Gene Summary

Gene:FABP5; fatty acid binding protein 5
Summary:This gene encodes the fatty acid binding protein found in epidermal cells, and was first identified as being upregulated in psoriasis tissue. Fatty acid binding proteins are a family of small, highly conserved, cytoplasmic proteins that bind long-chain fatty acids and other hydrophobic ligands. FABPs may play roles in fatty acid uptake, transport, and metabolism. Polymorphisms in this gene are associated with type 2 diabetes. The human genome contains many pseudogenes similar to this locus.[provided by RefSeq, Feb 2011]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:fatty acid-binding protein 5
Source:NCBIAccessed: 31 August, 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 31 August 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 31 August, 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: FABP5 (cancer-related)

Pan L, Xiao H, Liao R, et al.
Fatty acid binding protein 5 promotes tumor angiogenesis and activates the IL6/STAT3/VEGFA pathway in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2018; 106:68-76 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Tumor angiogenesis is an essential process for facilitating tumor growth and metastasis. Fatty acid binding protein 5(FABP5)is highly expressed in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Thus, we investigated the role of FABP5 in tumor angiogenesis during HCC development.
METHODS: In this study, the protein and mRNA levels of FABP5 in matched HCC and adjacent noncancerous liver tissues from 43 patients were determined using immunohistochemistry and real-time quantitative PCR, respectively. Two HCC cell lines (Huh7 and SMMC-7721) and human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECS) were used to investigate the pro-angiogenic effect of FABP5 by tube formation, CCK8 and Transwell migration assays. The expression levels of interleukin 6 (IL6) and vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA) secreted from HCC cells were detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
RESULTS: In 43 HCC patients, the expression of FABP5 mRNA was positively correlated with intratumoral VEGFA mRNA expression. FABP5 mRNA expression was also associated with adverse HCC characteristics. In vitro, cell viability, cell migration and tube formation in HUVECs were enhanced with increasing expression of FABP5 in HCC cells. Downregulation of FABP5 expression inhibited the IL6/STAT3/VEGFA pathway in HCC cells and inhibited tumor angiogenesis.
CONCLUSION: FABP5 was shown to promote angiogenesis and activate the IL6/STAT3/VEGFA pathway in HCC. FABP5 may be a potential antiangiogenic target in the treatment of HCC.

Hou Q, Bing ZT, Hu C, et al.
RankProd Combined with Genetic Algorithm Optimized Artificial Neural Network Establishes a Diagnostic and Prognostic Prediction Model that Revealed C1QTNF3 as a Biomarker for Prostate Cancer.
EBioMedicine. 2018; 32:234-244 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Prostate cancer (PCa) is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in males in the Western world. Although prostate-specific antigen (PSA) has been widely used as a biomarker for PCa diagnosis, its results can be controversial. Therefore, new biomarkers are needed to enhance the clinical management of PCa. From publicly available microarray data, differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified by meta-analysis with RankProd. Genetic algorithm optimized artificial neural network (GA-ANN) was introduced to establish a diagnostic prediction model and to filter candidate genes. The diagnostic and prognostic capability of the prediction model and candidate genes were investigated in both GEO and TCGA datasets. Candidate genes were further validated by qPCR, Western Blot and Tissue microarray. By RankProd meta-analyses, 2306 significantly up- and 1311 down-regulated probes were found in 133 cases and 30 controls microarray data. The overall accuracy rate of the PCa diagnostic prediction model, consisting of a 15-gene signature, reached up to 100% in both the training and test dataset. The prediction model also showed good results for the diagnosis (AUC = 0.953) and prognosis (AUC of 5 years overall survival time = 0.808) of PCa in the TCGA database. The expression levels of three genes, FABP5, C1QTNF3 and LPHN3, were validated by qPCR. C1QTNF3 high expression was further validated in PCa tissue by Western Blot and Tissue microarray. In the GEO datasets, C1QTNF3 was a good predictor for the diagnosis of PCa (GSE6956: AUC = 0.791; GSE8218: AUC = 0.868; GSE26910: AUC = 0.972). In the TCGA database, C1QTNF3 was significantly associated with PCa patient recurrence free survival (P < .001, AUC = 0.57). In this study, we have developed a diagnostic and prognostic prediction model for PCa. C1QTNF3 was revealed as a promising biomarker for PCa. This approach can be applied to other high-throughput data from different platforms for the discovery of oncogenes or biomarkers in different kinds of diseases.

Ju J, Wang N, Wang J, et al.
4-Amino-2-trifluoromethyl-phenyl retinate inhibits proliferation, invasion, and migration of breast cancer cells by independently regulating CRABP2 and FABP5.
Drug Des Devel Ther. 2018; 12:997-1008 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Background: 4-Amino-2-trifluoromethyl-phenyl retinate (ATPR), a novel retinoid derivative, inhibits proliferation and induces differentiation in many cancer cells. In this study, the inhibitory effects of ATPR on the proliferation, invasion, and migration of breast cancer (BC) cells, and the relationship between ATPR and the expression of the intracellular lipid-binding proteins CRABP2 and FABP5 were investigated.
Methods: CRABP2 and FABP5 expression was evaluated in infiltrating breast-infiltrating ductal carcinoma(BIDC) and benign breast fibroma (BBF) by immunohistochemistry and in MCF-7, MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-435, and MDA-MB-453 cells by immunofluorescence. The inhibition of proliferation by ATPR in these cells was detected by MTT. After downregulation and upregulation of CRABP2 and FABP5 in MCF-7 or MDA-MB-231 cells using siRNA and plasmids, the effect of ATPR on proliferation was detected by MTT and real-time cell analysis, and the effects of ATPR on the invasion and migration of MDA-MB-231 cells were detected using a Boyden chamber assay and a wound healing assay.
Results: CRABP2 expression was moderately or strongly positive in BIDC and BBF. FABP5 expression was also moderately or strongly positive in BIDC, but weakly positive or negative in BBF. CRABP2 and FABP5 were highly expressed in MCF-7 cells, moderately expressed in MDA-MB-453 cells, and weakly expressed in MDA-MB-435 and MDA-MB-231 cells. ATPR inhibited proliferation more strongly in MCF-7 cells than in other cells. The inhibition of proliferation by ATPR depended on an increase in CRABP2, but not FABP5 expression. A decrease in FABP5 could inhibit the invasion and migration of BC cells.
Conclusion: These findings indicate that ATPR might inhibit proliferation by upregulating CRABP2, and inhibit invasion and migration by downregulating FABP5 in BC cells. These findings may facilitate the use of differentiation therapy in BC.

Li YT, Tian XT, Wu ML, et al.
Resveratrol Suppresses the Growth and Enhances Retinoic Acid Sensitivity of Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer Cells.
Int J Mol Sci. 2018; 19(4) [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC) is a highly lethal undifferentiated malignancy without reliable therapies. Retinoic acid (RA) has been employed to promote redifferentiation of thyroid cancers by increasing their I

Zaatiti H, Abdallah J, Nasr Z, et al.
Tumorigenic proteins upregulated in the MYCN-amplified IMR-32 human neuroblastoma cells promote proliferation and migration.
Int J Oncol. 2018; 52(3):787-803 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Childhood neuroblastoma is one of the most common types of extra-cranial cancer affecting children with a clinical spectrum ranging from spontaneous regression to malignant and fatal progression. In order to improve the clinical outcomes of children with high-risk neuroblastoma, it is crucial to understand the tumorigenic mechanisms that govern its malignant behaviors. MYCN proto-oncogene, bHLH transcription factor (MYCN) amplification has been implicated in the malignant, treatment-evasive nature of aggressive, high-risk neuroblastoma. In this study, we used a SILAC approach to compare the proteomic signatures of MYCN-amplified IMR-32 and non-MYCN-amplified SK-N-SH human neuroblastoma cells. Tumorigenic proteins, including fatty-acid binding protein 5 (FABP5), L1-cell adhesion molecule (L1-CAM), baculoviral IAP repeat containing 5 [BIRC5 (survivin)] and high mobility group protein A1 (HMGA1) were found to be significantly upregulated in the IMR-32 compared to the SK-N-SH cells and mapped to highly tumorigenic pathways including, MYC, MYCN, microtubule associated protein Tau (MAPT), E2F transcription factor 1 (E2F1), sterol regulatory element binding transcription factor 1 or 2 (SREBF1/2), hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF-1α), Sp1 transcription factor (SP1) and amyloid precursor protein (APP). The transcriptional knockdown (KD) of MYCN, HMGA1, FABP5 and L1-CAM significantly abrogated the proliferation of the IMR-32 cells at 48 h post transfection. The early apoptotic rates were significantly higher in the IMR-32 cells in which FABP5 and MYCN were knocked down, whereas cellular migration was significantly abrogated with FABP5 and HMGA1 KD compared to the controls. Of note, L1-CAM, HMGA1 and FABP5 KD concomitantly downregulated MYCN protein expression and MYCN KD concomitantly downregulated L1-CAM, HMGA1 and FABP5 protein expression, while survivin protein expression was significantly downregulated by MYCN, HMGA1 and FABP5 KD. In addition, combined L1-CAM and FABP5 KD led to the concomitant downregulation of HMGA1 protein expression. On the whole, our data indicate that this inter-play between MYCN and the highly tumorigenic proteins which are upregulated in the malignant IMR-32 cells may be fueling their aggressive behavior, thereby signifying the importance of combination, multi-modality targeted therapy to eradicate this deadly childhood cancer.

Fischer-Huchzermeyer S, Dombrowski A, Wilke G, et al.
MEK inhibitors enhance therapeutic response towards ATRA in NF1 associated malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNST) in-vitro.
PLoS One. 2017; 12(11):e0187700 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is a hereditary tumor syndrome characterized by an increased risk of malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNST). Chemotherapy of MPNST is still insufficient. In this study, we investigated whether human tumor Schwann cells derived from NF1 associated MPNST respond to all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). We analyzed effects of ATRA and MEK inhibitor (MEKi) combination therapy.
METHODS: MPNST cell lines S462, T265, NSF1 were treated with ATRA and MEKi U0126 and PD0325901. We assessed cell viability, proliferation, migration, apoptosis and differentiation as well as mRNA expression of RAR and RXR subtypes and ATRA target genes such as CRABP2, CYP26A1, RARB and PDK1. We also analyzed CRABP2 methylation in cell lines and performed immunohistochemistry of human MPNST specimens.
RESULTS: ATRA therapy reduced viability and proliferation in S462 and T265 cells, accompanied by differentiation, apoptosis and reduced migration. NSF1 cells which lacked RXRG expression did not respond to ATRA. We furthermore demonstrated that ATRA signaling was functional for common targets, and that mRNA expression of CRABP2 and its targets was raised by ATRA therapy, whereas alternative pathways via FABP5 were not induced. Finally, combination of ATRA and MEKi demonstrated additively reduced viability of T265 and S462 cells.
CONCLUSIONS: We observed therapeutic effects in two of three MPNST cell lines pronounced by combination therapy. These data point to a potentially successful treatment of MPNST by combined application of ATRA and MEK inhibitors such as U0126 or PD0325901.

Al-Jameel W, Gou X, Forootan SS, et al.
Inhibitor SBFI26 suppresses the malignant progression of castration-resistant PC3-M cells by competitively binding to oncogenic FABP5.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(19):31041-31056 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Castration resistant-prostate cancer is largely impervious to feather hormonal therapy and hence the outlook for patients is grim. Here we use an approach to attach the recently discovered Achilles heel. The experimental treatment established in this study is based on the recent discovery that it is the FABP5-PPARγ-VEGF signalling axis, rather than the androgen receptor pathway, played a dominant role in promoting the malignant progression of castration resistant prostate cancer cells. Treatments have been established in mice by suppressing the biological activity of FABP5 using a chemical inhibitor SBFI26. The inhibitor significantly suppressed the proliferation, migration, invasiveness and colony formation of PC3-M cells in vitro. It also produced a highly significant suppression of both the metastases and the primary tumours developed from cancer cells implanted orthotopically into the prostate glands of the mice. The inhibitor SBFI26 interferes with the FABP5-PPARγ- signalling pathway at the initial stage of the signal transduction by binding competitively to FABP5 to inhibit cellular fatty acid uptake. This avoids the fatty-acid stimulation of PPARγ and prevents it activating the down-stream regulated cancer-promoting genes. This entirely novel experimental approach to treating castration- resistant prostate cancer is completely different from current treatments that are based on androgen-blockade therapy.

Ohata T, Yokoo H, Kamiyama T, et al.
Fatty acid-binding protein 5 function in hepatocellular carcinoma through induction of epithelial-mesenchymal transition.
Cancer Med. 2017; 6(5):1049-1061 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a highly prevalent cancer with poor prognosis. The correlation between overexpression of fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5) and malignant potential of tumor growth and metastasis in several cancers has been previously reported. However, the correlation between FABP5 expression and HCC malignant behavior remains unknown. We compared FABP5 expression and patient characteristics in paired HCC and adjacent noncancerous liver tissues from 243 patients who underwent surgical resection of primary HCC. Cell proliferation, invasion, and migration assays were performed in HCC cell lines overexpressing FABP5 or downregulated for FABP5. Tumor growths were monitored in xenograft model, and liver and lung metastasis models were established. In the 243 HCC patients, FABP5-positive staining (n = 139/243, 57.2%) was associated with poor prognosis and recurrence (P < 0.0001) and showed positive correlation with distant metastasis, tumor size and vascular invasion (P < 0.05). Cell proliferation, invasion, and migration in vitro were enhanced by upregulation of FABP5 and decreased by downregulation of FABP5 in HCC cell lines. Similar results in tumor formation and metastasis were obtained through in vivo analyses. PCR array results revealed upregulation of SNAI1 in FABP5-overexpressing HepG2 cells. Western blot analysis showed significantly increased expression of E-cadherin and ZO-1 and decreased SNAI1 expression and nuclear translocation of β-catenin by knockdown of FABP5. We revealed a significant role for FABP5 in HCC progression and metastasis through the induction of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. FABP5 may be a potential novel prognostic biomarker and new therapeutic target for HCC.

Massafra V, Milona A, Vos HR, et al.
Quantitative liver proteomics identifies FGF19 targets that couple metabolism and proliferation.
PLoS One. 2017; 12(2):e0171185 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Fibroblast growth factor 19 (FGF19) is a gut-derived peptide hormone that is produced following activation of Farnesoid X Receptor (FXR). FGF19 is secreted and signals to the liver, where it contributes to the homeostasis of bile acid (BA), lipid and carbohydrate metabolism. FGF19 is a promising therapeutic target for the metabolic syndrome and cholestatic diseases, but enthusiasm for its use has been tempered by FGF19-mediated induction of proliferation and hepatocellular carcinoma. To inform future rational design of FGF19-variants, we have conducted temporal quantitative proteomic and gene expression analyses to identify FGF19-targets related to metabolism and proliferation. Mice were fasted for 16 hours, and injected with human FGF19 (1 mg/kg body weight) or vehicle. Liver protein extracts (containing "light" lysine) were mixed 1:1 with a spike-in protein extract from 13C6-lysine metabolically labelled mouse liver (containing "heavy" lysine) and analysed by LC-MS/MS. Our analyses provide a resource of FGF19 target proteins in the liver. 189 proteins were upregulated (≥ 1.5 folds) and 73 proteins were downregulated (≤ -1.5 folds) by FGF19. FGF19 treatment decreased the expression of proteins involved in fatty acid (FA) synthesis, i.e., Fabp5, Scd1, and Acsl3 and increased the expression of Acox1, involved in FA oxidation. As expected, FGF19 increased the expression of proteins known to drive proliferation (i.e., Tgfbi, Vcam1, Anxa2 and Hdlbp). Importantly, many of the FGF19 targets (i.e., Pdk4, Apoa4, Fas and Stat3) have a dual function in both metabolism and cell proliferation. Therefore, our findings challenge the development of FGF19-variants that fully uncouple metabolic benefit from mitogenic potential.

Napoli JL
Cellular retinoid binding-proteins, CRBP, CRABP, FABP5: Effects on retinoid metabolism, function and related diseases.
Pharmacol Ther. 2017; 173:19-33 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cellular binding-proteins (BP), including CRBP1, CRBP2, CRABP1, CRABP2, and FABP5, shepherd the poorly aqueous soluble retinoids during uptake, metabolism and function. Holo-BP promote efficient use of retinol, a scarce but essential nutrient throughout evolution, by sheltering it and its major metabolite all-trans-retinoic acid from adventitious interactions with the cellular milieu, and by imposing specificity of delivery to enzymes, nuclear receptors and other partners. Apo-BP reflect cellular retinoid status and modify activities of retinoid metabolon enzymes, or exert non-canonical actions. High ligand binding affinities and the nature of ligand sequestration necessitate external factors to prompt retinoid release from holo-BP. One or more of cross-linking, kinetics, and colocalization have identified these factors as RDH, RALDH, CYP26, LRAT, RAR and PPARβ/δ. Michaelis-Menten and other kinetic approaches verify that BP channel retinoids to select enzymes and receptors by protein-protein interactions. Function of the BP and enzymes that constitute the retinoid metabolon depends in part on retinoid exchanges unique to specific pairings. The complexity of these exchanges configure retinol metabolism to meet the diverse functions of all-trans-retinoic acid and its ability to foster contrary outcomes in different cell types, such as inducing apoptosis, differentiation or proliferation. Altered BP expression affects retinoid function, for example, by impairing pancreas development resulting in abnormal glucose and energy metabolism, promoting predisposition to breast cancer, and fostering more severe outcomes in prostate cancer, ovarian adenocarcinoma, and glioblastoma. Yet, the extent of BP interactions with retinoid metabolon enzymes and their impact on retinoid physiology remains incompletely understood.

Li Q, You C, Zhou L, et al.
High FABP5 Versus CRABPII Expression Ratio in Recurrent Craniopharyngiomas: Implications for Future Treatment.
World Neurosurg. 2016; 94:197-205 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Recurrence is a major problem in craniopharyngioma (CP) management. Recent study shows that high FABP5/CRABPII may be related to tumor growth and that all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) may suppress primary CP growth. We studied the expression profile of FABP5 and CRABPII in recurrent CP tissue and the effect of ATRA on recurrent CP cells.
METHODS: Fifty cases of patients with CP were enrolled in the retrospective study. Among them, 15 were recurrent. Fresh specimens were collected for immunohistochemistry, reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, and western blotting analysis of FABP5 and CRABPII. Fresh specimens from 6 primary and recurrent CPs were collected and subjected to cell culture using an explants method. ATRA at various concentrations was applied to recurrent CP cell culture, and cell growth was recorded and analyzed.
RESULTS: Immunohistochemistry, reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, and western blot study showed that FABP5 was expressed significantly higher in recurrent tumors, whereas CRABPII was expressed significantly higher in primary tumors. The FABP5/CRABPII ratio was significantly higher in recurrent rather than primary tumors. Recurrent CP cells grew faster than primary cells, and ATRA induced cellular apoptosis and inhibited CP cell growth in a dose-dependent manner.
CONCLUSIONS: A high expression ratio between FABP5 and CRABPII may be related to CP tumor recurrence and ATRA could be a potential therapeutic agent for CP chemotherapy.

Forootan FS, Forootan SS, Gou X, et al.
Fatty acid activated PPARγ promotes tumorigenicity of prostate cancer cells by up regulating VEGF via PPAR responsive elements of the promoter.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(8):9322-39 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
In previous work, it is suggested that the excessive amount of fatty acids transported by FABP5 may facilitate the malignant progression of prostate cancer cells through a FABP5-PPARγ-VEGF signal transduction axis to increase angiogenesis. To further functionally characterise the FABP5-PPARγ-VEGF signal transduction pathway, we have, in this work, investigated the molecular mechanisms involved in its tumorigenicity promoting role in prostate cancer. Suppression of PPARγ in highly malignant prostate cancer cells produced a significant reduction (up to 53%) in their proliferation rate, invasiveness (up to 89%) and anchorage-independent growth (up to 94%) in vitro. Knockdown of PPARγ gene in PC3-M cells by siRNA significantly reduced the average size of tumours formed in nude mice by 99% and tumour incidence by 90%, and significantly prolonged the latent period by 3.5 fold. Results in this study combined with some previous results suggested that FABP5 promoted VEGF expression and angiogenesis through PPARγ which was activated by fatty acids transported by FABP5. Further investigations showed that PPARγ up-regulated VEGF expression through acting with the PPAR-responsive elements in the promoter region of VEGF gene in prostate cancer cells. Although androgen can modulate VEGF expression through Sp1/Sp3 binding site on VEGF promoter in androgen-dependent prostate cancer cells, this route, disappeared as the cells gradually lost their androgen dependency; was replaced by the FABP5-PPARγ-VEGF signalling pathway. These results suggested that the FABP5-PPARγ-VEGF signal transduction axis, rather than androgen modulated route, may be a more important novel therapeutic target for angiogenesis-suppression treatment of castration resistant prostate cancer.

Kawaguchi K, Kinameri A, Suzuki S, et al.
The cancer-promoting gene fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5) is epigenetically regulated during human prostate carcinogenesis.
Biochem J. 2016; 473(4):449-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
FABPs (fatty-acid-binding proteins) are a family of low-molecular-mass intracellular lipid-binding proteins consisting of ten isoforms. FABPs are involved in binding and storing hydrophobic ligands such as long-chain fatty acids, as well as transporting these ligands to the appropriate compartments in the cell. FABP5 is overexpressed in multiple types of tumours. Furthermore, up-regulation of FABP5 is strongly associated with poor survival in triple-negative breast cancer. However, the mechanisms underlying the specific up-regulation of the FABP5 gene in these cancers remain poorly characterized. In the present study, we determined that FABP5 has a typical CpG island around its promoter region. The DNA methylation status of the CpG island in the FABP5 promoter of benign prostate cells (PNT2), prostate cancer cells (PC-3, DU-145, 22Rv1 and LNCaP) and human normal or tumour tissue was assessed by bisulfite sequencing analysis, and then confirmed by COBRA (combined bisulfite restriction analysis) and qAMP (quantitative analysis of DNA methylation using real-time PCR). These results demonstrated that overexpression of FABP5 in prostate cancer cells can be attributed to hypomethylation of the CpG island in its promoter region, along with up-regulation of the direct trans-acting factors Sp1 (specificity protein 1) and c-Myc. Together, these mechanisms result in the transcriptional activation of FABP5 expression during human prostate carcinogenesis. Importantly, silencing of Sp1, c-Myc or FABP5 expression led to a significant decrease in cell proliferation, indicating that up-regulation of FABP5 expression by Sp1 and c-Myc is critical for the proliferation of prostate cancer cells.

Levi L, Wang Z, Doud MK, et al.
Saturated fatty acids regulate retinoic acid signalling and suppress tumorigenesis by targeting fatty acid-binding protein 5.
Nat Commun. 2015; 6:8794 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Long chain fatty acids (LCFA) serve as energy sources, components of cell membranes and precursors for signalling molecules. Here we show that these biological compounds also regulate gene expression and that they do so by controlling the transcriptional activities of the retinoic acid (RA)-activated nuclear receptors RAR and PPARβ/δ. The data indicate that these activities of LCFA are mediated by FABP5, which delivers ligands from the cytosol to nuclear PPARβ/δ. Both saturated and unsaturated LCFA (SLCFA, ULCFA) bind to FABP5, thereby displacing RA and diverting it to RAR. However, while SLCFA inhibit, ULCFA activate the FABP5/PPARβ/δ pathway. We show further that, by concomitantly promoting the activation of RAR and inhibiting the activation of PPARβ/δ, SLCFA suppress the oncogenic properties of FABP5-expressing carcinoma cells in cultured cells and in vivo. The observations suggest that compounds that inhibit FABP5 may constitute a new class of drugs for therapy of certain types of cancer.

Zhang W, Levi L, Banerjee P, et al.
Kruppel-like factor 2 suppresses mammary carcinoma growth by regulating retinoic acid signaling.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(34):35830-42 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The transcription factor Kruppel-like factor 2 (KLF2) displays anticarcinogenic activities but the mechanism that underlies this activity is unknown. We show here that KLF2 is markedly downregulated in human breast cancers and that its expression positively correlates with breast cancer patient survival. We show further that KLF2 suppresses tumor development by controlling the transcriptional activity of the vitamin A metabolite retinoic acid (RA). RA regulates gene transcription by activating two types of nuclear receptors: RA receptors (RARs), which inhibit tumor development, and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor β/δ (PPARβ/δ), which promotes tumorigenesis. The partitioning of RA between these receptors is regulated by two carrier proteins: cellular retinoic acid-binding protein 2 (CRABP2), which delivers RA to RARs, and fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5), which shuttles ligands to PPARβ/δ. We show that KLF2 induces the expression of CRABP2 and RARγ and inhibits the expression FABP5 and PPARβ/δ thereby shifting RA signaling from the pro-carcinogenic FABP5/PPARβ/δ to the growth-suppressing CRABP2/RAR path. The data thus reveal that KLF2 suppresses tumor growth by controlling the transcriptional activities of RA.

Liu RZ, Garcia E, Glubrecht DD, et al.
CRABP1 is associated with a poor prognosis in breast cancer: adding to the complexity of breast cancer cell response to retinoic acid.
Mol Cancer. 2015; 14:129 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Clinical trials designed to test the efficacy of retinoic acid (RA) as an adjuvant for the treatment of solid cancers have been disappointing, primarily due to RA resistance. Estrogen receptor (ER)-negative breast cancer cells are more resistant to RA than ER-positive cells. The expression and subcellular distribution of two RA-binding proteins, FABP5 and CRABP2, has already been shown to play critical roles in breast cancer cell response to RA. CRABP1, a third member of the RA-binding protein family, has not previously been investigated as a possible mediator of RA action in breast cancer.
METHODS: CRABP1 and CRABP2 expression in primary breast tumor tissues was analyzed using gene expression and tissue microarrays. CRABP1 levels were manipulated using siRNAs and by transient overexpression. RA-induced subcellular translocation of CRABPs was examined by immunofluorescence microscopy and immunoblotting. RA-induced transactivation of RAR was analyzed using a RA response element (RARE)-driven luciferase reporter system. Effects of CRABP1 expression and RA treatment on downstream gene expression were investigated by semi-quantitative RT-PCR analysis.
RESULTS: Compared to normal mammary tissues, CRABP1 expression is significantly down-regulated in ER+ breast tumors, but maintained in triple-negative breast cancers. Elevated CRABP1 levels are associated with poor patient prognosis, high Ki67 immunoreactivity and high tumor grade in breast cancer. The prognostic significance of CRABP1 is attributed to its cytoplasmic localization. We demonstrate that CRABP1 expression attenuates RA-induced cell growth arrest and inhibits RA signalling in breast cancer cells by sequestering RA in the cytoplasm. We also show that CRABP1 affects the expression of genes involved in RA biosynthesis, trafficking and metabolism.
CONCLUSIONS: CRABP1 is an adverse factor for clinical outcome in triple-negative breast cancer and a potent inhibitor of RA signalling in breast cancer cells. Our data indicate that CRABP1, in conjunction with previously identified CRABP2 and FABP5, plays a key role in breast cancer cell response to RA. We propose that these three RA-binding proteins can serve as biomarkers for predicting triple-negative breast cancer response to RA, with elevated levels of either cytoplasmic CRABP1 or FABP5 associated with RA resistance, and elevated levels of nuclear CRABP2 associated with sensitivity to RA.

Davalieva K, Kostovska IM, Kiprijanovska S, et al.
Proteomics analysis of malignant and benign prostate tissue by 2D DIGE/MS reveals new insights into proteins involved in prostate cancer.
Prostate. 2015; 75(14):1586-600 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The key to a more effective diagnosis, prognosis, and therapeutic management of prostate cancer (PCa) could lie in the direct analysis of cancer tissue. In this study, by comparative proteomics analysis of PCa and benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) tissues we attempted to elucidate the proteins and regulatory pathways involved in this disease.
METHODS: The samples used in this study were fresh surgical tissues with clinically and histologically confirmed PCa (n = 19) and BPH (n = 33). We used two dimensional difference in gel electrophoresis (2D DIGE) coupled with mass spectrometry (MS) and bioinformatics analysis.
RESULTS: Thirty-nine spots with statistically significant 1.8-fold variation or more in abundance, corresponding to 28 proteins were identified. The IPA analysis pointed out to 3 possible networks regulated within MAPK, ERK, TGFB1, and ubiquitin pathways. Thirteen of the identified proteins, namely, constituents of the intermediate filaments (KRT8, KRT18, DES), potential tumor suppressors (ARHGAP1, AZGP1, GSTM2, and MFAP4), transport and membrane organization proteins (FABP5, GC, and EHD2), chaperons (FKBP4 and HSPD1) and known cancer marker (NME1) have been associated with prostate and other cancers by numerous proteomics, genomics or functional studies. We evidenced for the first time the dysregulation of 9 proteins (CSNK1A1, ARID5B, LYPLA1, PSMB6, RABEP1, TALDO1, UBE2N, PPP1CB, and SERPINB1) that may have role in PCa. The UBE2N, PSMB6, and PPP1CB, involved in cell cycle regulation and progression were evaluated by Western blot analysis which confirmed significantly higher abundances of UBE2N and PSMB6 and significantly lower abundance of PPP1CB in PCa.
CONCLUSION: In addition to the identification of substantial number of proteins with known association with PCa, the proteomic approach in this study revealed proteins not previously clearly related to PCa, providing a starting point for further elucidation of their function in disease initiation and progression.

Thulasiraman P, McAndrews DJ, Mohiudddin IQ
Curcumin restores sensitivity to retinoic acid in triple negative breast cancer cells.
BMC Cancer. 2014; 14:724 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: A major obstacle in the use of retinoid therapy in cancer is the resistance to this agent in tumors. Retinoic acid facilitates the growth of mammary carcinoma cells which express high levels of fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5). This protein delivers retinoic acid to peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor β/δ (PPARβ/δ) that targets genes involved in cell proliferation and survival. One approach to overcome resistance of mammary carcinoma cells to retinoic acid is to target and suppress the FABP5/ PPARβ/δ pathway. The objective of this research was to investigate the effect of curcumin, a polyphenol extract from the plant Curcuma longa, on the FABP5/ PPARβ/δ pathway in retinoic acid resistant triple negative breast cancer cells.
METHODS: Cell viability and proliferation of triple negative breast cancer cell lines (MDA-MB-231 and MD-MB-468) treated with curcumin and/or retinoic was analyzed using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) and 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine (BrdU). Expression level of FABP5 and PPARβ/δ in these cells treated with curcumin was examined by Western Blotting analysis and Quantitative Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (qRT-PCR). Effect of curcumin and retinoic acid on PPARβ/δ target genes, PDK1and VEGF-A were also examined using qRT-PCR. Western Blotting was utilized to examine the protein expression level of the p65 subunit of NF-κB.
RESULTS: Treatment of retinoic acid resistant triple negative breast cancer cells with curcumin sensitized these cells to retinoic acid mediated growth suppression, as well as suppressed incorporation of BrdU. Further studies demonstrated that curcumin showed a marked reduction in the expression level of FABP5 and PPARβ/δ. We provide evidence that curcumin suppresses p65, a transcription factor known to regulate FABP5. The combination of curcumin with retinoic acid suppressed PPARβ/δ target genes, VEGF-A and PDK1.
CONCLUSIONS: Curcumin suppresses the expression level of FABP5 and PPARβ/δ in triple negative mammary carcinoma cells. By targeting the FABP5/PPARβ/δ pathway, curcumin prevents the delivery of retinoic acid to PPARβ/δ and suppresses retinoic acid-induced PPARβ/δ target gene, VEGF-A. Our data demonstrates that suppression of the FABP5/ PPARβ/δ pathway by curcumin sensitizes retinoic acid resistant triple negative breast cancer cells to retinoic acid mediated growth suppression.

Wasinger C, Künzl M, Minichsdorfer C, et al.
Autocrine secretion of 15d-PGJ2 mediates simvastatin-induced apoptotic burst in human metastatic melanoma cells.
Br J Pharmacol. 2014; 171(24):5708-27 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Despite new therapeutic approaches, metastatic melanomas still have a poor prognosis. Statins reduce low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and exert anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferative actions. We have recently shown that simvastatin triggers an apoptotic burst in human metastatic melanoma cells by the synthesis of an autocrine factor.
EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: The current in vitro study was performed in human metastatic melanoma cell lines (A375, 518a2) and primary human melanocytes and melanoma cells. The secretome of simvastatin-stressed cells was analysed with two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis and MS. The signalling pathways involved were analysed at the protein and mRNA level using pharmacological approaches and siRNA technology.
KEY RESULTS: Simvastatin was shown to activate a stress cascade, leading to the synthesis of 15-deoxy-12,14-PGJ2 (15d-PGJ2 ), in a p38- and COX-2-dependent manner. Significant concentrations of 15d-PGJ2 were reached in the medium of melanoma cells, which were sufficient to activate caspase 8 and the mitochondrial pathway of apoptosis. Inhibition of lipocalin-type PGD synthase, a key enzyme for 15d-PGJ2 synthesis, abolished the apoptotic effect of simvastatin. Moreover, 15d-PGJ2 was shown to bind to the fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5), which was up-regulated and predominantly detected in the secretome of simvastatin-stressed cells. Knockdown of FABP5 abolished simvastatin-induced activation of PPAR-γ and amplified the apoptotic response.
CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: We characterized simvastatin-induced activation of the 15d-PGJ2 /FABP5 signalling cascades, which triggered an apoptotic burst in melanoma cells but did not affect primary human melanocytes. These data support the rationale for the pharmacological targeting of 15d-PGJ2 in metastatic melanoma.

Zhang Y, Sun Y, Rao E, et al.
Fatty acid-binding protein E-FABP restricts tumor growth by promoting IFN-β responses in tumor-associated macrophages.
Cancer Res. 2014; 74(11):2986-98 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Fatty acid-binding proteins (FABP) are known central regulators of both metabolic and inflammatory pathways, but their role in tumor development remains largely unexplored. Here, we report that host expression of epidermal FABP (E-FABP) protects against mammary tumor growth. We find that E-FABP is highly expressed in macrophages, particularly in a specific subset, promoting their antitumor activity. In the tumor stroma, E-FABP-expressing tumor-associated macrophages (TAM) produce high levels of IFN-β through upregulation of lipid droplet formation in response to tumors. E-FABP-mediated IFN-β signaling can further enhance recruitment of tumoricidal effector cells, in particular natural killer cells, to the tumor stroma for antitumor activity. These findings identify E-FABP as a new protective factor to strengthen IFN-β responses against tumor growth.

Forootan FS, Forootan SS, Malki MI, et al.
The expression of C-FABP and PPARγ and their prognostic significance in prostate cancer.
Int J Oncol. 2014; 44(1):265-75 [PubMed] Related Publications
The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that cooperative interaction between cutaneous fatty acid-binding protein (C-FABP) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPAR) promotes the malignant progression of human prostate cancer. The expression of C-FABP, PPARβ/δ and PPARγ was measured by western blot analysis in prostate cell lines and by immunohistochemical staining in tissue sections of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostatic carcinomas. The correlation between the expression of PPARs and C-FABP was assessed. The significance of increased expression of these proteins was analysed with respect to prognosis and compared with those of alternative biomarkers. The expression levels of C-FABP and PPARγ in prostate cancer cell lines and the cytoplasm and nuclei of carcinoma tissues were significantly (Student's t-test, p<0.05) higher compared to those in benign cell lines and BPH tissues. The raised expression level of C-FABP and PPARγ was significantly correlated with the increased combined Gleason scores (GS) of the carcinomas. Enhanced expression of cytoplasmic C-FABP significantly correlated with increased nuclear PPARγ (Student's t-test, p<0.005). While expression of PPARβ/δ in carcinomas did not correlate with patient outcome, the increased levels of both C-FABP and PPARγ were associated with shorter patient survival. Multivariate analysis indicated that C-FABP was independently associated with patient survival, whereas PPARγ was confounded by C-FABP in predicting patient survival. Thus, the increased C-FABP may interact with PPARγ in a coordinated mechanism to facilitate malignant progression in prostatic cancer. Both C-FABP and PPARγ are suitable as prognostic factors to predict the clinical outcome of prostatic cancer patients.

Levi L, Lobo G, Doud MK, et al.
Genetic ablation of the fatty acid-binding protein FABP5 suppresses HER2-induced mammary tumorigenesis.
Cancer Res. 2013; 73(15):4770-80 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The fatty acid-binding protein FABP5 shuttles ligands from the cytosol to the nuclear receptor PPARβ/δ (encoded for by Pparδ), thereby enhancing the transcriptional activity of the receptor. This FABP5/PPARδ pathway is critical for induction of proliferation of breast carcinoma cells by activated epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). In this study, we show that FABP5 is highly upregulated in human breast cancers and we provide genetic evidence of the pathophysiologic significance of FABP5 in mammary tumorigenesis. Ectopic expression of FABP5 was found to be oncogenic in 3T3 fibroblasts where it augmented the ability of PPARδ to enhance cell proliferation, migration, and invasion. To determine whether FABP5 is essential for EGFR-induced mammary tumor growth, we interbred FABP5-null mice with MMTV-ErbB2/HER2 oncomice, which spontaneously develop mammary tumors. FABP5 ablation relieved activation of EGFR downstream effector signals, decreased expression of PPARδ target genes that drive cell proliferation, and suppressed mammary tumor development. Our findings establish that FABP5 is critical for mammary tumor development, rationalizing the development of FABP5 inhibitors as novel anticarcinogenic drugs.

Koshiyama A, Ichibangase T, Imai K
Comprehensive fluorogenic derivatization-liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry proteomic analysis of colorectal cancer cell to identify biomarker candidate.
Biomed Chromatogr. 2013; 27(4):440-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
Existing colorectal cancer biomarkers are insufficient for providing a quick and accurate diagnosis, which is critical for a good prognosis. More appropriate biomarkers are thus needed. To identify new colorectal cancer biomarker candidates, we conducted a comprehensive differential proteomic analysis of six cancer cell lines and a normal cell line, utilizing a fluorogenic derivatization-liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (FD-LC-MS/MS) approach. Two sets of intracellular biomarker candidates were identified: one for colorectal cancer, and the other for metastatic colorectal cancer. Our results suggest that cooperative expression of FABP5 and cyclophilin A might be linked to Her2 signaling. Upregulation of LDHB and downregulation of GAPDH suggest the existence of a specific nonglycolytic energy production pathway in metastatic colorectal cancer cells. Downregulation of 14-3-3ζ/δ, cystatin-B, Ran and thioredoxin could be a result of their secretion, which then stimulates metastasis via activity in the sera and ascitic fluids. We propose a possible flow scheme to describe the dynamics of protein expression in colorectal cancer cells leading to tumor progression and metastasis via cell proliferation, angiogenesis, disorganization of actin filaments and epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Our results suggest that colorectal tumor progression may be regulated by signaling mediated by Her2, hypoxia, and TGFβ.

Jeong CY, Hah YS, Cho BI, et al.
Fatty acid-binding protein 5 promotes cell proliferation and invasion in human intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma.
Oncol Rep. 2012; 28(4):1283-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC) is a rare primary malignant liver tumor with an extremely poor prognosis. Recently its incidence has increased, however, little attention has been directed to factors related to its molecular carcinogenesis, including oncogenes, tumor suppressor genes and cell cycle-related proteins. ICC is generally characterized by strong proliferation, invasion and early metastasis. These biological behaviors of ICC, with respect to the genetic and molecular aspects, remain to be clarified. In this study, we performed a proteomic analysis to identify the proteomic alterations associated with carcinogenesis of ICC. Protein expression profiles of sixteen cases of ICC were compared with those of adjacent non-involved bile duct tissue. Among the 151 protein spots that showed a statistically significant expression difference (P<0.05), there were 50 spots with significantly increased intensity (3-fold increase) and 17 spots with decreased intensity (3-fold decrease) in cancerous tissues. Of these, increased expression of fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5) was further confirmed by western blot analysis and immunohistochemical analysis. Immunohistochemical analysis of FABP5 expression in tumor specimens obtained from 43 patients with mass-forming (MF) type ICC showed a positive correlation of FABP5 immunoreactivity with tumor size (P=0.047), lymph node metastasis (P=0.013), angioinvasion (P=0.032) and staging (P=0.007). In addition, silencing FABP5 with short hairpin RNA (shRNA) suppressed cell proliferation and invasiveness in HuCCT1 cells, and conversely, overexpression of FABP5 in FABP5-negative Hep3B cells increased cell proliferation and invasiveness. Our study shows that FABP5 is significantly overexpressed in ICC combined lymph node metastasis and is involved in cell proliferation and invasion in vitro. Our data suggest that FABP5 may be associated with tumor progression in ICC.

Sudhir PR, Chen CH, Pavana Kumari M, et al.
Label-free quantitative proteomics and N-glycoproteomics analysis of KRAS-activated human bronchial epithelial cells.
Mol Cell Proteomics. 2012; 11(10):901-15 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Mutational activation of KRAS promotes various malignancies, including lung adenocarcinoma. Knowledge of the molecular targets mediating the downstream effects of activated KRAS is limited. Here, we provide the KRAS target proteins and N-glycoproteins using human bronchial epithelial cells with and without the expression of activated KRAS (KRAS(V12)). Using an OFFGEL peptide fractionation and hydrazide method combined with subsequent LTQ-Orbitrap analysis, we identified 5713 proteins and 608 N-glycosites on 317 proteins in human bronchial epithelial cells. Label-free quantitation of 3058 proteins (≥2 peptides; coefficient of variation (CV) ≤ 20%) and 297 N-glycoproteins (CV ≤ 20%) revealed the differential regulation of 23 proteins and 14 N-glycoproteins caused by activated KRAS, including 84% novel ones. An informatics-assisted IPA-Biomarker® filter analysis prioritized some of the differentially regulated proteins (ALDH3A1, CA2, CTSD, DST, EPHA2, and VIM) and N-glycoproteins (ALCAM, ITGA3, and TIMP-1) as cancer biomarkers. Further, integrated in silico analysis of microarray repository data of lung adenocarcinoma clinical samples and cell lines containing KRAS mutations showed positive mRNA fold changes (p < 0.05) for 61% of the KRAS-regulated proteins, including biomarker proteins, CA2 and CTSD. The most significant discovery of the integrated validation is the down-regulation of FABP5 and PDCD4. A few validated proteins, including tumor suppressor PDCD4, were further confirmed as KRAS targets by shRNA-based knockdown experiments. Finally, the studies on KRAS-regulated N-glycoproteins revealed structural alterations in the core N-glycans of SEMA4B in KRAS-activated human bronchial epithelial cells and functional role of N-glycosylation of TIMP-1 in the regulation of lung adenocarcinoma A549 cell invasion. Together, our study represents the largest proteome and N-glycoproteome data sets for HBECs, which we used to identify several novel potential targets of activated KRAS that may provide insights into KRAS-induced adenocarcinoma and have implications for both lung cancer therapy and diagnosis.

Kowalewska M, Radziszewski J, Goryca K, et al.
Estimation of groin recurrence risk in patients with squamous cell vulvar carcinoma by the assessment of marker gene expression in the lymph nodes.
BMC Cancer. 2012; 12:223 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Regional lymph node (LN) status is a well-known prognostic factor for vulvar carcinoma (VC) patients. Although the reliable LN assessment in VC is crucial, it presents significant diagnostic problems. We aimed to identify specific mRNA markers of VC dissemination in the LN and to address the feasibility of predicting the risk of nodal recurrence by the patterns of gene expression.
METHODS: Sentinel and inguinal LN samples from 20 patients who had undergone surgery for stage T(1-3), N(0-2), M(0) primary vulvar squamous cell carcinoma were analyzed. Gene expression profiles were assessed in four metastatic [LN(+)] and four histologically negative [LN(-)] lymph node samples obtained from four VC patients, by the Affymetrix U133 Plus 2.0 gene expression microarrays. Of the set of genes of the highest expression in the metastatic LNs compared to LN(-), seven candidate marker genes were selected: PERP, S100A8, FABP5, SFN, CA12, JUP and CSTA, and the expression levels of these genes were further analyzed by the real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) in 71 LN samples.
RESULTS: All of the seven genes in question were significantly increased in LN(+) compared to LN(-) samples. In the initial validation of the seven putative markers of metastatic LN, the Cox proportional hazard model pointed to SFN, CA12 and JUP expression to significantly relate to the time to groin recurrence in VC patients.
CONCLUSIONS: Our findings first provided evidence that SFN, CA12 and JUP have a potential of marker genes for the prediction of the groin recurrence LN in VC patients.

Chen NN, Li Y, Wu ML, et al.
CRABP-II- and FABP5-independent all-trans retinoic acid resistance in COLO 16 human cutaneous squamous cancer cells.
Exp Dermatol. 2012; 21(1):13-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The effect of all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) on cutaneous squamous cell carcinomas (c-SCC) has been poorly described. Because the imbalance of CRABP-II-mediated anticancer signalling and FABP5-mediated growth-promoting signalling was supposed to be related with ATRA sensitivities of cancer cells, COLO16 human c-SCC cell line was selected to check underlying mechanism leading to ATRA resistance by multiple experimental approaches. The results revealed that COLO 16 cells were resistant to 15 μm ATRA treatment. FABP5 as well as the elements related with CRABP-II signalling (CYP26A1, CYP26B1, CRABP-I, RARα/β/γ and RXRα/β/γ) and with FABP5 signalling (PPARβ/δ) were expressed, but CRABP-II was undetectable in COLO 16 cells. 5-Aza treatment enhanced CRABP-II expression but further bisulfite sequencing PCR-DNA sequencing revealed no methylation in CRABP-II promoter region. Transfection of CRABP-II-expressing plasmids or FABP5 siRNA or both successfully manipulated the level(s) of target gene expression but failed to overcome ATRA resistance in the transfectants. In conclusion, CRABP-II and FABP5 expression were imbalanced in ATRA-resistant COLO 16 cells. 5-Aza-enhanced CRABP-II expression and unmethylation in CRABP-II promoter region suggest the methylation of certain CRABP-II regulatory gene(s) in COLO 16 cells. As neither restoration of CRABP-II expression nor the increased CRABP-II versus FABP5 ratio can overcome ATRA resistance of COLO 16 cells, additional ATRA-resistant mechanism(s) may present in human c-SCCs and COLO 16 cells would be of value in addressing this issue.

Gupta S, Pramanik D, Mukherjee R, et al.
Molecular determinants of retinoic acid sensitivity in pancreatic cancer.
Clin Cancer Res. 2012; 18(1):280-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: To identify a predictive molecular "signature" for sensitivity to retinoic acid in pancreatic cancer.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Fourteen patient-derived, low-passage pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) lines with varied expression of fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5) and cellular retinoic acid-binding protein 2 (CRABP2) were used to evaluate the response to all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). Cell proliferation, apoptosis, and migration/invasion assays were used to measure the in vitro response. Tumor growth was monitored in subcutaneous xenografts in athymic nude mice for 4 weeks.
RESULTS: Response to ATRA was observed to be dependent upon differential expression of FABP5 versus CRABP2. Thus, elevated FABP5 expression was associated with minimal cytotoxicity and tumor growth inhibition and a paradoxical increase in migration and invasion. Conversely, CRABP2 expression in the absence of FABP5 was associated with significant tumor growth inhibition with ATRA, even in gemcitabine-resistant tumors. The ATRA-resistant phenotype of FABP5(high)CRABP2(null) cells could be circumvented by ectopic expression of CRABP2. Alternatively, reexpression of endogenous CRABP2 could be enabled in FABP5(high)CRABP2(null) PDAC lines by exposure to decitabine and trichostatin A, thereby relieving epigenetic silencing of the CRABP2 gene promoter. Immunohistochemical staining for FABP5 in archival human tissue microarrays identifies a subset of cases (13 of 63, ~20%) which are negative for FABP5 expression and might be candidates for ATRA therapy.
CONCLUSIONS: The widely used agent ATRA deserves a "second look" in PDAC, but needs to be targeted to patient subsets with biopsy-proven FABP5-negative tumors, or be combined with a chromatin-modifying agent to reexpress endogenous CRABP2.

Tölle A, Suhail S, Jung M, et al.
Fatty acid binding proteins (FABPs) in prostate, bladder and kidney cancer cell lines and the use of IL-FABP as survival predictor in patients with renal cell carcinoma.
BMC Cancer. 2011; 11:302 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Fatty acid binding proteins (FABP) play an important role in carcinogenesis. Modified FABP expression patterns were described for prostate, bladder and for renal cell carcinoma. Studies on metabolic relationships and interactions in permanent cell lines allow a deeper insight into molecular processes. The aim of this study is therefore a systematic overview on mRNA and protein expressions of seven FABPs in frequently used urological cell lines.
METHODS: Nine cell lines of renal carcinomas, seven of urinary bladder carcinomas, and five of prostate carcinomas were investigated. Quantitative RT-qPCR and western blotting were used to determine different FABPs. In addition, 46 paired cancerous and noncancerous tissue samples from nephrectomy specimen with renal cell carcinomas were investigated regarding the ileum FABP mRNA expression level and associated with survival outcome.
RESULTS: General characteristics of all urological carcinoma cell lines were the expression of E-and IL-FABP on mRNA and protein level, while the expressions differed between the cell lines. The protein expression was not always congruent with the mRNA expression. Renal cell carcinoma cell lines showed expressions of L-, H- and B-FABP mRNA in addition to the general FABP expression in five out of the eight investigated cell lines. In bladder cancer cell lines, we additionally found the expression of A-FABP mRNA in six cell lines, while H-FABP was present only in three cell lines. In prostate cancer cell lines, a strong reduction of A- and E- FABP mRNA was observed. The expression of B-FABP mRNA and protein was observed only in the 22 RV-1 cells. IL-FABP mRNA was over-expressed in renal tumour tissue. The IL-FABP ratio was identified as an independent indicator of survival outcome.
CONCLUSIONS: Distinctly different FABP expression patterns were observed not only between the cell lines derived from the three cancer types, but also between the cell lines from the same cancer. The FABP patterns in the cell lines do not always reflect the real situation in the tumours. These facts have to be considered in functional studies concerning the different FABPs.

Russell SM, Lechner MG, Gong L, et al.
USC-HN2, a new model cell line for recurrent oral cavity squamous cell carcinoma with immunosuppressive characteristics.
Oral Oncol. 2011; 47(9):810-7 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCC) are common and aggressive tumors that have not seen an improvement in survival rates in decades. These tumors are believed to evade the immune system through a variety of mechanisms and are therefore highly immune modulatory. In order to elucidate their interaction with the immune system and develop new therapies targeting immune escape, new pre-clinical models are needed. A novel human cell line, USC-HN2, was established from a patient biopsy specimen of invasive, recurrent buccal HNSCC and characterized by morphology, heterotransplantation, cytogenetics, phenotype, gene expression, and immune modulation studies and compared to a similar HNSCC cell line; SCCL-MT1. Characterization studies confirmed the HNSCC origin of USC-HN2 and demonstrated a phenotype similar to the original tumor and typical of aggressive oral cavity HNSCC (EGFR(+)CD44v6(+)FABP5(+)Keratin(+) and HPV(-)). Gene and protein expression studies revealed USC-HN2 to have highly immune-modulatory cytokine production (IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, GM-CSF, and VEGF) and strong regulatory T and myeloid derived suppressor cell (MDSC) induction capacity in vitro. Of note, both USC-HN2 and SCCL-MT1 were found to have a more robust cytokine profile and MDSC induction capacity when compared to seven previously established HNSCC cell lines. Additionally, microarray gene expression profiling of both cell lines demonstrate up-regulation of antigen presenting genes. Because USC-HN2 is therefore highly immunogenic, it also induces strong immune suppression to evade immunologic destruction. Based upon these results, both cell lines provide an excellent model for the development of new suppressor cell-targeted immunotherapies.

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