Gene Summary

Gene:CLDN1; claudin 1
Aliases: CLD1, SEMP1, ILVASC
Summary:Tight junctions represent one mode of cell-to-cell adhesion in epithelial or endothelial cell sheets, forming continuous seals around cells and serving as a physical barrier to prevent solutes and water from passing freely through the paracellular space. These junctions are comprised of sets of continuous networking strands in the outwardly facing cytoplasmic leaflet, with complementary grooves in the inwardly facing extracytoplasmic leaflet. The protein encoded by this gene, a member of the claudin family, is an integral membrane protein and a component of tight junction strands. Loss of function mutations result in neonatal ichthyosis-sclerosing cholangitis syndrome. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Source:NCBIAccessed: 01 September, 2019


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 (1994-2019)
Graph generated 01 September 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 01 September, 2019 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: CLDN1 (cancer-related)

Yang Y, Liu L, Fang M, et al.
The chromatin remodeling protein BRM regulates the transcription of tight junction proteins: Implication in breast cancer metastasis.
Biochim Biophys Acta Gene Regul Mech. 2019; 1862(5):547-556 [PubMed] Related Publications
Claudins are a group of cell tight junction proteins that play versatile roles in cancer biology. Recent studies have correlated down-regulation of Claudins with augmented breast cancer malignancy and poor prognosis. The mechanism underlying repression of Claudin transcription in breast cancer cells is not well understood. Here we report that expression levels of Brahma (BRM) were down-regulated in triple negative breast cancer cells (MDA-231) compared to the less malignant MCF-7 cells and in high-grade human breast cancer specimens compared to low-grade ones. TGF-β treatment in MCF-7 cells repressed BRM transcription likely through targeting C/EBPβ. BRM over-expression suppressed whereas BRM knockdown promoted TGF-β induced migration and invasion of MCF-7 cells. BRM down-regulation was accompanied by the loss of a panel of Claudins in breast cancer cells. BRM directly bound to the promoter region of Claudin genes via interacting with Sp1 and activated transcription by modulating histone modifications. Together, our data have identified a novel epigenetic pathway that links Claudin transcription to breast cancer metastasis.

Zhao X, Sun Q, Dou C, et al.
BMP4 inhibits glioblastoma invasion by promoting E-cadherin and claudin expression.
Front Biosci (Landmark Ed). 2019; 24:1060-1070 [PubMed] Related Publications
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a brain tumor that deeply infiltrates adjacent tissues and causes significant mortality. Thus, understanding the mechanisms that derive the invasion of brain tissue by GBM might help the treatment of this cancer. To this end, we examined the impact of BMP4 on invasion of GBM. In this study, Human GBM samples, GBM cells and human orthotopic GBM-xenografted animal model, quantitative PCR, immunostaining, immunoblotting, Scratch wound and transwell assays were used to detect the effect and the mechanism of BMP4 in GBM cells. BMP4 expression was found to positively correlate with E-cadherin and claudin expression in human GBM samples. Elevation or suppression of BMP4 expression resulted in a respective increase or decrease in E-cadherin and claudin levels, both

Tu X, Hong D, Jiang Y, et al.
FH535 inhibits proliferation and migration of colorectal cancer cells by regulating CyclinA2 and Claudin1 gene expression.
Gene. 2019; 690:48-56 [PubMed] Related Publications
Wnt signaling pathway plays a major role in the progression of colorectal cancer (CRC). Small molecules which can cut off this signal transduction can be promising anti-cancer drugs for CRC therapy. Therefore, we aimed to investigate the mechanisms of FH535, an inhibitor of the Wnt signaling pathway, on inhibiting proliferation and migration of colorectal cancer cells DLD-1 and SW620. We found that FH535 could significantly suppress the growth of DLD-1 and SW620 cells in a concentration-dependent and time-dependent manner. The results of cell cycle tests showed that FH535 could significantly induce G2/M arrest in colorectal cancer cells. Transwell and Wound-healing assays revealed that FH535 notably inhibited cell migration. Moreover, we found that FH535 down-regulated β-catenin and CyclinA2 expressions while up-regulating Claudin-1 expression at both mRNA and protein levels, which may contribute to the FH535-induced inhibitory effect on proliferation and migration in human colorectal cancer cells. Our study revealed that FH535 inhibited proliferation and migration of colorectal cancer cells by regulating CyclinA2 and Claudin1 gene expression, which enriches regulatory network of FH535 and may contribute to being promising anti-cancer drugs for CRC therapy.

Xue R, Hua L, Xu W, et al.
Derivation and Validation of the Potential Core Genes in Pancreatic Cancer for Tumor-Stroma Crosstalk.
Biomed Res Int. 2018; 2018:4283673 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Background: Pancreatic cancer is a fatal malignancy with a poor prognosis. The interactions between tumor cells and stromal cells contribute to cancer progression. Pancreatic stellate cells (PSCs) play a key role in tumor-stroma crosstalk of pancreatic cancer. The in-depth exploration for tumor-stroma crosstalk is helpful to develop novel therapeutic strategies. Our aim was to identify the potential core genes and pathways in tumor-stroma crosstalk.
Methods: 3 microarray datasets were from Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO). Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were screened through bioinformatics analysis. Gene Ontology (GO) enrichment, Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) enrichment, and protein-protein interaction (PPI) network were used to obtain the biological roles of DEGs. The top 15 DEGs were explored by principal component analysis. We validated the top 15 DEGs expression in the tumor-stroma crosstalk model in which PSCs were treated with the mixture of Aspc-1 and Panc-1 supernatant.
Results: A total of 221 genes were filtered as DEGs for tumor-stroma crosstalk. The results of principal component analysis for the top 15 DEGs can distinguish three groups. According to the KEGG enrichment, there were 8, 7, and 7 DEGs enriched in cancer related pathway, PI3K-Akt signaling pathway, and microRNAs, respectively. In the tumor-stroma crosstalk model, significant differences can be validated in the AKAP12, CLDN1, CP, FKBP1A, LAMB3, LSM4, MTMR3, PRKARIA, YWHAZ, and JUND expressions.
Conclusions: These results identified the potential core genes and pathways in pancreatic cancer for tumor-stroma crosstalk, which could provide potential targets for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

Qiu J, Zhang W, Zang C, et al.
Identification of key genes and miRNAs markers of papillary thyroid cancer.
Biol Res. 2018; 51(1):45 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: In this study, crucial genes and microRNAs (miRNAs) associated with the progression, staging, and prognosis of papillary thyroid cancer (PTC) were identified.
METHODS: Four PTC datasets, including our own mRNA-sequencing (mRNA-seq) dataset and three public datasets downloaded from Gene Expression Omnibus and The Cancer Genome Atlas, were used to analyze differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and miRNAs (DEMs) between PTC tumor tissues and paired normal tissues (control). Gene ontology (GO) terms and pathways associated with these DEGs were identified, and protein-protein interactions (PPIs) were analyzed. Additionally, an miRNA-mRNA regulatory network was constructed and the functions of DEMs were explored. Finally, miRNAs/mRNAs associated with tumor staging and prognosis were identified. The expression levels of several key genes and miRNAs were validated by qRT-PCR.
RESULTS: Numerous DEGs and DEMs were identified between tumor and control groups in four datasets. The DEGs were significantly enriched in cell adhesion and cancer-related GO terms and pathways. In the constructed PPI network, ITGA2, FN1, ICAM1, TIMP1 and CDH2 were hub proteins. In the miRNA-mRNA negative regulatory networks, miR-204-5p regulated the largest number of target genes, such as TNFRSF12A. miR-146b, miR-204, miR-7-2, and FN1 were associated with tumor stage in PTC, and TNFRSF12A and CLDN1 were related to prognosis.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggested the important roles of ITGA2, FN1, ICAM1, TIMP1 and CDH2 in the progression of PTC. miR-204-5p, miR-7-2, and miR-146b are potential biomarkers for PTC staging and FN1, CLDN1, and TNFRSF12A may serve as markers of prognosis in PTC.

Akimoto T, Takasawa A, Takasawa K, et al.
Estrogen/GPR30 Signaling Contributes to the Malignant Potentials of ER-Negative Cervical Adenocarcinoma via Regulation of Claudin-1 Expression.
Neoplasia. 2018; 20(10):1083-1093 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cervical adenocarcinomas are believed to lose estrogen response on the basis of no expression of a nuclear estrogen receptor such as ERα in clinical pathology. Here, we demonstrated that cervical adenocarcinoma cells respond to a physiological concentration of estrogen to upregulate claudin-1, a cell surface molecule highly expressed in cervical adenocarcinomas. Knockout of claudin-1 induced apoptosis and significantly inhibited proliferation, migration, and invasion of cervical adenocarcinoma cells and tumorigenicity in vivo. Importantly, all of the cervical adenocarcinoma cell lines examined expressed a membrane-bound type estrogen receptor, G protein-coupled receptor 30 (GPR30/GPER1), but not ERα. Estrogen-dependent induction of claudin-1 expression was mediated by GPR30 via ERK and/or Akt signaling. In surgical specimens, there was a positive correlation between claudin-1 expression and GPR30 expression. Double high expression of claudin-1 and GPR30 predicts poor prognosis in patients with cervical adenocarcinomas. Mechanism-based targeting of estrogen/GPR30 signaling and claudin-1 may be effective for cervical adenocarcinoma therapy.

Liu X, Zuo J, Fang Y, et al.
Downregulation of hepatic lipase is associated with decreased CD133 expression and clone formation in HepG2 cells.
Int J Mol Med. 2018; 42(4):2137-2144 [PubMed] Related Publications
The drug resistance of cancer remains a major obstacle to successful chemotherapy. New strategies for improving chemotherapeutic efficacy are urgently required. Recent studies have indicated that LIPC plays a role in promoting the liver metastasis of colorectal cancer. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the effects of LIPC on theproliferation and clone formation of colorectal cancer-derived cells, and chemoresistance in hepatoblastoma-derived HepG2 cells. The activity and expression of LIPC were determined in the cell lines by RT-qPCR and western blot analysis. HepG2 cells in which LIPC was knocked down by LIPC short hairpin RNA (shRNA) and control cells [shRNA control (shCON)] were established and analyzed for cell proliferation and colony formation rates. FACS analysis was used to explore the association between LIPC and the tumor-derived cell biomarker, CD133, and the percentages of CD133-positive cells were assessed by FACS. Additionally, shLIPC- and shCON-transfected cells were treated with various concentrations of doxorubicin and 5-floxuridine (5-FU), and cell viability was determined by MTT assay. mRNA levels in the shLIPC- and shCON-transfected cells were compared by cDNA microarray and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway analysis. The results revealed that the HepG2 cells exhibited a relatively higher LIPC activity and expression levels compared to the other colon cancer cell lines. The downregulation of LIPC in the HepG2 cells was associated with the decreased expression of CD133, decreased cell proliferation and colony formation, as well as increased resistance to chemotherapy. KEGG analysis of the cDNA microarray data revealed increased levels in the cell adhesion molecule (CAM) pathway, including CLDN10 and CLDN1, indicating that CAMs may play a role in LIPC-mediated tumor progression. The present findings indicate a potential role of LIPC as a promising therapeutic target in cancer.

Katoh M
Multi‑layered prevention and treatment of chronic inflammation, organ fibrosis and cancer associated with canonical WNT/β‑catenin signaling activation (Review).
Int J Mol Med. 2018; 42(2):713-725 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
β‑catenin/CTNNB1 is an intracellular scaffold protein that interacts with adhesion molecules (E‑cadherin/CDH1, N‑cadherin/CDH2, VE‑cadherin/CDH5 and α‑catenins), transmembrane‑type mucins (MUC1/CD227 and MUC16/CA125), signaling regulators (APC, AXIN1, AXIN2 and NHERF1/EBP50) and epigenetic or transcriptional regulators (BCL9, BCL9L, CREBBP/CBP, EP300/p300, FOXM1, MED12, SMARCA4/BRG1 and TCF/LEF). Gain‑of‑function CTTNB1 mutations are detected in bladder cancer, colorectal cancer, gastric cancer, liver cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer and uterine cancer, whereas loss‑of‑function CTNNB1 mutations are also detected in human cancer. ABCB1, ALDH1A1, ASCL2, ATF3, AXIN2, BAMBI, CCND1, CD44, CLDN1, CTLA4, DKK1, EDN1, EOMES, FGF18, FGF20, FZD7, IL10, JAG1, LEF1, LGR5, MITF, MSX1, MYC, NEUROD1, NKD1, NODAL, NOTCH2, NOTUM, NRCAM, OPN, PAX3, PPARD, PTGS2, RNF43, SNAI1, SP5, TCF7, TERT, TNFRSF19, VEGFA and ZNRF3 are representative β‑catenin target genes. β‑catenin signaling is involved in myofibroblast activation and subsequent pulmonary fibrosis, in addition to other types of fibrosis. β‑catenin and NF‑κB signaling activation are involved in field cancerization in the stomach associated with Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection and in the liver associated with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and other etiologies. β‑catenin‑targeted therapeutics are functionally classified into β‑catenin inhibitors targeting upstream regulators (AZ1366, ETC‑159, G007‑LK, GNF6231, ipafricept, NVP‑TNKS656, rosmantuzumab, vantictumab, WNT‑C59, WNT974 and XAV939), β‑catenin inhibitors targeting protein‑protein interactions (CGP049090, CWP232228, E7386, ICG‑001, LF3 and PRI‑724), β‑catenin inhibitors targeting epigenetic regulators (PKF118‑310), β‑catenin inhibitors targeting mediator complexes (CCT251545 and cortistatin A) and β‑catenin inhibitors targeting transmembrane‑type transcriptional outputs, including CD44v6, FZD7 and LGR5. Eradicating H. pylori and HCV is the optimal approach for the first‑line prevention of gastric cancer and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), respectively. However, β‑catenin inhibitors may be applicable for the prevention of organ fibrosis, second‑line HCC prevention and treating β‑catenin‑driven cancer. The multi‑layered prevention and treatment strategy of β‑catenin‑related human diseases is necessary for the practice of personalized medicine and implementation of precision medicine.

Zheng Q, Wang C, Wang L, et al.
Interaction with SP1, but not binding to the E-box motifs, is responsible for BHLHE40/DEC1-induced transcriptional suppression of CLDN1 and cell invasion in MCF-7 cells.
Mol Carcinog. 2018; 57(9):1116-1129 [PubMed] Related Publications
Basic helix-loop-helix family member e40 (BHLHE40) is located in 3p26.1 and acts as a transcriptional repressor of the circadian rhythm by suppressing the expression of the clock genes and clock-controlled genes. Recent research indicated that BHLHE40 may be involved in regulating tumor cell progression. However the mechanism by which BHLHE40 regulates the invasion and metastasis of tumor cells is unclear. Our in vitro assays showed that BHLHE40 promoted tumor cell invasion while BHLHE40 silencing by siRNA suppressed tumor cell invasion of MCF-7 cells. BHLHE40 suppressed the mRNA and protein expression of CLDN1 CLDN4 and CDH1 and promoted the expression of SNAI1 and SNAI2. Reporter assays demonstrated that BHLHE40 suppressed CLDN1 transcription but not through direct binding to the E-box motifs in the CLDN1 promoter. Further studies demonstrated BHLHE40 suppressed CLDN1 transcription by preventing the interaction between SP1 and a specific motif within the promoter region of CLDN1. BHLHE40 could not further suppress CLDN1 transactivation after SP1 siRNA transfection that is, BHLHE40-induced suppression of CLDN1 relied on SP1. Furthermore our data indicated that SP1 was a major regulator of CLDN1 transcription by binding to a specific motif that was located at -233 to -61 bp upstream of the transcription start site. Immunoprecipitation and co-localization data revealed an interaction between BHLHE40 and SP1. By constructing deletion mutants we found that the BHLH and Orange regions are both essential for the BHLHE40-SP1 interaction. BHLHE40 probably acts as an inhibitory nuclear cofactor or perhaps recruits other inhibitory cofactors to inhibit the SP1-mediated CLDN1 transactivation. These results suggest that BHLHE40 facilitates cell invasion and may be used as a novel target for breast cancer prevention and treatment.

Upmanyu N, Bulldan A, Papadopoulos D, et al.
Impairment of the Gnα11-controlled expression of claudin-1 and MMP-9 and collective migration of human breast cancer MCF-7 cells by DHEAS.
J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2018; 182:50-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) constitutes the most abundant steroid in humans, in-depth investigations of its effects are rather scarce. We address here DHEAS effects on the estrogen receptor-positive metastatic human breast cancer cell line MCF-7. We focus on DHEAS-mediated signaling that might influence expression of claudin-1 and matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), both known to be critical factors for migration and invasiveness of various cancers, including breast cancer cells. Physiological concentrations of DHEAS trigger persistent phosphorylation of Erk1/2 in MCF-7 cells. Exposure of these cells for 24 h to 1 μM DHEAS also leads to a significant reduction of claudin-1 expression that cannot be prevented by high concentrations of the steroid sulfatase inhibitor STX64, indicating that desulfation and further conversion of DHEAS to some other steroid hormone is not required for this action. In addition, exposure of MCF-7 cells to the same concentration of DHEAS completely abolishes MMP-9 expression and considerably impairs cell migratory behavior. Abrogation of Gnα11 expression by siRNA prevents the stimulatory effect of DHEAS on Erk1/2 phosphorylation, consistent with a G-protein-coupled receptor being involved in the DHEAS-induced signaling. Nevertheless, Gnα11 also has direct effects that do not depend on DHEAS; thus, when Gnα11 expression is suppressed, expression of claudin-1 and MMP-9 as well as cell migration are significantly reduced. This is the first report demonstrating direct involvement of DHEAS and Gnα11 in the regulation of claudin-1 and MMP-9 expression and migration of MCF-7 cells.

Weiler J, Mohr M, Zänker KS, Dittmar T
Matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP9) is involved in the TNF-α-induced fusion of human M13SV1-Cre breast epithelial cells and human MDA-MB-435-pFDR1 cancer cells.
Cell Commun Signal. 2018; 16(1):14 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: In addition to physiological events such as fertilisation, placentation, osteoclastogenesis, or tissue regeneration/wound healing, cell fusion is involved in pathophysiological conditions such as cancer. Cell fusion, which applies to both the proteins and conditions that induce the merging of two or more cells, is not a fully understood process. Inflammation/pro-inflammatory cytokines might be a positive trigger for cell fusion. Using a Cre-LoxP-based cell fusion assay we demonstrated that the fusion between human M13SV1-Cre breast epithelial cells and human MDA-MB-435-pFDR1 cancer cells was induced by the pro-inflammatory cytokine tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α).
METHODS: The gene expression profile of the cells in the presence of TNF-α and under normoxic and hypoxic conditions was analysed by cDNA microarray analysis. cDNA microarray data were verified by qPCR, PCR, Western blot and zymography. Quantification of cell fusion events was determined by flow cytometry. Proteins of interest were either blocked or knocked-down using a specific inhibitor, siRNA or a blocking antibody.
RESULTS: The data showed an up-regulation of various genes, including claudin-1 (CLDN1), ICAM1, CCL2 and MMP9 in M13SV1-Cre and/or MDA-MB-435-pFDR1 cells. Inhibition of these proteins using a blocking ICAM1 antibody, CLDN1 siRNA or an MMP9 inhibitor showed that only the blockage of MMP9 was correlated with a decreased fusion rate of the cells. Likewise, the tetracycline-based antibiotic minocycline, which exhibits anti-inflammatory properties, was also effective in both inhibiting the TNF-α-induced MMP9 expression in M13SV1-Cre cells and blocking the TNF-α-induced fusion frequency of human M13SV1-Cre breast epithelial cells and human MDA-MB-435-pFDR1 cancer cells.
CONCLUSIONS: The matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP9) is most likely involved in the TNF-α-mediated fusion of human M13SV1-Cre breast epithelial cells and human MDA-MB-435-pFDR1 cancer cells. Likewise, our data indicate that the tetracycline-based antibiotic minocycline might exhibit anti-fusogenic properties because it inhibits a cell fusion-related mechanism.

Sekhar V, Pollicino T, Diaz G, et al.
Infection with hepatitis C virus depends on TACSTD2, a regulator of claudin-1 and occludin highly downregulated in hepatocellular carcinoma.
PLoS Pathog. 2018; 14(3):e1006916 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Entry of hepatitis C virus (HCV) into hepatocytes is a complex process that involves numerous cellular factors, including the scavenger receptor class B type 1 (SR-B1), the tetraspanin CD81, and the tight junction (TJ) proteins claudin-1 (CLDN1) and occludin (OCLN). Despite expression of all known HCV-entry factors, in vitro models based on hepatoma cell lines do not fully reproduce the in vivo susceptibility of liver cells to primary HCV isolates, implying the existence of additional host factors which are critical for HCV entry and/or replication. Likewise, HCV replication is severely impaired within hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) tissue in vivo, but the mechanisms responsible for this restriction are presently unknown. Here, we identify tumor-associated calcium signal transducer 2 (TACSTD2), one of the most downregulated genes in primary HCC tissue, as a host factor that interacts with CLDN1 and OCLN and regulates their cellular localization. TACSTD2 gene silencing disrupts the typical linear distribution of CLDN1 and OCLN along the cellular membrane in both hepatoma cells and primary human hepatocytes, recapitulating the pattern observed in vivo in primary HCC tissue. Mechanistic studies suggest that TACSTD2 is involved in the phosphorylation of CLDN1 and OCLN, which is required for their proper cellular localization. Silencing of TACSTD2 dramatically inhibits HCV infection with a pan-genotype effect that occurs at the level of viral entry. Our study identifies TACSTD2 as a novel regulator of two major HCV-entry factors, CLDN1 and OCLN, which is strongly downregulated in malignant hepatocytes. These results provide new insights into the complex process of HCV entry into hepatocytes and may assist in the development of more efficient cellular systems for HCV propagation in vitro.

Akizuki R, Maruhashi R, Eguchi H, et al.
Decrease in paracellular permeability and chemosensitivity to doxorubicin by claudin-1 in spheroid culture models of human lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells.
Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Cell Res. 2018; 1865(5):769-780 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chemotherapy resistance is a major problem in the treatment of cancer, but the underlying mechanisms are not fully understood. We found that the expression levels of claudin-1 (CLDN1) and 3, tight junctional proteins, are upregulated in cisplatin (CDDP)-resistant human lung adenocarcinoma A549 (A549R) cells. A549R cells showed cross-resistance to doxorubicin (DXR). Here, the expression mechanism and function of CLDN1 and 3 were examined. CLDN1 and 3 were mainly localized at tight junctions concomitant with zonula occludens (ZO)-1, a scaffolding protein, in A549 and A549R cells. The phosphorylation levels of Src, MEK, ERK, c-Fos, and Akt in A549R cells were higher than those in A549 cells. The expression levels of CLDN1 and 3 were decreased by LY-294002, a phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) inhibitor, and BAY 11-7082, an NF-κB inhibitor. The overexpression of CLDN1 and 3 decreased the paracellular permeability of DXR in A549 cells. Hypoxia levels in A549R and CLDN1-overexpressing cells (CLDN1/A549) were greater than those in A549, mock/A549, and CLDN3/A549 cells in a spheroid culture model. In contrast, accumulation in the region inside the spheroids and the toxicity of DXR in A549R and CLDN1/A549 cells were lower than those in other cells. Furthermore, the accumulation and toxicity of DXR were rescued by CLDN1 siRNA in A549R cells. We suggest that CLDN1 is upregulated by CDDP resistance through activation of a PI3K/Akt/NF-κB pathway, resulting in the inhibition of penetration of anticancer drugs into the inner area of spheroids.

Ouban A
Claudin-1 role in colon cancer: An update and a review.
Histol Histopathol. 2018; 33(10):1013-1019 [PubMed] Related Publications
Tight junction proteins are essential for sealing the cellular sheets and controlling para-cellular ion flux. Our understanding of the role that tight junction proteins, particularly claudins, play in cellular functions and pathologic conditions is continuously expanding. Particularly, the role of claudin-1 in oncogenesis in multiple locations in the human body is coming to light. This review will shed light on the role of claudin-1 in colon cancer. It will address the mechanisms through which claudin-1 becomes dysregulated in colon cancer. This will provide a platform to address results of claudin-1 expression in the third most common malignant tumour worldwide. Furthermore, it will provide updates about possible use of this biomarker in the surveillance of difficult colon maladies, such as inflammatory bowel disease. The use of claudin-1 as a biomarker of diagnostic and prognostic values will provide Medicine with much needed ammunition in the fight against cancer and will bring about, with added refinements, a new chapter in the era of personalized medicine to tackle this disease and match its destructive course with equally powerful and specifically targeted therapies.

Shi YX, Wang Y, Li X, et al.
Genome-wide DNA methylation profiling reveals novel epigenetic signatures in squamous cell lung cancer.
BMC Genomics. 2017; 18(1):901 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Epigenetic alterations are strongly associated with the development of cancer. The aim of this study was to identify epigenetic pattern in squamous cell lung cancer (LUSC) on a genome-wide scale.
RESULTS: Here we performed DNA methylation profiling on 24 LUSC and paired non-tumor lung (NTL) tissues by Illumina Human Methylation 450 K BeadArrays, and identified 5214 differentially methylated probes. By integrating DNA methylation and mRNA expression data, 449 aberrantly methylated genes accompanied with altered expression were identified. Ingenuity Pathway analysis highlighted these genes which were closely related to the carcinogenesis of LUSC, such as ERK family, NFKB signaling pathway, Hedgehog signaling pathway, providing new clues for understanding the molecular mechanisms of LUSC pathogenesis. To verify the results of high-throughput screening, we used 56 paired independent tissues for clinical validation by pyrosequencing. Subsequently, another 343 tumor tissues from the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) database were utilized for further validation. Then, we identified a panel of DNA methylation biomarkers (CLDN1, TP63, TBX5, TCF21, ADHFE1 and HNF1B) in LUSC. Furthermore, we performed receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analysis to assess the performance of biomarkers individually, suggesting that they could be suitable as potential diagnostic biomarkers for LUSC. Moreover, hierarchical clustering analysis of the DNA methylation data identified two tumor subgroups, one of which showed increased DNA methylation.
CONCLUSIONS: Collectively, these results suggest that DNA methylation plays critical roles in lung tumorigenesis and may potentially be proposed as a diagnostic biomarker.
TRIAL REGISTRATION: ChiCTR-RCC-12002830 Date of registration: 2012-12-17.

Afaloniati H, Karagiannis GS, Hardas A, et al.
Inflammation-driven colon neoplasmatogenesis in uPA-deficient mice is associated with an increased expression of Runx transcriptional regulators.
Exp Cell Res. 2017; 361(2):257-264 [PubMed] Related Publications
Deregulation of the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) pathway has been documented in colorectal cancer (CRC). Previously, we investigated possible associations between urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA) deficiency and expression of extracellular constituents of BMP signaling in a newly developed mouse model of inflammation-driven intestinal neoplasmatogenesis, in which chronic colitis and CRC are induced using dextran sodium sulfate (DSS). In this report, we explored the contribution of intracellular components of Smad-mediated BMP signal transduction using the same model. Interestingly, upon DSS treatment, we noticed an overexpression of Runx1/2/3 transcription factors in both wild-type and uPA-deficient mice. Moreover, Runx1 and Runx2 expression levels exhibited an even higher increase in DSS-treated/uPA-deficient mice as compared to DSS-treated/wild-type animals. In all experimental conditions, in situ investigation of Runx-expressing cell types, revealed detection of all three Runx in the immune cells, yet in the DSS-treated/uPA-deficient mice Runx1 and Runx2 were also identified in the preneoplastic epithelium of advanced high-grade dysplasia and carcinoma in-situ colonic lesions. Finally, the uPA-deficient pro-tumorigenic colitic microenvironment exhibited increased levels of the Runx-induced target genes Snai2, Bim and Claudin1, known to have a role in tumor development and progression. These findings suggest that the absence of uPA correlates with increased levels of Runx transcriptional regulators in a way that promotes inflammation-associated carcinogenesis.

Cherradi S, Ayrolles-Torro A, Vezzo-Vié N, et al.
Antibody targeting of claudin-1 as a potential colorectal cancer therapy.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2017; 36(1):89 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) is one of the major causes of cancer-related death. Despite the substantial progress in mCRC management, it remains important to identify new therapeutic options and biological markers for personalized medicine. Here, we investigated the expression of claudin-1 (CLDN1), a major tight junction transmembrane protein, in the different colorectal cancer (CRC) molecular subtypes and then assessed the anti-tumor effect of a new anti-CLDN1 monoclonal antibody (mAb).
METHODS: Gene expression profiling and immunochemistry analysis of normal and tumor tissue samples from patients with stage IV CRC were used to determine CLDN1 gene expression. Then, the 6F6 mAb against CLDN1 extracellular part was generated. Its effect on CRC cell cycle, proliferation, survival and migration was assessed in vitro, using a 3D cell culture system, flow cytometry, clonogenic and migration assays. In vivo, 6 F6 mAb efficacy was evaluated in nude mice after subcutaneous xenografts or intrasplenic injection of CRC cells.
RESULTS: Compared with normal mucosa where it was almost exclusively cytoplasmic, in CRC samples CLDN1 was overexpressed (p < 0.001) and mainly localized at the membrane. Moreover, it was differentially expressed in the various CRC molecular subtypes. The strongest expressions were found in the consensus molecular subtype CMS2 (p < 0.001), the transit-ampliflying (p < 0.001) and the C5 subtypes (p < 0.001). Lower CLDN1 expression predicted a better outcome in the molecular subtypes C3 and C5 (p = 0.012 and p = 0.004, respectively). CLDN1 targeting with the 6 F6 mAb led to reduction of survival, growth and migration of CLDN1-positive cells. In preclinical mouse models, the 6F6 mAb decreased tumor growth and liver metastasis formation.
CONCLUSION: Our data indicate that CLDN1 targeting with an anti-CLDN1 mAb results in decreased growth and survival of CRC cells. This suggests that CLDN1 could be a new potential therapeutic target.

Mahati S, Bolati D, Yang Y, et al.
TMPRSS4 promotes cancer stem cell traits by regulating CLDN1 in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2017; 490(3):906-912 [PubMed] Related Publications
Encouraging advances in the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma(HCC) have been achieved; however, a considerable part of patients still relapse or metastasize after therapy, and the underlying mechanisms have not been clarified yet. Here, we found that CLDN1 was markedly up-regulated in HCC tissues, and correlated with poor prognosis. Overexpression of CLDN1 dramatically promoted the capability of tumorsphere formation and cancer stem cell (CSC) traits. Furthermore, we found that TMPRSS4 was up-regulated in HCC tissues and there was a positive correlation between TMPRSS4 and CLDN1. In addition, the expression of CLDN1 was regulated by TMPRSS4. Moreover, TMPRSS4 mediated CSC properties and up-regulated CLDN1 by activating ERK1/2 signaling pathway. Taken together, our results revealed that CLDN1 contributed to CSC features of HCC, which was altered by TMPRSS4 expression via ERK1/2 signaling pathway, providing promising targets for novel specific therapies.

Zhao Z, Li J, Jiang Y, et al.
CLDN1 Increases Drug Resistance of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer by Activating Autophagy via Up-Regulation of ULK1 Phosphorylation.
Med Sci Monit. 2017; 23:2906-2916 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND The aim of this study was to investigate the expression of CLDN1 in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and its mechanism of action in cisplatin resistance. MATERIAL AND METHODS A total of 55 patients with NSCLC admitted to our hospital between October 2013 and October 2015 were included. NSCLC tissues and tumor-adjacent tissues (≥5 cm from tumor edge) were collected. Among the 55 patients, 37 had adenocarcinoma and 18 had squamous cell carcinoma. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to determine mRNA expression, and protein expression was examined using Western blotting. CCK-8 assay was used to determine cell proliferation and Transwell assay was used to detect migration and invasion of the cells. Confocal microscopy was used to observe autophagosomes. RESULTS Increased CLDN1 expression promoted the development and metastasis of NSCLC. CLDN1 expression in A549/CDDP cells was up-regulated at both transcriptional and translational levels. Reduced CLDN1 expression decreased the drug resistance, proliferation, migration, and invasion abilities of A549/CDDP cells. Decreased CLDN1 expression promoted the apoptosis of A549/CDDP cells. CLDN1 enhanced CDDP drug resistance of A549 cells by activating autophagy. CLDN1 promoted the autophagy of A549 cells by up-regulating the phosphorylation level of ULK1. CONCLUSIONS The present study demonstrates that expression of CLDN1 in NSCLC is up-regulated and it is correlated with clinicopathological features. CLDN1 activates autophagy through up-regulation of ULK1 phosphorylation and promotes drug resistance of NSCLC cells to CDDP.

Wang L, Jia Y, Jiang Z, et al.
FSCN1 is upregulated by SNAI2 and promotes epithelial to mesenchymal transition in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
Cell Biol Int. 2017; 41(8):833-841 [PubMed] Related Publications
In this study, we investigated whether there is any association between the expression of FSCN1 and SNAI2 and the possible underlying mechanisms in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSC). In addition, we also investigated whether FSCN1 modulates epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in HNSC cells. Microarray data of dysregulated genes in HNSC were searched in GEO datasets. The association between FSCN1 expression and the 5-year/10-year overall survival (OS), as well as the correlation between the expression of FSCN1 and SOX2, MYBL2, SNAI2, STAT1, and SOX4, was analyzed based on data in TCGA HNSC cohort (TCGA-HNSC). The binding site of SNAI2 in FSCN1 promoter was verified using luciferase reporter assay. SCC9 and SCC15 cells were transfected with pCMV-SNAI2 or pCMV-FSCN1 expression vector or the empty control. Alteration of E-cadherin, Claudin 1, Vimentin, and N-cadherin was then quantified. Our results showed that FSCN1 is significantly upregulated in HNSC tissues compared with the normal control tissues. High FSCN1 expression is associated with worse 5-year and 10-year OS among the HNSC patients. Bioinformatic prediction showed a highly possible SNAI2 binding site in FSCN1 promoter and following luciferase reporter assay verified this site. SNAI2 overexpression significantly increased FSCN1 expression at both mRNA and protein level. FSCN1 overexpression reduced the expression of E-cadherin and Claudin 1, but increased the expression of Vimentin and N-cadherin in SCC9 and SCC-15 cells. Therefore, we infer that FSCN1 is a downstream effector of SNAI2 in promoting EMT in HNSC cells.

Basu M, Sengupta I, Khan MW, et al.
Dual histone reader ZMYND8 inhibits cancer cell invasion by positively regulating epithelial genes.
Biochem J. 2017; 474(11):1919-1934 [PubMed] Related Publications
Enhanced migratory potential and invasiveness of cancer cells contribute crucially to cancer progression. These phenotypes are achieved by precise alteration of invasion-associated genes through local epigenetic modifications which are recognized by a class of proteins termed a chromatin reader. ZMYND8 [zinc finger MYND (myeloid, Nervy and DEAF-1)-type containing 8], a key component of the transcription regulatory network, has recently been shown to be a novel reader of H3.1K36Me2/H4K16Ac marks. Through differential gene expression analysis upon silencing this chromatin reader, we identified a subset of genes involved in cell proliferation and invasion/migration regulated by ZMYND8. Detailed analysis uncovered its antiproliferative activity through BrdU incorporation, alteration in the expression of proliferation markers, and cell cycle regulating genes and cell viability assays. In addition, performing wound healing and invasion/migration assays, its anti-invasive nature is evident. Interestingly, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), a key mechanism of cellular invasion, is regulated by ZMYND8 where we identified its selective enrichment on promoters of

Hahn-Strömberg V, Askari S, Ahmad A, et al.
Expression of claudin 1, claudin 4, and claudin 7 in colorectal cancer and its relation with CLDN DNA methylation patterns.
Tumour Biol. 2017; 39(4):1010428317697569 [PubMed] Related Publications
Altered claudin expression has been described in colon, prostatic, ovarian, and breast carcinoma. However, the role of epigenetic modifications in these genes and their role in colorectal cancer is unknown. We aimed our study to investigate whether claudin protein expression and methylation of CLDN can influence the tumorigenesis of colorectal cancer. A total of 31 patients diagnosed with colorectal carcinoma was used in this study. Immunohistochemical staining was used to study protein expression in both tumor and the adjacent nonneoplastic mucosa of claudin 1, 4, and 7. To detect the DNA methylation pattern of CLDN1, 4, and 7, genomic DNA was extracted from both the tumor and the adjacent nonneoplastic mucosa. Methylation analysis was carried out using bisulfite pyrosequencing. Cell membrane staining intensity of all claudins was found significantly lower in colorectal cancer tissues when compared to paired normal mucosa (p ≤ 0.001). For claudin 4, the percentage of cells staining positively was also significantly reduced (p = 0.04). In normal mucosa, cytoplasm showed no staining for claudins in any patient, whereas in paired colorectal cancer tissues, significant cytoplasmic staining appeared both for claudin 1 (p = 0.04) and claudin 4 (p = 0.01). Tumor samples were significantly hypomethylated in CLDN1 (p < 0.05). In conclusion, our results show that CLDN1 is significantly hypomethylated in tumor samples and that the membrane staining intensity for claudin 1, 4, and 7 is significantly lower in colorectal cancer tissues than in adjacent nonneoplastic tissue. Colorectal cancer cells showed dystopic cytoplasmic location of claudins.

Mahati S, Xiao L, Yang Y, et al.
miR-29a suppresses growth and migration of hepatocellular carcinoma by regulating CLDN1.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2017; 486(3):732-737 [PubMed] Related Publications
CLDN1 (claudin1) is essential for intercellular junctions and has been reported to be involving in cell migration and metastasis, making it as an oncogene in various cancer types. However, the biological function roles and regulatory mechanisms of CLDN1 in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) are still not clarified. In this study, we found down-regulation of miR-29a and up-regulation of CLDN1 in HCC tissues and cell lines. Further found an inverse relation between the expressions of miR-29a and CLDN1 in HCC. Dual-luciferase reporter assay indicated that miR-29a regulated the expression of CLDN1 by binding to its 3' untranslated region (3'UTR). Knockdown of CLDN1 led to decrease in tumor cell growth and migration capacities in vitro and in vivo. While overexpression of miR-29a suppressed tumor growth and migration, these effects could be reversed by re-expressing CLDN1. Taken together, out data suggested that miR-29a may regulate tumor growth and migration by targeting CLDN1, providing promising therapeutic targets for HCC.

Kitaichi T, Yasui K, Gen Y, et al.
Loss of PAR-3 protein expression is associated with invasion, lymph node metastasis, and poor survival in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
Hum Pathol. 2017; 62:134-140 [PubMed] Related Publications
Disrupted cell polarity is a feature of epithelial cancers. The partitioning defective 3 (PAR-3) protein, a key component of the PAR complex that regulates the polarization of cells, is involved in tight junction formation at epithelial cell-cell contacts. Our previous study detected a homozygous deletion of the PAR-3 gene in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cell lines and frequent copy number loss of the PAR-3 gene in primary ESCC. Here, we aimed to investigate the clinicopathological relevance of altered expression of the PAR-3 protein in primary ESCC. We immunohistochemically analyzed expression of the PAR-3 protein, as well as that of other tight junction proteins, ZO-1 and claudin-1, in 74 primary ESCCs. While the PAR-3 protein was expressed in the cytoplasm of basal cells, it was localized on the plasma membrane of suprabasal cells of normal squamous epithelium of the esophagus. Of the 74 ESCC tumors, 20 (27%), 11 (15%), and 13 (18%) were negative for PAR-3, ZO-1, and claudin-1 proteins, respectively. Negative PAR-3 protein expression, but not negative ZO-1 or claudin-1 expression, was significantly associated with deeper tumor invasion (P<.01), positive lymph node metastasis (P=.03), and advanced tumor stage (P=.01). Patients with PAR-3-negative tumors showed marginally significantly shorter overall survival after surgery than those with PAR-3-positive tumors (P=.053). In conclusion, these results suggest that PAR-3 protein expression is frequently lost in primary ESCC and that loss of the PAR-3 protein is associated with aggressive clinicopathological features of ESCC.

Lu J, Xu Y, Wei X, et al.
Emodin Inhibits the Epithelial to Mesenchymal Transition of Epithelial Ovarian Cancer Cells via ILK/GSK-3
Biomed Res Int. 2016; 2016:6253280 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is the most lethal gynecologic malignancy. Despite the anticancer capabilities of emodin observed in many cancers, including EOC, the underlying molecular mechanism remains to be elucidated. A crucial link has been discovered between the acquisition of metastatic traits and the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). The present study aimed to determine whether emodin could inhibit the EMT of EOC cells and explore the underlying mechanism. The CCK-8 assay and transwell assay showed that emodin effectively repressed the abilities of proliferation, invasion, and migration in A2780 and SK-OV-3 cells. The Western blot showed that emodin upregulated epithelial markers (E-cadherin and Claudin) while it downregulated mesenchymal markers (N-cadherin and Vimentin) and transcription factor (Slug) in a dose-dependent fashion. After transfection of siRNA-Slug, both Slug and N-cadherin were downregulated in EOC cells while E-cadherin was upregulated, which was intensified by emodin. Besides, emodin decreased the expression of ILK, p-GSK-3

Liu H, Jiang F, Jia X, et al.
Cycling hypoxia affects cell invasion and proliferation through direct regulation of claudin1 / claudin7 expression, and indirect regulation of P18 through claudin7.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(6):10298-10311 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Claudins (CLDNs), the major integral membrane proteins at tight junction, play critical roles in apical cell-to-cell adhesion, maintenance of epithelial polarity, and formation of impermeable barriers between epithelial cells.We investigated in this study the expression of CLDNs- Claudin1 (CLDN1) and Claudin7 (CLDN7), and their relation to tumor progression in nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC). CLDN7, rather than CLDN1, showed higher expression in both undifferentiated tumor tissue and the poorly differentiated CNE2 cells, compared with differentiated tissue and the highly differentiated CNE1 cells. Furthermore, knockdown of CLDN7 dramatically inhibited the metastasis and invasion of CNE2 cells suggesting that CLDN7 could act as a biomarker for NPC metastasis.Cycling hypoxia could induce significant changes in CLDN1 and CLDN7 expression in NPC cells. Genetics analysis demonstrated that CLDN1/CLDN7 were not only regulated directly by HIF1a but also affected each other through a feedback mechanism. CLDN7 acted as a bridge to promote HIF1a-induced P18 expression and cell differentiation. Taken together, our results provide evidence that adjusting the oxygenation time and cycles in NPC might be an effective method to prevent / delay the metastasis of poorly differentiated NPC cells.

Dias K, Dvorkin-Gheva A, Hallett RM, et al.
Claudin-Low Breast Cancer; Clinical & Pathological Characteristics.
PLoS One. 2017; 12(1):e0168669 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Claudin-low breast cancer is a molecular type of breast cancer originally identified by gene expression profiling and reportedly associated with poor survival. Claudin-low tumors have been recognised to preferentially display a triple-negative phenotype, however only a minority of triple-negative breast cancers are claudin-low. We sought to identify an immunohistochemical profile for claudin-low tumors that could facilitate their identification in formalin fixed paraffin embedded tumor material. First, an in silico collection of ~1600 human breast cancer expression profiles was assembled and all claudin-low tumors identified. Second, genes differentially expressed between claudin-low tumors and all other molecular subtypes of breast cancer were identified. Third, a number of these top differentially expressed genes were tested using immunohistochemistry for expression in a diverse panel of breast cancer cell lines to determine their specificity for claudin-low tumors. Finally, the immunohistochemical panel found to be most characteristic of claudin-low tumors was examined in a cohort of 942 formalin fixed paraffin embedded human breast cancers with >10 years clinical follow-up to evaluate the clinico-pathologic and survival characteristics of this tumor subtype. Using this approach we determined that claudin-low breast cancer is typically negative for ER, PR, HER2, claudin 3, claudin 4, claudin 7 and E-cadherin. Claudin-low tumors identified with this immunohistochemical panel, were associated with young age of onset, higher tumor grade, larger tumor size, extensive lymphocytic infiltrate and a circumscribed tumor margin. Patients with claudin-low tumors had a worse overall survival when compared to patients with luminal A type breast cancer. Interestingly, claudin-low tumors were associated with a low local recurrence rate following breast conserving therapy. In conclusion, a limited panel of antibodies can facilitate the identification of claudin-low tumors. Furthermore, claudin-low tumors identified in this manner display similar clinical, pathologic and survival characteristics to claudin-low tumors identified from fresh frozen tumor material using gene expression profiling.

Zhang WN, Li W, Wang XL, et al.
CLDN1 expression in cervical cancer cells is related to tumor invasion and metastasis.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(52):87449-87461 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Even though infection with human papillomaviruses (HPV) is very important, it is not the sole cause of cervical cancer. Because it is known that genetic variations that result from HPV infection are probably the most important causes of cervical cancer, we used human whole genome array comparative genomic hybridization to detect the copy number variations of genes in cervical squamous cell carcinoma. The results of the array were validated by PCR, FISH and immunohistochemistry. We find that the copy number and protein expression of claudin-1 (CLDN1) increase with the progression of cervical cancer. The strong positive staining of CLDN1 in the cervical lymph node metastasis group received a significantly higher score than the staining in the group with no lymph node metastasis of cervical cancer tissues. The overexpression of CLDN1 in SiHa cells can increase anti-apoptosis ability and promote invasive ability of these cells accompanied by a decrease in expression of the epithelial marker E-cadherin as well as an increase in the expression of the mesenchymal marker vimentin. CLDN1 induces the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) through its interaction with SNAI1. Furthermore, we demonstrate that CLDN1 overexpression has significant effects on the growth and metastasis of xenografted tumors in athymic mice. These data suggest that CLDN1 promotes invasion and metastasis in cervical cancer cells via the expression of EMT/invasion-related genes. Therefore, CLDN1 could be a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of cervical cancer.

Guo JY, Hsu HS, Tyan SW, et al.
Serglycin in tumor microenvironment promotes non-small cell lung cancer aggressiveness in a CD44-dependent manner.
Oncogene. 2017; 36(17):2457-2471 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Tumor microenvironment (TME) plays an active role in promoting tumor progression. To further understand the communication between TME and tumor cells, this study aimed at investigating the involvement of CD44, a type I cell surface receptor, in the crosstalk between tumor cells and TME. We have previously shown that chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan serglycin (SRGN), a CD44-interacting factor, was preferentially secreted by cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) for promoting tumor growth in breast cancer patients. In this study, we show that SRGN is overexpressed in primary non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLCs), by both carcinoma and stromal cells. Using gain-of-function and loss-of-function approaches, we show that SRGN promotes NSCLC cell migration and invasion as well as colonization in the lung and liver in a CD44-dependent manner. SRGN induces lung cancer cell stemness, as demonstrated by its ability to enhance NSCLC cell sphere formation via Nanog induction, accompanied with increased chemoresistance and anoikis-resistance. SRGN promotes epithelial-mesenchymal transition by enhancing vimentin expression via CD44/NF-κB/claudin-1 (CLDN1) axis. In support, CLDN1 and SRGN expression are tightly linked together in primary NSCLC. Most importantly, increased expression of SRGN and/or CLDN1 predicts poor prognosis in primary lung adenocarcinomas. In summary, we demonstrate that SRGN secreted by tumor cells and stromal components in the TME promotes malignant phenotypes through interacting with tumor cell receptor CD44, suggesting that a combined therapy targeting both CD44 and its ligands in the TME may be an attractive approach for cancer therapy.

Mitra S, Federico L, Zhao W, et al.
Rab25 acts as an oncogene in luminal B breast cancer and is causally associated with Snail driven EMT.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(26):40252-40265 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The Rab GTPases regulate vesicular trafficking machinery that transports and delivers a diverse pool of cargo, including growth factor receptors, integrins, nutrient receptors and junction proteins to specific intracellular sites. The trafficking machinery is indeed a major posttranslational modifier and is critical for cellular homeostasis. Deregulation of this stringently controlled system leads to a wide spectrum of disorders including cancer. Herein we demonstrate that Rab25, a key GTPase, mostly decorating the apical recycling endosome, is a dichotomous variable in breast cancer cell lines with higher mRNA and protein expression in Estrogen Receptor positive (ER+ve) lines. Rab25 and its effector, Rab Coupling Protein (RCP) are frequently coamplified and coordinately elevated in ER+ve breast cancers. In contrast, Rab25 levels are decreased in basal-like and almost completely lost in claudin-low tumors. This dichotomy exists despite the presence of the 1q amplicon that hosts Rab25 across breast cancer subtypes and is likely due to differential methylation of the Rab25 promoter. Functionally, elevated levels of Rab25 drive major hallmarks of cancer including indefinite growth and metastasis but in case of luminal B breast cancer only. Importantly, in such ER+ve tumors, coexpression of Rab25 and its effector, RCP is significantly associated with a markedly worsened clinical outcome. Importantly, in claudin-low cell lines, exogenous Rab25 markedly inhibits cell migration. Similarly, during Snail-induced epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) exogenous Rab25 potently reverses Snail-driven invasion. Overall, this study substantiates a striking context dependent role of Rab25 in breast cancer where Rab25 is amplified and enhances aggressiveness in luminal B cancers while in claudin-low tumors, Rab25 is lost indicating possible anti-tumor functions.

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