HDM2, has been reported to activate apoptosis through both the transcriptional activity-dependent and -independent programs of p53. Transcription-independent apoptosis by nutlin-3 is triggered by p53 which is translocated to mitochondria. However, we previously demonstrated that the nutlin-3-induced mitochondrial translocation of p53 stimulates ERK1/2 activation, an anti-apoptosis signal, via mitochondrial ROS generation. We report on how nutlin-3-stimulated ERK1/2 activity inhibits p53-induced apoptosis. Among the anti-apoptotic BCL2 family proteins, BCL2A1 expression was increased by nutlin-3 at both the mRNA and protein levels, and this increase was prevented by the inhibition of ERK1/2. TEMPO, a ROS scavenger, and PFT-μ , a blocker of the mitochondrial translocation of p53, also inhibited BCL2A1 expression as well as ERK1/2 phosphorylation. In addition, nutlin-3 stimulated phosphorylation of ELK1, which was prevented by all compounds that inhibited nutlin-3-induced ERK1/2 such as U0126, PFT-μ and TEMPO. Moreover, an increase in BCL2A1 expression was weakened by the knockdown of ELK1. Finally, nutlin-3-induced apoptosis was found to be potentiated by the knockdown of BCL2A1, as demonstrated by an increase of in hypo-diploidic cells and Annexin V-positive cells. Parallel to the increase in apoptotic cells, the knockdown of BCL2A1 augmented the cleavage of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1. It is noteworthy that the augmented levels of apoptosis induced by the knockdown of BCL2A1 were comparable to those of apoptosis induced by U0126. Collectively, these results suggest that nutlin-3-activated ERK1/2 may stimulate the transcription of BCL2A1 via the activation of ELK1, and BCL2A1 expression may contribute to the inhibitory effect of ERK1/2 on nutlin-3-induced apoptosis, thereby constituting a negative feedback loop of p53-induced apoptosis.

Hartman ML, Talar B, Noman MZ, et al.
Gene expression profiling identifies microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) and Dickkopf-1 (DKK1) as regulators of microenvironment-driven alterations in melanoma phenotype.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(4):e95157 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The diversity of functional phenotypes observed within a tumor does not exclusively result from intratumoral genetic heterogeneity but also from the response of cancer cells to the microenvironment. We have previously demonstrated that the morphological and functional phenotypes of melanoma can be dynamically altered upon external stimuli.
FINDINGS: In the present study, transcriptome profiles were generated to explore the molecules governing phenotypes of melanospheres grown in the bFGF(+)EGF(+) serum-free cultures and monolayers maintained in the serum-containing medium. Higher expression levels of MITF-dependent genes that are responsible for differentiation, e.g., TYR and MLANA, and stemness-related genes, e.g., ALDH1A1, were detected in melanospheres. These results were supported by the observation that the melanospheres contained more pigmented cells and cells exerting the self-renewal capacity than the monolayers. In addition, the expression of the anti-apoptotic, MITF-dependent genes e.g., BCL2A1 was also higher in the melanospheres. The enhanced activity of MITF in melanospheres, as illustrated by the increased expression of 74 MITF-dependent genes, identified MITF as a central transcriptional regulator in melanospheres. Importantly, several genes including MITF-dependent ones were expressed in melanospheres and original tumors at similar levels. The reduced MITF level in monolayers might be partially explained by suppression of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway, and DKK1, a secreted inhibitor of this pathway, was highly up-regulated in monolayers in comparison to melanospheres and original tumors. Furthermore, the silencing of DKK1 in monolayers increased the percentage of cells with self-renewing capacity.
CONCLUSIONS: Our study indicates that melanospheres can be used to unravel the molecular pathways that sustain intratumoral phenotypic heterogeneity. Melanospheres directly derived from tumor specimens more accurately mirrored the morphology and gene expression profiles of the original tumors compared to monolayers. Therefore, melanospheres represent a relevant preclinical tool to study new anticancer treatment strategies.

Huang Y, Yu T, Zhu W, et al.
[Increased invasion ability mechanism of salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma through elevated interstitial fluid pressure in vitro].
Hua Xi Kou Qiang Yi Xue Za Zhi. 2014; 32(1):9-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Through a simulation of interstitial fluid pressure (IFP), we developed an in vitro model to explore the change law of biological characteristics of adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC) under different IFP.
METHODS: A pressure cooker was refitted into a controllable pressure device. Cultured ACC-2 cells were subdivided into different groups, namely, negative control (untreated ACC-2) and experimental group (stressed for 3, 6, 12, 24 h under pressure of 7.551, 7.649, 7.747 kPa). CCK-8 and immunofluorescence of Ki67 were used to reflect proliferation ability. Transwell chamber assay was performed to observe the invasion ability of cells.
RESULTS: The proliferation ability was positively correlated with treatment time, and the peak value was obtained after the cells were subjected to 7.649 kPa of stress for 24 h. The invasion ability of ACC-2 cells was upregulated under stress.
CONCLUSION: We successfully developed an in vitro model of IFP and found that high IFP can stimulate cell proliferation ability and upregulate invasion ability.

Wang YF, Zhang W, He KF, et al.
Induction of autophagy-dependent cell death by the survivin suppressant YM155 in salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma.
Apoptosis. 2014; 19(4):748-58 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC) is one of the most common malignancies of the major and minor salivary glands. However, the molecular mechanism underlying the aggressive growth of human salivary ACC remains unclear. In the present study, we showed that survivin, which belongs to the family of inhibitors of apoptosis, is closely related to the high expression of CDK4 and cyclin D1 in human ACC specimens. By employing the small-molecule drug YM155, we found that the inhibition of survivin in ACC cells caused significant cell death and induced autophagy. Chloroquine, an autophagy inhibitor, prevented cell death induced by YM155, suggesting YM155-induced autophagy contributed to the cell death effects in ACC cells. More importantly, evidence obtained from a xenograft model using ACC-2 cells proved the occurrence of YM155-induced autophagy and cell death in vivo was correlated with the suppression of Erk1/2 and S6 activation as well as increased TFEB nuclear translocation. Taken together, our results indicate YM155 is a novel inducer of autophagy-dependent cell death and possesses therapeutic potential in ACC.

Filip AA, Ciseł B, Wąsik-Szczepanek E
Guilty bystanders: nurse-like cells as a model of microenvironmental support for leukemic lymphocytes.
Clin Exp Med. 2015; 15(1):73-83 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (B-CLL) is one of the most common leukemias among the elderly and, despite many efforts, still stays incurable. Recent studies point to the microenvironment as the critical factor providing leukemic lymphocytes with pro-survival signals. Thus, the neighboring cells appear to be a perfect target for antileukemic therapy. Nurse-like cells (NLCs) largely contribute to CLL microenvironmental support. We developed the CLL lymphocyte/NLC co-culture model for the investigation of microenvironmental interactions. Viability and apoptosis were investigated in CLL lymphocytes treated with dexamethasone (DEX) and chlorambucil (CLB), with and without NLCs' support. For the first time, the capacity of DEX and CLB to affect NLCs viability was also evaluated. Apoptosis-associated gene expression profiles of leukemic lymphocytes ex vivo and cultured with NLCs were assessed by expression arrays. CLL lymphocytes escaped spontaneous apoptosis for several months when cultured with NLCs. The presence of NLCs significantly reduced apoptosis induced with DEX and CLB (p < 0.001; p = 0.012, respectively), and their protective effect was more evident than the effect of recombinant SDF1. Both DEX and CLB also decreased NLCs viability, but to a lesser extent (mean viability in DEX-treated cultures was 37.79% in NLCs compared to 29.24% in lymphocytes). NLCs induced the expression of important anti-apoptotic genes in cultured CLL lymphocytes; median expression of BCL2, SURVIVIN, BCL2A1, and XIAP was significantly higher as compared to ex vivo status. The CLL lymphocyte/NLC co-culture makes up the convenient and close to the natural-state model for studying the relationship between leukemic cells and the microenvironment. Direct cell-to-cell contact with NLCs increases the expression of anti-apoptotic genes in CLL lymphocytes, thus protecting them against induced apoptosis. As the effect of antileukemic drugs is not so apparent in NLCs, the combined therapy targeted at both lymphocytes and the microenvironment should be considered for CLL patients. Simultaneous aiming at the disruption of several different signaling pathways and/or anti-apoptotic proteins may further improve treatment efficiency.

Hollevoet K, Antignani A, Fitzgerald DJ, Pastan I
Combining the antimesothelin immunotoxin SS1P with the BH3-mimetic ABT-737 induces cell death in SS1P-resistant pancreatic cancer cells.
J Immunother. 2014; 37(1):8-15 [PubMed] Related Publications
SS1P is an antimesothelin recombinant immunotoxin (RIT). Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) cell lines are resistant to SS1P, despite high mesothelin expression. The aim of this study is to examine whether combining SS1P and BH3-mimetic ABT-737 induces cell death in a panel of PDAC cell lines. ABT-737 binds and neutralizes several antiapoptotic BCL2 family proteins, but has a low affinity for the short-lived MCL1 and BCL2A1. SS1P inhibits protein synthesis, which has shown to downregulate MCL1. PDAC cell lines KLM-1, BxPc-3, and Panc 3.014 were resistant to SS1P or ABT-737 alone. Combining both compounds led to a significant increase in cell death. After 48 hours of treatment, cell death was observed in 92% of KLM-1, 55% of BxPc-3, and 23% of Panc 3.014 cells. Panc 3.014 had the highest number of mesothelin-binding sites (92×10(3)), followed by KLM-1 (58×10(3)) and BxPc-3 (3×10(3)). ABT-737 had no effect on SS1P internalization, but enhanced SS1P-induced protein synthesis inhibition significantly in KLM-1, to a lesser extent in BxPc-3, and very little in Panc 3.014. SS1P alone or in combination with ABT-737 downregulated MCL1 in KLM-1 and BxPc-3, but not in Panc 3.014. Similar observations were made for BCL2A1, which had the highest levels in Panc 3.014. Compared with KLM-1, Panc 3.014, and BxPc-3 also had lower proapoptotic BAK and a trend toward higher MCL1. Proapoptotic BAX was similar in KLM-1 and BxPc-3, but lower in Panc 3.014. In conclusion, combining SS1P with ABT-737 overcomes SS1P-resistance in PDAC, although to a variable extent. The efficacy of the combination is mainly associated with the RIT-associated inhibition of protein synthesis and the ability to downregulate MCL1 and BCL2A1, while levels of other key apoptotic proteins may also be important. Our data support the combination of an RIT and a BH3-mimetic, and identify factors that potentially limit the efficacy of such therapeutic approach.

Soderquist R, Pletnev AA, Danilov AV, Eastman A
The putative BH3 mimetic S1 sensitizes leukemia to ABT-737 by increasing reactive oxygen species, inducing endoplasmic reticulum stress, and upregulating the BH3-only protein NOXA.
Apoptosis. 2014; 19(1):201-9 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
S1 is a putative BH3 mimetic proposed to inhibit BCL2 and MCL1 based on cell-free assays. However, we previously demonstrated that it failed to inhibit BCL2 or induce apoptosis in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) cells, which are dependent on BCL2 for survival. In contrast, we show here that S1 rapidly increases reactive oxygen species, initiates endoplasmic reticulum stress, and upregulates the BH3-only protein NOXA. The BCL2 inhibitors, ABT-737, ABT-263, and ABT-199, have demonstrated pro-apoptotic efficacy in cell lines, while ABT-263 and ABT-199 have demonstrated efficacy in early clinical trials. Resistance to these inhibitors arises from the upregulation of anti-apoptotic factors, such as MCL1, BFL1, and BCLXL. This resistance can be induced by co-culturing CLL cells on a stromal cell line that mimics the microenvironment found in patients. Since NOXA can inhibit MCL1, BFL1, and BCLXL, we hypothesized that S1 may overcome resistance to ABT-737. Here we demonstrate that S1 induces NOXA-dependent sensitization to ABT-737 in a human promyelocytic leukemia cell line (NB4). Furthermore, S1 sensitized CLL cells to ABT-737 ex vivo, and overcame resistance to ABT-737 induced by co-culturing CLL cells with stroma.

Zhou B, Li T, Liu Y, Zhu N
Promoting effects on the proliferation and metastasis of ACC tumor cell with XAGE-1b overexpression.
Oncol Rep. 2013; 30(5):2323-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
Adenoid cystic carcinoma is salivary gland malignancy characterized by indolent yet relentless growth that exhibits inherent resistance to surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy and it also expresses genes associated with well-defined carcinogenic and metastasis processes. There is no clear role established for XAGE-1b, which is a member of the cancer testis antigen family in tumorigenesis and the metastasis process of ACC. We studied and elucidated the correlation between the proliferation and metastasis of ACC and XAGE-1b. The eukaryotic vector was constructed for XAGE-1b overexpression in ACC-2 cells, which were used for studying the proliferation and migration phenotype in vivo and in vitro. RNAi technology was used to suppress the expression of XAGE-1b in the ACC-M cell line, and shRNA expression vector was also constructed and screened for interfering XAGE-1b expression applied to ACC-M cell lines. The effects on cell migration activity with XAGE-1b overexpression were determined by QCMTM 24-Well Cell Invasion Assay in vitro, and a lung metastatic model in mice. We found decreased effects on the proliferation phenotype of ACC-M cell in vivo and in vitro with XAGE-1b downregulation, and XAGE-1b overexpression promoted the proliferation of ACC-2 cells in vivo and in vitro, while its overexpression promoted the transmembrane invasion of ACC-2 cells in vitro and metastasis in vivo of the nude mice. The proliferation in vitro of ACC-M cells and subcutaneous tumor growth of nude mice was inhibited by XAGE-1b interference. The ACC-2 cell line with XAGE-1b overexpression displayed more rapid proliferation and higher transmembrane and metastatic ability in vivo and in vitro, with more angiogenesis in the tumor tissues. XAGE-1b gene was able to influence angiogenesis directly or indirectly, leading to tumorigenesis and metastasis of ACC.

You G, Feng L, Yan W, et al.
BCL2A1 is a potential biomarker for postoperative seizure control in patients with low-grade gliomas.
CNS Neurosci Ther. 2013; 19(11):882-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: To identify molecular genetic factors that influence preoperative seizure occurrence and postoperative seizure control in patients with low-grade gliomas (LGGs).
METHODS: Fifty-four WHO grade II astrocytomas were used for microarray analysis under strict inclusion criteria. The primary endpoint was seizure control at 12 months after surgery. Biological processes were investigated by gene ontology (GO) analysis. Quantitative RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry were used to validate key genes.
RESULTS: Differentially expressed genes correlated with seizure occurrence failed to significantly distinguish patients with and without a history of seizures. With respect to postoperative seizure control, a transcript profile of 92 genes was identified, which successfully separated patients with good and poor seizure prognosis. GO analysis revealed that the most striking overrepresentation of genes was found in a category of anti-apoptotic genes and their regulation. Increased expression was also observed for genes involved in immune and inflammatory responses. BCL2A1 was proven to be a novel marker associated with seizure prognosis.
CONCLUSION: Increased anti-apoptotic activity of tumor cells appears to contribute to seizure recurrence after surgery in patients with LGGs. These findings provide insights that may lead to the development of effective treatment strategies for prolonging the survival of patients with LGG in the future.

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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