CAMP

Gene Summary

Gene:CAMP; cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide
Aliases: LL37, CAP18, CRAMP, HSD26, CAP-18, FALL39, FALL-39
Location:3p21.3
Summary:This gene encodes a member of an antimicrobial peptide family, characterized by a highly conserved N-terminal signal peptide containing a cathelin domain and a structurally variable cationic antimicrobial peptide, which is produced by extracellular proteolysis from the C-terminus. In addition to its antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral activities, the encoded protein functions in cell chemotaxis, immune mediator induction, and inflammatory response regulation. [provided by RefSeq, Sep 2014]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide
HPRD
Source:NCBIAccessed: 06 August, 2015

Ontology:

What does this gene/protein do?
Show (8)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 06 August 2015 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.

  • U937 Cells
  • Cyclic AMP Response Element-Binding Protein
  • Breast Cancer
  • Genetic Predisposition
  • Adrenocortical Cancer
  • Mutation
  • Cell Movement
  • RNA Interference
  • Thyroid Nodule
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Skin Cancer
  • Enzyme Activation
  • siRNA
  • Protein Binding
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinase RIalpha Subunit
  • Tissue Array Analysis
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Phosphorylation
  • Chromosome 3
  • Western Blotting
  • Secretin
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases
  • VIP
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Zinc Fingers
  • Transcription Factor AP-1
  • Viral Envelope Proteins
  • Somatotrophs
  • Subcellular Fractions
  • Gene Expression
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases
  • AKT1
  • Thyrotropin
  • Uterine Cancer
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Apoptosis
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Signal Transduction
  • RTPCR
  • Cyclic AMP
  • Stem Cells
Tag cloud generated 06 August, 2015 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: CAMP (cancer-related)

Cromer MK, Choi M, Nelson-Williams C, et al.
Neomorphic effects of recurrent somatic mutations in Yin Yang 1 in insulin-producing adenomas.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015; 112(13):4062-7 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Insulinomas are pancreatic islet tumors that inappropriately secrete insulin, producing hypoglycemia. Exome and targeted sequencing revealed that 14 of 43 insulinomas harbored the identical somatic mutation in the DNA-binding zinc finger of the transcription factor Yin Yang 1 (YY1). Chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-Seq) showed that this T372R substitution changes the DNA motif bound by YY1. Global analysis of gene expression demonstrated distinct clustering of tumors with and without YY1(T372R) mutations. Genes showing large increases in expression in YY1(T372R) tumors included ADCY1 (an adenylyl cyclase) and CACNA2D2 (a Ca(2+) channel); both are expressed at very low levels in normal β-cells and show mutation-specific YY1 binding sites. Both gene products are involved in key pathways regulating insulin secretion. Expression of these genes in rat INS-1 cells demonstrated markedly increased insulin secretion. These findings indicate that YY1(T372R) mutations are neomorphic, resulting in constitutive activation of cAMP and Ca(2+) signaling pathways involved in insulin secretion.

Montero-Melendez T, Gobbetti T, Cooray SN, et al.
Biased agonism as a novel strategy to harness the proresolving properties of melanocortin receptors without eliciting melanogenic effects.
J Immunol. 2015; 194(7):3381-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
There is a need for novel approaches to control pathologies with overexuberant inflammatory reactions. Targeting melanocortin (MC) receptors represents a promising therapy for obesity and chronic inflammation, but lack of selectivity and safety concerns limit development. A new way to increase selectivity of biological effects entails the identification of biased agonists. In this study, we characterize the small molecule AP1189 as a biased agonist at receptors MC1 and MC3. Although not provoking canonical cAMP generation, AP1189 addition to MC1 or MC3, but not empty vector, transfected HEK293 cells caused ERK1/2 phosphorylation, a signaling responsible for the proefferocytic effect evoked in mouse primary macrophages. Added to macrophage cultures, AP1189 reduced cytokine release, an effect reliant on both MC1 and MC3 as evident from the use of Mc1r(-/-) and Mc3r(-/-) macrophages. No melanogenesis was induced by AP1189 in B16-F10 melanocytes. In vivo, oral AP1189 elicited anti-inflammatory actions in peritonitis and, upon administration at the peak of inflammation, accelerated the resolution phase by ∼3-fold. Finally, given the clinical efficacy of adrenocorticotropin in joint diseases, AP1189 was tested in experimental inflammatory arthritis, where this biased agonist afforded significant reduction of macroscopic and histological parameters of joint disruption. These proof-of-concept analyses with AP1189, an active oral anti-inflammatory and resolution-promoting compound, indicate that biased agonism at MC receptors is an innovative, viable approach to yield novel anti-inflammatory molecules endowed with a more favorable safety profile.

Cheung J, Ginter C, Cassidy M, et al.
Structural insights into mis-regulation of protein kinase A in human tumors.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015; 112(5):1374-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The extensively studied cAMP-dependent protein kinase A (PKA) is involved in the regulation of critical cell processes, including metabolism, gene expression, and cell proliferation; consequentially, mis-regulation of PKA signaling is implicated in tumorigenesis. Recent genomic studies have identified recurrent mutations in the catalytic subunit of PKA in tumors associated with Cushing's syndrome, a kidney disorder leading to excessive cortisol production, and also in tumors associated with fibrolamellar hepatocellular carcinoma (FL-HCC), a rare liver cancer. Expression of a L205R point mutant and a DnaJ-PKA fusion protein were found to be linked to Cushing's syndrome and FL-HCC, respectively. Here we reveal contrasting mechanisms for increased PKA signaling at the molecular level through structural determination and biochemical characterization of the aberrant enzymes. In the Cushing's syndrome disorder, we find that the L205R mutation abolishes regulatory-subunit binding, leading to constitutive, cAMP-independent signaling. In FL-HCC, the DnaJ-PKA chimera remains under regulatory subunit control; however, its overexpression from the DnaJ promoter leads to enhanced cAMP-dependent signaling. Our findings provide a structural understanding of the two distinct disease mechanisms and they offer a basis for designing effective drugs for their treatment.

Kim J, Jeong D, Nam J, et al.
MicroRNA-124 regulates glucocorticoid sensitivity by targeting phosphodiesterase 4B in diffuse large B cell lymphoma.
Gene. 2015; 558(1):173-80 [PubMed] Related Publications
Glucocorticoids (GCs) are chemotherapeutic drugs commonly used to treat hematological malignancies. However, a significant fraction of patients develop resistance to GCs during treatment. A better insight into how GC resistance develops is therefore needed. It was previously shown that cyclic AMP (cAMP) induces sensitivity to GCs by inhibiting the AKT/mTOR/MCL1 signaling, while high levels of phosphodiesterase 4B (PDE4B) reverse the effect of cAMP on GC responses in B-cell lymphoma. Here, we show that miR-124 influences GC-induced apoptosis by directly targeting PDE4B. Stable expression of miR-124 in diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) cell lines diminished PDE4B expression. This was associated with increased cAMP levels, inhibition of the AKT/mTOR/MCL1 survival pathway, upregulation of GRα expression, and improved sensitivity to GCs in the presence of forskolin, an activator of adenylyl cyclase. Interestingly, miR-124 did not affect GC sensitivity in the absence of forskolin, indicating that the effect of this miRNA is accomplished via downregulation of PDE4B expression. Further, restoration of PDE4B expression in miR-124 cells rescued the phenotypic effect of this miRNA, demonstrating the critical role of PDE4B in miR-124-mediated regulation of the GC response. Our study supports the notion that miR-124 could be an attractive therapeutic target for overcoming GC resistance in DLBCL.

Palagani A, Op de Beeck K, Naulaerts S, et al.
Ectopic microRNA-150-5p transcription sensitizes glucocorticoid therapy response in MM1S multiple myeloma cells but fails to overcome hormone therapy resistance in MM1R cells.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(12):e113842 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Glucocorticoids (GCs) selectively trigger cell death in the multiple myeloma cell line MM1S which express NR3C1/Glucocorticoid Receptor (GR) protein, but fail to kill MM1R cells which lack GR protein. Given recent demonstrations of altered microRNA profiles in a diverse range of haematological malignancies and drug resistance, we characterized GC inducible mRNA and microRNA transcription profiles in GC sensitive MM1S as compared to GC resistant MM1R cells. Transcriptome analysis revealed that GCs regulate expression of multiple genes involved in cell cycle control, cell organization, cell death and immunological disease in MM1S cells, which remain unaffected in MM1R cells. With respect to microRNAs, mir-150-5p was identified as the most time persistent GC regulated microRNA, out of 5 QPCR validated microRNAs (mir-26b, mir-125a-5p, mir-146-5p, mir-150-5p, and mir-184), which are GC inducible in MM1S but not in MM1R cells. Functional studies further revealed that ectopic transfection of a synthetic mir-150-5p mimics GR dependent gene expression changes involved in cell death and cell proliferation pathways. Remarkably, despite the gene expression changes observed, overexpression of mir-150-5p in absence of GCs did not trigger significant cytotoxicity in MM1S or MM1R cells. This suggests the requirement of additional steps in GC induced cell death, which can not be mimicked by mir-150-5p overexpression alone. Interestingly, a combination of mir-150-5p transfection with low doses GC in MM1S cells was found to sensitize therapy response, whereas opposite effects could be observed with a mir-150-5p specific antagomir. Although mir-150-5p overexpression did not substantially change GR expression levels, it was found that mir-150-5p evokes GR specific effects through indirect mRNA regulation of GR interacting transcription factors and hormone receptors, GR chaperones, as well as various effectors of unfolded protein stress and chemokine signalling. Altogether GC-inducible mir-150-5p adds another level of regulation to GC specific therapeutic responses in multiple myeloma.

Cao C, Gao R, Zhang M, et al.
Role of LKB1-CRTC1 on glycosylated COX-2 and response to COX-2 inhibition in lung cancer.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015; 107(1):358 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) directs the synthesis of prostaglandins including PGE-2 linking inflammation with mitogenic signaling. COX-2 is also an anticancer target, however, treatment strategies have been limited by unreliable expression assays and by inconsistent tumor responses to COX-2 inhibition.
METHODS: We analyzed the TCGA and Director's Challenge lung cancer datasets (n = 188) and also generated an LKB1-null lung cancer gene signature (n = 53) to search the Broad Institute/Connectivity-MAP (C-MAP) dataset. We performed ChIP analyses, real-time polymerase chain reaction, immunoblotting, and drug testing of tumor cell lines (n = 8) and primary lung adenocarcinoma surgical resections (n = 13).
RESULTS: We show that COX-2 is a target of the cAMP/CREB coactivator CRTC1 signaling pathway. In addition, we detected a correlation between LKB1 status, CRTC1 activation, and presence of glycosylated, but not inactive hypoglycosylated COX-2 in primary lung adenocarcinoma. A search of the C-MAP drug database discovered that all high-ranking drugs positively associated with the LKB1-null signature are known CRTC1 activators, including forskolin and six different PGE-2 analogues. Somatic LKB1 mutations are present in 20.0% of lung adenocarcinomas, and we observed growth inhibition with COX-2 inhibitors in LKB1-null lung cancer cells with activated CRTC1 as compared with LKB1-wildtype cells (NS-398, P = .002 and Niflumic acid, P = .006; two-tailed t test).
CONCLUSION: CRTC1 activation is a key event that drives the LKB1-null mRNA signature in lung cancer. We also identified a positive feedback LKB1/CRTC1 signaling loop for COX-2/PGE2 regulation. These data suggest a role for LKB1 status and glycosylated COX-2 as specific biomarkers that provide a framework for selecting patients for COX-2 inhibition studies.

Cho HK, Kim SY, Kyaw YY, et al.
HBx induces the proliferation of hepatocellular carcinoma cells via AP1 over-expressed as a result of ER stress.
Biochem J. 2015; 466(1):115-21 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most common cancers worldwide and chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is the most common risk factor for HCC. The HBV proteins can induce oncogenic or synergy effects with a hyperproliferative response on transformation into HCC. CREBH (cAMP-responsive, element-binding protein H), activated by stress in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), is an ER-resident transmembrane bZIP (basic leucine zipper) transcription factor that is specifically expressed in the liver. In the present study, we address the role played by CREBH activated by ER stress in HBV-induced hepatic cell proliferation. We confirmed CREBH activation by ER stress and showed that it occurred as a result of/via hepatitis B virus X (HBx)-induced ER stress. CREBH activated by HBx increased the expression of AP-1 target genes through c-Jun induction. Under pathological conditions such as liver damage or liver regeneration, activated CREBH may have an important role to play in hepatic inflammation and cell proliferation, as an insulin receptor with dual functions under these conditions. We showed that CREBH activated by HBx interacted with HBx protein, leading to a synergistic effect on the expression of AP-1 target genes and the proliferation of HCC cells and mouse primary hepatocytes. In conclusion, in HBV-infected hepatic cells or patients with chronic HBV, CREBH may induce proliferation of hepatic cells in co-operation with HBx, resulting in HCC.

Rajendiran S, Parwani AV, Hare RJ, et al.
MicroRNA-940 suppresses prostate cancer migration and invasion by regulating MIEN1.
Mol Cancer. 2014; 13:250 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are crucial molecules that regulate gene expression and hence pathways that are key to prostate cancer progression. These non-coding RNAs are highly deregulated in prostate cancer thus facilitating progression of the disease. Among the many genes that have gained importance in this disease, Migration and invasion enhancer 1 (MIEN1), a novel gene located next to HER2/neu in the 17q12 amplicon of the human chromosome, has been shown to enhance prostate cancer cell migration and invasion, two key processes in cancer progression. MIEN1 is differentially expressed between normal and cancer cells and tissues. Understanding the regulation of MIEN1 by microRNA may enable development of better targeting strategies.
METHODS: The miRNAs that could target MIEN1 were predicted by in silico algorithms and microarray analysis. The validation for miRNA expression was performed by qPCR and northern blotting in cells and by in situ hybridization in tissues. MIEN1 and levels of other molecules upon miRNA regulation was determined by Western blotting, qPCR, and immunofluorescence. The functional effects of miRNA on cells were determined by wound healing cell migration, Boyden chamber cell invasion, clonal and colony formation assays. For knockdown or overexpression of the miRNA or overexpression of MIEN1 3'UTR, cells were transfected with the oligomiRs and plasmids, respectively.
RESULTS: A novel miRNA, hsa-miR-940 (miR-940), identified and validated to be highly expressed in immortalized normal cells compared to cancer cells, is a regulator of MIEN1. Analysis of human prostate tumors and their matched normal tissues confirmed that miR-940 is highly expressed in the normal tissues compared to its low to negligible expression in the tumors. While MIEN1 is a direct target of miR-940, miR-940 alters MIEN1 RNA, in a quantity as well as cell dependent context, along with altering its downstream effectors. The miR-940 inhibited migratory and invasive potential of cells, attenuated their anchorage-independent growth ability, and increased E-cadherin expression, implicating its role in mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition (MET).
CONCLUSIONS: These results, for the first time, implicate miR-940, a regulator of MIEN1, as a promising novel diagnostic and prognostic tool for prostate cancer.

Felizola SJ, Nakamura Y, Ozawa Y, et al.
Activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) in the human adrenal cortex: its possible involvement in aldosterone biosynthesis.
Tohoku J Exp Med. 2014; 234(4):249-54 [PubMed] Related Publications
The activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) is a member of the cAMP-responsive element-binding (CREB) protein family of transcription factors. ATF3 is expressed in H295R human adrenocortical carcinoma cells and considered a rapid-responder gene to angiotensin-II stimulation. However, the functions of ATF3 in human adrenocortical tissues have remained unknown. In this study, we analyzed the localization and possible regulatory mechanisms of ATF3 in human adrenocortical cells and tissues. The expression levels of ATF3 mRNA were analyzed in 66 aldosterone-producing adenomas (APA) and 14 cortisol-producing adenomas (CPA) using real-time RT-PCR. To localize the ATF3 protein, we performed immunohistochemical analysis in 20 non-pathological adrenal glands, 9 adrenal glands with idiopathic hyperaldosteronism (IHA), 20 APA, and 5 CPA using a mouse monoclonal antibody against human ATF3. We showed that ATF3 mRNA levels were higher in APA compared to CPA (P = 0.0053). ATF3 was immunolocalized to the zona glomerulosa of non-pathological adrenal glands and adrenal glands with IHA, and diffusely detected in the tumor cells of APA and CPA. Subsequently, H295R cells were treated for 6 h with each inhibitor of Src kinase (SRC), PKC, JAK2, and calcium-dependent calmodulin kinase-II (CaMKII) in the presence or absence of angiotensin-II. The expression levels of ATF3 mRNA were increased by angiotensin-II (about 3.5-fold induction), but the magnitude of the induction was significantly decreased in the presence of an inhibitor for SRC (PP2) or CaMKII (KN93). These results suggest that ATF3 is a downstream target of SRC and CaMKII signaling, and may be involved in adrenocortical aldosterone synthesis.

Warrington NM, Sun T, Luo J, et al.
The cyclic AMP pathway is a sex-specific modifier of glioma risk in type I neurofibromatosis patients.
Cancer Res. 2015; 75(1):16-21 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
Identifying modifiers of glioma risk in patients with type I neurofibromatosis (NF1) could help support personalized tumor surveillance, advance understanding of gliomagenesis, and potentially identify novel therapeutic targets. Here, we report genetic polymorphisms in the human adenylate cyclase gene adenylate cyclase 8 (ADCY8) that correlate with glioma risk in NF1 in a sex-specific manner, elevating risk in females while reducing risk in males. This finding extends earlier evidence of a role for cAMP in gliomagenesis based on results in a genetically engineered mouse model (Nf1 GEM). Thus, sexually dimorphic cAMP signaling might render males and females differentially sensitive to variation in cAMP levels. Using male and female Nf1 GEM, we found significant sex differences exist in cAMP regulation and in the growth-promoting effects of cAMP suppression. Overall, our results establish a sex-specific role for cAMP regulation in human gliomagenesis, specifically identifying ADCY8 as a modifier of glioma risk in NF1.

Gargiulo L, Copsel S, Rivero EM, et al.
Differential β₂-adrenergic receptor expression defines the phenotype of non-tumorigenic and malignant human breast cell lines.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(20):10058-69 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
Breast cancer is the most frequent malignancy in women. Several reports demonstrated that adrenergic receptors (ARs) are involved in breast cancer. Here we observed that epinephrine (Epi), an endogenous AR agonist, caused opposite effects in non-tumorigenic (MCF-10A and HBL-100) and tumor cells (MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231). Thus, Epi, in non-tumor breast cells, as well as isoproterenol (β-agonist), in all cell lines, maintained a benign phenotype, decreasing cell proliferation and migration, and stimulating cell adhesion. β-AR expression and cAMP levels were higher in MCF-10A than in MCF-7 cells. β₂-AR knock-down caused a significant increase of cell proliferation and migration, and a decrease of cell adhesion both in basal and in Iso-stimulated conditions. Coincidently, β₂-AR over-expression induced a significant decrease of cell proliferation and migration, and an increase of cell adhesion. Therefore, β₂-AR is implied in cell phenotype and its agonists or antagonists could eventually complement cancer therapy.

Iwata T, Tamanaha T, Koezuka R, et al.
Germline deletion and a somatic mutation of the PRKAR1A gene in a Carney complex-related pituitary adenoma.
Eur J Endocrinol. 2015; 172(1):K5-10 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The objective was to assess involvement of loss of the PRKAR1A gene encoding a type 1α regulatory subunit of cAMP-dependent protein kinase A located on 17q24 in a Carney complex (CNC)-related pituitary adenoma.
DESIGN: We investigated aberrations of the PRKAR1A gene in a CNC patient with a GH-producing pituitary adenoma, whose family has three other members with probable CNC.
METHODS: A gene mutation was identified by a standard DNA sequencing method based on PCR. DNA copy number was measured to evaluate allelic loss on 17q24 by quantitative PCR. The breakpoints of deletion were determined by cloning a rearranged region in the deleted allele.
RESULTS: A PRKAR1A mutation of c.751_758del8 (p.S251LfsX16) was found in genomic DNA obtained from a pituitary adenoma, but not leukocytes from the patient. Reduced DNA copy number at loci including the PRKAR1A gene on 17q24 was detected in both the tumor and leukocytes, suggesting a deletion at the loci at the germline level. The deletion size was determined to be ∼ 0.5 Mb and this large deletion was also found in two other family members.
CONCLUSION: This is the first case showing a CNC-related pituitary adenoma with the combination of somatic mutation and a large inherited deletion of the PRKAR1A gene. Biallelic inactivation of PRKAR1A appears to be necessary for the development of CNC-related pituitary adenoma.

Knappskog S, Gansmo LB, Dibirova K, et al.
Population distribution and ancestry of the cancer protective MDM2 SNP285 (rs117039649).
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(18):8223-34 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
The MDM2 promoter SNP285C is located on the SNP309G allele. While SNP309G enhances Sp1 transcription factor binding and MDM2 transcription, SNP285C antagonizes Sp1 binding and reduces the risk of breast-, ovary- and endometrial cancer. Assessing SNP285 and 309 genotypes across 25 different ethnic populations (>10.000 individuals), the incidence of SNP285C was 6-8% across European populations except for Finns (1.2%) and Saami (0.3%). The incidence decreased towards the Middle-East and Eastern Russia, and SNP285C was absent among Han Chinese, Mongolians and African Americans. Interhaplotype variation analyses estimated SNP285C to have originated about 14,700 years ago (95% CI: 8,300 - 33,300). Both this estimate and the geographical distribution suggest SNP285C to have arisen after the separation between Caucasians and modern day East Asians (17,000 - 40,000 years ago). We observed a strong inverse correlation (r = -0.805; p < 0.001) between the percentage of SNP309G alleles harboring SNP285C and the MAF for SNP309G itself across different populations suggesting selection and environmental adaptation with respect to MDM2 expression in recent human evolution. In conclusion, we found SNP285C to be a pan-Caucasian variant. Ethnic variation regarding distribution of SNP285C needs to be taken into account when assessing the impact of MDM2 SNPs on cancer risk.

Park PJ, Lee TR, Cho EG
Substance P stimulates endothelin 1 secretion via endothelin-converting enzyme 1 and promotes melanogenesis in human melanocytes.
J Invest Dermatol. 2015; 135(2):551-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Substance P (SP) is a well-known neuropeptide implicated in the wound-healing process. The wound occasionally causes a pigmented scar. In the present study, we examined whether increased levels of SP affected melanogenesis. When human melanocytes were treated with SP, the melanin content increased and the pigmentation process accelerated in a dose-dependent manner. In addition to melanogenesis-related genes, the expression of neurokinin 1 receptor, endothelin 1 (EDN1), and EDN receptor type B (EDNRB) also increased at both the messenger RNA and protein levels. Interestingly, secreted EDN1 was observed in the melanocyte culture medium, and this phenomenon was significantly enhanced by SP treatment. Through knockdown experiments using small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), we confirmed that endothelin-converting enzyme 1 (ECE1), EDN1, and EDNRB were involved in SP-induced pigmentation and found that EDN1 secretion was affected by ECE1 and EDN1 siRNAs, but not by EDNRB siRNA. These findings indicate that ECE1 is essential for EDN1 secretion in melanocytes and that EDNRB functions downstream of secreted EDN1 to increase the cAMP levels and activate the melanogenesis-related phosphorylation cascade. This study provides in vitro evidence for a melanogenic function of SP in the skin and suggests that the SP-related signal is a potent target for regulating stress- or wound-induced pigmentation.

He J, Sun X, Shi T, et al.
Antibody-independent targeted quantification of TMPRSS2-ERG fusion protein products in prostate cancer.
Mol Oncol. 2014; 8(7):1169-80 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
Fusions between the transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2) and ETS related gene (ERG) represent one of the most specific biomarkers that define a distinct molecular subtype of prostate cancer. Studies of TMPRSS2-ERG gene fusions have seldom been performed at the protein level, primarily due to the lack of high-quality antibodies suitable for quantitative studies. Herein, we applied a recently developed PRISM (high-pressure high-resolution separations with intelligent selection and multiplexing)-SRM (selected reaction monitoring) strategy for quantifying ERG protein in prostate cancer cell lines and tumors. The highly sensitive PRISM-SRM assays provided confident detection of 6 unique ERG peptides in both TMPRSS2-ERG positive cell lines and tissues, but not in cell lines or tissues lacking the TMPRSS2-ERG rearrangement, clearly indicating that ERG protein expression is significantly increased in the presence of the TMPRSS2-ERG gene fusion. Significantly, our results provide evidence that two distinct ERG protein isoforms are simultaneously expressed in TMPRSS2-ERG positive samples as evidenced by the concomitant detection of two mutually exclusive peptides in two patient tumors and in the VCaP prostate cancer cell line. Three peptides, shared across almost all fusion protein products, were determined to be the most abundant peptides, providing "signature" peptides for detection of ERG over-expression resulting from TMPRSS2-ERG gene fusion. The PRISM-SRM assays provide valuable tools for studying TMPRSS2-ERG gene fusion protein products in prostate cancer.

Banerjee J, Al-Wadei HA, Al-Wadei MH, et al.
Differential modulation of nicotine-induced gemcitabine resistance by GABA receptor agonists in pancreatic cancer cell xenografts and in vitro.
BMC Cancer. 2014; 14:725 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Pancreatic cancer is frequently resistant to cancer therapeutics. Smoking and alcoholism are risk factors and pancreatic cancer patients often undergo nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) and treatment for alcohol dependence. Based on our report that low dose nicotine within the range of NRT causes gemcitabine resistance in pancreatic cancer, our current study has tested the hypothesis that GABA or the selective GABA-B-R agonist baclofen used to treat alcohol dependence reverse nicotine-induced gemcitabine resistance in pancreatic cancer.
METHODS: Using mouse xenografts from the gemcitabine--sensitive pancreatic cancer cell line BXPC-3, we tested the effects of GABA and baclofen on nicotine-induced gemcitabine resistance. The levels of cAMP, p-SRC, p-ERK, p-AKT, p-CREB and cleaved caspase-3 in xenograft tissues were determined by ELISA assays. Expression of the two GABA-B receptors, metalloproteinase-2 and 9 and EGR-1 in xenograft tissues was monitored by Western blotting. Mechanistic studies were conducted in vitro, using cell lines BXPC-3 and PANC-1 and included analyses of cAMP production by ELISA assay and Western blots to determine protein expression of GABA-B receptors, metalloproteinase-2 and 9 and EGR-1.
RESULTS: Our data show that GABA was as effective as gemcitabine and significantly reversed gemcitabine resistance induced by low dose nicotine in xenografts whereas baclofen did not. These effects of GABA were accompanied by decreases in cAMP, p-CREB, p-AKT, p-Src, p-ERK metalloproteinases-9 and -2 and EGR-1 and increases in cleaved caspase-3 in xenografts whereas baclofen had the opposite effects. In vitro exposure of cells to single doses or seven days of nicotine induced the protein expression of MMP-2, MMP-9 and EGR-1 and these responses were blocked by GABA. Baclofen downregulated the protein expression of GABA-B-Rs in xenograft tissues and in cells exposed to baclofen for seven days in vitro. This response was accompanied by inversed baclofen effects from inhibition of cAMP formation after single dose exposures to stimulation of cAMP formation in cells pretreated for seven days.
CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest GABA as a promising single agent for the therapy of pancreatic cancer and to overcome nicotine-induced gemcitabine resistance whereas treatment with baclofen may increase gemcitabine resistance.

Shao XD, Guo XZ, Ren LN, Lin H
The mechanism of COX-2 regulating HERG channel in gastric cancer cells.
Bratisl Lek Listy. 2014; 115(8):487-91 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: To elucidate the signal transduction pathway, by which cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) regulates human erg-related gene (HERG) current in gastric cancer cells.
METHODS: The HERG mRNA, protein and current in gastric cancer cells transfected with or without COX-2 antisense vector were measured by RT-PCR, Western blot and patch-clamp, respectively. Cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) concentration in gastric cancer cells transfected with or without COX-2 antisense vector was measured by ELISA.
RESULTS: Transfection with COX-2 antisense vector did not alter the expression of HERG mRNA and protein, but it diminished the amplitude of HERG current in gastric cancer cells (p < 0.05). The cAMP concentration in gastric cancer cells transfected with COX-2 antisense vector was lower than that in parental gastric cancer cells (p < 0.05). COX-2 inhibitor and PGE2 had influence on the HERG current in gastric cancer cells. COX-2 inhibitor reduced the amplitude of HERG current in gastric cancer cells and PGE2 enhanced the amplitude. However, in gastric cancer cells transfected with HERG mutant deleting cAMP-binding domain, both COX-2 inhibitor and PGE2 did not show significant effects on HERG current. cAMP agonist enhanced the amplitude of HERG current and cAMP antagonist reduced the amplitude in gastric cancer cells. Both agonist and antagonist of cAMP had no significant effect on HERG current in gastric cancer cells transfected with HERG mutant deleting cAMP binding domain. PKA inhibitor did not influence the HERG current whether in parental gastric cancer cells or in gastric cancer cells transfected with HERG mutant.

Jeon S, Kim Y, Chung IW, Kim YS
Clozapine induces chloride channel-4 expression through PKA activation and modulates CDK5 expression in SH-SY5Y and U87 cells.
Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2015; 56:168-73 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Second-generation antipsychotic drugs, such as clozapine, were reported to enhance neurite outgrowth by nerve growth factor in PC12 cells. The authors previously showed that chloride channel 4 (CLC-4) is responsible for nerve growth factor-induced neurite outgrowth in neuronal cells. In this study, we examined whether clozapine induces CLC-4 in neuroblastoma and glioma cells.
METHODS: The effect of clozapine on CLC-4 expression was examined in neuroblastoma (SH-SY5Y) and glioma (U87) cells. To investigate the signaling pathway responsible for clozapine-induced CLC-4 expression, the phosphorylation of cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB), which binds CRE in the promoter of the human CLC-4 gene, was examined. To identify the target of clozapine induced CLC-4, CLC-4 siRNA was introduced to neuroblastoma and glioma cells for functional knockdown.
RESULTS: We observed that clozapine increased CLC-4 expression in both SH-SY5Y and U87 cells. Clozapine induced CREB phosphorylation, but in the presence of inhibitor of protein kinase A (an upstream kinase of CREB) clozapine-induced CLC-4 expression was suppressed. Finally, we found that CLC-4 knockdown suppressed clozapine-induced cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (CDK5) expression in SH-SY5Y and U-87 cells suggesting CDK5 as potential molecular target of clozapine induced CLC-4 expression.
CONCLUSIONS: The results of the present study suggest that clozapine's therapeutic effect may include the induction of CLC-4 which is dependent on CREB activation via PKA. We also found that functional knockdown of CLC-4 resulted in reduction of CDK5 expression, which may also be implicated in clozapine's therapeutic effect.

Szarek E, Stratakis CA
Phosphodiesterases and adrenal Cushing in mice and humans.
Horm Metab Res. 2014; 46(12):863-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The majority of benign adrenal cortex lesions leading to Cushing syndrome are associated to one or another abnormality of the cAMP/cGMP-phosphodiesterase signaling pathway. Phosphodiesterases (PDEs) are key regulatory enzymes of intracellular cAMP/cGMP levels. These second messengers play important regulatory roles in controlling steroidogenesis in the adrenal. Disruption of PDEs has been associated with a number of adrenal diseases. Specifically, genetic mutations have been associated with benign adrenal lesions, leading to Cushing syndrome and/or related adrenal hyperplasias. A Genome Wide Association study, in 2006, led to the identification of mutations in 2 PDE genes: PDE8B and PDE11A; mutations in these 2 genes modulate steroidogenesis. Further human studies have identified PDE2 as also directly regulating steroidogenesis. PDE2 decreases aldosterone production. This review focuses on the most recent knowledge we have gained on PDEs and their association with adrenal steroidogenesis and altered function, through analysis of patient cohorts and what we have learned from mouse studies.

Larkin SJ, Ferraù F, Karavitaki N, et al.
Sequence analysis of the catalytic subunit of PKA in somatotroph adenomas.
Eur J Endocrinol. 2014; 171(6):705-10 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The pathogenetic mechanisms of sporadic somatotroph adenomas are not well understood, but derangements of the cAMP pathway have been implicated. Recent studies have identified L206R mutations in the alpha catalytic subunit of protein kinase A (PRKACA) in cortisol-producing adrenocortical adenomas and amplification of the beta catalytic subunit of protein kinase A PRKACB in acromegaly associated with Carney complex. Given that both adrenocortical adenomas and somatotroph adenomas are known to be reliant on the cAMP signalling pathway, we sought to determine the relevance of the L206R mutation in both PRKACA and PRKACB for the pathogenesis of sporadic somatotroph adenomas.
DESIGN: Somatotroph adenoma specimens, both frozen and formalin-fixed, from patients who underwent surgery for their acromegaly between 1995 and 2012, were used in the study.
METHODS: The DNA sequence at codon 206 of PRKACA and PRKACB was determined by PCR amplification and sequencing. The results were compared with patient characteristics, the mutational status of the GNAS complex locus and the tumour granulation pattern.
RESULTS: No mutations at codon 206 of PRKACA or PRKACB were found in a total of 92 specimens, comprising both WT and mutant GNAS cases, and densely, sparsely and mixed granulation patterns.
CONCLUSIONS: It is unlikely that mutation at this locus is involved in the pathogenesis of sporadic somatotroph adenoma; however, gene amplification or mutations at other loci or in other components of the cAMP signalling pathway, while unlikely, cannot be ruled out.

Brooks MD, Jackson E, Warrington NM, et al.
PDE7B is a novel, prognostically significant mediator of glioblastoma growth whose expression is regulated by endothelial cells.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(9):e107397 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
Cell-cell interactions between tumor cells and constituents of their microenvironment are critical determinants of tumor tissue biology and therapeutic responses. Interactions between glioblastoma (GBM) cells and endothelial cells (ECs) establish a purported cancer stem cell niche. We hypothesized that genes regulated by these interactions would be important, particularly as therapeutic targets. Using a computational approach, we deconvoluted expression data from a mixed physical co-culture of GBM cells and ECs and identified a previously undescribed upregulation of the cAMP specific phosphodiesterase PDE7B in GBM cells in response to direct contact with ECs. We further found that elevated PDE7B expression occurs in most GBM cases and has a negative effect on survival. PDE7B overexpression resulted in the expansion of a stem-like cell subpopulation in vitro and increased tumor growth and aggressiveness in an in vivo intracranial GBM model. Collectively these studies illustrate a novel approach for studying cell-cell interactions and identifying new therapeutic targets like PDE7B in GBM.

Wang H, Sun T, Hu J, et al.
miR-33a promotes glioma-initiating cell self-renewal via PKA and NOTCH pathways.
J Clin Invest. 2014; 124(10):4489-502 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and lethal brain tumor in adults. Glioma-initiating cells (GICs) are stem-like cells that have been implicated in glioblastoma progression and recurrence; however, the distinct properties of GICs and non-GICs within GBM tumors are largely uncharacterized. Here, we evaluated stem cell-associated microRNA (miR) expression in GICs from GBM patients and GICs derived from xenografted human glioma cell lines and determined that miR-33a promotes GIC growth and self-renewal. Moreover, evaluation of a GBM tissue array revealed that higher miR-33a expression was associated with poor prognosis of GBM patients. Antagonizing miR-33a function in GICs reduced self-renewal and tumor progression in immune-compromised mice, whereas overexpression of miR-33a in non-GICs promoted the display of features associated with GICs. We identified the mRNAs encoding phosphodiesterase 8A (PDE8A) and UV radiation resistance-associated gene (UVRAG) as direct miR-33a targets. PDE8A and UVRAG negatively regulated the cAMP/PKA and NOTCH pathways, respectively; therefore, miR-33a-dependent reduction of these proteins promoted growth and self-renewal of GICs by enhancing PKA and NOTCH activity. Furthermore, in GBM specimens, there was an inverse correlation between the expression levels of miR-33a and PDE8A and UVRAG expression. These findings reveal a miR-33a-centered signaling network that promotes GIC maintenance and has potential as a therapeutic target for GBM treatment.

Teoh JP, Park KM, Wang Y, et al.
Endothelin-1/endothelin A receptor-mediated biased signaling is a new player in modulating human ovarian cancer cell tumorigenesis.
Cell Signal. 2014; 26(12):2885-95 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/12/2015 Related Publications
The endothelin-1 (ET-1)/endothelin A receptor (ETAR, a G protein-coupled receptor) axis confers pleiotropic effects on both tumor cells and the tumor microenvironment, modulating chemo-resistance and other tumor-associated processes by activating Gαq- and β-arrestin-mediated pathways. While the precise mechanisms by which these effects occur remain to be elucidated, interference with ETAR signaling has emerged as a promising antitumor strategy in many cancers including ovarian cancer (OC). However, current clinical approaches using ETAR antagonists in the absence of a detailed knowledge of downstream signaling have resulted in multiple adverse side effects and limited therapeutic efficacy. To maximize the safety and efficacy of ETAR-targeted OC therapy, we investigated the role of other G protein subunits such as Gαs in the ETAR-mediated ovarian oncogenic signaling. In HEY (human metastatic OC) cells where the ET-1/ETAR axis is well-characterized, Gαs signaling inhibits ETAR-mediated OC cell migration, wound healing, proliferation and colony formation on soft agar while inducing OC cell apoptosis. Mechanistically, ET-1/ETAR is coupled to Gαs/cAMP signaling in the same ovarian carcinoma-derived cell line. Gαs/cAMP/PKA activation inhibits ETAR-mediated β-arrestin activation of angiogenic/metastatic Calcrl and Icam2 expression. Consistent with our findings, Gαs overexpression is associated with improved survival in OC patients in the analysis of the Cancer Genome Atlas data. In conclusion, our results indicate a novel function for Gαs signaling in ET-1/ETAR-mediated OC oncogenesis and may provide a rationale for a biased signaling mechanism, which selectively activates Gαs-coupled tumor suppressive pathways while blocking Gαq-/β-arrestin-mediated oncogenic pathways, to improve the targeting of the ETAR axis in OC.

Boeckx C, Op de Beeck K, Wouters A, et al.
Overcoming cetuximab resistance in HNSCC: the role of AURKB and DUSP proteins.
Cancer Lett. 2014; 354(2):365-77 [PubMed] Related Publications
Unraveling the underlying mechanisms of cetuximab resistance in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is of major importance as many tumors remain non-responsive or become resistant. Our microarray results suggest that "resistant" cells still exhibit RAS-MAPK pathway signaling contributing to drug resistance, as witnessed by low expression of DUSP5 and DUSP6, negative regulators of ERK1/2, and increased expression of AURKB, a key regulator of mitosis. Therefore, interrupting the RAS-MAPK pathway by an ERK1/2 inhibitor (apigenin) or an AURKB inhibitor (barasertib) might be a new strategy for overcoming cetuximab resistance in HNSCC.

He X, Zhang L, Chen Y, et al.
The G protein α subunit Gαs is a tumor suppressor in Sonic hedgehog-driven medulloblastoma.
Nat Med. 2014; 20(9):1035-42 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/12/2015 Related Publications
Medulloblastoma, the most common malignant childhood brain tumor, exhibits distinct molecular subtypes and cellular origins. Genetic alterations driving medulloblastoma initiation and progression remain poorly understood. Herein, we identify GNAS, encoding the G protein Gαs, as a potent tumor suppressor gene that, when expressed at low levels, defines a subset of aggressive Sonic hedgehog (SHH)-driven human medulloblastomas. Ablation of the single Gnas gene in anatomically distinct progenitors in mice is sufficient to induce Shh-associated medulloblastomas, which recapitulate their human counterparts. Gαs is highly enriched at the primary cilium of granule neuron precursors and suppresses Shh signaling by regulating both the cAMP-dependent pathway and ciliary trafficking of Hedgehog pathway components. Elevation in levels of a Gαs effector, cAMP, effectively inhibits tumor cell proliferation and progression in Gnas-ablated mice. Thus, our gain- and loss-of-function studies identify a previously unrecognized tumor suppressor function for Gαs that can be found consistently across Shh-group medulloblastomas of disparate cellular and anatomical origins, highlighting G protein modulation as a potential therapeutic avenue.

Hui K, Yang Y, Shi K, et al.
The p38 MAPK-regulated PKD1/CREB/Bcl-2 pathway contributes to selenite-induced colorectal cancer cell apoptosis in vitro and in vivo.
Cancer Lett. 2014; 354(1):189-99 [PubMed] Related Publications
Supranutritional selenite has anti-cancer therapeutic effects in vivo; however, the detailed mechanisms underlying these effects are not clearly understood. Further studies would broaden our understanding of the anti-cancer effects of this compound and provide a theoretical basis for its clinical application. In this study, we primarily found that selenite exposure inhibited phosphorylation of cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP)-response element binding protein (CREB), leading to suppression of Bcl-2 in HCT116 and SW480 colorectal cancer (CRC) cells. Moreover, the selenite-induced inhibitory effect on PKD1 activation was involved in suppression of the CREB signalling pathway. Additionally, we discovered that selenite treatment can upregulate p38 MAPK phosphorylation, which results in inhibition of the PKD1/CREB/Bcl-2 survival pathway and triggers apoptosis. Finally, we established a colorectal cancer xenograft model and found that selenite treatment markedly inhibits tumour growth through the MAPK/PKD1/CREB/Bcl-2 pathway in vivo. Our results demonstrated that a supranutritional dose of selenite induced CRC cell apoptosis through inhibition of the PKD1/CREB/Bcl-2 axis both in vitro and in vivo.

Stockman DL, Ali SM, He J, et al.
Sclerosing epithelioid fibrosarcoma presenting as intraabdominal sarcomatosis with a novel EWSR1-CREB3L1 gene fusion.
Hum Pathol. 2014; 45(10):2173-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
We report a case of intraabdominal sclerosing epithelioid fibrosarcoma (SEF) with a t (11;22)(p11.2;q12.2) Ewing sarcoma breakpoint region 1-cAMP-responsive element-binding protein 3-like 1 translocation. A 43-year old man presented with massive ascites and shortness of breath. Imaging studies revealed a large mesenteric-based mass with extensive omental/peritoneal disease. After resection and cytoreductive surgery, the tumor recurred with metastasis to the lungs; the patient is still alive with disease. Histologically, there was a uniform population of epithelioid cells arranged in cords and nests, embedded in a dense collagenous matrix; no areas of low-grade fibromyxoid sarcoma were identified. All immunohistochemical markers were nonreactive. Fluorescence in situ hybridization studies showed rearrangement of Ewing sarcoma breakpoint region 1. Genomic profiling by clinical grade next-generation sequencing revealed a fusion gene between intron 11 of Ewing sarcoma breakpoint region 1 (22q12.2) and intron 5 of cAMP-responsive element-binding protein 3-like 1 (11p11.2). This is the first report of "pure" or true SEF presenting as intraabdominal sarcomatosis with confirmation of the recently described unique Ewing sarcoma breakpoint region 1-cAMP-responsive element-binding protein 3-like 1 gene fusion in SEF without areas of low-grade fibromyxoid sarcoma.

He N, Kim N, Song M, et al.
Integrated analysis of transcriptomes of cancer cell lines and patient samples reveals STK11/LKB1-driven regulation of cAMP phosphodiesterase-4D.
Mol Cancer Ther. 2014; 13(10):2463-73 [PubMed] Related Publications
The recent proliferation of data on large collections of well-characterized cancer cell lines linked to therapeutic drug responses has made it possible to identify lineage- and mutation-specific transcriptional markers that can help optimize implementation of anticancer agents. Here, we leverage these resources to systematically investigate the presence of mutation-specific transcription markers in a wide variety of cancer lineages and genotypes. Sensitivity and specificity of potential transcriptional biomarkers were simultaneously analyzed in 19 cell lineages grouped into 228 categories based on the mutational genotypes of 12 cancer-related genes. Among a total of 1,455 category-specific expression patterns, the expression of cAMP phosphodiesterase-4D (PDE4D) with 11 isoforms, one of the PDE4(A-D) subfamilies, was predicted to be regulated by a mutant form of serine/threonine kinase 11 (STK11)/liver kinase B1 (LKB1) present in lung cancer. STK11/LKB1 is the primary upstream kinase of adenine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Subsequently, we found that the knockdown of PDE4D gene expression inhibited proliferation of STK11-mutated lung cancer lines. Furthermore, challenge with a panel of PDE4-specific inhibitors was shown to selectively reduce the growth of STK11-mutated lung cancer lines. Thus, we show that multidimensional analysis of a well-characterized large-scale panel of cancer cell lines provides unprecedented opportunities for the identification of unexpected oncogenic mechanisms and mutation-specific drug targets.

Xia S, Ma J, Bai X, et al.
Prostaglandin E2 promotes the cell growth and invasive ability of hepatocellular carcinoma cells by upregulating c-Myc expression via EP4 receptor and the PKA signaling pathway.
Oncol Rep. 2014; 32(4):1521-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) represents a major health problem worldwide. Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), the predominant product of cyclooxygenase-2, has been implicated in hepatocarcinogenesis. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain to be further elucidated. c-myc, a cellular proto-oncogene, is activated or overexpressed in many types of human cancer, including HCC. The present study was designed to investigate the internal relationship and molecular mechanisms between PGE2 and c-Myc in HCC, and to define its role in HCC cell growth and invasion. Our results showed that PGE2 significantly upregulated c-Myc expression at both the mRNA and protein levels, and knockdown of c-Myc blocked PGE2-induced HCC cell growth and invasive ability in human HCC Huh-7 cells. The effect of PGE2 on c-Myc expression was mainly through the EP4 receptor, and EP4 receptor-mediated c-Myc protein upregulation largely depended on de novo biosynthesis of c-Myc mRNA and its protein. EP4 receptor signaling activated GS/AC and increased the intracellular cAMP level in Huh-7 cells. The adenylate cyclase (AC) activator forskolin mimicked the effects of the EP4 receptor agonist on c-Myc expression, while the AC inhibitor SQ22536 reduced EP4 receptor-mediated c-Myc upregulation. These data confirm the involvement of the GS/AC/cAMP pathway in EP4 receptor-mediated c-Myc upregulation. Moreover, the phosphorylation levels of CREB protein were markedly elevated by EP4 receptor signaling, and by using specific inhibitor and siRNA interference, we demonstrated that PKA/CREB was also involved in the EP4 receptor-mediated c-Myc upregulation. In summary, the present study revealed that PGE2 significantly upregulates c-Myc expression at both mRNA and protein levels through the EP4R/GS/AC/cAMP/PKA/CREB signaling pathway, thus promoting cell growth and invasion in HCC cells. Targeting of the PGE2/EP4R/c-Myc pathway may be a new therapeutic strategy to prevent and cure human HCC.

Espiard S, Ragazzon B, Bertherat J
Protein kinase A alterations in adrenocortical tumors.
Horm Metab Res. 2014; 46(12):869-75 [PubMed] Related Publications
Stimulation of the cAMP pathway by adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) is essential for adrenal cortex maintenance, glucocorticoid and adrenal androgens synthesis, and secretion. Various molecular and cellular alterations of the cAMP pathway have been observed in endocrine tumors. Protein kinase A (PKA) is a central key component of the cAMP pathway. Molecular alterations of PKA subunits have been observed in adrenocortical tumors. PKA molecular defects can be germline in hereditary disorders or somatic in sporadic tumors. Heterozygous germline inactivating mutations of the PKA regulatory subunit RIα gene (PRKAR1A) can be observed in patients with ACTH-independent Cushing's syndrome (CS) due to primary pigmented nodular adrenocortical disease (PPNAD). PRKAR1A is considered as a tumor suppressor gene. Interestingly, these mutations can also be observed as somatic alterations in sporadic cortisol-secreting adrenocortical adenomas. Germline gene duplication of the catalytic subunits Cα (PRKACA) has been observed in patients with PPNAD. Furthermore, exome sequencing revealed recently activating somatic mutations of PRKACA in about 40% of cortisol-secreting adrenocortical adenomas. In vitro and in vivo functional studies help in the progress to understand the mechanisms of adrenocortical tumors development due to PKA regulatory subunits alterations. All these alterations are observed in benign oversecreting tumors and are mimicking in some way cAMP pathway constitutive activation. On the long term, unraveling these alterations will open new strategies of pharmacological treatment targeting the cAMP pathway in adrenal tumors and cortisol-secretion disorders.

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