Gene Summary

Gene:CDK6; cyclin dependent kinase 6
Aliases: MCPH12, PLSTIRE
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is a member of the cyclin-dependent protein kinase (CDK) family. CDK family members are highly similar to the gene products of Saccharomyces cerevisiae cdc28, and Schizosaccharomyces pombe cdc2, and are known to be important regulators of cell cycle progression. This kinase is a catalytic subunit of the protein kinase complex that is important for cell cycle G1 phase progression and G1/S transition. The activity of this kinase first appears in mid-G1 phase, which is controlled by the regulatory subunits including D-type cyclins and members of INK4 family of CDK inhibitors. This kinase, as well as CDK4, has been shown to phosphorylate, and thus regulate the activity of, tumor suppressor protein Rb. Expression of this gene is up-regulated in some types of cancer. Multiple alternatively spliced variants, encoding the same protein, have been identified. [provided by RefSeq, Nov 2009]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:cyclin-dependent kinase 6
Source:NCBIAccessed: 15 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 15 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 15 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (6)

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: CDK6 (cancer-related)

Li A, Li J, Lin J, et al.
COL11A1 is overexpressed in gastric cancer tissues and regulates proliferation, migration and invasion of HGC-27 gastric cancer cells in vitro.
Oncol Rep. 2017; 37(1):333-340 [PubMed] Related Publications
The role of COL11A1 in carcinogenesis is increasingly recognized. However, the biological role and potential mechanisms of COL11A1 in gastric cancer have not been elucidated. In the present study, the COL11A1 mRNA expression in 57 patients with gastric cancer was measured by reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR), and the biological effects of COL11A1 suppression were determined using MTS, monolayer colony formation, flow cytometry and Transwell assays. In addition, the potential molecular mechanisms of COL11A1 in gastric cancer were analyzed by western blotting and cDNA microarray analysis. Compared with matched adjacent non-tumor tissue, COL11A1 mRNA was significantly overexpressed in tumor tissue and was positively related to age, tumor invasion depth, tumor size and lymph node positivity. Moreover, in vitro experiments demonstrated that COL11A1 suppression by short hairpin RNA (shRNA) significantly inhibited the proliferation, migration and invasion of HGC-27 cells and that COL11A1 suppression promoted cell apoptosis, induced G1-phase cell cycle arrest and led to a significant downregulation of cyclin D1 and upregulation of p21 and cleaved caspase-3. In addition, the cDNA microarray analysis of HGC-27 cells with and without COL11A1 suppression indicated that COL11A1 may regulate multiple genes responsible for cell growth and/or invasion, including downregulation of CDK6, TIAM1, ITGB8 and WNT5A and upregulation of RGS2 and NEFL following suppression of COL11A1 expression in HGC-27 cells, validated with RT-qPCR assays. Taken together, our findings demonstrate that COL11A1 might be an oncogene in GC and is a promising therapeutic target in cancer treatment.

Zhu H, Wang G, Zhou X, et al.
miR-1299 suppresses cell proliferation of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) by targeting CDK6.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2016; 83:792-797 [PubMed] Related Publications
microRNA (miRNA) plays critical role in HCC initiation and development, many miRNAs have been reported to regulate HCC progression. In this study, we studied the role of miR-1299 in cell proliferation of HCC. We found miR-1299 was significantly downregulated in HCC cells and tissues. miR-1299 overexpression inhibited cell proliferation and arrested cell cycle in G0/G1 phase analyzed by MTT assay, soft agar assay, BrdU cell proliferation assay and cell cycle assay, while miR-1299 knockdown promoted cell proliferation and accelerated G1/S transition. Further analysis suggested the key regulator of G1/S transition, cyclin-dependent kinase 6 (CDK6) was the target of miR-1299, miR-1299 inhibited CDK6 expression and bound to the 3'UTR of CDK6. When double knockdown of miR-1299 and CDK6 promoted cell proliferation copied the phenotype caused by miR-1299 overexpression, suggesting miR-1299 inhibits cell proliferation by targeting CDK6. In summary, our data revealed miR-1299 inhibits cell proliferation, and might be a target for HCC therapy.

Shin SS, Park SS, Hwang B, et al.
MicroRNA-892b influences proliferation, migration and invasion of bladder cancer cells by mediating the p19ARF/cyclin D1/CDK6 and Sp-1/MMP-9 pathways.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 36(4):2313-20 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancers often utilize microRNAs to suppress tumor suppressor genes, thus facilitating their potential for growth and invasion. In the present study, we report the novel findings that miR-892b inhibits proliferation, migration and invasion of bladder cancer cells. The basal expression level of miR‑892b was significantly lower in 3 different bladder cancer cell lines than in normal human urothelial cells. Transfection of miR-892b mimics to bladder cancer cells resulted in dose‑dependent growth arrest. Flow cytometric analysis of the cell cycle showed that miR-892b-transfected bladder cancer cells were subject to arrest in the G1 phase, which was due to the downregulation of cyclin D1 and CDK6 followed by upregulation of p19ARF. In addition, overexpression of miR-892b impeded the migration and invasion of EJ cells. Expression of MMP-9 in EJ cells was blocked by transfection of miR-892b; the effect was regulated, at least in part, by activation of the Sp-1 transcription factor. Overall, we verified that miR-892b regulates the p19ARF/cyclin D1/CDK6 and Sp-1/MMP-9 signaling networks in bladder cancer cells and may provide a treatment option for advanced-stage bladder cancers.

Erdmann K, Kaulke K, Rieger C, et al.
MiR-26a and miR-138 block the G1/S transition by targeting the cell cycle regulating network in prostate cancer cells.
J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2016; 142(11):2249-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: The tumor-suppressive microRNAs miR-26a and miR-138 are significantly down-regulated in prostate cancer (PCa) and have been identified as direct regulators of enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2), which is a known oncogene in PCa. In the present study, the influence of miR-26a and miR-138 on EZH2 and cellular function including the impact on the cell cycle regulating network was evaluated in PCa cells.
METHODS: PC-3 and DU-145 PCa cells were transfected with 100 nM of miRNA mimics, siRNA against EZH2 (siR-EZH2) or control constructs for 4 h. Analyses of gene expression and cellular function were conducted 48 h after transfection.
RESULTS: Both miRNAs influenced the EZH2 expression and activity only marginally, whereas siR-EZH2 led to a notable decrease of the EZH2 expression and activity. Both miRNAs inhibited short- and/or long-term proliferation of PCa cells but showed no effect on viability and apoptosis. In PC-3 cells, miR-26a and miR-138 caused a significant surplus of cells in the G0/G1 phase of 6 and 12 %, respectively, thus blocking the G1/S-phase transition. Treatment with siR-EZH2 was without substantial influence on cellular function and cell cycle. Therefore, alternative target genes involved in cell cycle regulation were identified in silico. MiR-26a significantly diminished the expression of its targets CCNE1, CCNE2 and CDK6, whereas CCND1, CCND3 and CDK6 were suppressed by their regulator miR-138.
CONCLUSIONS: The present findings suggest an anti-proliferative role for miR-26a and miR-138 in PCa by blocking the G1/S-phase transition independent of EZH2 but via a concerted inhibition of crucial cell cycle regulators.

Roy R, Singh R, Chattopadhyay E, et al.
MicroRNA and target gene expression based clustering of oral cancer, precancer and normal tissues.
Gene. 2016; 593(1):58-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Development of oral cancer is usually preceded by precancerous lesion. Despite histopathological diagnosis, development of disease specific biomarkers continues to be a promising field of study. Expression of miRNAs and their target genes was studied in oral cancer and two types of precancer lesions to look for disease specific gene expression patterns.
METHODS: Expression of miR-26a, miR-29a, miR-34b and miR-423 and their 11 target genes were determined in 20 oral leukoplakia, 20 lichen planus and 20 cancer tissues with respect to 20 normal tissues using qPCR assay. Expression data were, then, used for cluster analysis of normal as well as disease tissues.
RESULTS: Expression of miR-26a and miR-29a was significantly down regulated in leukoplakia and cancer tissues but up regulated in lichen planus tissues. Expression of target genes such as, ADAMTS7, ATP1B1, COL4A2, CPEB3, CDK6, DNMT3a and PI3KR1 was significantly down regulated in at least two of three disease types with respect to normal tissues. Negative correlations between expression levels of miRNAs and their targets were observed in normal tissues but not in disease tissues implying altered miRNA-target interaction in disease state. Specific expression profile of miRNAs and target genes formed separate clusters of normal, lichen planus and cancer tissues.
CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that alterations in expression of selected miRNAs and target genes may play important roles in development of precancer to cancer. Expression profiles of miRNA and target genes may be useful to differentiate cancer and lichen planus from normal tissues, thereby bolstering their role in diagnostics.

Shin SS, Park SS, Hwang B, et al.
MicroRNA-106a suppresses proliferation, migration, and invasion of bladder cancer cells by modulating MAPK signaling, cell cycle regulators, and Ets-1-mediated MMP-2 expression.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 36(4):2421-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Despite the clinical significance of tumorigenesis, little is known about the cellular signaling networks of microRNAs (miRs). Here we report a new finding that mir‑106a regulates the proliferation, migration, and invasion of bladder cancer cells. Basal expression levels of mir‑106a were significantly lower in bladder cancer cells than in normal urothelial cells. Overexpression of mir‑106a suppressed the proliferation of bladder cancer cell line EJ. Transient transfection of mir‑106a into EJ cells led to downregulation of ERK phosphorylation and upregulation of p38 and JNK phosphorylation over their levels in the control. Flow cytometry analysis revealed that mir‑106a-transfected cells accumulated in the G1-phase of the cell cycle, and cyclin D1 and CDK6 were significantly downregulated. This G1-phase cell cycle arrest was due in part to the upregulation of p21CIP1/WAF1. In addition, mir‑106a overexpression blocked the wound-healing migration and invasion of EJ cells. Furthermore, mir‑106a transfection resulted in decreased expression of MMP-2 and diminished binding activity of transcription factor Ets-1 in EJ cells. Collectively, we report the novel mir‑106a-mediated molecular signaling networks that regulate the proliferation, migration, and invasion of bladder cancer cells, suggesting that mir‑106a may be a therapeutic target for treating advanced bladder tumors.

Jagadish N, Gupta N, Agarwal S, et al.
Sperm-associated antigen 9 (SPAG9) promotes the survival and tumor growth of triple-negative breast cancer cells.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(10):13101-13110 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recently, we demonstrated the association of sperm-associated antigen 9 (SPAG9) expression with breast cancer. Among breast cancer, 15 % of the cancers are diagnosed as triple-negative breast cancers (TNBC) based on hormone receptor status and represent an important clinical challenge because of lack of effective available targeted therapy. Therefore, in the present investigation, plasmid-based small hairpin (small hairpin RNA (shRNA)) approach was used to ablate SPAG9 in aggressive breast cancer cell line model (MDA-MB-231) in order to understand the role of SPAG9 at molecular level in apoptosis, cell cycle, and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) signaling. Our data in MDA-MB-231 cells showed that ablation of SPAG9 resulted in membrane blebbing, increased mitochondrial membrane potential, DNA fragmentation, phosphatidyl serine surface expression, and caspase activation. SPAG9 depletion also resulted in cell cycle arrest in G0-G1 phase and induced cellular senescence. In addition, in in vitro and in vivo xenograft studies, ablation of SPAG9 resulted in upregulation of p21 along with pro-apoptotic molecules such as BAK, BAX, BIM, BID, NOXA, AIF, Cyto-C, PARP1, APAF1, Caspase 3, and Caspase 9 and epithelial marker, E-cadherin. Also, SPAG9-depleted cells showed downregulation of cyclin B1, cyclin D1, cyclin E, CDK1, CDK4, CDK6, BCL2, Bcl-xL, XIAP, cIAP2, MCL1, GRP78, SLUG, SNAIL, TWIST, vimentin, N-cadherin, MMP2, MMP3, MMP9, SMA, and β-catenin. Collectively, our data suggests that SPAG9 promotes tumor growth by inhibiting apoptosis, altering cell cycle, and enhancing EMT signaling in in vitro cells and in vivo mouse model. Hence, SPAG9 may be a potential novel target for therapeutic use in TNBC treatment.

Tang T, Eldabaje R, Yang L
Current Status of Biological Therapies for the Treatment of Metastatic Melanoma.
Anticancer Res. 2016; 36(7):3229-41 [PubMed] Related Publications
Compared to early-stage melanoma when surgical excision is possible, metastatic disease continues to offer a much grimmer prognosis as traditional chemotherapy treatment regimens offer relatively little survival benefit. This has led to changes in treatment approaches over the preceding two decades as contemporary methods for the treatment of advanced or metastatic melanoma now involve a number of biological modalities, which include immunotherapeutic approaches, targeted therapies and epigenetic modification therapies. Clinically available immunotherapeutic agents include interleukin 2 (IL-2), as well as drugs targeting the important immune checkpoint molecules, such as cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated protein 4 (CTLA-4) and programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1). The targeted therapeutic agents modulate specific pro-oncogenic mutations such as v-Raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B (BRAF), receptor tyrosine kinases, MEK inhibitors and potential future therapeutic targets, such as the CDK4/CDK6, PTEN and GNAQ/GNA11 genes. Additionally, an increasing understanding of the role of epigenetic alterations in the development and progression of melanoma now offers a new potential drug target. Several of these agents have shown promising results; however, in many investigations, combinations of different therapeutic approaches, each with different mechanisms of action, have yielded improved outcomes as treatment regimens continue to be further optimized by active research and patient disease sub-group analyses. This review summarizes the novel biological agents and new treatments, directly contributing to the significant improvement of biological therapies and markedly advancing knowledge of clinical application of newly approved and developed therapies in treatment of patients with metastatic melanoma.

Curigliano G, Gómez Pardo P, Meric-Bernstam F, et al.
Ribociclib plus letrozole in early breast cancer: A presurgical, window-of-opportunity study.
Breast. 2016; 28:191-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Cyclin D-cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) 4/6-inhibitor of CDK4/6-retinoblastoma (Rb) pathway hyperactivation is associated with hormone receptor-positive (HR+) breast cancer (BC). This study assessed the biological activity of ribociclib (LEE011; CDK4/6 inhibitor) plus letrozole compared with single-agent letrozole in the presurgical setting.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Postmenopausal women (N = 14) with resectable, HR+, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-negative (HER2-) early BC were randomized 1:1:1 to receive 2.5 mg/day letrozole alone (Arm 1), or with 400 or 600 mg/day ribociclib (Arm 2 or 3). Circulating tumor DNA and tumor biopsies were collected at baseline and, following 14 days of treatment, prior to or during surgery. The primary objective was to assess antiproliferative response per Ki67 levels in Arms 2 and 3 compared with Arm 1. Additional assessments included safety, pharmacokinetics, and genetic profiling.
RESULTS: Mean decreases in the Ki67-positive cell fraction from baseline were: Arm 1 69% (range 38-100%; n = 2), Arm 2 96% (range 78-100%; n = 6), Arm 3 92% (range 75-100%; n = 3). Decreased phosphorylated Rb levels and CDK4, CDK6, CCND2, CCND3, and CCNE1 gene expression were observed following ribociclib treatment. Ribociclib and letrozole pharmacokinetic parameters were consistent with single-agent data. The ribociclib plus letrozole combination was well tolerated, with no Grade 3/4 adverse events over the treatment.
CONCLUSION: The results suggest absence of a drug-drug interaction between ribociclib and letrozole and indicate ribociclib plus letrozole may reduce Ki67 expression in HR+, HER2- BC (NCT01919229).

Liu H, Chen F, Zhang L, et al.
A novel all-trans retinoic acid derivative 4-amino‑2‑trifluoromethyl-phenyl retinate inhibits the proliferation of human hepatocellular carcinoma HepG2 cells by inducing G0/G1 cell cycle arrest and apoptosis via upregulation of p53 and ASPP1 and downregulation of iASPP.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 36(1):333-41 [PubMed] Related Publications
4-Amino-2-trifluoromethyl-phenyl retinate (ATPR), a novel all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) derivative, was reported to function as a tumor inhibitor in various types of cancer cells in vitro. However, little is known concerning its antitumor effect on human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) HepG2 cells. The aims of the present study were to investigate the effects of ATPR on the proliferation of HepG2 cells and to explore the probable mechanisms. A series of experiments were performed following the treatment of HepG2 cells with ATRA and ATPR. MTT and plate colony formation assays were used to measure the cell viability. To confirm the influence on proliferation, flow cytometry was used to detect the distribution of the cell cycle. Apoptosis was observed by Hoechst staining and flow cytometry. In addition, to characterize the underlying molecular mechanisms, immunofluorescence was applied to observe the distribution of p53. The transcription and translation levels of p53 were analyzed by real-time quantitative RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) and western blotting. The expression levels of murine double minute 2 (MDM2), apoptosis stimulating proteins of p53 (ASPP), cell cycle- and apoptosis-associated proteins were detected by western blotting. After HepG2 cells were incubated with ATRA and ATPR, the viability of the HepG2 cells was inhibited in a dose- and time-dependent manner. As well, ATPR significantly suppressed HepG2 cell colony formation and arrested cells at the G0/G1 phase, while ATRA had no obvious effects. Both Hoechst staining and flow cytometry unveiled the apoptosis of HepG2 cells. Moreover, the fluorescent density of p53 was higher in the nuclei after exposure to ATPR than that in the ATRA group. HepG2 cells treated with ATPR showed elevated mRNA and protein levels of p53 when compared with these levels in the ATRA-treated cells. Western blotting showed that ATPR increased ASPP1, p21 and Bax expression and decreased MDM2, iASPP, cyclin D and E, cyclin-dependent kinase 6 (CDK6) and Bcl-2 expression, while CDK4 and ASPP2 expression were scarcely altered. Consequently, ATPR exerted a better inhibitory effect on the proliferation of HepG2 cells than ATRA through increased expression of p53 and ASPP1 and downregulation of iASPP, thereby resulting in G0/G1 cell cycle arrest and apoptosis.

Datta J, Islam M, Dutta S, et al.
Suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid inhibits growth of head and neck cancer cell lines by reactivation of tumor suppressor microRNAs.
Oral Oncol. 2016; 56:32-9 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: microRNAs negatively regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Mounting evidence shows that miR expression is deregulated in human cancers including head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Epigenetically silenced tumor suppressor miRs may be re-expressed upon treatment with histone deacetylases inhibitors. Suberoylanilide Hydroxamic Acid (SAHA) is a histone deacetylase inhibitor that is currently being investigated in clinical trials for HNSCC. We hypothesized that SAHA will re-express a set of tumor suppressor miRs and enhance the efficacy of cisplatin and radiation in HNSCC.
RESULTS: In this study, miR expression profile was utilized to identify the tumor suppressor miRs that are re-expressed following SAHA treatment in HNSCC. Our data demonstrated that two tumor suppressor miRs, miR-107 and miR-138, were significantly up-regulated in CAL27 and SCC25 cell lines, following SAHA treatment. In addition to this, treatment with SAHA in a dose dependent manner significantly inhibited the cell proliferation, cell migration, and anchorage dependent clonogenic survival in CAL27 and SCC25 cell lines, respectively. Further, the expression of several oncogenes, PKCε, HIF1β, CDK6, and RhoC were down regulated in response to SAHA treatment. Additionally, we demonstrated that the combination treatment with SAHA and a chemotherapeutic drug cisplatin caused a significant reduction of cell growth compared to the single agent treatment.
CONCLUSION: Our data indicate that SAHA treatment results in reactivation of the silenced tumor suppressor miRs. Furthermore, this study emphasizes the usefulness of this drug as a novel combination therapy for HNSCC patients.

Wang Q, Ao Y, Yang K, et al.
Circadian clock gene Per2 plays an important role in cell proliferation, apoptosis and cell cycle progression in human oral squamous cell carcinoma.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 35(6):3387-94 [PubMed] Related Publications
Previous studies have shown that the aberrant expression of period circadian clock 2 (Per2) is closely related to the occurrence and development of cancers, but the specific mechanism remains unclear. In the present study, we used shRNA to downregulate Per2 in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) Tca8113 cells, and then detected the alterations in cell cycle, cell proliferation and apoptosis by flow cytometric analysis and mRNA expression alterations in all the important genes in the cyclin/cyclin-dependent protein kinase (CDK)/cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CKI) cell cycle network by RT-qPCR. We found that in the Tca8113 cells, after Per2 downregulation, the mRNA expression levels of cyclin A2, B1 and D1, CDK4, CDK6 and E2F1 were significantly increased (P<0.05), the mRNA expression levels of p53, p16 and p21 were significantly decreased (P<0.05), cell proliferation was significantly higher (P<0.05), apoptosis was significantly lower (P<0.05) and the number of cells in the G1/G0 phase was significantly decreased (P<0.05). The present study proves that in OSCC, clock gene Per2 plays an important role in cell cycle progression and the balance of cell proliferation and apoptosis by regulation of the cyclin/CDK/CKI cell cycle network. Further research on Per2 may provide a new effective molecular target for cancer treatments.

Seçme M, Eroğlu C, Dodurga Y, Bağcı G
Investigation of anticancer mechanism of oleuropein via cell cycle and apoptotic pathways in SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells.
Gene. 2016; 585(1):93-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Neuroblastoma is one of the most common types of pediatric tumors that can spread quickly in neuronal tissues. Oleuropein which is active compound of olive leaves, belongs to polyphenols group and has antioxidant, anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, anti-hypertensive and anti-carcinogenic effects. The aim of the study is to determine the therapeutic effects of oleuropein on cell proliferation, invasion, colony formation, cell cycle and apoptotic mechanisms in SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cell line under in vitro conditions. The effect of oleuropein on cell viability was determined by XTT method. 84 cell cycle control and 84 apoptosis related genes were evaluated by RT-PCR. Effects of oleuropein on apoptosis were researched by TUNEL assay. Protein expressions were determined by western blot analysis. Effects of oleuropein on cell invasion, colony formation and migration were detected by matrigel-chamber, colony formation assay and wound-healing assay, respectively. IC50 value of oleuropein in SH-SY5Y cells was detected as 350 μM at 48th hours. It is determined that oleuropein causes cell cycle arrest by down-regulating of CylinD1,CylinD2,CyclinD3,CDK4,CDK6 and up-regulating of p53 and CDKN2A, CDKN2B, CDKN1A gene expressions. Oleuropein also induces apoptosis by inhibiting of Bcl-2 and activating of Bax,caspase-9 and caspase-3 gene expressions. Apoptotic cell ratio was found 36.4 ± 3.27% in oleuropein dose group. Oleuropein decreased invasion in SH-SY5Y cells and suppressed colony numbers in ratio of 53.6 ± 4.71%.Our results demonstrated that oleuropein can be a therapeutic agent in the treatment of neuroblastoma.

Palanichamy JK, Tran TM, Howard JM, et al.
RNA-binding protein IGF2BP3 targeting of oncogenic transcripts promotes hematopoietic progenitor proliferation.
J Clin Invest. 2016; 126(4):1495-511 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
Posttranscriptional control of gene expression is important for defining both normal and pathological cellular phenotypes. In vitro, RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) have recently been shown to play important roles in posttranscriptional regulation; however, the contribution of RBPs to cell specification is not well understood. Here, we determined that the RBP insulin-like growth factor 2 mRNA-binding protein 3 (IGF2BP3) is specifically overexpressed in mixed lineage leukemia-rearranged (MLL-rearranged) B-acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL), which constitutes a subtype of this malignancy associated with poor prognosis and high risk of relapse. IGF2BP3 was required for the survival of B-ALL cell lines, as knockdown led to decreased proliferation and increased apoptosis. Enforced expression of IGF2BP3 provided murine BM cells with a strong survival advantage, led to proliferation of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells, and skewed hematopoietic development to the B cell/myeloid lineage. Cross-link immunoprecipitation and high throughput sequencing uncovered the IGF2BP3-regulated transcriptome, which includes oncogenes MYC and CDK6 as direct targets. IGF2BP3 regulated transcripts via targeting elements within 3' untranslated regions (3'UTR), and enforced IGF2BP3 expression in mice resulted in enhanced expression of Myc and Cdk6 in BM. Together, our data suggest that IGF2BP3-mediated targeting of oncogenic transcripts may represent a critical pathogenetic mechanism in MLL-rearranged B-ALL and support IGF2BP3 and its cognate RNA-binding partners as potential therapeutic targets in this disease.

Kim SH, Ho JN, Jin H, et al.
Upregulated expression of BCL2, MCM7, and CCNE1 indicate cisplatin-resistance in the set of two human bladder cancer cell lines: T24 cisplatin sensitive and T24R2 cisplatin resistant bladder cancer cell lines.
Investig Clin Urol. 2016; 57(1):63-72 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
PURPOSE: The mechanism of resistance to cisplatin during treatment of bladder cancer (BC) has been a subject of intense investigation in clinical research. This study aims to identify candidate genes associated with resistance to cisplatin, in order to understand the resistance mechanism of BC cells to the drug, by combining the use of microarray profiling, quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), and Western blot analyses.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The cisplatin sensitive human BC cell line (T24) and the cisplatin resistant BC cell line, T24R2, were used for microarray analysis to determine the differential expression of genes that are significant in cisplatin resistance. Candidate upregulated genes belonging to three well-known cancer-related KEGG (Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes) pathways (p53 tumor suppressor, apoptosis, and cell cycle) were selected from the microarray data. These candidate genes, differentially expressed in T24 and T24R2, were then confirmed by quantitative RT-PCR and western blot. A fold change ≥2 with a p-value <0.05 was considered significant.
RESULTS: A total of 18 significantly upregulated genes were detected in the three selected cancer-related pathways in both microarray and RT-PCR analyses. These genes were PRKAR2A, PRKAR2B, CYCS, BCL2, BIRC3, DFFB, CASP6, CDK6, CCNE1, STEAP3, MCM7, ORC2, ORC5, ANAPC1, and ANAPC7, CDC7, CDC27, and SKP1. Western blot analyses also confirmed the upregulation of BCL2, MCM7, and CCNE1 at the protein level, indicating their crucial association with cisplatin resistance.
CONCLUSIONS: The BCL2, MCM7, and CCNE1 genes might play distinctive roles in cisplatin resistance in BC.

Cao J, Xu G, Lan J, et al.
High expression of piwi-like RNA-mediated gene silencing 1 is associated with poor prognosis via regulating transforming growth factor-β receptors and cyclin-dependent kinases in breast cancer.
Mol Med Rep. 2016; 13(3):2829-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
Previous studies have demonstrated that abnormal expression levels of PIWI may serve a crucial role in tumorigenesis. However, the pathological role and its association with prognosis remains to be fully elucidated. In the present study, the expression levels of piwi‑like RNA‑mediated gene silencing 1 (HIWI) and piwi‑like RNA‑mediated gene silencing 2 (HILI) in breast cancer tissues were reported to be high. The high expression levels of HIWI are correlated with poor prognosis in detected patients. In addition, by overexpression and interference, it was demonstrated that HIWI promotes the activity of breast cancer cells while depression of HIWI may induce apoptosis of breast cancer cells. It was additionally identified that suppression of HIWI may arrest the cells at the G2/M stage. The expression levels of transforming growth factor‑β receptor (TβR)I, TβRII, cyclin‑dependent kinase (CDK)4, CDK6 and CDK8 were observed to be regulated by HIWI, which indicated a novel mechanism of HIWI in the regulation of breast cancer progression. The present study provides novel insight into the HIWI expression in breast cancer, providing a potential biomarker for assessment of prognosis and therapy of breast cancer.

Wang P, Wu T, Zhou H, et al.
Long noncoding RNA NEAT1 promotes laryngeal squamous cell cancer through regulating miR-107/CDK6 pathway.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2016; 35:22 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Long noncoding RNA nuclear paraspeckle assembly transcript 1 (NEAT1) plays key role in the progression of some human cancers. However, the role of NEAT1 in human laryngeal squamous cell cancer (LSCC) is still unknown. We therefore investigated the expression and function of NEAT1 in LSCC.
METHODS: NEAT1 level in LSCC and adjacent non-neoplastic tissues were detected by qRT-PCR. NEAT1 was knockdown in LSCC cells and cell proliferation, apoptosis and cell cycle were examined. The growth of xenografts with NEAT1 knockdown LSCC cells was analyzed.
RESULTS: NEAT1 level was significantly higher in LSCC than in corresponding adjacent non-neoplastic tissues, and patients with neck nodal metastasis or advanced clinical stage had higher NEAT1 expression. Moreover, siRNA mediated NEAT1 knockdown significantly inhibited the proliferation and induced apoptosis and cell cycle arrest at G1 phase in LSCC cells. The growth of LSCC xenografts was significantly suppressed by the injection of NEAT1 siRNA lentivirus. Furthermore, NEAT1 regulated CDK6 expression in LSCC cells which was mediated by miR-107.
CONCLUSION: NEAT1 plays an oncogenic role in the tumorigenesis of LSCC and may serve as a potential target for therapeutic intervention.

Wang F, Lu J, Peng X, et al.
Integrated analysis of microRNA regulatory network in nasopharyngeal carcinoma with deep sequencing.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2016; 35:17 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been shown to play a critical role in the development and progression of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). Although accumulating studies have been performed on the molecular mechanisms of NPC, the miRNA regulatory networks in cancer progression remain largely unknown. Laser capture microdissection (LCM) and deep sequencing are powerful tools that can help us to detect the integrated view of miRNA-target network.
METHODS: Illumina Hiseq2000 deep sequencing was used to screen differentially expressed miRNAs in laser-microdessected biopsies between 12 NPC and 8 chronic nasopharyngitis patients. The result was validated by real-time PCR on 201 NPC and 25 chronic nasopharyngitis patients. The potential candidate target genes of the miRNAs were predicted using published target prediction softwares (RNAhybrid, TargetScan, Miranda, PITA), and the overlay part was analyzed in Gene Ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) biological process. The miRNA regulatory network analysis was performed using the Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) software.
RESULTS: Eight differentially expressed miRNAs were identified between NPC and chronic nasopharyngitis patients by deep sequencing. Further qRT-PCR assays confirmed 3 down-regulated miRNAs (miR-34c-5p, miR-375 and miR-449c-5p), 4 up-regulated miRNAs (miR-205-5p, miR-92a-3p, miR-193b-3p and miR-27a-5p). Additionally, the low level of miR-34c-5p (miR-34c) was significantly correlated with advanced TNM stage. GO and KEGG enrichment analyses showed that 914 target genes were involved in cell cycle, cytokine secretion and tumor immunology, and so on. IPA revealed that cancer was the top disease associated with those dysregulated miRNAs, and the genes regulated by miR-34c were in the center of miRNA-mRNA regulatory network, including TP53, CCND1, CDK6, MET and BCL2, and the PI3K/AKT/ mTOR signaling was regarded as a significant function pathway in this network.
CONCLUSION: Our study presents the current knowledge of miRNA regulatory network in NPC with combination of bioinformatics analysis and literature research. The hypothesis of miR-34c regulatory pathway may be beneficial in guiding further studies on the molecular mechanism of NPC tumorigenesis.

Zhang Z, Zhang G, Kong C, et al.
METTL13 is downregulated in bladder carcinoma and suppresses cell proliferation, migration and invasion.
Sci Rep. 2016; 6:19261 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
The incidence of bladder cancer has increased in the last few decades, thus novel markers for early diagnosis and more efficacious treatment are urgently needed. It found that METTTL13 protein is aberrant expression in variety of human cancers and METTL13 was involved in oncogenic pathways. However, the role of METTL13 has been unexplored in bladder cancer to date. Here, expression of METTL13 was lower in bladder cancer tissue samples and cancer cell lines than in normal bladder tissue and cell lines. METTL13 was downregulated in the late stages of the disease and was maintained at low level throughout the tumor progression process based on tumor node metastasis (TNM) staging. Further research suggested that METTL13 negatively regulates cell proliferation in bladder cancer and reinstates G1/S checkpoint via the coordinated downregulation of CDK6, CDK4 and CCND1, decreased phosphorylation of Rb and subsequent delayed cell cycle progression. Moreover, METTL13-dependent inhibition of bladder cancer cell migration and invasion is mediated by downregulation of FAK (Focal adhesion kinase) phosphorylation, AKT (v-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene) phosphorylation, β-catenin expression and MMP-9 expression. These integrated efforts have identified METTL13 as a tumor suppressor and might provide promising approaches for bladder cancer treatment and prevention.

Wang Z, Chen J, Zhang W, et al.
Axon guidance molecule semaphorin3A is a novel tumor suppressor in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(5):6048-62 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
Semaphorin3A (SEMA3A), an axon guidance molecule in the nervous system, plays an inhibitory role in oncogenesis. Here, we investigated the expression pattern and biological roles of SEMA3A in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) by gain-of-function assays using adenovirus transfection and recombinant human SEMA3A protein. In addition, we explored the therapeutic efficacy of SEMA3A against HNSCC in vivo. We found that lower expression of SEMA3A correlated with shorter overall survival and had independent prognostic importance in patients with HNSCC. Both genetic and recombinant SEMA3A protein inhibited cell proliferation and colony formation and induced apoptosis, accompanied by decreased cyclin E, cyclin D, CDK2, CDK4 and CDK6 and increased P21, P27, activated caspase-5 and caspase-7. Moreover, over-expression of SEMA3A suppressed migration, invasion and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition due in part to the inhibition of NF-κB and SNAI2 in HNSCC cell lines. Furthermore, intratumoral SEMA3A delivery significantly stagnated tumor growth in a xenograft model. Taken together, our results indicate that SEMA3A serves as a tumor suppressor during HNSCC tumorigenesis and a new target for the treatment of HNSCC.

Dodgshun AJ, Sexton-Oates A, Saffery R, Sullivan MJ
Biallelic FANCD1/BRCA2 mutations predisposing to glioblastoma multiforme with multiple oncogenic amplifications.
Cancer Genet. 2016 Jan-Feb; 209(1-2):53-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Fanconi anaemia (FA) caused by biallelic mutation in FANCD1/BRCA2 is rare but carries a high risk of early onset cancer. Medulloblastoma is well described in this cohort but reports of other brain tumours are uncommon. The molecular profile of tumours from FA patients is not well reported. A glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) from a 3-year-old patient with FA and confirmed biallelic BRCA2 mutations was submitted for methylation analysis. This revealed strong clustering with the K27 mutation subgroup and copy number analysis showed gains of chromosomes 1q, 4q, part of 7q, part of 8q and 17q with resultant amplifications of MDM4, CDK6, MET, MYC and PPM1D (WIP1). We also describe for the first time the germline mutation in BRCA2 c.8057T > C resulting in p.Leu2686Pro in our patient with confirmed FA. Biallelic BRCA2 mutations have predisposed to an aggressive and universally fatal subtype of childhood GBM in our patient. Copy number alterations and multiple oncogenic amplifications may be secondary to inherent chromosomal instability and this raises the question of what role BRCA2 may play in the development of GBM in children without FA.

Yang Y, Mei Q
miRNA signature identification of retinoblastoma and the correlations between differentially expressed miRNAs during retinoblastoma progression.
Mol Vis. 2015; 21:1307-17 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2017 Related Publications
PURPOSE: Retinoblastoma (RB) is a common pediatric cancer. The study aimed to uncover the mechanisms of RB progression and identify novel therapeutic biomarkers.
METHODS: The miRNA expression profile GSE7072, which includes three RB samples and three healthy retina samples, was used. After data normalization using the preprocessCore package, differentially expressed miRNAs (DE-miRs) were selected by the limma package. The targets of the DE-miRs were predicted based on two databases, followed by construction of the miRNA-target network. Pathway enrichment analysis was conducted for the targets of the DE-miRNAs using DAVID. The CTD database was used to predict RB-related genes, followed by clustering analysis using the pvclust package. The correlation network of DE-miRs was established. MiRNA expression was validated in another data set, GSE41321.
RESULTS: In total, 24 DE-miRs were identified whose targets were correlated with the cell cycle pathway. Among them, hsa-miR-373, hsa-miR-125b, and hsa-miR-181a were highlighted in the miRNA-target regulatory network; 14 DE-miRs, including hsa-miR-373, hsa-miR-125b, hsa-miR-18a, hsa-miR-25, hsa-miR-20a, and hsa-let-7 (a, b, c), were shown to distinguish RB from healthy tissue. In addition, hsa-miR-25, hsa-miR-18a, and hsa-miR-20a shared the common target BCL2L11; hsa-let-7b and hsa-miR-125b targeted the genes CDC25A, CDK6, and LIN28A. Expression of three miRNAs in GSE41321 was consistent with that in GSE7072.
CONCLUSIONS: Several critical miRNAs were identified in RB progression. Hsa-miR-373 might regulate RB invasion and metastasis, hsa-miR-181a might involve in the CDKN1B-mediated cell cycle pathway, and hsa-miR-125b and hsa-let-7b might serve as tumor suppressors by coregulating CDK6, CDC25A, and LIN28A. The miRNAs hsa-miR-25, hsa-miR-18a, and hsa-miR-20a might exert their function by coregulating BCL2L1.

Vilgelm AE, Johnson CA, Prasad N, et al.
Connecting the Dots: Therapy-Induced Senescence and a Tumor-Suppressive Immune Microenvironment.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2016; 108(6):djv406 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Tumor cell senescence is a common outcome of anticancer therapy. Here we investigated how therapy-induced senescence (TIS) affects tumor-infiltrating leukocytes (TILs) and the efficacy of immunotherapy in melanoma.
METHODS: Tumor senescence was induced by AURKA or CDK4/6 inhibitors (AURKAi, CDK4/6i). Transcriptomes of six mouse tumors with differential response to AURKAi were analyzed by RNA sequencing, and TILs were characterized by flow cytometry. Chemokine RNA and protein expression were determined by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Therapeutic response was queried in immunodeficient mice, in mice with CCL5-deficient tumors, and in mice cotreated with CD137 agonist to activate TILs. CCL5 expression in reference to TIS and markers of TILs was studied in human melanoma tumors using patient-derived xenografts (n = 3 patients, n = 3 mice each), in AURKAi clinical trial samples (n = 3 patients, before/after therapy), and in The Cancer Genome Atlas (n = 278). All statistical tests were two-sided.
RESULTS: AURKAi response was associated with induction of the immune transcriptome (P = 3.5 x 10-29) while resistance inversely correlated with TIL numbers (Spearman r = -0.87, P < .001). AURKAi and CDK4/6i promoted the recruitment of TILs by inducing CCL5 secretion in melanoma cells (P ≤ .005) in an NF-κB-dependent manner. Therapeutic response to AURKAi was impaired in immunodeficient compared with immunocompetent mice (0% vs 67% tumors regressed, P = .01) and in mice bearing CCL5-deficient vs control tumors (P = .61 vs P = .02); however, AURKAi response was greatly enhanced in mice also receiving T-cell-activating immunotherapy (P < .001). In human tumors, CCL5 expression was also induced by AURKAi (P ≤ .02) and CDK4/6i (P = .01) and was associated with increased immune marker expression (P = 1.40 x 10-93).
CONCLUSIONS: Senescent melanoma cells secret CCL5, which promotes recruitment of TILs. Combining TIS with immunotherapy that enhances tumor cell killing by TILs is a promising novel approach to improve melanoma outcomes.

Yousef BA, Guerram M, Hassan HM, et al.
Pristimerin demonstrates anticancer potential in colorectal cancer cells by inducing G1 phase arrest and apoptosis and suppressing various pro-survival signaling proteins.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 35(2):1091-100 [PubMed] Related Publications
Pristimerin is a naturally occurring triterpenoid that has a cytotoxic effect on several cancer cell lines. However, the cytotoxic effects of pristimerin as well as its molecular mechanisms of action against colorectal cancer have never been explored. In the present study, we investigated the anticancer potential of pristimerin, and examined the different signaling pathways affected by its action in three colon cancer cell lines namely HCT-116, COLO-205 and SW-620. Pristimerin was found to possess potent cytotoxic and proliferation inhibitory effects against these cell lines. Cell cycle analysis revealed G1 phase arrest, which was strongly associated with decreased expression of cyclin D1 and cyclin-dependent kinases (cdk4 and cdk6) with concomitant induction of p21. Pristimerin also induced apoptosis in a dose-dependent manner. Cell plasma membrane alterations studied by Annexin V/PI double staining, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm), measurements of caspase activities and the inhibitory effect of Z-VAD-FMK (a caspase inhibitor) confirmed the apoptotic effect of pristimerin. Moreover, western blot data showed that apoptotic induction was associated with activated caspase-3 and -8, PARP-1 cleavage and modulation of the expression levels of Bcl-2 family proteins. Additionally, pristimerin treatment downregulated the phosphorylated forms of EGFR and HER2 proteins, and subsequently caused a decrease in the phosphorylated forms of Erk1/2, Akt, mTOR and NF-κB proteins. Taken together, these results suggest that pristimerin may have potential as a new targeting therapeutic strategy for the treatment of colon cancer.

Kibel AS, Ahn J, Isikbay M, et al.
Genetic variants in cell cycle control pathway confer susceptibility to aggressive prostate carcinoma.
Prostate. 2016; 76(5):479-90 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Because a significant number of patients with prostate cancer (PCa) are diagnosed with disease unlikely to cause harm, genetic markers associated with clinically aggressive PCa have potential clinical utility. Since cell cycle checkpoint dysregulation is crucial for the development and progression of cancer, we tested the hypothesis that common germ-line variants within cell cycle genes were associated with aggressive PCa.
METHODS: Via a two-stage design, 364 common sequence variants in 88 genes were tested. The initial stage consisted of 258 aggressive PCa patients and 442 controls, and the second stage added 384 aggressive PCa Patients and 463 controls. European-American and African-American samples were analyzed separately. In the first stage, SNPs were typed by Illumina Goldengate assay while in the second stage SNPs were typed by Pyrosequencing assays. Genotype frequencies between cases and controls were compared using logistical regression analysis with additive, dominant and recessive models.
RESULTS: Eleven variants within 10 genes (CCNC, CCND3, CCNG1, CCNT2, CDK6, MDM2, SKP2, WEE1, YWHAB, YWHAH) in the European-American population and nine variants in 7 genes (CCNG1, CDK2, CDK5, MDM2, RB1, SMAD3, TERF2) in the African-American population were found to be associated with aggressive PCa using at least one model. Of particular interest, CCNC (rs3380812) was associated with risk in European-American cohorts from both institutions. CDK2 (rs1045435) and CDK5 (rs2069459) were associated with risk in the African-American cohorts from both institutions. Lastly, variants within MDM2 and CCNG1 were protective for aggressive PCa in both ethnic groups.
CONCLUSIONS: This study confirms that polymorphisms within cell cycle genes are associated with clinically aggressive PCa. Validation of these markers in additional populations is necessary, but these markers may help identify patients at risk for potentially lethal carcinoma.

Wang J, Ni J, Yi S, et al.
Protein inhibitor of activated STAT xα depresses cyclin D and cyclin D kinase, and contributes to the inhibition of osteosarcoma cell progression.
Mol Med Rep. 2016; 13(2):1645-52 [PubMed] Related Publications
Previous studies have shown that protein inhibitor of activated STAT (PIAs)xα is crucial in protein sumoylation and is associated with cancer cell progression. However, the mechanism underlying the inhibitory effect on cancer cells, which may assist in developing novel treatment strategies in cancer remains to be elucidated. In present study, the expression levels of PIAsxα from tissue samples of osteosarcoma and adjacent tissues from 25 patients were analyzed using reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction, western blot and immunohistochemical analyses. In addition, techniques using an overexpression vector and small interfering (si)RNAs were used to examine the effect of PIAsxα on osteosarcoma cells. Finally, using xenograft U2-OS osteosarcoma cells overexpressing PIAsxα, the effect of PIAsxα on osteosarcoma formation was determined. The results revealed low expression of PIAsxα in osteosarcoma tissues. In addition, following overexpression of PIAsxα, the apoptotic rates were significantly increased. The rate of G2/M arrest was at the highest level in the overexpression group, compared with other groups assessed. Furthermore, the expression levels of cyclin D1 and cyclin D3 were inhibited following PIAsxα increase, indicating the repressive effects of PIAsxα on cell cycle. Accordingly, cyclin D kinase (CDK) genes, including CDK4, CDK6 and CDK8, increased markedly following treatment with PIAsxα siRNAs. The expression levels of CDK4, CDK6 and CDK8 decreased significantly in the overexpression group, compared to the other groups. Furthermore, high expression levels of PIAsxα inhibited tumor formation in a nude mouse model. Taken together, these findings provide evidence for the effects of PIAsxα and its mechanism on osteosarcoma progression, which offers novel insight into sumoylation and the cell cycle in osteosarcoma.

Sherr CJ, Beach D, Shapiro GI
Targeting CDK4 and CDK6: From Discovery to Therapy.
Cancer Discov. 2016; 6(4):353-67 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
UNLABELLED: Biochemical and genetic characterization of D-type cyclins, their cyclin D-dependent kinases (CDK4 and CDK6), and the polypeptide CDK4/6 inhibitor p16(INK4)over two decades ago revealed how mammalian cells regulate entry into the DNA synthetic (S) phase of the cell-division cycle in a retinoblastoma protein-dependent manner. These investigations provided proof-of-principle that CDK4/6 inhibitors, particularly when combined with coinhibition of allied mitogen-dependent signal transduction pathways, might prove valuable in cancer therapy. FDA approval of the CDK4/6 inhibitor palbociclib used with the aromatase inhibitor letrozole for breast cancer treatment highlights long-sought success. The newest findings herald clinical trials targeting other cancers.
SIGNIFICANCE: Rapidly emerging data with selective inhibitors of CDK4/6 have validated these cell-cycle kinases as anticancer drug targets, corroborating longstanding preclinical predictions. This review addresses the discovery of these CDKs and their regulators, as well as translation of CDK4/6 biology to positive clinical outcomes and development of rational combinatorial therapies.

Gu C, Yang Y, Sompallae R, et al.
FOXM1 is a therapeutic target for high-risk multiple myeloma.
Leukemia. 2016; 30(4):873-82 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
The transcription factor forkhead box M1 (FOXM1) is a validated oncoprotein in solid cancers, but its role in malignant plasma cell tumors such as multiple myeloma (MM) is unknown. We analyzed publicly available MM data sets and found that overexpression of FOXM1 prognosticates inferior outcome in a subset (~15%) of newly diagnosed cases, particularly patients with high-risk disease based on global gene expression changes. Follow-up studies using human myeloma cell lines (HMCLs) as the principal experimental model system demonstrated that enforced expression of FOXM1 increased growth, survival and clonogenicity of myeloma cells, whereas knockdown of FOXM1 abolished these features. In agreement with that, constitutive upregulation of FOXM1 promoted HMCL xenografts in laboratory mice, whereas inducible knockdown of FOXM1 led to growth inhibition. Expression of cyclin-dependent kinase 6 (CDK6) and NIMA-related kinase 2 (NEK2) was coregulated with FOXM1 in both HMCLs and myeloma patient samples, suggesting interaction of these three genes in a genetic network that may lend itself to targeting with small-drug inhibitors for new approaches to myeloma therapy and prevention. These results establish FOXM1 as high-risk myeloma gene and provide support for the design and testing of FOXM1-targeted therapies specifically for the FOXM1(High) subset of myeloma.

Nemoto A, Saida S, Kato I, et al.
Specific Antileukemic Activity of PD0332991, a CDK4/6 Inhibitor, against Philadelphia Chromosome-Positive Lymphoid Leukemia.
Mol Cancer Ther. 2016; 15(1):94-105 [PubMed] Related Publications
S-phase progression of the cell cycle is accelerated in tumors through various genetic abnormalities, and, thus, pharmacologic inhibition of altered cell-cycle progression would be an effective strategy to control tumors. In the current study, we analyzed the antileukemic activity of three available small molecules targeting CDK4/CDK6 against lymphoid crisis of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML-LC) and Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph(+) ALL), and found that all three molecules showed specific activities against leukemic cell lines derived from CML-LC and Ph(+) ALL. In particular, PD0332991 exhibited extremely high antileukemic activity against CML-LC and Ph(+) ALL cell lines in the nanomolar range by the induction of G0-G1 arrest and partially cell death through dephosphorylation of pRb and downregulation of the genes that are involved in S-phase transition. As an underlying mechanism for favorable sensitivity to the small molecules targeting CDK4/CDK6, cell-cycle progression of Ph(+) lymphoid leukemia cells was regulated by transcriptional and posttranscriptional modulation of CDK4 as well as Cyclin D2 gene expression under the control of BCR-ABL probably through the PI3K pathway. Consistently, the gene expression level of Cyclin D2 in Ph(+) lymphoid leukemia cells was significantly higher than that in Ph(-) lymphoid leukemia cells. Of note, three Ph(+) ALL cell lines having the T315I mutation also showed sensitivity to PD0332991. In a xenograft model, PD0332991, but not imatinib, suppressed dissemination of Ph(+) ALL having the T315I mutation and prolonged survival, demonstrating that this reagent would be a new therapeutic modality for relapsed CML-LC and Ph(+) ALL patients after treatment with tyrosine kinase inhibitors.

Jagadish N, Parashar D, Gupta N, et al.
A-kinase anchor protein 4 (AKAP4) a promising therapeutic target of colorectal cancer.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2015; 34:142 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Colorectal cancer (CRC) ranks third among the estimated cancer cases and cancer related mortalities in the Western world. Early detection and efficient therapy of CRC remains a major health challenge. Therefore, there is a need to identify novel tumor markers for early diagnosis and treatment of CRC.
METHODS: A-kinase anchor protein 4 (AKAP4) gene and protein expression was monitored by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), reverse transcription (RT)-PCR and Western blotting in normal colon tissue lysate, normal colon epithelial cells and in colon cancer cell lines viz., Caco-2, COLO205, COLO320DM, HCT-15, HCT116, HT-29, SW480, and SW620. The effect of AKAP4 on cellular growth, migration and invasion abilities was studied using gene silencing approach. The role of AKAP4 in various pathways involved in cell cycle, apoptosis, senescence was investigated in in vitro and in human xenograft mouse model.
RESULTS: Our studies showed that AKAP4 gene and protein expression was expressed in all colon cancer cells while no expression was detectable in normal colon cells. Ablation of AKAP4 led to reduced cellular growth, migration, invasion and increased apoptosis and senescence of CRC cells in in vitro assays and tumor growth in human xenograft mouse. Human colon xenograft studies showed a significant decrease in the levels of cyclins B1, D and E and cyclin dependent kinases such as CDK1, CDK2, CDK4 and CDK6. Interestingly, an up-regulation in the levels of p16 and p21 was also observed. Besides, an increase in the levels of pro-apoptotic molecules AIF, APAF1, BAD, BID, BAK, BAX, PARP1, NOXA, PUMA and cyt-C and Caspase 3, 7, 8 and 9 was also found in cancer cells as well as in xenograft tissue sections. However, anti-apoptotic molecules BCL2, Bcl-xL, cIAP2, XIAP, Axin2 and Survivin were down regulated in these samples. Our data also revealed elevated expression of epithelial marker E-cadherin and down regulation of EMT markers N-cadherin, P-cadherin, SLUG, α-SMA, SNAIL, TWIST and Vimentin. Further ablation of AKAP4 resulted in the down regulation of invasion molecules matrix metalloproteinase MMP2, MMP3 and MMP9.
CONCLUSION: AKAP4 appears to be a novel CRC-associated antigen with a potential for developing as a new clinical therapeutic target.

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