Gene Summary

Gene:FGF9; fibroblast growth factor 9
Aliases: GAF, FGF-9, SYNS3, HBFG-9, HBGF-9
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is a member of the fibroblast growth factor (FGF) family. FGF family members possess broad mitogenic and cell survival activities, and are involved in a variety of biological processes, including embryonic development, cell growth, morphogenesis, tissue repair, tumor growth and invasion. This protein was isolated as a secreted factor that exhibits a growth-stimulating effect on cultured glial cells. In nervous system, this protein is produced mainly by neurons and may be important for glial cell development. Expression of the mouse homolog of this gene was found to be dependent on Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling. Mice lacking the homolog gene displayed a male-to-female sex reversal phenotype, which suggested a role in testicular embryogenesis. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:fibroblast growth factor 9
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: FGF9 (cancer-related)

Rao C, Miao X, Zhao G, et al.
MiR-219a-5p enhances cisplatin sensitivity of human non-small cell lung cancer by targeting FGF9.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2019; 114:108662 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cisplatin (DDP) resistance is a major obstacle in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). MicroRNA-219a-5p (miR-219a-5p) has been reported to be a tumor suppressor in several cancers, but whether it regulates chemosensitivity in NSCLC remains unclear. Here, using quantitative real time PCR analysis, we observed that miR-219a-5p was down-regulated in responding tumor tissues compared with that in non-responding tumor tissues from NSCLC patients received DDP-based chemotherapy. Consistently, miR-219a-5p expression was lower in cisplatin (DDP)-resistant NSCLC cell lines (A549-R and SPC-A1-R) than that in corresponding parental cells (A549 and SPC-A1). Gain of-function assay showed ectopic expression of miR-219a-5p reversed DDP chemoresistance of NSCLC cells in vitro and in vivo. Using bioinformatics prediction and dual-luciferase reporter assays, we identified the FGF9 gene as a novel direct target of miR-219a-5p. Moreover, restoration of FGF9 expression reversed the miR-219a-5p-mediated chemosensitivity. In conclusion, this study demonstrated miR-219a-5p plays a crucial role in the development of acquired drug resistance to DDP in NSCLC cells by targeting FGF9 and might be a therapeutic target for DDP resistance in clinical practice.

Chen TM, Lai MC, Li YH, et al.
hnRNPM induces translation switch under hypoxia to promote colon cancer development.
EBioMedicine. 2019; 41:299-309 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Hypoxia suppresses global protein production, yet certain essential proteins are translated through alternative pathways to survive under hypoxic stress. Translation via the internal ribosome entry site (IRES) is a means to produce proteins under stress conditions such as hypoxia; however, the underlying mechanism remains largely uncharacterized.
METHODS: Proteomic and bioinformatic analyses were employed to identify hnRNPM as an IRES interacting factor. Clinical specimens and mouse model of tumorigenesis were used for determining the expression and correlation of hnRNPM and its target gene. Transcriptomic and translatomic analyses were performed to profile target genes regulated by hnRNPM.
FINDINGS: Hypoxia increases cytosolic hnRNPM binding onto its target mRNAs and promotes translation initiation. Clinical colon cancer specimens and mouse carcinogenesis model showed that hnRNPM is elevated during the development of colorectal cancer, and is associated with poor prognosis. Genome-wide transcriptomics and translatomics analyses revealed a unique set of hnRNPM-targeted genes involved in metabolic processes and cancer neoplasia are selectively translated under hypoxia.
INTERPRETATION: These data highlight the critical role of hnRNPM-IRES-mediated translation in transforming hypoxia-induced proteome toward malignancy. FUND: This work was supported by the Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan (MOST 104-2320-B-006-042 to HSS and MOST 105-2628-B-001-MY3 to TMC).

Wang R, Sun Y, Yu W, et al.
Downregulation of miRNA-214 in cancer-associated fibroblasts contributes to migration and invasion of gastric cancer cells through targeting FGF9 and inducing EMT.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2019; 38(1):20 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs), one of the principal constituents of the tumor microenvironment, have a pivotal role in tumor progression. Dysregulation of microRNAs (miRNAs) in CAFs contributes to the tumor-promoting ability of CAFs. However, the mechanism underlying the involvement of miRNAs in CAFs of gastric cancer (GC) is not fully understood. This study aimed to explore the effects of miRNA-214 in CAFs on GC migration and invasion.
METHODS: The primary CAFs and corresponding normal fibroblasts (NFs) were isolated. Cell counting kit-8, EdU cell proliferation staining and Transwell assays were used to determine the role of miRNA-214 in GC progression. Real-time polymerase chain reaction, Western blot analysis, and dual-luciferase reporter assay were performed to verify the target genes of miRNA-214. Immunofluorescence and Western blot analysis were applied to detect the expression of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) markers. Immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization were implemented to analyze the fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9) and miRNA-214 expression in human GC tissues, respectively. Finally, to assess its prognostic relevance, Kaplan-Meier survival analysis was conducted.
RESULTS: MiRNA-214 was significantly downregulated in CAFs of GC compared with NFs. The upregulation of miRNA-214 in CAFs inhibited GC cell migration and invasion in vitro but failed to affect proliferation. Moreover, GC cells cultured with conditioned medium from CAFs transfected with miR-214 mimic showed increased expression of E-cadherin and decreased expression of Vimentin, N-cadherin and Snail, indicating the suppression of EMT of GC cells. Furthermore, FGF9 was proved to be a direct target gene of miR-214. The expression of FGF9 was higher in CAFs than that in tumor cells not only in primary tumor but also in lymph node metastatic sites (30.0% vs 11.9%, P < 0.01 and 32.1% vs 12.3%, P < 0.01, respectively). Abnormal expression of FGF9 in CAFs of lymph node metastatic sites was significantly associated with poor prognosis in patients with GC (P < 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: This study showed that miR-214 inhibited the tumor-promoting effect of CAFs on GC through targeting FGF9 in CAFs and regulating the EMT process in GC cells, suggesting miRNA-214/FGF9 in CAFs as a potential target for therapeutic approaches in GC.

He X, Chen SY, Yang Z, et al.
miR-4317 suppresses non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) by targeting fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9) and cyclin D2 (CCND2).
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2018; 37(1):230 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is a leading cause of death worldwide. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been indicated as crucial actors in cancer biology. Accumulating evidence suggests that miRNAs can be used as diagnostic and prognostic markers for NSCLC.
METHODS: The purpose of this study was to characterize and identify the novel biomarker miR-4317 and its targets in NSCLC. The expression of miR-4317 was analyzed by in situ hybridization (ISH) and quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). The effect of miR-4317 on proliferation was evaluated through 3-4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl-5-3-carboxymethoxyphenyl-2-4-sulfophenyl-2H-tetrazolium (MTS) and colony formation assays, and cell migration and invasion were evaluated through transwell assays. The expression of target proteins and downstream molecules was analyzed by qRT-PCR and western blot. Dual-luciferase reporter assay was used to assess the target genes of miR4317 in NSCLC cells.
RESULTS: Our results demonstrated that miR-4317 was downregulated in NSCLC tissues and serum, particularly in lymph node metastasis and advanced clinical stage tissues. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis showed that NSCLC patients with high expression of miR-4317 exhibited better overall survival (OS). Enhanced expression of miR-4317 significantly inhibited proliferation, colony formation, migration and invasion, and hampered cycles of NSCLC cell lines in vitro. Our results suggested that miR-4317 functions by directly targeting fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9) and cyclin D2 (CCND2). In concordance with in vitro studies, mouse xenograft, lung, and brain metastatic studies validated that miR-4317 functions as a potent suppressor miRNA of NSCLC in vivo. Systemically delivered agomiR-4317 reduced tumor growth and inhibited FGF9 and CCND2 protein expression. Reintroduction of FGF9 and CCND2 attenuated miR-4317-mediated suppression of migration and invasion in NSCLC.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate that miR-4317 can reduce NSCLC cell growth and metastasis by targeting FGF9 and CCND2. These findings provide new evidence of miR-4317 as a potential non-invasive biomarker and therapeutic target for NSCLC.

Werner TA, Forster CM, Dizdar L, et al.
CXCR4/CXCR7/CXCL12 axis promotes an invasive phenotype in medullary thyroid carcinoma.
Br J Cancer. 2017; 117(12):1837-1845 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) is a rare and challenging endocrine malignancy. Once spread, the therapeutic options are limited and the outcome poor. For these patients, the identification of new druggable biological markers is of great importance. Here, we investigated the prognostic and biological role of the C-X-C chemokine receptors type 4 and 7 (CXCR4/7) in MTC.
METHODS: Eighty-six MTC and corresponding non-neoplastic thyroid specimens were immunohistochemically stained for CXCR4/7 using tissue microarray technology and expression levels correlated with clinicopathological variables. Medullary thyroid carcinoma cell line TT was treated with recombinant human SDF1α/CXCL12 (rh-SDF1α) and CXCR4 antagonists AMD3100 and WZ811. Changes in cell cycle activation, tumour cell invasiveness as well as changes in mRNA expression levels of genes associated with epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) were investigated.
RESULTS: High CXCR4 expression was associated with large tumour size and metastatic disease. CXCR4 antagonists significantly reduced tumour cell invasiveness, while the treatment with rh-SDF1α stimulated invasive growth, caused cell cycle activation and induced EMT.
CONCLUSIONS: The CXCR4/CXCR7/CXCL12 axis plays an important role in MTC. We provide first evidence that the chemokine receptors might serve as potential therapeutic targets in patients with advanced MTC and offer new valuable insight into the underlying molecular machinery of metastatic MTC.

Quispel-Janssen JM, Badhai J, Schunselaar L, et al.
Comprehensive Pharmacogenomic Profiling of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma Identifies a Subgroup Sensitive to FGFR Inhibition.
Clin Cancer Res. 2018; 24(1):84-94 [PubMed] Related Publications

Makondi PT, Chu CM, Wei PL, Chang YJ
Prediction of novel target genes and pathways involved in irinotecan-resistant colorectal cancer.
PLoS One. 2017; 12(7):e0180616 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Acquired drug resistance to the chemotherapeutic drug irinotecan (the active metabolite of which is SN-38) is one of the significant obstacles in the treatment of advanced colorectal cancer (CRC). The molecular mechanism or targets mediating irinotecan resistance are still unclear. It is urgent to find the irinotecan response biomarkers to improve CRC patients' therapy.
METHODS: Genetic Omnibus Database GSE42387 which contained the gene expression profiles of parental and irinotecan-resistant HCT-116 cell lines was used. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between parental and irinotecan-resistant cells, protein-protein interactions (PPIs), gene ontologies (GOs) and pathway analysis were performed to identify the overall biological changes. The most common DEGs in the PPIs, GOs and pathways were identified and were validated clinically by their ability to predict overall survival and disease free survival. The gene-gene expression correlation and gene-resistance correlation was also evaluated in CRC patients using The Cancer Genomic Atlas data (TCGA).
RESULTS: The 135 DEGs were identified of which 36 were upregulated and 99 were down regulated. After mapping the PPI networks, the GOs and the pathways, nine genes (GNAS, PRKACB, MECOM, PLA2G4C, BMP6, BDNF, DLG4, FGF2 and FGF9) were found to be commonly enriched. Signal transduction was the most significant GO and MAPK pathway was the most significant pathway. The five genes (FGF2, FGF9, PRKACB, MECOM and PLA2G4C) in the MAPK pathway were all contained in the signal transduction and the levels of those genes were upregulated. The FGF2, FGF9 and MECOM expression were highly associated with CRC patients' survival rate but not PRKACB and PLA2G4C. In addition, FGF9 was also associated with irinotecan resistance and poor disease free survival. FGF2, FGF9 and PRKACB were positively correlated with each other while MECOM correlated positively with FGF9 and PLA2G4C, and correlated negatively with FGF2 and PRKACB after doing gene-gene expression correlation.
CONCLUSION: Targeting the MAPK signal transduction pathway through the targeting of the FGF2, FGF9, MECOM, PLA2G4C and PRKACB might increase tumor responsiveness to irinotecan treatment.

McCallie BR, Parks JC, Griffin DK, et al.
Infertility diagnosis has a significant impact on the transcriptome of developing blastocysts.
Mol Hum Reprod. 2017; 23(8):549-556 [PubMed] Related Publications
STUDY QUESTION: Is the human blastocyst transcriptome associated with infertility diagnosis, specifically: polycystic ovaries (PCO), male factor (MF) and unexplained (UE)?
SUMMARY ANSWER: The global blastocyst transcriptome was significantly altered in association with a PCO, MF and UE infertility diagnosis.
WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY: Infertility diagnosis has an impact on the probability for a successful outcome following an IVF cycle. Limited information is known regarding the relationship between a specific infertility diagnosis and blastocyst transcription during preimplantation development.
STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION: Blastocysts created during infertility treatment from patients with specific infertility diagnoses (PCO, MF and UE) were analyzed for global transcriptome compared to fertile donor oocyte blastocysts (control).
PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, METHODS: Surplus cryopreserved blastocysts were donated with patient consent and institutional review board approval. Female patients were <38 years old with male patients <40 years old. Blastocysts were grouped according to infertility diagnosis: PCO (n = 50), MF (n = 50), UE (n = 50) and fertile donor oocyte controls (n = 50). Pooled blastocysts were lysed for RNA isolation followed by microarray analysis using the SurePrint G3 Human Gene Expression Microarray. Validation was performed on significant genes of interest using real-time quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR).
MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE: Transcription alterations were observed for all infertility etiologies compared to controls, resulting in differentially expressed genes: PCO = 869, MF = 348 and UE = 473 (P < 0.05; >2-fold). Functional annotation of biological and molecular processes revealed both similarities, as well as differences, across the infertility groups. All infertility etiologies displayed transcriptome alterations in signal transducer activity, receptor binding, reproduction, cell adhesion and response to stimulus. Blastocysts from PCO patients were also enriched for apoptotic genes while MF blastocysts displayed enrichment for genes involved in cancer processes. Blastocysts from couples with unexplained infertility displayed transcription alterations related to various disease states, which included mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) and adipocytokine signaling. RT-qPCR validation confirmed differential gene expression for the following genes: BCL2 like 10 (BCL2L10), heat shock protein family A member 1A (HSPA1A), heat shock protein family A member 1B (HSPA1B), activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3), fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9), left-right determination factor 1 (LEFTY1), left-right determination factor 2 (LEFTY2), growth differentiation factor 15 (GDF15), inhibin beta A subunit (INHBA), adherins junctions associated protein 1 (AJAP1), cadherin 9 (CDH9) and laminin subunit alpha 4 (LAMA4) (P < 0.05; >2-fold).
LARGE SCALE DATA: Not available due to participant privacy.
LIMITATIONS, REASONS FOR CAUTION: Blastocyst samples for microarray analysis required pooling. While this allows for an overall average in each infertility etiology group and can reduce noise from sample-to-sample variation, it cannot give a detailed analysis of each blastocyst within the group.
WIDER IMPLICATIONS OF THE FINDINGS: Underlying patient infertility diagnosis has an impact on the blastocyst transcriptome, modifying gene expression associated with developmental competence and implantation potential.
STUDY FUNDING AND COMPETING INTEREST(S): No conflict of interest or outside funding provided.

Siegfried JM, Farooqui M, Rothenberger NJ, et al.
Interaction between the estrogen receptor and fibroblast growth factor receptor pathways in non-small cell lung cancer.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(15):24063-24076 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The estrogen receptor (ER) promotes non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) proliferation. Since fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) are known regulators of stem cell markers in ER positive breast cancer, we investigated whether a link between the ER, FGFs, and stem cell markers exists in NSCLC. In lung preneoplasias and adenomas of tobacco carcinogen exposed mice, the anti-estrogen fulvestrant and/or the aromatase inhibitor anastrozole blocked FGF2 and FGF9 secretion, and reduced expression of the stem cell markers SOX2 and nanog. Mice administered β-estradiol during carcinogen exposure showed increased FGF2, FGF9, SOX2, and Nanog expression in airway preneoplasias. In normal FGFR1 copy number NSCLC cell lines, multiple FGFR receptors were expressed and secreted several FGFs. β-estradiol caused enhanced FGF2 release, which was blocked by fulvestrant. Upon co-inhibition of ER and FGFRs using fulvestrant and the pan-FGFR inhibitor AZD4547, phosphorylation of FRS2, the FGFR docking protein, was maximally reduced, and enhanced anti-proliferative effects were observed. Combined AZD4547 and fulvestrant enhanced lung tumor xenograft growth inhibition and decreased Ki67 and stem cell marker expression. To verify a link between ERβ, the predominant ER in NSCLC, and FGFR signaling in patient tumors, mRNA analysis was performed comparing high versus low ERβ expressing tumors. The top differentially expressed genes in high ERβ tumors involved FGF signaling and human embryonic stem cell pluripotency. These results suggest interaction between the ER and FGFR pathways in NSCLC promotes a stem-like state. Combined FGFR and ER inhibition may increase the efficacy of FGFR inhibitors for NSCLC patients lacking FGFR genetic alterations.

Sinha S, Mundy C, Bechtold T, et al.
Unsuspected osteochondroma-like outgrowths in the cranial base of Hereditary Multiple Exostoses patients and modeling and treatment with a BMP antagonist in mice.
PLoS Genet. 2017; 13(4):e1006742 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Hereditary Multiple Exostoses (HME) is a rare pediatric disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in the genes encoding the heparan sulfate (HS)-synthesizing enzymes EXT1 or EXT2. HME is characterized by formation of cartilaginous outgrowths-called osteochondromas- next to the growth plates of many axial and appendicular skeletal elements. Surprisingly, it is not known whether such tumors also form in endochondral elements of the craniofacial skeleton. Here, we carried out a retrospective analysis of cervical spine MRI and CT scans from 50 consecutive HME patients that included cranial skeletal images. Interestingly, nearly half of the patients displayed moderate defects or osteochondroma-like outgrowths in the cranial base and specifically in the clivus. In good correlation, osteochondromas developed in the cranial base of mutant Ext1f/f;Col2-CreER or Ext1f/f;Aggrecan-CreER mouse models of HME along the synchondrosis growth plates. Osteochondroma formation was preceded by phenotypic alteration of cells at the chondro-perichondrial boundary and was accompanied by ectopic expression of major cartilage matrix genes -collagen 2 and collagen X- within the growing ectopic masses. Because chondrogenesis requires bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling, we asked whether osteochondroma formation could be blocked by a BMP signaling antagonist. Systemic administration with LDN-193189 effectively inhibited osteochondroma growth in conditional Ext1-mutant mice. In vitro studies with mouse embryo chondrogenic cells clarified the mechanisms of LDN-193189 action that turned out to include decreases in canonical BMP signaling pSMAD1/5/8 effectors but interestingly, concurrent increases in such anti-chondrogenic mechanisms as pERK1/2 and Chordin, Fgf9 and Fgf18 expression. Our study is the first to reveal that the cranial base can be affected in patients with HME and that osteochondroma formation is amenable to therapeutic drug intervention.

Wang Q, Liu S, Zhao X, et al.
MiR-372-3p promotes cell growth and metastasis by targeting FGF9 in lung squamous cell carcinoma.
Cancer Med. 2017; 6(6):1323-1330 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The aim of this study was to study the role of miR-372-3p in lung squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC) cell proliferation and invasion by suppressing FGF9. RT-PCR was used to determine miR-372-3p and FGF9 mRNA expression in tissues and cells. Western blot was used to determine FGF9 expression in tissues and NCI-H520 cell line. Dual luciferase reporter gene assay was conducted to confirm that FGF9 can be directly targeted by miR-372-3p. MTT, colony formation assays were conducted to investigate the effects of ectopic miR-372-3p and FGF9 expression on NCI-H520 cell growth. Flow cytometry was used to analyze the influence of miR-372-3p and FGF9 expression on cell cycle distribution and apoptosis. Transwell assay was also conducted to see the effects of miR-372-3p and FGF9 expression on NCI-H520 cell invasiveness. MiR-372-3p was found significantly overexpressed in both LSCC tissues and cell lines, whereas FGF9 mRNA was found underexpressed in LSCC tissues. MiR-372-3p directly bound to wild-type FGF9 mRNA 3'UTR, therefore led to the reduction in FGF9 expression. The upregulation of FGF9 or the downregulation of miR-372-3p substantially retarded LSCC cell growth, mitosis, and invasion. MiR-372-3p enhanced LSCC cell proliferation and invasion through inhibiting FGF9.

Mizukami T, Togashi Y, Naruki S, et al.
Significance of FGF9 gene in resistance to anti-EGFR therapies targeting colorectal cancer: A subset of colorectal cancer patients with FGF9 upregulation may be resistant to anti-EGFR therapies.
Mol Carcinog. 2017; 56(1):106-117 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although fibroblast growth factor (FGF) signals are strongly associated with malignancy, limited information is available regarding the role of the FGF9 signal in colorectal cancer (CRC). In this study, we investigated the frequency of FGF9 amplification in CRC clinical specimens and the association between the FGF9 gene and resistance to anti-EGFR therapies. In clinical samples, an FGF9 copy number gain of >5 copies was observed at a frequency of 8/145 (5.5%) and tended to be related to wild-type KRAS (7/96, 7.3%). Furthermore, FGF9 amplification was not observed in any of the samples from the 15 responders to anti-EGFR therapies but was observed in one sample from the seven non-responders with wild-type KRAS, and two samples from non-responders also had high FGF9 mRNA expression levels. FGF9 amplification was validated using a fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis, and FGF9-amplified sections showed readily detectable signals originating from FGF9 protein when examined using immunohistochemistry. In both the in vitro and in vivo experiments using FGF9-overexpressing CRC cell lines, FGF9 overexpression induced strong resistance to anti-EGFR therapies via the enforced FGFR signal, and this resistance was cancelled by the application of an FGFR inhibitor. Considering these results, the FGF9 gene may play an important role in resistance to anti-EGFR therapies in patients with CRC, and such resistance might be overcome by combined treatment with an anti-FGFR inhibitor. These findings strongly encourage the development of FGFR-targeted therapy for CRC patients with FGF9 gene upregulation. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Dahl NA, Sheil A, Knapke S, Geller JI
Gardner Fibroma: Clinical and Histopathologic Implications of Germline APC Mutation Association.
J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2016; 38(5):e154-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
The proportion and clinical characteristics of Gardner fibromas (GAFs) that are sporadic versus familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP)-associated have not been clearly established. We report on 7 patients diagnosed with GAF who underwent APC sequencing and duplication/deletion testing. Three (43%) were found to have underlying APC germline perturbations consistent with FAP; these patients had multifocal (1) or large; unresectable (2) GAFs. The 4 patients with negative APC testing each had a single resectable GAF. β-catenin reactivity was noted in all FAP-associated GAFs and in 1/4 APC wild-type cases. FAP-associated GAFs may be less common than sporadic GAFs and can demonstrate clinically distinct features.

Yin H, Frontini MJ, Arpino JM, et al.
Fibroblast Growth Factor 9 Imparts Hierarchy and Vasoreactivity to the Microcirculation of Renal Tumors and Suppresses Metastases.
J Biol Chem. 2015; 290(36):22127-42 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Tumor vessel normalization has been proposed as a therapeutic paradigm. However, normal microvessels are hierarchical and vasoreactive with single file transit of red blood cells through capillaries. Such a network has not been identified in malignant tumors. We tested whether the chaotic tumor microcirculation could be reconfigured by the mesenchyme-selective growth factor, FGF9. Delivery of FGF9 to renal tumors in mice yielded microvessels that were covered by pericytes, smooth muscle cells, and a collagen-fortified basement membrane. This was associated with reduced pulmonary metastases. Intravital microvascular imaging revealed a haphazard web of channels in control tumors but a network of arterioles, bona fide capillaries, and venules in FGF9-expressing tumors. Moreover, whereas vasoreactivity was absent in control tumors, arterioles in FGF9-expressing tumors could constrict and dilate in response to adrenergic and nitric oxide releasing agents, respectively. These changes were accompanied by reduced hypoxia in the tumor core and reduced expression of the angiogenic factor VEGF-A. FGF9 was found to selectively amplify a population of PDGFRβ-positive stromal cells in the tumor and blocking PDGFRβ prevented microvascular differentiation by FGF9 and also worsened metastases. We conclude that harnessing local mesenchymal stromal cells with FGF9 can differentiate the tumor microvasculature to an extent not observed previously.

Zhang L, Yu H, Badzio A, et al.
Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor 1 and Related Ligands in Small-Cell Lung Cancer.
J Thorac Oncol. 2015; 10(7):1083-90 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Small-cell lung cancer (SCLC) accounts for 15% of all lung cancers and has been understudied for novel therapies. Signaling through fibroblast growth factors (FGF2, FGF9) and their high-affinity receptor has recently emerged as a contributing factor in the pathogenesis and progression of non-small-cell lung cancer. In this study, we evaluated fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1) and ligand expression in primary SCLC samples.
METHODS: FGFR1 protein expression, messenger RNA (mRNA) levels, and gene copy number were determined by immunohistochemistry (IHC), mRNA in situ hybridization, and silver in situ hybridization, respectively, in primary tumors from 90 patients with SCLC. Protein and mRNA expression of the FGF2 and FGF9 ligands were determined by IHC and mRNA in situ hybridization, respectively. In addition, a second cohort of 24 SCLC biopsy samples with known FGFR1 amplification by fluorescence in situ hybridization was assessed for FGFR1 protein expression by IHC. Spearman correlation analysis was performed to evaluate associations of FGFR1, FGF2 and FGF9 protein levels, respective mRNA levels, and FGFR1 gene copy number.
RESULTS: FGFR1 protein expression by IHC demonstrated a significant correlation with FGFR1 mRNA levels (p < 0.0001) and FGFR1 gene copy number (p = 0.03). The prevalence of FGFR1 mRNA positivity was 19.7%. FGFR1 mRNA expression correlated with both FGF2 (p = 0.0001) and FGF9 (p = 0.002) mRNA levels, as well as with FGF2 (p = 0.01) and FGF9 (p = 0.001) protein levels. There was no significant association between FGFR1 and ligands with clinical characteristics or prognosis. In the second cohort of specimens with known FGFR1 amplification by fluorescence in situ hybridization, 23 of 24 had adequate tumor by IHC, and 73.9% (17 of 23) were positive for FGFR1 protein expression.
CONCLUSIONS: A subset of SCLCs is characterized by potentially activated FGF/FGFR1 pathways, as evidenced by positive FGF2, FGF9, and FGFR1 protein and/or mRNA expression. FGFR1 protein expression is correlated with FGFR1 mRNA levels and FGFR1 gene copy number. Combined analysis of FGFR1 and ligand expression may allow selection of patients with SCLC to FGFR1 inhibitor therapy.

Yin Y, Castro AM, Hoekstra M, et al.
Fibroblast Growth Factor 9 Regulation by MicroRNAs Controls Lung Development and Links DICER1 Loss to the Pathogenesis of Pleuropulmonary Blastoma.
PLoS Genet. 2015; 11(5):e1005242 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Pleuropulmonary Blastoma (PPB) is the primary neoplastic manifestation of a pediatric cancer predisposition syndrome that is associated with several diseases including cystic nephroma, Wilms tumor, neuroblastoma, rhabdomyosarcoma, medulloblastoma, and ovarian Sertoli-Leydig cell tumor. The primary pathology of PPB, epithelial cysts with stromal hyperplasia and risk for progression to a complex primitive sarcoma, is associated with familial heterozygosity and lesion-associated epithelial loss-of-heterozygosity of DICER1. It has been hypothesized that loss of heterozygosity of DICER1 in lung epithelium is a non-cell autonomous etiology of PPB and a critical pathway that regulates lung development; however, there are no known direct targets of epithelial microRNAs (miRNAs) in the lung. Fibroblast Growth Factor 9 (FGF9) is expressed in the mesothelium and epithelium during lung development and primarily functions to regulate lung mesenchyme; however, there are no known mechanisms that regulate FGF9 expression during lung development. Using mouse genetics and molecular phenotyping of human PPB tissue, we show that FGF9 is overexpressed in lung epithelium in the initial multicystic stage of Type I PPB and that in mice lacking epithelial Dicer1, or induced to overexpress epithelial Fgf9, increased Fgf9 expression results in pulmonary mesenchymal hyperplasia and a multicystic architecture that is histologically and molecularly indistinguishable from Type I PPB. We further show that miR-140 is expressed in lung epithelium, regulates epithelial Fgf9 expression, and regulates pseudoglandular stages of lung development. These studies identify an essential miRNA-FGF9 pathway for lung development and a non-cell autonomous signaling mechanism that contributes to the mesenchymal hyperplasia that is characteristic of Type I PPB.

Sun C, Fukui H, Hara K, et al.
FGF9 from cancer-associated fibroblasts is a possible mediator of invasion and anti-apoptosis of gastric cancer cells.
BMC Cancer. 2015; 15:333 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs), which reside around tumor cells, are suggested to play a pivotal role in tumor progression. Here we performed microarray analyses to compare gene expression profiles between CAFs and non-cancerous gastric fibroblasts (NGFs) from a patient with gastric cancer and found that fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9) was a novel growth factor overexpressed in CAFs. We then examined the biological effects of FGF9 during progression of gastric cancer.
METHODS: Expression of FGF9 in CAFs and NGFs, and their secreted products, were examined by Western blotting. The effects of FGF9 on AGS and MKN28 gastric cancer cells in terms of proliferation, invasion and anti-apoptosis were assessed by WST-1 assay, invasion chamber assay and FACS, respectively. Furthermore, the intracellular signaling by which FGF9 exerts its biological roles was examined in vitro.
RESULTS: FGF9 was strongly expressed in CAFs in comparison with NGFs, being compatible with microarray data indicating that FGF9 was a novel growth factor overexpressed in CAFs. Treatment with FGF9 promoted invasion and anti-apoptosis through activation of the ERK and Akt signaling pathways in AGS and MKN28 cells, whereas these effects were attenuated by treatment with anti-FGF9 neutralizing antibody. In addition, FGF9 treatment significantly enhanced the expression of matrix metalloproteinase 7 (MMP7) in both cell lines.
CONCLUSIONS: FGF9 is a possible mediator secreted by CAFs that promotes the anti-apoptosis and invasive capability of gastric cancer cells.

Chen H, Ren C, Han C, et al.
Expression and prognostic value of miR-486-5p in patients with gastric adenocarcinoma.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(3):e0119384 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
MicroRNA (miR)-486-5p expression is often reduced in human cancers. However, its expression in gastric carcinoma and its relation to clinicopathological features and prognosis are unclear. Tissue microarrays were constructed from 84 patients with gastric adenocarcinoma (GC) who were undergoing radical resection. miR-486-5p expression was detected by miRNA-locked nucleic acid in situ hybridization, and its correlations with clinicopathological features and overall survival were analyzed. Bioinformatic studies predict that fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9) is a potential target gene of miR-486-5p. miR-486-5p was mainly located in the cytoplasm of GC cells and neighboring normal tissues. Compared with paracancerous normal tissue, miR-486-5p expression was decreased in 63.1% (53/84) of the GC samples, increased in 32.1% (27/84) and unchanged in 4.8% (4/84). FGF9 expression was decreased in 69.0% (58/84) of GC samples and increased in 31.0% (26/84) compared with normal paracancerous tissues using immunohistochemical analysis. Low or unchanged miR-486-5p expression (P = 0.002), tumor stage (P = 0.001), tumor status (P = 0.001), node status (P = 0.001), tumor size (P = 0.004), and depth of tumor invasion (P = 0.013) were significant negative prognostic predictors for overall survival in patients with GC. After stratification according to American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) stage, low/unchanged miR-486-5p expression remained a significant predictor of poor survival in stage II (P = 0.024) and stage III (P = 0.003). Cox regression analysis identified the following predictors of poor prognosis: tumor status (hazard ratio [HR], 7.19; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.75-29.6; P = 0.006), stage (HR, 2.62; 95%CI, 1.50-4.59; P = 0.001), lymph node metastasis (HR, 2.52; 95% CI, 1.27-4.99; P = 0.008), low/unchanged miR-486-5p (HR, 2.47; 95% CI, 1.35-4.52; P = 0.003), high level of FGF9 (HR, 2.41; 95% CI, 1.42-4.09; P = 0.001) and tumor size (HR, 2.50; 95% CI, 1.30-4.82; P = 0.006). Low or unchanged expression of miR-486-5p compared with neighboring normal tissues was associated with a poor prognosis, while high expression was associated with a good prognosis in GC. miR-486-5p may thus be useful for evaluating prognosis and may provide a novel target treatment in patients with GC.

Guillaud-Bataille M, Ragazzon B, de Reyniès A, et al.
IGF2 promotes growth of adrenocortical carcinoma cells, but its overexpression does not modify phenotypic and molecular features of adrenocortical carcinoma.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(8):e103744 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) overexpression is an important molecular marker of adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC), which is a rare but devastating endocrine cancer. It is not clear whether IGF2 overexpression modifies the biology and growth of this cancer, thus more studies are required before IGF2 can be considered as a major therapeutic target. We compared the phenotypical, clinical, biological, and molecular characteristics of ACC with or without the overexpression of IGF2, to address these issues. We also carried out a similar analysis in an ACC cell line (H295R) in which IGF2 expression was knocked down with si- or shRNA. We found no significant differences in the clinical, biological and molecular (transcriptomic) traits between IGF2-high and IGF2-low ACC. The absence of IGF2 overexpression had little influence on the activation of tyrosine kinase pathways both in tumors and in H295 cells that express low levels of IGF2. In IGF2-low tumors, other growth factors (FGF9, PDGFA) are more expressed than in IGF2-high tumors, suggesting that they play a compensatory role in tumor progression. In addition, IGF2 knock-down in H295R cells substantially impaired growth (>50% inhibition), blocked cells in G1 phase, and promoted apoptosis (>2-fold). Finally, analysis of the 11p15 locus showed a paternal uniparental disomy in both IGF2-high and IGF2-low tumors, but low IGF2 expression could be explained in most IGF2-low ACC by an additional epigenetic modification at the 11p15 locus. Altogether, these observations confirm the active role of IGF2 in adrenocortical tumor growth, but also suggest that other growth promoting pathways may be involved in a subset of ACC with low IGF2 expression, which creates opportunities for the use of other targeted therapies.

Wynes MW, Hinz TK, Gao D, et al.
FGFR1 mRNA and protein expression, not gene copy number, predict FGFR TKI sensitivity across all lung cancer histologies.
Clin Cancer Res. 2014; 20(12):3299-309 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: FGFR1 gene copy number (GCN) is being evaluated as a biomarker for FGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) response in squamous cell lung cancers (SCC). The exclusive use of FGFR1 GCN for predicting FGFR TKI sensitivity assumes increased GCN is the only mechanism for biologically relevant increases in FGFR1 signaling. Herein, we tested whether FGFR1 mRNA and protein expression may serve as better biomarkers of FGFR TKI sensitivity in lung cancer.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Histologically diverse lung cancer cell lines were submitted to assays for ponatinib sensitivity, a potent FGFR TKI. A tissue microarray composed of resected lung tumors was submitted to FGFR1 GCN, and mRNA analyses and the results were validated with The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) lung cancer data.
RESULTS: Among 58 cell lines, 14 exhibited ponatinib sensitivity (IC50 values ≤ 50 nmol/L) that correlated with FGFR1 mRNA and protein expression, but not with FGFR1 GCN or histology. Moreover, ponatinib sensitivity associated with mRNA expression of the ligands, FGF2 and FGF9. In resected tumors, 22% of adenocarcinomas and 28% of SCCs expressed high FGFR1 mRNA. Importantly, only 46% of SCCs with increased FGFR1 GCN expressed high mRNA. Lung cancer TCGA data validated these findings and unveiled overlap of FGFR1 mRNA positivity with KRAS and PIK3CA mutations.
CONCLUSIONS: FGFR1 dependency is frequent across various lung cancer histologies, and FGFR1 mRNA may serve as a better biomarker of FGFR TKI response in lung cancer than FGFR1 GCN. The study provides important and timely insight into clinical testing of FGFR TKIs in lung cancer and other solid tumor types.

Chen TM, Shih YH, Tseng JT, et al.
Overexpression of FGF9 in colon cancer cells is mediated by hypoxia-induced translational activation.
Nucleic Acids Res. 2014; 42(5):2932-44 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Human fibroblast growth factor 9 (FGF9) is a potent mitogen involved in many physiological processes. Although FGF9 messenger RNA (mRNA) is ubiquitously expressed in embryos, FGF9 protein expression is generally low and restricted to a few adult organs. Aberrant expression of FGF9 usually results in human malignancies including cancers, but the mechanism remains largely unknown. Here, we report that FGF9 protein, but not mRNA, was increased in hypoxia. Two sequence elements, the upstream open reading frame (uORF) and the internal ribosome entry site (IRES), were identified in the 5' UTR of FGF9 mRNA. Functional assays indicated that FGF9 protein synthesis was normally controlled by uORF-mediated translational repression, which kept the protein at a low level, but was upregulated in response to hypoxia through a switch to IRES-dependent translational control. Our data demonstrate that FGF9 IRES functions as a cellular switch to turn FGF9 protein synthesis 'on' during hypoxia, a likely mechanism underlying FGF9 overexpression in cancer cells. Finally, we provide evidence to show that hypoxia-induced translational activation promotes FGF9 protein expression in colon cancer cells. Altogether, this dynamic working model may provide a new direction in anti-tumor therapies and cancer intervention.

Deng M, Tang HL, Lu XH, et al.
miR-26a suppresses tumor growth and metastasis by targeting FGF9 in gastric cancer.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(8):e72662 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The role of miR-26a in cancer cells seemed controversial in previous studies. Until now, the role of miR-26a in gastric cancer remains undefined. In this study, we found that miR-26a was strongly downregulated in gastric cancer (GC) tissues and cell lines, and its expression levels were associated with lymph node metastasis and clinical stage, as well as overall survival and replase-free survival of GC. We also found that ectopic expression of miR-26a inhibited GC cell proliferation and GC metastasis in vitro and in vivo. We further identified a novel mechanism of miR-26a to suppress GC growth and metastasis. FGF9 was proved to be a direct target of miR-26a, using luciferase assay and western blot. FGF9 overexpression in miR-26a-expressing cells could rescue invasion and growth defects of miR-26a. In addition, miR-26a expression inversely correlated with FGF9 protein levels in GC. Taken together, our data suggest that miR-26a functions as a tumor suppressor in GC development and progression, and holds promise as a prognostic biomarker and potential therapeutic target for GC.

De Martino MC, Al Ghuzlan A, Aubert S, et al.
Molecular screening for a personalized treatment approach in advanced adrenocortical cancer.
J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2013; 98(10):4080-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
CONTEXT: Adrenocortical cancer (ACC) is a rare cancer with poor prognosis and scant treatment options. In ACC, no personalized approach has emerged but no extensive molecular screening has been performed to date.
OBJECTIVE: The objective of the study was to evaluate the presence of a large number of potentially targetable molecular events in a large cohort of advanced ACC.
DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: We used hot spot gene sequencing (Ion Torrent, 40 patients) and comparative genomic hybridization (CGH; 28 patients; a subset of the entire cohort) in adult stage III-IV ACC samples to screen for mutations and copy number abnormalities of potential interest for therapeutic use in 46 and 130 genes, respectively.
RESULTS: At least one copy number alteration or mutation was found in 19 patients (47.5%). The most frequent mutations were detected on TP53, ATM, and CTNNB1 [6 of 40 (15%), 5 of 40 (12.5%), and 4 of 40 (10%), respectively]. The most frequent copy number alterations identified were: amplification of the CDK4 oncogene (5 of 28; 17.9%) and deletion of the CDKN2A (4 of 28; 14.3%) and CDKN2B (3 of 28; 10.7%) tumor suppressor genes. Amplifications of FGFR1, FGF9, or FRS2 were discovered in three subjects (10.7%). Associated alterations were: deletions of CDKN2A, CDKN2B with ATM mutations, and TP53 mutations with CTNNB1 mutations.
CONCLUSIONS: No simple targetable molecular event emerged. Drugs targeting the cell cycle could be the most relevant new therapeutic approach for patients with advanced ACC. Inhibitors of the fibroblast growth factor receptor pathway could also be a therapeutic option in a subset of patients, whereas other targeted therapies should be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Ishigami T, Hida Y, Matsudate Y, et al.
The involvement of fibroblast growth factor receptor signaling pathways in dermatofibroma and dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans.
J Med Invest. 2013; 60(1-2):106-13 [PubMed] Related Publications
Fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) and their receptors (FGFRs) control a wide range of biological functions; however, their involvement in the pathogenesis of dermatofibroma (DF) and dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP) is currently unknown. In this study, we first confirmed the histological diagnosis by detecting fusion COL1A1-PDGFB transcripts in DFSP, and examined the expression of all FGFRs (FGFR1-4), some of their ligands (FGF1, 2, 9), and forkhead box N1 (FOXN1) as a downstream target of FGFR3 in DF and DFSP by immunohistochemical analysis. Although we failed to detect the expression of FGF1 and FGF9 as specific ligands for FGFR3 in DF, overexpression of FGFR3 and FOXN1 was observed in the epidermal regions of DF, suggesting that the epidermal regions of DF were similar to seborrhoeic keratosis both in terms of histological features and the activation of FGFR3/FOXN1. In addition, strong expression of FGF2 and FGFR4 was observed in the tumor lesions of DF. Expression patterns of FGFR3/FOXN1 and FGF2/FGFR4 in DF were in contrast with those of DFSP. The activation of FGFR signaling pathways may be not only relevant to the pathogenesis of DF, but also very useful in the differential diagnosis of DF and DFSP.

Forrester HB, Temple-Smith P, Ham S, et al.
Genome-wide analysis using exon arrays demonstrates an important role for expression of extra-cellular matrix, fibrotic control and tissue remodelling genes in Dupuytren's disease.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(3):e59056 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Dupuytren's disease (DD) is a classic example of pathological fibrosis which results in a debilitating disorder affecting a large sector of the human population. It is characterized by excessive local proliferation of fibroblasts and over-production of collagen and other components of extracellular matrix (ECM) in the palmar fascia. The fibrosis progressively results in contracture of elements between the palmar fascia and skin causing flexion deformity or clawing of the fingers and a severe reduction in hand function. While much is known about the pathogenesis and surgical treatment of DD, little is known about the factors that cause its onset and progression, despite many years of research. Gene expression patterns in DD patients now offers the potential to identify genes that direct the pathogenesis of DD. In this study we used primary cultures of fibroblasts derived from excisional biopsies of fibrotic tissue from DD patients to compare the gene expression profiles on a genome-wide basis with normal control fibroblasts. Our investigations have identified genes that may be involved with DD pathogenesis including some which are directly relevant to fibrosis. In particular, these include significantly reduced expression levels of three matrix metallopeptidases (MMP1, MMP3, MMP16), follistatin, and STAT1, and significantly increased expression levels of fibroblast growth factors (FGF9, FGF11), a number of collagen genes and other ECM genes in DD patient samples. Many of these gene products are known to be involved in fibrosis, tumour formation and in the normal processes of tissue remodelling. In addition, alternative splicing was identified in some DD associated genes. These highly sensitive genomic investigations provide new insight into the molecular mechanisms that may underpin the development and progression of DD.

Chan DW, Mak CS, Leung TH, et al.
Down-regulation of Sox7 is associated with aberrant activation of Wnt/b-catenin signaling in endometrial cancer.
Oncotarget. 2012; 3(12):1546-56 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Although the mortality rate of endometrial cancer is comparatively low in gynecologic malignancies, a rising trend of this cancer has been observed for the past decade. The understanding of the molecular mechanism will favor for the clinical management of this disease. Aberrant activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway plays a major role in the pathogenesis of endometrioid adenocarcinoma including this cancer type. In this study, we reported that Sox7, one of Sox transcriptional factors, was frequently underexpressed in endometrial cancer and importantly, it was associated with dysregulation of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling activity. Immunohistochemical and quantitative RT-PCR analyses showed that Sox7 was underexpressed and was associated with high-grade tumor (P=0.021), increased expressions of β-catenin (P=0.038) and its downstream targets; CyclinD1 (P less than 0.001) and FGF9 (P less than 0.001). In addition, using HEK293T cell model, we found that Sox7 was able to inhibit TCF/LEF-1-dependent luciferase activity induced by Wnt-1. This was further proved by that Sox7 could significantly suppress the expressions of Wnt targets; Cyclin D1 and C-myc in endometrial cells. Immuno-fluorescent microscopy revealed that Sox7 was co-localizaed with either mutant β-catenin or TCF4 protein in nucleus, while co-immunopreciptation assay demonstrated that Sox7 could physically interact with not only wild-type but also mutant β-catenin, as well as TCF4 proteins. Functionally, enforced expression of Sox7 could significantly inhibit endometrial or endometrioid ovarian cancer cells (OEA) harboring either wild-type or mutant β-catenin. These data suggest Sox7 is a negative regulator of Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway through impeding the transcriptional machinery of β-catenin/TCF/LEF-1 transcriptional complex, and the loss of expression may be involved in the pathogenesis of endometrial cancer.

Tang H, Bian Y, Tu C, et al.
The miR-183/96/182 cluster regulates oxidative apoptosis and sensitizes cells to chemotherapy in gliomas.
Curr Cancer Drug Targets. 2013; 13(2):221-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
Many microRNAs reside in clusters in the genome, are generally similar in sequence, are transcribed in the same direction, and usually function synergistically. The miR-183/96/182 cluster is composed of 3 miRNA genes, and increased expression of miR-183, 96 and 182 are implicated in glioma carcinogenesis. Knockdown of individual components or of the entire miR-183/96/182 cluster inhibits the survival of glioma cells by regulating the ROS-induced apoptosis pathway. Furthermore, inhibition of the miR-183/96/182 cluster induced ROS-mediated AKT/survival independent of three target genes FGF9, CPEB1, and FOXO1, and inhibition of the miRNA cluster induced p53/apoptosis signaling, which was dependent on these same genes. In addition, knockdown of the miR-183/96/182 cluster enhanced the anticancer effect of Temozolomide on glioma cells by the ROS-mediated apoptosis pathway. Therefore, the miR-183/96/182 cluster may be a pleiotropic target for glioma therapy.

Fritz V, Brondello JM, Gordeladze JO, et al.
Bone-metastatic prostate carcinoma favors mesenchymal stem cell differentiation toward osteoblasts and reduces their osteoclastogenic potential.
J Cell Biochem. 2011; 112(11):3234-45 [PubMed] Related Publications
Bone homeostasis is achieved by the balance between osteoclast-dependent bone resorption and osteoblastic events involving differentiation of adult mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Prostate carcinoma (PC) cells display the propensity to metastasize to bone marrow where they disrupt bone homeostasis as a result of mixed osteolytic and osteoblastic lesions. The PC-dependent activation of osteoclasts represents the initial step of tumor engraftment into bone, followed by an accelerated osteoblastic activity and exaggerated bone formation. However, the interactions between PC cells and MSCs and their participation in the disease progression remain as yet unclear. In this study, we show that bone metastatic PC-3 carcinoma cells release factors that increase the expression by human (h)MSCs of several known pro-osteoblastic commitment factors, such as α5/β1 integrins, fibronectin, and osteoprotegerin. As a consequence, as shown in an osteogenesis assay, hMSCs treated with conditioned medium (C(ed) M) derived from PC-3 cells have an enhanced potential to differentiate into osteoblasts, as compared to hMSCs treated with control medium or with C(ed) M from non-metastatic 22RV1 cells. We demonstrate that FGF-9, one of the factors produced by PC-3 cells, is involved in this process. Furthermore, we show that PC-3 C(ed) M decreases the pro-osteoclastic activity of hMSCs. Altogether, these findings allow us to propose clues to understand the mechanisms by which PC favors bone synthesis by regulating MSC outcome and properties.

Leushacke M, Spörle R, Bernemann C, et al.
An RNA interference phenotypic screen identifies a role for FGF signals in colon cancer progression.
PLoS One. 2011; 6(8):e23381 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
In tumor cells, stepwise oncogenic deregulation of signaling cascades induces alterations of cellular morphology and promotes the acquisition of malignant traits. Here, we identified a set of 21 genes, including FGF9, as determinants of tumor cell morphology by an RNA interference phenotypic screen in SW480 colon cancer cells. Using a panel of small molecular inhibitors, we subsequently established phenotypic effects, downstream signaling cascades, and associated gene expression signatures of FGF receptor signals. We found that inhibition of FGF signals induces epithelial cell adhesion and loss of motility in colon cancer cells. These effects are mediated via the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and Rho GTPase cascades. In agreement with these findings, inhibition of the MEK1/2 or JNK cascades, but not of the PI3K-AKT signaling axis also induced epithelial cell morphology. Finally, we found that expression of FGF9 was strong in a subset of advanced colon cancers, and overexpression negatively correlated with patients' survival. Our functional and expression analyses suggest that FGF receptor signals can contribute to colon cancer progression.

Schmid S, Bieber M, Zhang F, et al.
Wnt and hedgehog gene pathway expression in serous ovarian cancer.
Int J Gynecol Cancer. 2011; 21(6):975-80 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Ovarian cancer has very heterogeneous histological classification, and response to therapy of the same grade and type varies. We studied genes in the Wnt and hedgehog (Hh) pathways, which are essential for embryonic development and which play critical roles in proliferation in a variety of human cancers. Variations in these pathway genes causing proliferation could play a role in the variation in tumor progression and response to therapy.
METHODS/MATERIALS: Using real-time polymerase chain reaction, we studied 16 primary grade 3 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics stage III serous ovarian cancer samples for expression of the Wnt pathway gene AXIN2, fibroblast growth factor 9, and Hh pathway gene expressions of glioma-associated oncogene 1, glioma-associated oncogene 2, patched homolog 1, patched homolog 2, Indian Hedgehog (HH), sonic HH, and Smoothened, a G protein-coupled receptor protein. Normal ovary epithelial cell line was used as control.
RESULTS: We found wide variation of up-regulation of pathway component and target genes in the primary tumor samples and apparent cross talk between the pathways. AXIN2, a Wnt target gene, showed increased expression in all serous ovarian cancer samples. Fibroblast growth factor 9 was also overexpressed in all tumors with greater than 1000-fold increase in gene expression in 4 tumors. Expression of Hh pathway genes varied greatly. More than half of the tumor samples showed involvement of Hh signaling or pathway activation either by expression of transcription factors and Hh ligands or by overexpression of Indian HH/sonic HH and the receptor-encoding patched homolog 1/patched homolog 2.
CONCLUSION: We found a wide variation in fold expression of genes involved in the Wnt and Hh pathway between patient samples.

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