Gene Summary

Gene:CDH11; cadherin 11
Aliases: OB, CAD11, CDHOB, OSF-4
Summary:This gene encodes a type II classical cadherin from the cadherin superfamily, integral membrane proteins that mediate calcium-dependent cell-cell adhesion. Mature cadherin proteins are composed of a large N-terminal extracellular domain, a single membrane-spanning domain, and a small, highly conserved C-terminal cytoplasmic domain. Type II (atypical) cadherins are defined based on their lack of a HAV cell adhesion recognition sequence specific to type I cadherins. Expression of this particular cadherin in osteoblastic cell lines, and its upregulation during differentiation, suggests a specific function in bone development and maintenance. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Source:NCBIAccessed: 11 March, 2017


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.

  • Genomics
  • Oncogene Proteins
  • Epigenetics
  • Adolescents
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Disease Progression
  • Breast Cancer
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Chromosome 17
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Ubiquitin Thiolesterase
  • Skin Cancer
  • CpG Islands
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • Translocation
  • Gene Amplification
  • Messenger RNA
  • Promoter Regions
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Childhood Cancer
  • Adenocarcinoma
  • Sequence Deletion
  • Chromosome 16
  • RT-PCR
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • DNA Methylation
  • Western Blotting
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Chromosome Aberrations
  • Cadherins
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Gene Dosage
  • Cell Movement
  • Tissue Array Analysis
  • Retinoblastoma
Tag cloud generated 11 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (1)

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: CDH11 (cancer-related)

Weigand A, Boos AM, Tasbihi K, et al.
Selective isolation and characterization of primary cells from normal breast and tumors reveal plasticity of adipose derived stem cells.
Breast Cancer Res. 2016; 18(1):32 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: There is a need to establish more cell lines from breast tumors in contrast to immortalized cell lines from metastatic effusions in order to represent the primary tumor and not principally metastatic biology of breast cancer. This investigation describes the simultaneous isolation, characterization, growth and function of primary mammary epithelial cells (MEC), mesenchymal cells (MES) and adipose derived stem cells (ADSC) from four normal breasts, one inflammatory and one triple-negative ductal breast tumors.
METHODS: A total of 17 cell lines were established and gene expression was analyzed for MEC and MES (n = 42) and ADSC (n = 48) and MUC1, pan-KRT, CD90 and GATA-3 by immunofluorescence. DNA fingerprinting to track cell line identity was performed between original primary tissues and isolates. Functional studies included ADSC differentiation, tumor MES and MEC invasion co-cultured with ADSC-conditioned media (CM) and MES adhesion and growth on 3D-printed scaffolds.
RESULTS: Comparative analysis showed higher gene expression of EPCAM, CD49f, CDH1 and KRTs for normal MEC lines; MES lines e.g. Vimentin, CD10, ACTA2 and MMP9; and ADSC lines e.g. CD105, CD90, CDH2 and CDH11. Compared to the mean of all four normal breast cell lines, both breast tumor cell lines demonstrated significantly lower ADSC marker gene expression, but higher expression of mesenchymal and invasion gene markers like SNAI1 and MMP2. When compared with four normal ADSC differentiated lineages, both tumor ADSC showed impaired osteogenic and chondrogenic but enhanced adipogenic differentiation and endothelial-like structures, possibly due to high PDGFRB and CD34. Addressing a functional role for overproduction of adipocytes, we initiated 3D-invasion studies including different cell types from the same patient. CM from ADSC differentiating into adipocytes induced tumor MEC 3D-invasion via EMT and amoeboid phenotypes. Normal MES breast cells adhered and proliferated on 3D-printed scaffolds containing 20 fibers, but not on 2.5D-printed scaffolds with single fiber layers, important for tissue engineering.
CONCLUSION: Expression analyses confirmed successful simultaneous cell isolations of three different phenotypes from normal and tumor primary breast tissues. Our cell culture studies support that breast-tumor environment differentially regulates tumor ADSC plasticity as well as cell invasion and demonstrates applications for regenerative medicine.

Sepulveda JL, Gutierrez-Pajares JL, Luna A, et al.
High-definition CpG methylation of novel genes in gastric carcinogenesis identified by next-generation sequencing.
Mod Pathol. 2016; 29(2):182-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
Gastric cancers are the most frequent gastric malignancy and usually arise in the sequence of Helicobacter pylori-associated chronic gastritis. CpG methylation is a central mechanism of epigenetic gene regulation affecting cancer-related genes, and occurs early in gastric carcinogenesis. DNA samples from non-metaplastic gastric mucosa with variable levels of gastritis (non-metaplastic mucosa), intestinal metaplasia, or gastric cancer were screened with methylation arrays for CpG methylation of cancer-related genes and 30 gene targets were further characterized by high-definition bisulfite next-generation sequencing. In addition, data from The Cancer Genome Atlas were analyzed for correlation of methylation with gene expression. Overall, 13 genes had significantly increased CpG methylation in gastric cancer vs non-metaplastic mucosa (BRINP1, CDH11, CHFR, EPHA5, EPHA7, FGF2, FLI1, GALR1, HS3ST2, PDGFRA, SEZ6L, SGCE, and SNRPN). Further, most of these genes had corresponding reduced expression levels in gastric cancer compared with intestinal metaplasia, including novel hypermethylated genes in gastric cancer (FLI1, GALR1, SGCE, and SNRPN), suggesting that they may regulate neoplastic transformation from non-malignant intestinal metaplasia to cancer. Our data suggest a tumor-suppressor role for FLI1 in gastric cancer, consistent with recently reported data in breast cancer. For the genes with strongest methylation/expression correlation, namely FLI1, the expression was lowest in microsatellite-unstable tumors compared with other gastric cancer molecular subtypes. Importantly, reduced expression of hypermethylated BRINP1 and SGCE was significantly associated with favorable survival in gastric cancer. In summary, we report novel methylation gene targets that may have functional roles in discrete stages of gastric carcinogenesis and may serve as biomarkers for diagnosis and prognosis of gastric cancer.

Yao J, Deng B, Zheng L, et al.
miR-27b is upregulated in cervical carcinogenesis and promotes cell growth and invasion by regulating CDH11 and epithelial-mesenchymal transition.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 35(3):1645-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
Dysregulation of microRNAs (miRNAs) occurs frequently in cervical carcinogenesis. miRNAs function as tumor-suppressors or oncogenes and are involved in tumor behavior. However, the expression and function of miR-27b in cervical carcinogenesis remain unknown. In the present study, we observed that miR-27b was significantly increased in cervical cancer cells and tissues, and upregulation of miR-27b was negatively associated with its direct target, cadherin 11 (CDH11). Upregulation of miR-27b significantly accelerated the proliferation, cell cycle transition from G1 to S phase, migration and invasion of C33A cells, while downregulation of miR-27b suppressed the proliferation and invasion of HeLa cells. Moreover, CDH11 cDNA transfection impaired the oncogenic effect of miR-27b on cancer cells. Knockdown of CDH11 attenuated the suppressive effect of an miR-27b inhibitor on cervical cancer cells. In addition, we found that CDH11 was involved in miR-27b-induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) by regulating expression of E-cadherin, vimentin and N-cadherin. Our results for the first time indicate that miR-27b acting as an oncogene may play an important role in the progression of cervical cancer by modulating CDH11 and EMT.

Satcher RL, Pan T, Bilen MA, et al.
Cadherin-11 endocytosis through binding to clathrin promotes cadherin-11-mediated migration in prostate cancer cells.
J Cell Sci. 2015; 128(24):4629-41 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cadherin-11 (Cad11) cell adhesion molecule plays a role in prostate cancer cell migration. Because disassembly of adhesion complexes through endocytosis of adhesion proteins has been shown to play a role in cell migration, we examined whether Cad11 endocytosis plays a role in Cad11-mediated migration. The mechanism by which Cad11 is internalized is unknown. Using a GST pulldown assay, we found that clathrin binds to the Cad11 cytoplasmic domain but not to that of E-cadherin. Using deletion analysis, we identified a unique sequence motif, VFEEE, in the Cad11 membrane proximal region (amino acid residues 11-15) that binds to clathrin. Endocytosis assays using K(+)-depletion buffer showed that Cad11 internalization is clathrin dependent. Proximity ligation assays showed that Cad11 colocalizes with clathrin, and immunofluorescence assays showed that Cad11 localizes in vesicles that stain for the early endosomal marker Rab5. Deletion of the VFEEE sequence from the Cad11 cytoplasmic domain (Cad11-cla-Δ5) leads to inhibition of Cad11 internalization and reduces Cad11-mediated cell migration in C4-2B and PC3-mm2 prostate cancer cells. These observations suggest that clathrin-mediated internalization of Cad11 regulates surface trafficking of Cad11 and that dynamic turnover of Cad11 regulates the migratory function of Cad11 in prostate cancer cells.

Bringuier PP, Schalken JA, Hervieu V, Giroldi LA
Involvement of orphan nuclear receptor COUP-TFII in cadherin-6 and cadherin-11 regulation: implications in development and cancer.
Mech Dev. 2015; 136:64-72 [PubMed] Related Publications
Changes in cadherin expression are instrumental both in embryonic development and disease, underlining the importance of understanding how cadherin expression is controlled. Kidney development is characterized by a mesenchymal-epithelial transition underlain by a cadherin-11 to cadherin-6 switch, the regulation mechanisms of which are presently unexplained. Using transfection and RNA-interference we demonstrate that COUP-TFII (NR2F2) induces down-regulation of cadherin-6 and up-regulation of cadherin-11 in cultured cell lines. Double immunolabeling of mouse embryos provides indirect evidence that COUP-TFII negatively controls the cadherin-11 to cadherin-6 switch underlying the kidney developmental mesenchymal-epithelial transition. Furthermore, we found high expression of COUP-TFII in some gastric and oesophageal adenocarcinomas, correlating with abnormal cadherin-11 expression and suggesting reactivation of embryonic pathways linked to COUP-TFII in these tumors. Altogether, our data shed new light upon the role of COUP-TFII in development and in cancer.

Ortiz A, Lee YC, Yu G, et al.
Angiomotin is a novel component of cadherin-11/β-catenin/p120 complex and is critical for cadherin-11-mediated cell migration.
FASEB J. 2015; 29(3):1080-91 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Loss of E-cadherin and up-regulation of mesenchymal cadherins, a hallmark of the epithelial-mesenchymal transition, contributes to migration and dissemination of cancer cells. Expression of human cadherin-11 (Cad11), also known as osteoblast cadherin, in prostate cancer increases the migration of prostate cancer cells. How Cad11 mediates cell migration is unknown. Using the human Cad11 cytoplasmic domain in pulldown assays, we identified human angiomotin (Amot), known to be involved in cell polarity, migration, and Hippo pathway, as a component of the Cad11 protein complex. Deletion analysis showed that the last C-terminal 10 amino acids in Cad11 cytoplasmic domain are required for Amot binding. Further, Cad11 preferentially interacts with Amot-p80 than Amot-p130 isoform and binds directly to the middle domain of Amot-p80. Cad11-Amot interaction affects Cad11-mediated cell migration, but not homophilic adhesion, as deletion of Amot binding motif of Cad11 (Cad11-ΔAmot) did not abolish Cad11-mediated cell-cell adhesion of mouse L cells, but significantly reduced Cad11-mediated cell migration of human C4-2B4 and PC3-mm2 prostate cancer cells and human HEK293T cells. Together, our studies identified Amot-p80 as a novel component of the Cad11 complex and demonstrated that Amot-p80 is critical for Cad11-mediated cell migration.

Wang J, Dong L, Xu L, et al.
B cell CLL/lymphoma 6 member B inhibits hepatocellular carcinoma metastases in vitro and in mice.
Cancer Lett. 2014; 355(2):192-200 [PubMed] Related Publications
B cell CLL/lymphoma 6 member B (BCL6B) is a novel tumor suppressor silenced in human cancer. In this study, we investigated the functional role and underlying mechanisms of BCL6B in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). BCL6B was expressed in normal HCC tissues, but its expression was suppressed in 6 out of 9 HCC cell lines. Loss of BCL6B expression was associated with promoter hypermethylation. Ectopic expression of BCL6B in HepG2 and Huh7 cell lines inhibited colony formation (P <0.05), cell viability (P <0.01), and tumorigenicity in nude mice (P <0.05). BCL6B expression also induced apoptosis (P <0.05), an effect associated with activation of the caspase cascade and cleavage of PARP. Stable expression of BCL6B in MHCC97L cells suppressed cell migration (P <0.05) and invasion (P <0.05), and significantly reduced the incidence and severity of lung metastasis in an orthotopic HCC mouse model. The anti-metastatic effect of BCL6B was mediated by up-regulation of cell adhesion gene E-cadherin, OB-cadherin, HIV-1 Tat interactive protein 2, and transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily M, member 1; and down-regulation of angiogenesis gene VEGFA. BCL6B functions as a tumor suppressor that inhibits HCC metastases in vitro and in vivo.

Marino N, Collins JW, Shen C, et al.
Identification and validation of genes with expression patterns inverse to multiple metastasis suppressor genes in breast cancer cell lines.
Clin Exp Metastasis. 2014; 31(7):771-86 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Metastasis suppressor genes (MSGs) have contributed to an understanding of regulatory pathways unique to the lethal metastatic process. When re-expressed in experimental models, MSGs block cancer spread to, and colonization of distant sites without affecting primary tumor formation. Genes have been identified with expression patterns inverse to a single MSG, and found to encode functional, druggable signaling pathways. We now hypothesize that common signaling pathways mediate the effects of multiple MSGs. By gene expression profiling of human MCF7 breast carcinoma cells expressing a scrambled siRNA, or siRNAs to each of 19 validated MSGs (NME1, BRMS1, CD82, CDH1, CDH2, CDH11, CASP8, MAP2K4, MAP2K6, MAP2K7, MAPK14, GSN, ARHGDIB, AKAP12, DRG1, CD44, PEBP1, RRM1, KISS1), we identified genes whose expression was significantly opposite to at least five MSGs. Five genes were selected for further analysis: PDE5A, UGT1A, IL11RA, DNM3 and OAS1. After stable downregulation of each candidate gene in the aggressive human breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231T, in vitro motility was significantly inhibited. Two stable clones downregulating PDE5A (phosphodiesterase 5A), an enzyme involved in the regulation of cGMP-specific signaling, exhibited no difference in cell proliferation, but reduced motility by 47 and 66 % compared to the empty vector-expressing cells (p = 0.01 and p = 0.005). In an experimental metastasis assay, two shPDE5A-MDA-MB-231T clones produced 47-62 % fewer lung metastases than shRNA-scramble expressing cells (p = 0.045 and p = 0.009 respectively). This study demonstrates that previously unrecognized genes are inversely related to the expression of multiple MSGs, contribute to aspects of metastasis, and may stand as novel therapeutic targets.

Gao L, van den Hurk K, Moerkerk PT, et al.
Promoter CpG island hypermethylation in dysplastic nevus and melanoma: CLDN11 as an epigenetic biomarker for malignancy.
J Invest Dermatol. 2014; 134(12):2957-66 [PubMed] Related Publications
Dysplastic nevi are melanocytic lesions that represent an intermediate stage between common nevus and melanoma. Histopathological distinction of dysplastic nevus from melanoma can be challenging and there is a requirement for molecular diagnostic markers. In this study, we examined promoter CpG island methylation of a selected panel of genes, identified in a genome-wide methylation screen, across a spectrum of 405 melanocytic neoplasms. Promoter methylation analysis in common nevi, dysplastic nevi, primary melanomas, and metastatic melanomas demonstrated progressive epigenetic deregulation. Dysplastic nevi were affected by promoter methylation of genes that are frequently methylated in melanoma but not in common nevi. We assessed the diagnostic value of the methylation status of five genes in distinguishing primary melanoma from dysplastic nevus. In particular, CLDN11 promoter methylation was specific for melanoma, as it occurred in 50% of primary melanomas but in only 3% of dysplastic nevi. A diagnostic algorithm that incorporates methylation of the CLDN11, CDH11, PPP1R3C, MAPK13, and GNMT genes was validated in an independent sample set and helped distinguish melanoma from dysplastic nevus (area under the curve 0.81). Melanoma-specific methylation of these genes supports the utility as epigenetic biomarkers and could point to their significance in melanoma development.

Li Y, Chao F, Huang B, et al.
HOXC8 promotes breast tumorigenesis by transcriptionally facilitating cadherin-11 expression.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(9):2596-607 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cell-cell adhesion molecule cadherin-11(CDH11) is preferentially expressed in basal-like breast cancer cells and facilitates breast cancer cell migration by promoting small GTPase Rac activity. However, how the expression of CDH11 is regulated in breast cancer cells is not understood. Here, we show that CDH11 is transcriptionally controlled by homeobox C8 (HOXC8) in human breast cancer cells. HOXC8 serves as a CDH11-specific transcription factor and binds to the site of nucleotides -196 to -191 in the CDH11 promoter. Depletion of HOXC8 leads to the decrease in anchorage-independent cell growth, cell migration/invasion and spontaneous metastasis of breast cancer cells; however, suppressed tumorigenic events were fully rescued by ectopic CDH11 expression in HOXC8-knockdown cells. These results indicate that HOXC8 impacts breast tumorigenesis through CDH11. The analysis of publically available human breast tumor microarray gene expression database demonstrates a strong positive linear association between HOXC8 and CDH11 expression ( = 0.801, p < 0.001). Survival analysis (Kaplan-Meier method, log-rank test) show that both high HOXC8 and CDH11 expression correlate with poor recurrence-free survival rate of patients. Together, our study suggests that HOXC8 promotes breast tumorigenesis by maintaining high level of CDH11 expression in breast cancer cells.

Golubkov VS, Strongin AY
Downstream signaling and genome-wide regulatory effects of PTK7 pseudokinase and its proteolytic fragments in cancer cells.
Cell Commun Signal. 2014; 12:15 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The full-length membrane protein tyrosine kinase 7 (PTK7) pseudokinase, an important component of the planar cell polarity and the Wnt canonical and non-canonical pathways, is a subject of step-wise proteolysis in cells and tissues. The proteolysis of PTK7 involves membrane type-matrix metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP), members of the Disintegrin Domain and Metalloproteinase (ADAM) family, and γ-secretase. This multi-step proteolysis results in the generation of the digest fragments of PTK7. These fragments may be either liberated into the extracellular milieu or retained on the plasma membrane or released into the cytoplasm and then transported into the nucleus.
RESULTS: We employed the genome-wide transcriptional and kinome array analyses to determine the role of the full-length membrane PTK7 and its proteolytic fragments in the downstream regulatory mechanisms, with an emphasis on the cell migration-related genes and proteins. Using fibrosarcoma HT1080 cells stably expressing PTK7 and its mutant and truncated species, the structure of which corresponded to the major PTK7 digest fragments, we demonstrated that the full-length membrane 1-1070 PTK7, the N-terminal 1-694 soluble ectodomain fragment, and the C-terminal 622-1070 and 726-1070 fragments differentially regulate multiple genes and signaling pathways in our highly invasive cancer cell model. Immunoblotting of the selected proteins were used to validate the results of our high throughput assays.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that PTK7 levels need to be tightly controlled to enable migration and that the anti-migratory effect of the full-length membrane PTK7 is linked to the down-regulation of multiple migration-related genes and to the activation of the Akt and c-Jun pathway. In turn, the C-terminal fragments of PTK7 act predominantly via the RAS-ERK and CREB/ATF1 pathway and through the up-regulation of cadherin-11. In general, our data correlate well with the distinct functionality of the full-length receptor tyrosine kinases and their respective intracellular domain (ICD) proteolytic fragments.

Sobolik T, Su YJ, Wells S, et al.
CXCR4 drives the metastatic phenotype in breast cancer through induction of CXCR2 and activation of MEK and PI3K pathways.
Mol Biol Cell. 2014; 25(5):566-82 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Aberrant expression of CXCR4 in human breast cancer correlates with metastasis to tissues secreting CXCL12. To understand the mechanism by which CXCR4 mediates breast cancer metastasis, MCF-7 breast carcinoma cells were transduced to express wild-type CXCR4 (CXCR4WT) or constitutively active CXCR4 (CXCR4ΔCTD) and analyzed in two-dimensional (2D) cultures, three-dimensional reconstituted basement membrane (3D rBM) cultures, and mice using intravital imaging. Two-dimensional cultures of MCF-7 CXCR4ΔCTD cells, but not CXCR4WT, exhibited an epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) characterized by up-regulation of zinc finger E box-binding homeobox 1, loss of E-cadherin, up-regulation of cadherin 11, p120 isoform switching, activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2, and matrix metalloproteinase-2. In contrast to the 2D environment, MCF-7 CXCR4WT cells cultured in 3D rBM exhibited an EMT phenotype, accompanied by expression of CXCR2, CXCR7, CXCL1, CXCL8, CCL2, interleukin-6, and granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor. Dual inhibition of CXCR2 with CXCR4, or inhibition of either receptor with inhibitors of mitogen-activated protein kinase 1 or phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase, reversed the aggressive phenotype of MCF-7 CXCR4-expressing or MDA-MB-231 cells in 3D rBM. Intravital imaging of CXCR4-expressing MCF-7 cells revealed that tumor cells migrate toward blood vessels and metastasize to lymph nodes. Thus CXCR4 can drive EMT along with an up-regulation of chemokine receptors and cytokines important in cell migration, lymphatic invasion, and tumor metastasis.

Nam EH, Lee Y, Zhao XF, et al.
ZEB2-Sp1 cooperation induces invasion by upregulating cadherin-11 and integrin α5 expression.
Carcinogenesis. 2014; 35(2):302-14 [PubMed] Related Publications
Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a process implicated in invasion and metastasis. EMT is characterized by repression of epithelial markers and induction of mesenchymal markers. ZEB2 is a transcriptional repressor of E-cadherin, leading to EMT. Previously, we have shown that ZEB2 directly upregulates integrin α5 transcription by cooperating with the transcription factor Sp1. In this study, we investigated the precise mechanism by which ZEB2 modulates invasion and EMT events and the role of Sp1 in ZEB2-induced invasion. We found that ZEB2 directly induced cadherin-11 transcription in an Sp1-dependent, but Smad- and E-box-independent, manner and repressed E-cadherin expression in an Sp1- and Smad-independent manner, leading to cadherin switch. Furthermore, ZEB2 upregulated Sp1 by enhancing Sp1 protein stability, and Sp1 was found to be critical for ZEB2-induced cancer cell invasion, mainly through induction of cadherin-11 and integrin α5. Expression levels of cadherin-11 and integrin α5 were interdependent and both modulated c-Jun N-terminal kinase-signaling activity and invasion. Immunofluorescence analysis showed that nuclear expression of ZEB2 was positively correlated with Sp1 expression in human colorectal cancers. Together, these findings demonstrate a previously unrecognized interplay between ZEB2, Sp1, cadherin-11 and integrin α5 that is, probably, significant in tumor progression and metastasis.

Torres S, Bartolomé RA, Mendes M, et al.
Proteome profiling of cancer-associated fibroblasts identifies novel proinflammatory signatures and prognostic markers for colorectal cancer.
Clin Cancer Res. 2013; 19(21):6006-19 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAF) are essential components of the stroma that play a critical role in cancer progression. This study aimed to identify novel CAFs markers that might contribute to the invasion and the prognosis of colorectal cancer.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: The azoxymethane/dextran sodium sulfate mouse model of sporadic colon cancer represents an adequate source for the isolation of CAFs and normal fibroblasts. By using the explants technique, we purified CAFs and normal fibroblasts from colon tissues. Whole-cell extracts and supernatants were subjected to in-depth quantitative proteomic analysis by tandem mass spectrometry. Further validations of upregulated proteins in CAFs were carried out by chemokine microarray and immunohistochemical analyses of mouse and human tissues.
RESULTS: Using a fold-change of 1.4 or more, we found 132 and 125 differentially expressed proteins in whole-cell extracts and supernatants, respectively. We found CAFs-associated proinflammatory and desmoplastic signatures. The proinflammatory signature was composed of several cytokines. Among them, CCL2 and CCL8 caused an increase in migration and invasion of colorectal cancer KM12 cells. The desmoplastic signature was composed of 30 secreted proteins. In mouse and human samples, expression of LTBP2, CDH11, OLFML3, and, particularly, FSTL1 was significantly increased in the tumoral stroma, without significant expression in the cancer epithelial cells. The combination of CALU and CDH11 stromal expression showed a significant association with disease-free survival and poor prognosis.
CONCLUSION: We have identified LTBP2, CDH11, OLFML3, and FSTL1 as selective biomarkers of cancer stroma, and CALU and CDH11 as candidate stromal biomarkers of prognostic significance in colon cancer.

Schulte JD, Srikanth M, Das S, et al.
Cadherin-11 regulates motility in normal cortical neural precursors and glioblastoma.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(8):e70962 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Metastasizing tumor cells undergo a transformation that resembles a process in normal development when non-migratory epithelial cells modulate the expression of cytoskeletal and adhesion proteins to promote cell motility. Here we find a mesenchymal cadherin, Cadherin-11 (CDH11), is increased in cells exiting the ventricular zone (VZ) neuroepithelium during normal cerebral cortical development. When overexpressed in cortical progenitors in vivo, CDH11 causes premature exit from the neuroepithelium and increased cell migration. CDH11 expression is elevated in human brain tumors, correlating with higher tumor grade and decreased patient survival. In glioblastoma, CDH11-expressing tumor cells can be found localized near tumor vasculature. Endothelial cells stimulate TGFβ signaling and CDH11 expression in glioblastoma cells. TGFβ promotes glioblastoma cell motility, and knockdown of CDH11 expression in primary human glioblastoma cells inhibits TGFβ-stimulated migration. Together, these findings show that Cadherin-11 can promote cell migration in neural precursors and glioblastoma cells and suggest that endothelial cells increase tumor aggressiveness by co-opting mechanisms that regulate normal neural development.

Klingen TA, Chen Y, Suhrke P, et al.
Expression of thyroid transcription factor-1 is associated with a basal-like phenotype in breast carcinomas.
Diagn Pathol. 2013; 8:80 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The differential diagnosis between primary and secondary breast cancers might be difficult, especially in poorly differentiated tumors. Thyroid Transcription Factor-1 (TTF-1) has been regarded as a reliable marker for lung or thyroid origin, with only occasional positive staining in other tumors. However, positive cases have recently been reported among primary breast carcinomas.
METHODS AND RESULTS: Here, we analyzed expression of TTF-1 protein (clone SPT24) by immunohistochemical staining of sections from paraffin embedded tumor samples in 247 primary breast cancers from the population-based Norwegian Breast Cancer Screening Program. Positive staining (weak or strong) was observed in 7 cases (2,8%). As novel observations, positivity was demonstrated more frequently in estrogen receptor negative cases (14,0% vs. 1,4%; p = 0,004), highly proliferative tumors (8,8% vs. 1,1%; p = 0,008), tumors with a basal-like phenotype by showing expression of CK5/6 and/or P-cadherin (11,1% vs. 1,4%; p = 0,01), and tumors with blood vessel invasion (9,7% vs. 1,9%; p = 0,04). Also, TTF-1 was associated with histological grade 3 tumors compared with grade 1 or 2 tumors (7,7% vs. 1,5%; p = 0,04) as well as lymph node positive cases (5,2% vs. 1,8%; p = 0,03).
CONCLUSIONS: Our population-based findings indicate that TTF-1 may be positive in approximately 3% of primary breast cancers, and positivity indicates an association with adverse prognostic factors.
VIRTUAL SLIDES: The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here:

Hung PF, Hong TM, Hsu YC, et al.
The motor protein KIF14 inhibits tumor growth and cancer metastasis in lung adenocarcinoma.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(4):e61664 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The motor protein kinesin superfamily proteins (KIFs) are involved in cancer progression. The depletion of one of the KIFs, KIF14, might delay the metaphase-to-anaphase transition, resulting in a binucleated status, which enhances tumor progression; however, the exact correlation between KIF14 and cancer progression remains ambiguous. In this study, using loss of heterozygosity and array comparative genomic hybridization analyses, we observed a 30% loss in the regions surrounding KIF14 on chromosome 1q in lung adenocarcinomas. In addition, the protein expression levels of KIF14 in 122 lung adenocarcinomas also indicated that approximately 30% of adenocarcinomas showed KIF14 down-regulation compared with the expression in the bronchial epithelial cells of adjacent normal counterparts. In addition, the reduced expression of KIF14 mRNA or proteins was correlated with poor overall survival (P = 0.0158 and <0.0001, respectively), and the protein levels were also inversely correlated with metastasis (P<0.0001). The overexpression of KIF14 in lung adenocarcinoma cells inhibited anchorage-independent growth in vitro and xenograft tumor growth in vivo. The overexpression and silencing of KIF14 also inhibited or enhanced cancer cell migration, invasion and adhesion to the extracellular matrix proteins laminin and collagen IV. Furthermore, we detected the adhesion molecules cadherin 11 (CDH11) and melanoma cell adhesion molecule (MCAM) as cargo on KIF14. The overexpression and silencing of KIF14 enhanced or reduced the recruitment of CDH11 in the membrane fraction, suggesting that KIF14 might act through recruiting adhesion molecules to the cell membrane and modulating cell adhesive, migratory and invasive properties. Thus, KIF14 might inhibit tumor growth and cancer metastasis in lung adenocarcinomas.

Luo D, Wilson JM, Harvel N, et al.
A systematic evaluation of miRNA:mRNA interactions involved in the migration and invasion of breast cancer cells.
J Transl Med. 2013; 11:57 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
In this study we performed a systematic evaluation of functional miRNA-mRNA interactions associated with the invasiveness of breast cancer cells using a combination of integrated miRNA and mRNA expression profiling, bioinformatics prediction, and functional assays. Analysis of the miRNA expression identified 11 miRNAs that were differentially expressed, including 7 down-regulated (miR-200c, miR-205, miR-203, miR-141, miR-34a, miR-183, and miR-375) and 4 up-regulated miRNAs (miR-146a, miR-138, miR-125b1 and miR-100), in invasive cell lines when compared to normal and less invasive cell lines. Transfection of miR-200c, miR-205, and miR-375 mimics into MDA-MB-231 cells led to the inhibition of in vitro cell migration and invasion. The integrated analysis of miRNA and mRNA expression identified 35 known and novel target genes of miR-200c, miR-205, and mir-375, including CFL2, LAMC1, TIMP2, ZEB1, CDH11, PRKCA, PTPRJ, PTPRM, LDHB, and SEC23A. Surprisingly, the majority of these genes (27 genes) were target genes of miR-200c, suggesting that miR-200c plays a pivotal role in regulating the invasiveness of breast cancer cells. We characterized one of the target genes of miR-200c, CFL2, and demonstrated that CFL2 is overexpressed in aggressive breast cancer cell lines and can be significantly down-regulated by exogenous miR-200c. Tissue microarray analysis further revealed that CFL2 expression in primary breast cancer tissue correlated with tumor grade. The results obtained from this study may improve our understanding of the role of these candidate miRNAs and their target genes in relation to breast cancer invasiveness and ultimately lead to the identification of novel biomarkers associated with prognosis.

Gasi Tandefelt D, Boormans JL, van der Korput HA, et al.
A 36-gene signature predicts clinical progression in a subgroup of ERG-positive prostate cancers.
Eur Urol. 2013; 64(6):941-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The molecular basis of the clinical heterogeneity of prostate cancer (PCa) is not well understood.
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of our study was to identify and characterize genes in a clinically relevant gene expression signature in a subgroup of primary PCa positive for transmembrane protease, serine 2 (TMPRSS2)-v-ets erythroblastosis virus E26 oncogene homolog (avian) (ERG).
DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: We studied gene expression profiles by unsupervised hierarchical clustering in 48 primary PCas from patients with a long clinical follow-up. Results were correlated with clinical outcome and validated in an independent patient cohort. Selected genes from a defined classifier were tested in vitro for biologic properties.
INTERVENTION: Initial treatment of primary tumors was radical prostatectomy.
OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: Associations between clinical and histopathologic variables were evaluated by the Pearson χ(2) test, Mann-Whitney U test, or Kruskal-Wallis test, where appropriate. The log-rank test or Breslow method was used for statistical analysis of Kaplan-Meier survival curves.
RESULTS AND LIMITATIONS: Most tumors that overexpressed ERG clustered separately from other primary PCas. No differences in any clinical end points between ERG-positive and ERG-negative cancers were detected. Importantly, within the ERG-positive samples, two subgroups were identified, which differed significantly in prostate-specific antigen recurrence-free survival, and cancer-specific and overall survival. From our findings, we defined a gene expression classifier of 36 genes. In a second, completely independent tumor set, the classifier also distinguished ERG-positive subgroups with different clinical outcome. In both patient cohorts, the classifier was not predictive in ERG-negative tumors. Biologic processes regulated by genes in the classifier included cell adhesion and bone remodeling. Tumor growth factor-β signaling was indicated as the main differing signaling pathway between the two ERG subgroups. In vitro biologic assays of two selected genes from the classifier (inhibin, beta A [INHBA] and cadherin 11, type 2, OB-cadherin (osteoblast) [CDH11]) supported a functional role in PCa progression. Possible multifocality and limited number of PCa samples can be limitations of the study.
CONCLUSIONS: The classifier identified can contribute to prediction of tumor progression in ERG-positive primary prostate tumors and might be instrumental in therapy decisions.

Sharili AS, Allen S, Smith K, et al.
Snail2 promotes osteosarcoma cell motility through remodelling of the actin cytoskeleton and regulates tumor development.
Cancer Lett. 2013; 333(2):170-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The function of Snail2 in mesenchymal tumors is, to date unknown. Using knockdown and overexpression studies, we show that Snail2 regulates migration and invasion of osteosarcoma cells. Knockdown resulted in significantly decreased motility, remodelling of the actin cytoskeleton, and loss of cellular protrusions. Over-expression increased motility, formation of actin-rich cellular protrusions, and altered expression of some non-canonical Wnt pathway components whilst decreasing expression of the adhesion molecule OB-cadherin. Unexpectedly, knockdown also resulted in significantly smaller tumors in an in vivo CAM assay. Therefore Snail2 may be a potential therapeutic target for clinical intervention of osteosarcoma.

Solyom S, Ewing AD, Rahrmann EP, et al.
Extensive somatic L1 retrotransposition in colorectal tumors.
Genome Res. 2012; 22(12):2328-38 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
L1 retrotransposons comprise 17% of the human genome and are its only autonomous mobile elements. Although L1-induced insertional mutagenesis causes Mendelian disease, their mutagenic load in cancer has been elusive. Using L1-targeted resequencing of 16 colorectal tumor and matched normal DNAs, we found that certain cancers were excessively mutagenized by human-specific L1s, while no verifiable insertions were present in normal tissues. We confirmed de novo L1 insertions in malignancy by both validating and sequencing 69/107 tumor-specific insertions and retrieving both 5' and 3' junctions for 35. In contrast to germline polymorphic L1s, all insertions were severely 5' truncated. Validated insertion numbers varied from up to 17 in some tumors to none in three others, and correlated with the age of the patients. Numerous genes with a role in tumorigenesis were targeted, including ODZ3, ROBO2, PTPRM, PCM1, and CDH11. Thus, somatic retrotransposition may play an etiologic role in colorectal cancer.

Ferrand N, Stragier E, Redeuilh G, Sabbah M
Glucocorticoids induce CCN5/WISP-2 expression and attenuate invasion in oestrogen receptor-negative human breast cancer cells.
Biochem J. 2012; 447(1):71-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
CCN5 (cysteine-rich 61/connective tissue growth factor/nephroblastoma overexpressed 5)/WISP-2 [WNT1 (wingless-type MMTV integration site family, member 1)-inducible signalling pathway protein 2] is an oestrogen-regulated member of the CCN family. CCN5 is a transcriptional repressor of genes associated with the EMT (epithelial-mesenchymal transition) and plays an important role in maintenance of the differentiated phenotype in ER (oestrogen receptor)-positive breast cancer cells. In contrast, CCN5 is undetectable in more aggressive ER-negative breast cancer cells. We now report that CCN5 is induced in ER-negative breast cancer cells such as MDA-MB-231 following glucocorticoid exposure, due to interaction of the endogenous glucocorticoid receptor with a functional glucocorticoid-response element in the CCN5 gene promoter. Glucocorticoid treatment of MDA-MB-231 cells is accompanied by morphological alterations, decreased invasiveness and attenuated expression of mesenchymal markers, including vimentin, cadherin 11 and ZEB1 (zinc finger E-box binding homeobox 1). Interestingly, glucocorticoid exposure did not increase CCN5 expression in ER-positive breast cancer cells, but rather down-regulated ER expression, thereby attenuating oestrogen pathway signalling. Taken together, our results indicate that glucocorticoid treatment of ER-negative breast cancer cells induces high levels of CCN5 expression and is accompanied by the appearance of a more differentiated and less invasive epithelial phenotype. These findings propose a novel therapeutic strategy for high-risk breast cancer patients.

Murali AK, Norris JS
Differential expression of epithelial and mesenchymal proteins in a panel of prostate cancer cell lines.
J Urol. 2012; 188(2):632-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Epithelial to mesenchymal transition is an important process that results in increased cell migration, invasion and metastasis of many carcinomas. During epithelial to mesenchymal transition epithelial cells down-regulate cell-cell adhesion molecules (ie E-cadherin), up-regulate mesenchymal proteins (ie N-cadherin and cadherin-11), alter polarity, reorganize the cytoskeleton and become isolated. In combination this leads to greater motility. We investigated the role of E-cadherin and the associated catenin-protein complex in regulating epithelial to mesenchymal transition in prostate cancer progression.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The relative invasion index of prostate cancer cells was assessed by MTT based in vitro invasion assay. Immunoprecipitation and Western blot were done to determine cadherin-complex formation, and catenin and cadherin protein expression.
RESULTS: Restoration of E-cadherin expression in nonE-cadherin expressing prostate cancer cells decreased invasive potential. However, in vitro invasive potential was tightly regulated by the interaction of cadherin proteins with the catenin complex. E and N-cadherin, cadherin-11, and the catenin proteins α, β, γ and p120 are important for the downstream signaling associated with epithelial to mesenchymal transition in tumor cells.
CONCLUSIONS: Restoration of epithelial specific proteins, such as E-cadherin, in tumor cells can inhibit invasion. However, invasion is a complex process regulated not only by E and N-cadherin but also by catenin-complex proteins. The complex signaling process associated with tumor invasion warrants further investigation since crosstalk between overlapping signaling pathways is involved in regulating prostate cancer invasion, metastasis and progression.

Singh B, Tai K, Madan S, et al.
Selection of metastatic breast cancer cells based on adaptability of their metabolic state.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(5):e36510 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
A small subpopulation of highly adaptable breast cancer cells within a vastly heterogeneous population drives cancer metastasis. Here we describe a function-based strategy for selecting rare cancer cells that are highly adaptable and drive malignancy. Although cancer cells are dependent on certain nutrients, e.g., glucose and glutamine, we hypothesized that the adaptable cancer cells that drive malignancy must possess an adaptable metabolic state and that such cells could be identified using a robust selection strategy. As expected, more than 99.99% of cells died upon glutamine withdrawal from the aggressive breast cancer cell line SUM149. The rare cells that survived and proliferated without glutamine were highly adaptable, as judged by additional robust adaptability assays involving prolonged cell culture without glucose or serum. We were successful in isolating rare metabolically plastic glutamine-independent (Gln-ind) variants from several aggressive breast cancer cell lines that we tested. The Gln-ind cells overexpressed cyclooxygenase-2, an indicator of tumor aggressiveness, and they were able to adjust their glutaminase level to suit glutamine availability. The Gln-ind cells were anchorage-independent, resistant to chemotherapeutic drugs doxorubicin and paclitaxel, and resistant to a high concentration of a COX-2 inhibitor celecoxib. The number of cells being able to adapt to non-availability of glutamine increased upon prior selection of cells for resistance to chemotherapy drugs or resistance to celecoxib, further supporting a linkage between cellular adaptability and therapeutic resistance. Gln-ind cells showed indications of oxidative stress, and they produced cadherin11 and vimentin, indicators of mesenchymal phenotype. Gln-ind cells were more tumorigenic and more metastatic in nude mice than the parental cell line as judged by incidence and time of occurrence. As we decreased the number of cancer cells in xenografts, lung metastasis and then primary tumor growth was impaired in mice injected with parental cell line, but not in mice injected with Gln-ind cells.

Carmona FJ, Villanueva A, Vidal A, et al.
Epigenetic disruption of cadherin-11 in human cancer metastasis.
J Pathol. 2012; 228(2):230-40 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Little is known about the molecular events occurring in the metastases of human tumours. Epigenetic alterations are dynamic lesions that change over the natural course of the disease, and so they might play a role in the biology of cancer cells that have departed from the primary tumour. Herein, we have adopted an epigenomic approach to identify some of these changes. Using a DNA methylation microarray platform to compare paired primary tumour and lymph node metastatic cell lines from the same patient, we observed cadherin-11 promoter CpG island hypermethylation as a likely target of the process. We found that CDH11 DNA methylation-associated transcriptional silencing occurred in the corresponding lymph node metastases of melanoma and head and neck cancer cells but not in the primary tumours. Using in vitro and in vivo cellular and mouse models for depleted or enhanced CDH11 activity, we also demonstrated that CDH11 acts as an inhibitor of tumour growth, motility and dissemination. Most importantly, the study of CDH11 5'-CpG island hypermethylation in primary tumours and lymph node metastases of cancer patients showed this epigenetic alteration to be significantly confined to the disseminated cells. Overall, these results indicate the existence of metastasis-specific epigenetic events that might contribute to the progression of the disease.

Huang L, Xu Y, Cai G, et al.
Downregulation of S100A4 expression by RNA interference suppresses cell growth and invasion in human colorectal cancer cells.
Oncol Rep. 2012; 27(4):917-22 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
S100A4 protein, a member of the S100 superfamily of calcium-binding proteins, is frequently observed in various types of human cancers, including colorectal cancer (CRC). Our previous investigations have demonstrated that the overexpression of S100A4 is associated with lymph node metastasis and poor prognosis in CRC; however, its biological roles in CRC remain unclear. In the present study, we compared the expression of S100A4 at the mRNA and protein levels in six CRC cell lines, and found that the expression levels roughly coincided with their invasiveness. Using RNA interference, we suppressed S100A4 expression in SW620 CRC cells with highly invasive potential and S100A4 high expression. The specific knockdown of S100A4 strongly suppressed cell growth, migration and invasion activities. Furthermore, employing metastasis-related gene mRNA microarrays, we found four genes to be significantly dysregulated (more than 2-fold) after downregulation of S100A4, including three downregulated genes (MMP9, MMP10 and CDH11) and one upregulated gene (TIMP4). Our present results indicate that S100A4 may positively regulate tumor cell proliferation, invasion and metastasis associated with multiple molecules. Thus, the inhibition of S100A4 might be a potentially novel approach to treatment for CRC.

Li L, Ying J, Li H, et al.
The human cadherin 11 is a pro-apoptotic tumor suppressor modulating cell stemness through Wnt/β-catenin signaling and silenced in common carcinomas.
Oncogene. 2012; 31(34):3901-12 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Genetic alterations of 16q21-q22, the locus of a 6-cadherin cluster, are frequently involved in multiple tumors, suggesting the presence of critical tumor suppressor genes (TSGs). Using 1 Mb array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH), we refined a small hemizygous deletion (~1 Mb) at 16q21-22.1, which contains a single gene Cadherin-11 (CDH11, OB-cadherin). CDH11 was broadly expressed in human normal adult and fetal tissues, while its silencing and promoter CpG methylation were frequently detected in tumor cell lines, but not in immortalized normal epithelial cells. Aberrant methylation was also frequently detected in multiple primary tumors. CDH11 silencing could be reversed by pharmacologic or genetic demethylation, indicating an epigenetic mechanism. Ectopic expression of CDH11 strongly suppressed tumorigenecity and induced tumor cell apoptosis. Moreover, CDH11 was found to inhibit Wnt/β-catenin and AKT/Rho A signaling, as well as actin stress fiber formation, thus further inhibiting tumor cell migration and invasion. CDH11 also inhibited epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and downregulated stem cell markers. Thus, our work identifies CDH11 as a functional tumor suppressor and an important antagonist of Wnt/β-catenin and AKT/Rho A signaling, with frequent epigenetic inactivation in common carcinomas.

Delic S, Lottmann N, Jetschke K, et al.
Identification and functional validation of CDH11, PCSK6 and SH3GL3 as novel glioma invasion-associated candidate genes.
Neuropathol Appl Neurobiol. 2012; 38(2):201-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: The molecular mechanisms underlying the infiltrative growth of glioblastomas, the most common primary tumours of the central nervous system in adults, are still poorly understood. We aimed to identify and functionally validate novel glioma invasion-associated candidate genes.
METHODS: Microarray-based expression analysis was applied to identify differentially expressed genes in microdissected infiltrating glioma cells in vivo. Promising candidate genes were selected by the invasion-associated gene ontology terms cell adhesion, endocytosis, extracellular matrix and cell migration and validated in vitro by invasion assays and in situ by immunohistochemistry.
RESULTS: We identified 180 up-regulated and 61 down-regulated genes (fold change: ≥ 2; P < 0.01) in the infiltration zone relative to more central cell-rich tumour areas of malignant astrocytic gliomas (n = 11). Twenty-seven of these genes matched to invasion-related gene ontology terms. From these, we confirmed the genes encoding cadherin-11 (CDH11), proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 6 (PCSK6) and SH3-domain GRB2-like 3 (SH3GL3) as novel glioma invasion-associated candidate genes, with knockdown of PCSK6 and SH3GL3 inhibiting glioma cell invasion, while inhibition of CDH11 promoted glioma cell invasion in vitro. Immunohistochemistry on glioblastoma tissue sections revealed expression of CDH11 and PCSK6 protein in glioma cells of more central, cell-rich tumour areas, with only weak or absent CDH11 immunoreactivity but consistent PCSK6 staining in infiltrating glioma cells.
CONCLUSION: Using molecular profiling of microdissected primary tumour tissue specimens followed by functional in vitro analysis, we identified and validated CDH11, PCSK6 and SH3GL3 as novel glioma invasion-associated candidate genes that likely contribute to the invasive phenotype of malignant gliomas.

Castilla MÁ, Moreno-Bueno G, Romero-Pérez L, et al.
Micro-RNA signature of the epithelial-mesenchymal transition in endometrial carcinosarcoma.
J Pathol. 2011; 223(1):72-80 [PubMed] Related Publications
Endometrial carcinosarcomas (ECSs) undergo a true epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). The molecular determinants of the EMT in vivo are unclear, although a role for some miRNAs, mainly involving the miR-200 family, was recently suggested from in vitro cellular models. We analysed the microRNA (miRNA) signatures associated to EMT in human carcinosarcomas, and determined their relationships with EMT markers and repressors of E-cadherin transcription. The expression of E-, P- and N-cadherin, cadherin-11, p120, vimentin, SPARC, fascin and caveolin-1 was studied in a group of 76 ECS by immunohistochemistry. In addition, real-time PCR was used to measure the differences in the expression of 384 miRNAs, E-cadherin, cadherin-11, SPARC, SNAIL, ZEB1, ZEB2, TWIST-1, TCF4, TGFβ1 and TGFβ2 between the epithelial and mesenchymal components of 23 ECSs. A loss of epithelial characteristics, including cadherin switching and the acquisition of a mesenchymal phenotype, was accompanied by changes in the profile of miRNA expression and the up-regulation of all the E-cadherin repressors analysed. A greater than five-fold difference in the expression of 14 miRNAs between both neoplastic components was seen. Members of the miR-200 family were down-regulated in the mesenchymal part of the ECS. In addition, miR-23b and miR-29c, which are involved in the inhibition of mesenchymal markers, and miR-203, which is involved in the inhibition of cell stemness, were also down-regulated. Up-regulated miRNAs included miR-155, miR-369-5p, miR-370, miR-450a and miR-542-5p. These data suggest that in human ECS, the interplay between transcriptional repressors of E-cadherin and miRNAs provides a link between EMT-activation and the maintenance of stemness.

Mueller DW, Bosserhoff AK
MicroRNA miR-196a controls melanoma-associated genes by regulating HOX-C8 expression.
Int J Cancer. 2011; 129(5):1064-74 [PubMed] Related Publications
Resulting from a screening for microRNAs differentially regulated in melanocytes and melanoma cells, we found expression of miR-196a to be significantly down-regulated in malignant melanoma cell lines and tissue samples. As it was stated before that miR-196a might negatively regulate expression of the transcription factor HOX-C8, we analyzed HOX-C8 levels in NHEMs and melanoma cells and found a strong up-regulation of HOX-C8 expression in malignant melanoma cell lines and tissue samples compared with melanocytes. Several HOX-C8 target genes are known to be involved in processes such as oncogenesis, cell adhesion, proliferation and apoptosis. We, therefore, aimed to further investigate a potential "miR-196a → HOX-C8 → HOX-C8 target gene" relationship. Stable transfection with an miR-196a expression plasmid led to strong down-regulation of HOX-C8 expression in melanoma cells. Luciferase assays using reporter plasmids containing different fragments of the HOX-C8 3'UTR confirmed direct interactions of miR-196a with the HOX-C8 mRNA. Focusing on target genes of HOX-C8, which might play an important role in melanomagenesis, we identified three genes (cadherin-11, calponin-1 and osteopontin) that are up- or down-regulated, respectively, by altered HOX-C8 expression in miR-196a expressing cell clones and are thus indirectly regulated by this microRNA. As those target genes are closely related to important cellular mechanisms such as cell adhesion, cytoskeleton remodeling, tumor formation and invasive behavior of tumor cells, altered miR-196a expression exerts strong effects contributing to tumor cell transformation and formation and progression of malignant melanoma. This fact is underlined by a strongly reduced invasive behavior of melanoma cells re-expressing miR-196a in vitro.

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