Gene Summary

Gene:FGFR1OP; FGFR1 oncogene partner
Aliases: FOP
Summary:This gene encodes a largely hydrophilic centrosomal protein that is required for anchoring microtubules to subcellular structures. A t(6;8)(q27;p11) chromosomal translocation, fusing this gene and the fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1) gene, has been found in cases of myeloproliferative disorder. The resulting chimeric protein contains the N-terminal leucine-rich region of this encoded protein fused to the catalytic domain of FGFR1. Alterations in this gene may also be associated with Crohn's disease, Graves' disease, and vitiligo. Alternatively spliced transcript variants that encode different proteins have been identified. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2013]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:FGFR1 oncogene partner
Source:NCBIAccessed: 16 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 16 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 16 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (6)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: FGFR1OP (cancer-related)

Saleh AJ, Soltani BM, Dokanehiifard S, et al.
Experimental verification of a predicted novel microRNA located in human PIK3CA gene with a potential oncogenic function in colorectal cancer.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(10):14089-14101 [PubMed] Related Publications
PI3K/AKT signaling is involved in cell survival, proliferation, and migration. In this pathway, PI3Kα enzyme is composed of a regulatory protein encoded by p85 gene and a catalytic protein encoded by PIK3CA gene. Human PIK3CA locus is amplified in several cancers including lung and colorectal cancer (CRC). Therefore, microRNAs (miRNAs) that are encoded within the PIK3CA gene might have a role in cancer development. Here, we report a novel microRNA named PIK3CA-miR1 (EBI accession no. LN626315), which is located within PIK3CA gene. A DNA segment corresponding to PIK3CA-premir1 sequence was transfected in human cell lines that resulted in generation of mature exogenous PIK3CA-miR1. Following the overexpression of PIK3CA-miR1, its predicted target genes (APPL1 and TrkC) were significantly downregulated in the CRC-originated HCT116 and SW480 cell lines, detected by qRT-PCR. Then, dual luciferase assay supported the interaction of PIK3CA-miR1 with APPL1 and TrkC transcripts. Endogenous PIK3CA-miR1 expression was also detected in several cell lines (highly in HCT116 and SW480) and highly in CRC specimens. Consistently, overexpression of PIK3CA-premir1 in HCT116 and SW480 cells resulted in significant reduction of the sub-G1 cell distribution and apoptotic cell rate, as detected by flowcytometry, and resulted in increased cell proliferation, as detected by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. PIK3CA-miR1 overexpression also resulted in Wnt signaling upregulation detected by Top/Fop assay. Overall, accumulative evidences indicated the presence of a bona fide novel onco-miRNA encoded within the PIK3CA oncogene, which is highly expressed in colorectal cancer and has a survival effect in CRC-originated cells.

Katoh M
FGFR inhibitors: Effects on cancer cells, tumor microenvironment and whole-body homeostasis (Review).
Int J Mol Med. 2016; 38(1):3-15 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Fibroblast growth factor (FGF)2, FGF4, FGF7 and FGF20 are representative paracrine FGFs binding to heparan-sulfate proteoglycan and fibroblast growth factor receptors (FGFRs), whereas FGF19, FGF21 and FGF23 are endocrine FGFs binding to Klotho and FGFRs. FGFR1 is relatively frequently amplified and overexpressed in breast and lung cancer, and FGFR2 in gastric cancer. BCR-FGFR1, CNTRL-FGFR1, CUX1-FGFR1, FGFR1OP-FGFR1, MYO18A-FGFR1 and ZMYM2-FGFR1 fusions in myeloproliferative neoplasms are non-receptor-type FGFR kinases, whereas FGFR1-TACC1, FGFR2-AFF3, FGFR2-BICC1, FGFR2-PPHLN1, FGFR3-BAIAP2L1 and FGFR3-TACC3 fusions in solid tumors are transmembrane-type FGFRs with C-terminal alterations. AZD4547, BGJ398 (infigratinib), Debio-1347 and dovitinib are FGFR1/2/3 inhibitors; BLU9931 is a selective FGFR4 inhibitor; FIIN-2, JNJ-42756493, LY2874455 and ponatinib are pan-FGFR inhibitors. AZD4547, dovitinib and ponatinib are multi-kinase inhibitors targeting FGFRs, colony stimulating factor 1 receptor (CSF1R), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)R2, and others. The tumor microenvironment consists of cancer cells and stromal/immune cells, such as cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs), endothelial cells, M2-type tumor-associating macrophages (M2-TAMs), myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) and regulatory T cells. FGFR inhibitors elicit antitumor effects directly on cancer cells, as well as indirectly through the blockade of paracrine signaling. The dual inhibition of FGF and CSF1 or VEGF signaling is expected to enhance the antitumor effects through the targeting of immune evasion and angiogenesis in the tumor microenvironment. Combination therapy using tyrosine kinase inhibitors (FGFR or CSF1R inhibitors) and immune checkpoint blockers (anti-PD-1 or anti-CTLA-4 monoclonal antibodies) may be a promising choice for cancer patients. The inhibition of FGF19-FGFR4 signaling is associated with a risk of liver toxicity, whereas the activation of FGF23-FGFR4 signaling is associated with a risk of heart toxicity. Endocrine FGF signaling affects the pathophysiology of cancer patients who are prescribed FGFR inhibitors. Whole-genome sequencing is necessary for the detection of promoter/enhancer alterations of FGFR genes and rare alterations of other genes causing FGFR overexpression. To sustain the health care system in an aging society, a benefit-cost analysis should be performed with a focus on disease-free survival and the total medical cost before implementing genome-based precision medicine for cancer patients.

Zhou F, Huo J, Liu Y, et al.
Elevated glucose levels impair the WNT/β-catenin pathway via the activation of the hexosamine biosynthesis pathway in endometrial cancer.
J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2016; 159:19-25 [PubMed] Related Publications
Endometrial cancer (EC) is one of the most common gynecological malignancies in the world. Associations between fasting glucose levels (greater than 5.6mmol/L) and the risk of cancer fatality have been reported. However, the underlying link between glucose metabolic disease and EC remains unclear. In the present study, we explored the influence of elevated glucose levels on the WNT/β-catenin pathway in EC. Previous studies have suggested that elevated concentrations of glucose can drive the hexosamine biosynthesis pathway (HBP) flux, thereby enhancing the O-GlcNAc modification of proteins. Here, we cultured EC cell lines, AN3CA and HEC-1-B, with various concentrations of glucose. Results showed that when treated with high levels of glucose, both lines showed increased expression of β-catenin and O-GlcNAcylation levels; however, these effects could be abolished by the HBP inhibitors, Azaserine and 6-Diazo-5-oxo-l-norleucine, and be restored by glucosamine. Moreover the AN3CA and HEC-1-B cells that were cultured with or without PUGNAc, an inhibitor of the O-GlcNAcase, showed that PUGNAc increased β-catenin levels. The results suggest that elevated glucose levels increase β-catenin expression via the activation of the HBP in EC cells. Subcellular fractionation experiments showed that AN3CA cells had a higher expression of intranuclear β-catenin in high glucose medium. Furthermore, TOP/FOP-Flash and RT-PCR results showed that glucose-induced increased expression of β-catenin triggered the transcription of target genes. In conclusion, elevated glucose levels, via HBP, increase the O-GlcNAcylation level, thereby inducing the over expression of β-catenin and subsequent transcription of the target genes in EC cells.

Kang X, Liu H, Onaitis MW, et al.
Polymorphisms of the centrosomal gene (FGFR1OP) and lung cancer risk: a meta-analysis of 14,463 cases and 44,188 controls.
Carcinogenesis. 2016; 37(3):280-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Centrosome abnormalities are often observed in premalignant lesions and in situ tumors and have been associated with aneuploidy and tumor development. We investigated the associations of 9354 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 106 centrosomal genes with lung cancer risk by first using the summary data from six published genome-wide association studies (GWASs) of the Transdisciplinary Research in Cancer of the Lung (TRICL) (12,160 cases and 16 838 controls) and then conducted in silico replication in two additional independent lung cancer GWASs of Harvard University (984 cases and 970 controls) and deCODE (1319 cases and 26,380 controls). A total of 44 significant SNPs with false discovery rate (FDR) ≤ 0.05 were mapped to one novel gene FGFR1OP and two previously reported genes (TUBB and BRCA2). After combined the results from TRICL with those from Harvard and deCODE, the most significant association (P combined = 8.032 × 10(-6)) was with rs151606 within FGFR1OP. The rs151606 T>G was associated with an increased risk of lung cancer [odds ratio (OR) = 1.10, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) = 1.05-1.14]. Another significant tagSNP rs12212247 T>C (P combined = 9.589 × 10(-6)) was associated with a decreased risk of lung cancer (OR = 0.93, 95% CI = 0.90-0.96). Further in silico functional analyzes revealed that rs151606 might affect transcriptional regulation and result in decreased FGFR1OP expression (P trend = 0.022). The findings shed some new light on the role of centrosome abnormalities in the susceptibility to lung carcinogenesis.

Ilmer M, Garnier A, Vykoukal J, et al.
Targeting the Neurokinin-1 Receptor Compromises Canonical Wnt Signaling in Hepatoblastoma.
Mol Cancer Ther. 2015; 14(12):2712-21 [PubMed] Related Publications
The substance P (SP)/NK-1 receptor (NK1R) complex represents an intriguing anticancer target for a variety of tumors, including hepatoblastoma (HB). Therefore, NK1R antagonists, such as the clinical drug aprepitant, recently have been proposed as potent anticancer agents. However, very little is known regarding the molecular basis of NK1R inhibition in cancer. Using reverse phase protein array, Western blot, Super TOP/FOP, confocal microscopy, and sphere formation ability (SFA) assays, we identified the AKT and Wnt signaling pathways as the key targets of aprepitant in three human HB cell lines (HepT1, HepG2, and HuH6). Following NK1R blockage, we observed decreased phosphorylation of p70S6K and 4E-BP1/2 and inhibition of the canonical Wnt pathway with subsequent decrease of HB cell growth. This effect was dependent of high baseline Wnt activity either by mutational status of β-catenin or extrinsic Wnt activation. Wnt inhibition seemed to be strengthened by disruption of the FOXM1-β-catenin complex. Furthermore, treatment of HB cells with aprepitant led to reduced expression of (liver) stemness markers (AFP, CD13, SOX2, NANOG, and OCT4) and SFA when grown under cancer stem cell conditions. Taken together, we show for the first time that targeting the SP/NK1R signaling cascade inhibits canonical Wnt signaling in HB cells. These findings reveal important insight into the molecular mechanisms of the SP/NK1R complex as a critical component in a model of pediatric liver cancer and may support the development of novel therapeutic interventions for HB and other Wnt-activated cancers.

Ma Y, Zhu B, Liu X, et al.
Inhibition of oleandrin on the proliferation show and invasion of osteosarcoma cells in vitro by suppressing Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2015; 34:115 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Osteosarcoma (OS) is a high-grade bone sarcoma with early metastasis potential, and the clinical chemotherapy drugs that are currently used for its treatment have some limitations. Recently, several studies have reported the selective antitumor effect of oleandrin on various tumor cells. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the effects and underlying mechanisms of oleandrin on OS cells.
METHODS: The effect of oleandrin on the proliferation, morphology, and apoptosis of U2OS and SaOS-2 cells were analyzed in vitro. The activity of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway was determined using a dual luciferase assay. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR and western blot assays were performed to evaluate the mRNA and total protein expression of the downstream target genes. Changes of β-catenin in intracellular localization were also explored using a western blot after separating the nucleus and cytoplasm proteins. The MMP-2 and MMP-9 enzymatic activities were determined using gelatin zymography.
RESULTS: Oleandrin significantly inhibited the proliferation and invasion of OS cells in vitro, and induced their apoptosis. After treatment with oleandrin, the TOP/FOP flash ratio in OS cells was noticeably decreased, which indicated that the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway was repressed. The expression of related Wnt target genes and total β-catenin was downregulated, and a reduced nuclear β-catenin level by oleandrin was observed as well. In addition, oleandrin suppressed the activities of MMP-2 and MMP-9.
CONCLUSIONS: Oleandrin, in vitro, exerted a strong antitumor effect on human OS cells by suppressing the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, which interfered with the proliferation and invasion of OS cells, as well as induced cells apoptosis. Moreover, the expression and activities of MMP-2 and MMP-9 were downregulated by oleandrin, which contributed to the cells' lower invasiveness.

Dong Z, Zhou L, Han N, et al.
Wnt/β-catenin pathway involvement in ionizing radiation-induced invasion of U87 glioblastoma cells.
Strahlenther Onkol. 2015; 191(8):672-80 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Radiotherapy has been reported to promote the invasion of glioblastoma cells; however, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we investigated the role of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway in radiation-induced invasion of glioblastoma cells.
METHODS: U87 cells were irradiated with 3 Gy or sham irradiated in the presence or absence of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway inhibitor XAV 939. Cell invasion was determined by an xCELLigence real-time cell analyser and matrigel invasion assays. The intracellular distribution of β-catenin in U87 cells with or without irradiation was examined by immunofluorescence and Western blotting of nuclear fractions. We next investigated the effect of irradiation on Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity using TOP/FOP flash luciferase assays and quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis of β-catenin target genes. The expression levels and activities of two target genes, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 and MMP-9, were examined further by Western blotting and zymography.
RESULTS: U87 cell invasiveness was increased significantly by ionizing radiation. Interestingly, ionizing radiation induced nuclear translocation and accumulation of β-catenin. Moreover, we found increased β-catenin/TCF transcriptional activities, followed by up-regulation of downstream genes in the Wnt/β-catenin pathway in irradiated U87 cells. Importantly, inhibition of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway by XAV 939, which promotes degradation of β-catenin, significantly abrogated the pro-invasion effects of irradiation. Mechanistically, XAV 939 suppressed ionizing radiation-triggered up-regulation of MMP-2 and MMP-9, and inhibited the activities of these gelatinases.
CONCLUSION: Our data demonstrate a pivotal role of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway in ionizing radiation-induced invasion of glioblastoma cells, and suggest that targeting β-catenin is a promising therapeutic approach to overcoming glioma radioresistance.

Ding SL, Yang ZW, Wang J, et al.
Integrative analysis of aberrant Wnt signaling in hepatitis B virus-related hepatocellular carcinoma.
World J Gastroenterol. 2015; 21(20):6317-28 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
AIM: To comprehensively understand the underlying molecular events accounting for aberrant Wnt signaling activation in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
METHODS: This study was retrospective. The HCC tissue specimens used in this research were obtained from patients who underwent liver surgery. The Catalogue of Somatic Mutations in Cancer (COSMIC) database was searched for the mutation statuses of CTNNB1, TP53, and protein degradation regulator genes of CTNNB1. Dual-luciferase reporter assay was performed with TOP/FOP reporters to detect whether TP53 gain-of-function (GOF) mutations could enhance the transcriptional activity of Wnt signaling. Methylation sensitive restriction enzyme-quantitative PCR was used to explore the methylation status of CpG islands located in the promoters of APC, SFRP1, and SFRP5 in HCCs with different risk factors. Finally, nested-reverse transcription PCR was performed to examine the integration of HBx in front of LINE1 element and the existence of HBx-LINE1 chimeric transcript in Hepatitis B virus-related HCC. All results in this article were analyzed with the software SPSS version 19.0 for Windows, and different groups were compared by χ(2) test as appropriate.
RESULTS: Based on the data from COSMIC database, compared with other solid tumors, mutation frequency of CTNNB1 was significantly higher in HCC (P < 0.01). The rate of CTNNB1 mutation was significantly less frequent in Hepatitis B virus-related HCC than in other etiologies (P < 0.01). Dual-luciferase reporter system and TOP/FOP reporter assays confirmed that TP53 GOF mutants were able to enhance the transcriptional ability of Wnt signaling. An exclusive relationship between the status of TP53 and CTNNB1 mutations was observed. However, according to the COSMIC database, TP53 GOF mutation is rare in HCC, which indicates that TP53 GOF mutation is not a reason for the aberrant activation of Wnt signaling in HCC. APC and AXIN1 were mutated in HCC. By using methylation sensitive restriction enzyme-quantitative PCR, hypermethylation of APC was detected in HCC with different risk factors, whereas SFRP1 and SFRP5 were not hypermethylated in any of the HCC etiologies, which indicates that the mutation of APC and AXIN1, together with the methylation of APC could take part in the overactivation of Wnt signaling. Nested-reverse transcription PCR failed to detect the integration of HBx before the LINE1 element, or the existence of an HBx-LINE1 chimeric transcript, suggesting that integration could not play a role in the aberrant activation of Wnt signaling in HCC.
CONCLUSION: In HCC, genetic/epigenetic aberration of CTNNB1 and its protein degradation regulators are the major cause of Wnt signaling overactivation.

Garnier A, Vykoukal J, Hubertus J, et al.
Targeting the neurokinin-1 receptor inhibits growth of human colon cancer cells.
Int J Oncol. 2015; 47(1):151-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
The substance P (SP)/neurokinin-1 receptor (NK1R) complex and the Wnt cascade are pivotal signaling pathways in the regulation of cell growth and hence, potent targets for future anticancer therapies. However, while the Wnt cascade has long been associated with colon cancer, little is known about the expression of the NK1R complex as a potential target in this tumor and its molecular basis in tumorigenesis in general. We treated the human colon cancer cell lines LiM6 and DLD1 with the NK1R antagonist and the clinical drug aprepitant (AP) and analyzed both growth response and downstream mechanisms using MTT-assay, reverse phase protein array (RPPA), western blot, Super TOP/FOP, confocal microscopy, and sphere formation ability (SFA) assays. Following NK1R blockage, we found significant growth inhibition of both colon cancer cell lines. When analyzing downstream mechanisms, we found a striking inhibition of the canonical Wnt pathway represented by decreased Super TOP/FOP and increased membrane stabilization of β-catenin. This effect was independent from baseline Wnt activity and mutational status of β-catenin. Further, treatment of colon cancer cells grown under cancer stem cell (CSC) conditions reduced sphere formation in both number and size after a single treatment period. We show that the NK1R can be a potent anticancer target in colon cancer and that NK1R antagonists could potentially serve as future anticancer drugs. This effect was seen not only in primary cancer cells but, for the first time, also in CSC-like cells, potentially including these cells in a therapeutic effect. Also, we describe the robust inhibition of canonical Wnt signaling through targeting the SP/NK1R signaling cascade. These findings give important insight into the molecular mechanisms of the SP/NK1R complex as a critical component in tumorigenesis and could help to identify future anticancer therapies for colon and other Wnt-activated cancers.

Bezerra AM, Sant'Ana TA, Gomes AV, et al.
Tyms double (2R) and triple repeat (3R) confers risk for human oral squamous cell carcinoma.
Mol Biol Rep. 2014; 41(12):7737-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
The oral cancer is responsible for approximately 3 % of cases of cancer in Brazil. Epidemiological studies have associated low folate intake with an increased risk of epithelial cancers, including oral cancer. Folic acid has a key role in DNA synthesis, repair, methylation and this is the basis of explanations for a putative role for folic acid in cancer prevention. The role of folic acid in carcinogenesis may be modulated by polymorphism C677T in MTHFR and tandem repeats 2R/3R in the promoter site of TYMS gene that are related to decreased enzymatic activity and quantity and availability of the enzyme, respectively. These events cause a decrease in the synthesis, repair and DNA methylation, which can lead to a disruption in the expression of tumor suppressor genes as TP53. The objective of this study was investigate the distribution of polymorphisms C677T and tandem repeats 2R/3R associated with the development of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). 53 paraffin-embedded samples from patients who underwent surgery but are no longer at the institution and 43 samples collected by method of oral exfoliation by cytobrush were selected. 132 healthy subjects were selected by specialists at the dental clinics of the Faculdade de Odontologia de Pernambuco-FOP. The MTHFR genotyping was performed by PCR-RFLP, and the TYMS genotyping was performed by conventional PCR. Fisher's Exact test at significant level of 5 %. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95 % confidence intervals (CIs) were used to measure the strength of association between genotype frequency and OSCC development. The results were statistically significant for the tandem repeats of the TYMS gene (p = 0.015). The TYMS 2R3R genotype was significantly associated with the development of OSCC (OR = 3.582; 95 % CI 1.240-10.348; p = 0.0262) and also the genotype 3R3R (OR = 3.553; 95 % CI 1.293-9.760; p = 0.0345). When analyzed together, the TYMS 2R3R + 3R3R genotypes also showed association (OR = 3.518; 95 % CI 11.188-10.348; p = 0.0177). No differences for the MTHFR C677T polymorphisms distribution were found between the oral cancer patients and controls subjects in our study (p = 0.499). Therefore, these data suggest that determination of TYMS tandem repeats could provide information on the comprehension of the risk factors and prevention of the OSCC.

Taylor KR, Vinci M, Bullock AN, Jones C
ACVR1 mutations in DIPG: lessons learned from FOP.
Cancer Res. 2014; 74(17):4565-70 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Whole-genome sequencing studies have recently identified a quarter of cases of the rare childhood brainstem tumor diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma to harbor somatic mutations in ACVR1. This gene encodes the type I bone morphogenic protein receptor ALK2, with the residues affected identical to those that, when mutated in the germline, give rise to the congenital malformation syndrome fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP), resulting in the transformation of soft tissue into bone. This unexpected link points toward the importance of developmental biology processes in tumorigenesis and provides an extensive experience in mechanistic understanding and drug development hard-won by FOP researchers to pediatric neurooncology. Here, we review the literature in both fields and identify potential areas for collaboration and rapid advancement for patients of both diseases.

Taylor KR, Mackay A, Truffaux N, et al.
Recurrent activating ACVR1 mutations in diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma.
Nat Genet. 2014; 46(5):457-61 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas (DIPGs) are highly infiltrative malignant glial neoplasms of the ventral pons that, due to their location within the brain, are unsuitable for surgical resection and consequently have a universally dismal clinical outcome. The median survival time is 9-12 months, with neither chemotherapeutic nor targeted agents showing substantial survival benefit in clinical trials in children with these tumors. We report the identification of recurrent activating mutations in the ACVR1 gene, which encodes a type I activin receptor serine/threonine kinase, in 21% of DIPG samples. Strikingly, these somatic mutations (encoding p.Arg206His, p.Arg258Gly, p.Gly328Glu, p.Gly328Val, p.Gly328Trp and p.Gly356Asp substitutions) have not been reported previously in cancer but are identical to mutations found in the germ line of individuals with the congenital childhood developmental disorder fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) and have been shown to constitutively activate the BMP-TGF-β signaling pathway. These mutations represent new targets for therapeutic intervention in this otherwise incurable disease.

Bossi D, Carlomagno F, Pallavicini I, et al.
Functional characterization of a novel FGFR1OP-RET rearrangement in hematopoietic malignancies.
Mol Oncol. 2014; 8(2):221-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
The RET (REarranged during Transfection) receptor tyrosine kinase is targeted by oncogenic rearrangements in thyroid and lung adenocarcinoma. Recently, a RET (exon 12) rearrangement with FGFR1OP [fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 (FGFR1) oncogene partner] (exon 12) was identified in one chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML) patient. We report the molecular cloning and functional characterization of a novel FGFR1OP (exon 11)-RET (exon 11) gene fusion event (named FGFR1OP-RET), mediated by a reciprocal translocation t(6; 10)(q27; q11), in a patient affected by primary myelofibrosis (PMF) with secondary acute myeloid leukemia (AML). The FGFR1OP-RET fusion protein displayed constitutive tyrosine kinase and transforming activity in NIH3T3 fibroblasts, and induced IL3-independent growth and activation of PI3K/STAT signaling in hematopoietic Ba/F3 cells. FGFR1OP-RET supported cytokine-independent growth, protection from stress and enhanced self-renewal of primary murine hematopoietic progenitor and stem cells in vitro. In vivo, FGFR1OP-RET caused a spectrum of disease phenotypes, with >50% of mice showing a fatal myeloproliferative disorder (MPD). Other phenotypes were leukemia transplantable in secondary recipients, dramatic expansion of the mast cell lineage, and reduction of repopulating activity upon lethal irradiation. In conclusion, FGFR1OP-RET chimeric oncogenes are endowed with leukemogenic potential and associated to myeloid neoplasms (CMML and PMF/AML).

Bravo DT, Yang YL, Kuchenbecker K, et al.
Frizzled-8 receptor is activated by the Wnt-2 ligand in non-small cell lung cancer.
BMC Cancer. 2013; 13:316 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Wnt-2 plays an oncogenic role in cancer, but which Frizzled receptor(s) mediates the Wnt-2 signaling pathway in lung cancer remains unclear. We sought to (1) identify and evaluate the activation of Wnt-2 signaling through Frizzled-8 in non-small cell lung cancer, and (2) test whether a novel expression construct dominant negative Wnt-2 (dnhWnt-2) reduces tumor growth in a colony formation assay and in a xenograft mouse model.
METHODS: Semi-quantitative RT-PCR was used to identify the expression of Wnt-2 and Frizzled-8 in 50 lung cancer tissues from patients. The TCF reporter assay (TOP/FOP) was used to detect the activation of the Wnt canonical pathway in vitro. A novel dnhWnt-2 construct was designed and used to inhibit activation of Wnt-2 signaling through Frizzled-8 in 293T, 293, A549 and A427 cells and in a xenograft mouse model. Statistical comparisons were made using Student's t-test.
RESULTS: Among the 50 lung cancer samples, we identified a 91% correlation between the transcriptional increase of Wnt-2 and Frizzled-8 (p<0.05). The Wnt canonical pathway was activated when both Wnt-2 and Frizzled-8 were co-expressed in 293T, 293, A549 and A427 cells. The dnhWnt-2 construct we used inhibited the activation of Wnt-2 signaling in 293T, 293, A549 and A427 cells, and reduced the colony formation of NSCLC cells when β-catenin was present (p<0.05). Inhibition of Wnt-2 activation by the dnhWnt-2 construct further reduced the size and mass of tumors in the xenograft mouse model (p<0.05). The inhibition also decreased the expression of target genes of Wnt signaling in these tumors.
CONCLUSIONS: We demonstrated an activation of Wnt-2 signaling via the Frizzled-8 receptor in NSCLC cells. A novel dnhWnt-2 construct significantly inhibits Wnt-2 signaling, reduces colony formation of NSCLC cells in vitro and tumor growth in a xenograft mouse model. The dnhWnt-2 construct may provide a new therapeutic avenue for targeting the Wnt pathway in lung cancer.

Loh YN, Hedditch EL, Baker LA, et al.
The Wnt signalling pathway is upregulated in an in vitro model of acquired tamoxifen resistant breast cancer.
BMC Cancer. 2013; 13:174 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Acquired resistance to Tamoxifen remains a critical problem in breast cancer patient treatment, yet the underlying causes of resistance have not been fully elucidated. Abberations in the Wnt signalling pathway have been linked to many human cancers, including breast cancer, and appear to be associated with more metastatic and aggressive types of cancer. Here, our aim was to investigate if this key pathway was involved in acquired Tamoxifen resistance, and could be targeted therapeutically.
METHODS: An in vitro model of acquired Tamoxifen resistance (named TamR) was generated by growing the estrogen receptor alpha (ER) positive MCF7 breast cancer cell line in increasing concentrations of Tamoxifen (up to 5 uM). Alterations in the Wnt signalling pathway and epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) in response to Tamoxifen and treatment with the Wnt inhibitor, IWP-2 were measured via quantitative RT-PCR (qPCR) and TOP/FOP Wnt reporter assays. Resistance to Tamoxifen, and effects of IWP-2 treatment were determined by MTT proliferation assays.
RESULTS: TamR cells exhibited increased Wnt signalling as measured via the TOP/FOP Wnt luciferase reporter assays. Genes associated with both the β-catenin dependent (AXIN2, MYC, CSNK1A1) and independent arms (ROR2, JUN), as well as general Wnt secretion (PORCN) of the Wnt signalling pathway were upregulated in the TamR cells compared to the parental MCF7 cell line. Treatment of the TamR cell line with human recombinant Wnt3a (rWnt3a) further increased the resistance of both MCF7 and TamR cells to the anti-proliferative effects of Tamoxifen treatment. TamR cells demonstrated increased expression of EMT markers (VIM, TWIST1, SNAI2) and decreased CDH1, which may contribute to their resistance to Tamoxifen. Treatment with the Wnt inhibitor, IWP-2 inhibited cell proliferation and markers of EMT.
CONCLUSIONS: These data support the role of the Wnt signalling pathway in acquired resistance to Tamoxifen. Further research into the mechanism by which activated Wnt signalling inhibits the effects of Tamoxifen should be undertaken. As a number of small molecules targeting the Wnt pathway are currently in pre-clinical development, combinatorial treatment with endocrine agents and Wnt pathway inhibitors may be a useful therapeutic option in the future for a subset of breast cancer patients.

Chuang KA, Lieu CH, Tsai WJ, et al.
3-methoxyapigenin modulates β-catenin stability and inhibits Wnt/β-catenin signaling in Jurkat leukemic cells.
Life Sci. 2013; 92(12):677-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: Aberrant activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling has been implicated in carcinogenesis. Identification of inhibitors of this pathway may help in cancer therapy. The purpose of this study is to investigate the inhibitory effect of 3-methoxyapigenin (3-MA) with β-catenin/LEF reporter system. The anti-cancer mechanisms in Jurkat leukemic cells were also examined.
MAIN METHODS: HEK 293-TOP/FOP reporter cells were used to determine the inhibitory effect of 3-MA on Wnt/β-catenin pathway. We also used Jurkat-TOP reporter cells to confirm the inhibitory effect and the action mechanisms of 3-MA. Target genes and cell proliferation were analyzed by RT-PCR and (3)H-thymidine uptake assay. The effects of 3-MA on β-catenin phosphorylation was determined by Western blotting and by in vitro kinase assays. β-catenin translocation and its transactivation were verified by cellular fractionation and EMSA.
KEY FINDINGS: 3-MA inhibited Wnt-3A-induced luciferase activity in the HEK 293-TOP/FOP reporter system. Western blotting analysis showed that phosphorylation sites in β-catenin by glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) and casein kinase 2 (CK2) were inhibited by 3-MA in Jurkat. In parallel, in vitro kinase assays verified this effect. As a result, total β-catenin turnover remained balanced by this dual inhibitory effect of 3-MA. Although the β-catenin protein level remained unchanged, 3-MA did inhibit β-catenin translocation. Finally, we found that the β-catenin/LEF transcriptional activity, expression of c-myc and cyclin-D3, and cell proliferation were inhibited by 3-MA.
SIGNIFICANCE: 3-MA modulates the turnover of β-catenin and suppresses the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway through inhibition of β-catenin translocation. We suggested that 3-MA has potential as an anti-cancer drug.

Ford CE, Jary E, Ma SS, et al.
The Wnt gatekeeper SFRP4 modulates EMT, cell migration and downstream Wnt signalling in serous ovarian cancer cells.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(1):e54362 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Aberrant Wnt signalling is implicated in numerous human cancers, and understanding the effects of modulation of pathway members may lead to the development of novel therapeutics. Expression of secreted frizzled related protein 4 (SFRP4), an extracellular modulator of the Wnt signalling pathway, is progressively lost in more aggressive ovarian cancer phenotypes. Here we show that recombinant SFRP4 (rSFRP4) treatment of a serous ovarian cancer cell line results in inhibition of β-catenin dependent Wnt signalling as measured by TOP/FOP Wnt reporter assay and decreased transcription of Wnt target genes, Axin2, CyclinD1 and Myc. In addition, rSFRP4 treatment significantly increased the ability of ovarian cancer cells to adhere to collagen and fibronectin, and decreased their ability to migrate across an inflicted wound. We conclude that these changes in cell behaviour may be mediated via mesenchymal to epithelial transition (MET), as rSFRP4 treatment also resulted in increased expression of the epithelial marker E-cadherin, and reduced expression of Vimentin and Twist. Combined, these results indicate that modulation of a single upstream gatekeeper of Wnt signalling can have effects on downstream Wnt signalling and ovarian cancer cell behaviour, as mediated through epithelial to mesenchymal plasticity (EMP). This raises the possibility that SFRP4 may be used both diagnostically and therapeutically in epithelial ovarian cancer.

Ballerini P, Struski S, Cresson C, et al.
RET fusion genes are associated with chronic myelomonocytic leukemia and enhance monocytic differentiation.
Leukemia. 2012; 26(11):2384-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Myeloproliferative neoplasms are frequently associated with aberrant constitutive tyrosine kinase (TK) activity resulting from chimaeric fusion genes or point mutations such as BCR-ABL1 or JAK2 V617F. We report here the cloning and functional characterization of two novel fusion genes BCR-RET and FGFR1OP-RET in chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML) cases generated by two balanced translocations t(10;22)(q11;q11) and t(6;10)(q27;q11), respectively. The two RET fusion genes leading to the aberrant activation of RET, are able to transform hematopoietic cells and skew the hematopoietic differentiation program towards the monocytic/macrophage lineage. The RET fusion genes seem to constitutively mimic the same signaling pathway as RAS mutations frequently involved in CMML. One patient was treated with Sorafenib, a specific inhibitor of the RET TK function, and demonstrated cytological and clinical remissions.

Bitu CC, Destro MF, Carrera M, et al.
HOXA1 is overexpressed in oral squamous cell carcinomas and its expression is correlated with poor prognosis.
BMC Cancer. 2012; 12:146 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: HOX genes encode homeodomain-containing transcription factors involved in the regulation of cellular proliferation and differentiation during embryogenesis. However, members of this family demonstrated oncogenic properties in some malignancies. The present study investigated whether genes of the HOXA cluster play a role in oral cancer.
METHODS: In order to identify differentially expressed HOXA genes, duplex RT-PCR in oral samples from healthy mucosa and squamous cell carcinoma was used. The effects of HOXA1 on proliferation, apoptosis, adhesion, invasion, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and anchorage-independent growth were assessed in cells with up- and down-regulation of HOXA1. Immunohistochemical analysis using a tissue microarray (TMA) containing 127 oral squamous cell carcinomas (OSCC) was performed to determine the prognostic role of HOXA1 expression.
RESULTS: We showed that transcripts of HOXA genes are more abundant in OSCC than in healthy oral mucosa. In particular, HOXA1, which has been described as one of the HOX members that plays an important role in tumorigenesis, was significantly more expressed in OSCCs compared to healthy oral mucosas. Further analysis demonstrated that overexpression of HOXA1 in HaCAT human epithelial cells promotes proliferation, whereas downregulation of HOXA1 in human OSCC cells (SCC9 cells) decreases it. Enforced HOXA1 expression in HaCAT cells was not capable of modulating other events related to tumorigenesis, including apoptosis, adhesion, invasion, EMT and anchorage-independent growth. A high number of HOXA1-positive cells was significantly associated with T stage, N stage, tumor differentiation and proliferative potential of the tumors, and was predictive of poor survival. In multivariate analysis, HOXA1 was an independent prognostic factor for OSCC patients (HR: 2.68; 95% CI: 1.59-2.97; p = 0.026).
CONCLUSION: Our findings indicate that HOXA1 may contribute to oral carcinogenesis by increasing tumor cell proliferation, and suggest that HOXA1 expression might be helpful as a prognostic marker for patients with OSCC.

Jin Y, Zhen Y, Haugsten EM, Wiedlocha A
The driver of malignancy in KG-1a leukemic cells, FGFR1OP2-FGFR1, encodes an HSP90 addicted oncoprotein.
Cell Signal. 2011; 23(11):1758-66 [PubMed] Related Publications
The KG-1a cell line is developed from a human stem cell myeloproliferative neoplasm as the result of intragenic disruption and a chromosomal translocation of the FGFR1 gene and the FGFR1OP2 gene encoding a protein of unknown function called FOP2 (FGFR1 Oncogene Partner 2). The resulting fusion protein FOP2-FGFR1 is soluble and has constitutive tyrosine kinase activity. Since the heat shock protein HSP90 and its co-chaperone CDC37 have been shown to stabilize many oncogenic proteins, we investigated the requirement for HSP90 or HSP90-CDC37 assistance to maintain the stability or activity of FOP2-FGFR1 expressed in KG-1a cells. We found that HSP90-CDC37 forms a permanent complex with FOP2-FGFR1. This results in protection against degradation of FOP2-FGFR1 and holds the oncoprotein in a permanently active conformation. Inhibition of HSP90 or depletion of CDC37 or heat shock factor 1 (HSF1) reduced the expression level of FOP2-FGFR1 and was sufficient to block the oncoprotein induced proliferation of KG-1a cells. We conclude that the driver of malignancy in KG-1a leukemic cells, FOP2-FGFR1, is an HSP90 addicted oncoprotein. This provides a rationale for the therapeutic use of HSP90 inhibitors in myeloid leukemias that contain FGFR fusion proteins.

Rose AE, Poliseno L, Wang J, et al.
Integrative genomics identifies molecular alterations that challenge the linear model of melanoma progression.
Cancer Res. 2011; 71(7):2561-71 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Superficial spreading melanoma (SSM) and nodular melanoma (NM) are believed to represent sequential phases of linear progression from radial to vertical growth. Several lines of clinical, pathologic, and epidemiologic evidence suggest, however, that SSM and NM might be the result of independent pathways of tumor development. We utilized an integrative genomic approach that combines single nucleotide polymorphism array (6.0; Affymetrix) with gene expression array (U133A 2.0; Affymetrix) to examine molecular differences between SSM and NM. Pathway analysis of the most differentially expressed genes between SSM and NM (N = 114) revealed significant differences related to metabolic processes. We identified 8 genes (DIS3, FGFR1OP, G3BP2, GALNT7, MTAP, SEC23IP, USO1, and ZNF668) in which NM/SSM-specific copy number alterations correlated with differential gene expression (P < 0.05; Spearman's rank). SSM-specific genomic deletions in G3BP2, MTAP, and SEC23IP were independently verified in two external data sets. Forced overexpression of metabolism-related gene MTAP (methylthioadenosine phosphorylase) in SSM resulted in reduced cell growth. The differential expression of another metabolic-related gene, aldehyde dehydrogenase 7A1 (ALDH7A1), was validated at the protein level by using tissue microarrays of human melanoma. In addition, we show that the decreased ALDH7A1 expression in SSM may be the result of epigenetic modifications. Our data reveal recurrent genomic deletions in SSM not present in NM, which challenge the linear model of melanoma progression. Furthermore, our data suggest a role for altered regulation of metabolism-related genes as a possible cause of the different clinical behavior of SSM and NM.

von Marschall Z, Fisher LW
Secreted Frizzled-related protein-2 (sFRP2) augments canonical Wnt3a-induced signaling.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2010; 400(3):299-304 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Secreted Frizzled-related proteins (sFRP) are involved in embryonic development as well as pathological conditions including bone and myocardial disorders and cancer. Because of their sequence homology with the Wnt-binding domain of Frizzled, they have generally been considered antagonists of canonical Wnt signaling. However, additional activities of various sFRPs including both synergism and mimicry of Wnt signaling as well as functions other than modulation of Wnt signaling have been reported. Using human embryonic kidney cells (HEK293A), we found that sFRP2 enhanced Wnt3a-dependent phosphorylation of LRP6 as well as both cytosolic β-catenin levels and its nuclear translocation. While addition of recombinant sFRP2 had no activity by itself, Top/Fop luciferase reporter assays showed a dose-dependent increase of Wnt3a-mediated transcriptional activity. sFRP2 enhancement of Wnt3a signaling was abolished by treatment with the Wnt antagonist, Dickkopf-1 (DKK1). Wnt-signaling pathway qPCR arrays showed that sFRP2 enhanced the Wnt3a-mediated transcriptional up-regulation of several genes regulated by Wnt3a including its antagonists, DKK1, and Naked cuticle-1 homolog (NKD1). These results support sFRP2's role as an enhancer of Wnt/β-catenin signaling, a result with biological impact for both normal development and diverse pathologies such as tumorigenesis.

Hajdu M, Singer S, Maki RG, et al.
IGF2 over-expression in solitary fibrous tumours is independent of anatomical location and is related to loss of imprinting.
J Pathol. 2010; 221(3):300-7 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Solitary fibrous tumour (SFT) is a mesenchymal neoplasm composed of CD34-positive fibroblastic cells. The pathogenesis driving this neoplasm remains unclear, with no recurrent genetic aberrations described to date. Previous reports suggest a role for IGF2 over-expression in the pathogenesis of these tumours, implicated in triggering hypoglycaemia in some patients. The expression profiling of 23 SFTs was investigated using an Affymetrix U133A platform. The transcriptional signature was compared to a set of 34 soft tissue sarcomas spanning seven subtypes. Potential candidate genes were then further investigated for activating mutations or loss of imprinting (LOI). SFT had a distinct expression signature and clustered in a tight genomic cluster, separate from all other sarcoma subtypes. A number of over-expressed receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) genes were identified in SFT, including DDR1, ERBB2 and FGFR1; however, no mutations were identified by cDNA sequencing. Over-expression of IGF2 was uniformly detected in SFT, regardless of anatomical location, and was related to LOI. In contrast, IGF1 and JUN over-expression was seen in pleural, but not meningeal, locations. SFT shows a distinctive expression signature, with over-expression of DDR1, ERBB2 and FGFR1. Despite of lack of activating mutations in these RTKs, therapy with specific inhibitors targeting these kinases might be considered in advanced/metastatic cases. Our results confirm LOI in several tumours expressing high levels of IGF2, which may explain the observed paraneoplastic hypoglycaemia.

Lee CH, Hung HW, Hung PH, Shieh YS
Epidermal growth factor receptor regulates beta-catenin location, stability, and transcriptional activity in oral cancer.
Mol Cancer. 2010; 9:64 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Many cancerous cells accumulate beta-catenin in the nucleus. We examined the role of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signaling in the accumulation of beta-catenin in the nuclei of oral cancer cells.
RESULTS: We used two strains of cultured oral cancer cells, one with reduced EGFR expression (OECM1 cells) and one with elevated EGFR expression (SAS cells), and measured downstream effects, such as phosphorylation of beta-catenin and GSK-3beta, association of beta-catenin with E-cadherin, and target gene regulation. We also studied the expression of EGFR, beta-catenin, and cyclin D1 in 112 samples of oral cancer by immunostaining. Activation of EGFR signaling increased the amount of beta-catenin in the nucleus and decreased the amount in the membranes. EGF treatment increased phosphorylation of beta-catenin (tyrosine) and GSK-3beta(Ser-(9), resulting in a loss of beta-catenin association with E-cadherin. TOP-FLASH and FOP-FLASH reporter assays demonstrated that the EGFR signal regulates beta-catenin transcriptional activity and mediates cyclin D1 expression. Chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments indicated that the EGFR signal affects chromatin architecture at the regulatory element of cyclin D1, and that the CBP, HDAC1, and Suv39h1 histone/chromatin remodeling complex is involved in this process. Immunostaining showed a significant association between EGFR expression and aberrant accumulation of beta-catenin in oral cancer.
CONCLUSIONS: EGFR signaling regulates beta-catenin localization and stability, target gene expression, and tumor progression in oral cancer. Moreover, our data suggest that aberrant accumulation of beta-catenin under EGFR activation is a malignancy marker of oral cancer.

Mozziconacci MJ, Carbuccia N, Prebet T, et al.
Common features of myeloproliferative disorders with t(8;9)(p12;q33) and CEP110-FGFR1 fusion: report of a new case and review of the literature.
Leuk Res. 2008; 32(8):1304-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The 8p12 myeloproliferative syndrome is a rare, generally aggressive chronic myeloproliferative disorder (MPD). The hallmark of this MPD is the disruption of the FGFR1 gene, which encodes a tyrosine kinase receptor for members of the fibroblast growth factor family. In MPD cells FGFR1 is fused to several partners. The most frequent partner genes are BCR, CEP110, FOP, and ZNF198, localized on 22q11, 9q33, 6q27, and 13q12, respectively. We report here the tenth case of translocation (8;9)(p12;q33) in an acute myelomonocytic leukemia and provide a review of the literature that points to common syndrome features: the t(8;9)(p11;q33) MPD transforms rapidly, and always in myelomonocytic leukemia, with a possible B- or T-lymphoid involvement, which may include tonsil invasion. The FGFR1-MPD seems refractory to current chemotherapies and is not sensitive to imatinib. Currently, only the patients with bone marrow transplantation stand a chance of survival.

Huang DY, Lin YT, Jan PS, et al.
Transcription factor SOX-5 enhances nasopharyngeal carcinoma progression by down-regulating SPARC gene expression.
J Pathol. 2008; 214(4):445-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is prevalent in south-eastern Asia, and its tumourigenesis is rather complex. The purpose of this research was to identify the pivotal genes that may be altered during the early stage of NPC progression. Eleven genes were selected by comparative microarray analysis of NPC versus normal nasomucosal cells. The expression of SPARC (secreted protein, acidic, cysteine-rich) was statistically significantly down-regulated in NPC cells. In exploring the mechanism underlying the decreased transcription of SPARC in NPC cells, we found that the transcription factor SRY (sex-determining region Y)-box 5 (SOX-5) is up-regulated in NPC cells. RNA interference of SOX-5 by short hairpin RNA (shRNA) in NPC cells caused a dramatic increase in SPARC and chromosome immunoprecipitation assay showed that SOX-5 can bind directly to the SPARC promoter, suggesting that SOX-5 acts as a key transcriptional repressor of SPARC. We further demonstrated that shRNA knockdown of SOX-5 suppressed the proliferation of NPC cells, as well as their migratory ability, which was also observed when SPARC was over-expressed in NPC cells. Alternatively, blocking SPARC with an antagonistic antibody reversed the effects of SOX-5 knockdown. In 66 NPC patients, over-expression of SOX-5 in tumour cells correlated clinically with poor survival. Our study suggests that SOX-5 transcriptionally down-regulates SPARC expression and plays an important role in the regulation of NPC progression. SOX-5 is a potential tumour marker for poor NPC prognosis.

Giladi N, Dvory-Sobol H, Sagiv E, et al.
Gene therapy approach in prostate cancer cells using an active Wnt signal.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2007; 61(9):527-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Functional activation of beta-catenin/T-cell factor (Tcf) signaling plays an important role in the early events of carcinogenesis. In past recent years accumulated evidence has demonstrated a significant role for the Wnt pathway in the development and progression of human prostate cancer. The objective of the current study was to use a gene-targeting approach to selectively kill human prostate cancer cells with activated beta-catenin/Tcf signaling.
METHODS: A recombinant adenovirus that carries a lethal gene (PUMA) under the control of a beta-catenin/T-cell factor (Tcf)-responsive promoter (Ad-TOP-PUMA), was used to selectively target human prostate cancer cells (PC-3) in which the beta-catenin/Tcf pathway is activated, and compared its killing efficiency in cancer cells in which this pathway is inactive (DU145 cells). Ad-FOP-PUMA, carrying a mutant Tcf binding site, was used as a control virus. Cell viability was measured by methylene blue assay, and the level of beta-catenin/Tcf activity was measured by luciferase assay.
RESULTS: The Ad-TOP-PUMA adenovirus inhibited PC-3 cell growth in a dose and time-dependent fashion, but did not had any effect on DU145 cell growth.
CONCLUSIONS: Selective targeting of prostate cancer cells with the activated beta-catenin pathway may be a novel and effective therapy in prostate cancer.

Mano Y, Takahashi K, Ishikawa N, et al.
Fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 oncogene partner as a novel prognostic biomarker and therapeutic target for lung cancer.
Cancer Sci. 2007; 98(12):1902-13 [PubMed] Related Publications
To screen candidate molecules that might be useful as diagnostic biomarkers or for development of novel molecular-targeting therapies, we previously carried out gene-expression profile analysis of 101 lung carcinomas and detected an elevated expression of FGFR1OP (fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 oncogene partner) in the majority of lung cancers. Immunohistochemical staining using tumor tissue microarrays consisting of 372 archived non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) specimens revealed positive staining of FGFR1OP in 334 (89.8%) of 372 NSCLCs. We also found that the high level of FGFR1OP expression was significantly associated with shorter tumor-specific survival times (P < 0.0001 by log-rank test). Moreover, multivariate analysis determined that FGFR1OP was an independent prognostic factor for surgically treated NSCLC patients (P < 0.0001). Treatment of lung cancer cells, in which endogenous FGFR1OP was overexpressed, using FGFR1OP siRNA, suppressed its expression and resulted in inhibition of the cell growth. Furthermore, induction of FGFR1OP increased the cellular motility and growth-promoting activity of mammalian cells. To investigate its function, we searched for FGFR1OP-interacting proteins in lung cancer cells and identified ABL1 (Abelson murine leukemia viral oncogene homolog 1) and WRNIP1 (Werner helicase interacting protein 1), which was known to be involved in cell cycle progression. FGFR1OP significantly reduced ABL1-dependent phosphorylation of WRNIP1 and resulted in the promotion of cell cycle progression. Because our data imply that FGFR1OP is likely to play a significant role in lung cancer growth and progression, FGFR1OP should be useful as a prognostic biomarker and probably as a therapeutic target for lung cancer.

Gu TL, Goss VL, Reeves C, et al.
Phosphotyrosine profiling identifies the KG-1 cell line as a model for the study of FGFR1 fusions in acute myeloid leukemia.
Blood. 2006; 108(13):4202-4 [PubMed] Related Publications
The 8p11 myeloproliferative syndrome (EMS) is associated with translocations that disrupt the FGFR1 gene. To date, 8 fusion partners of FGFR1 have been identified. However, no primary leukemia cell lines were identified that contain any of these fusions. Here, we screened more than 40 acute myeloid leukemia cell lines for constitutive phosphorylation of STAT5 and applied an immunoaffinity profiling strategy to identify tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins in the KG-1 cell line. Mass spectrometry analysis of KG-1 cells revealed aberrant tyrosine phosphorylation of FGFR1. Subsequent analysis led to the identification of a fusion of the FGFR1OP2 gene to the FGFR1 gene. Small interfering RNA (siRNA) against FGFR1 specifically inhibited the growth and induced apoptosis of KG-1 cells. Thus, the KG-1 cell line provides an in vitro model for the study of FGFR1 fusions associated with leukemia and for the analysis of small molecule inhibitors against FGFR1 fusions.

Yamaguchi K, Liggett JL, Kim NC, Baek SJ
Anti-proliferative effect of horehound leaf and wild cherry bark extracts on human colorectal cancer cells.
Oncol Rep. 2006; 15(1):275-81 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Marubium vulgare (horehound) and Prunus serotina (wild cherry) have been traditionally used for the treatment of inflammatory-related symptoms such as cold, fever, and sore throat. In this report, we show that extracts of anti-inflammatory horehound leaves and wild cherry bark exhibit anti-proliferative activity in human colorectal cancer cells. Both horehound and wild cherry extracts cause suppression of cell growth as well as induction of apoptosis. We found that horehound extract up-regulates pro-apoptotic non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug-activated gene (NAG-1) through transactivation of the NAG-1 promoter. In contrast, wild cherry extract decreased cyclin D1 expression and increased NAG-1 expression in HCT-116 and SW480 cell lines. Treatment with wild cherry extract resulted in the suppression of beta-catenin/T cell factor transcription, as assessed by TOP/FOP reporter constructs, suggesting that suppressed beta-catenin signaling by wild cherry extract leads to the reduction of cyclin D1 expression. Our data suggest the mechanisms by which these extracts suppress cell growth and induce apoptosis involve enhanced NAG-1 expression and/or down-regulation of beta-catenin signaling, followed by reduced cyclin D1 expression in human colorectal cancer cells. These findings may provide mechanisms for traditional anti-inflammatory products as cancer chemopreventive agents.

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