Gene Summary

Gene:HDGF; heparin binding growth factor
Aliases: HMG1L2
Summary:This gene encodes a member of the hepatoma-derived growth factor family. The encoded protein has mitogenic and DNA-binding activity and may play a role in cellular proliferation and differentiation. High levels of expression of this gene enhance the growth of many tumors. This gene was thought initially to be located on chromosome X; however, that location has been determined to correspond to a related pseudogene. Alternatively spliced transcript variants encoding distinct isoforms have been described. [provided by RefSeq, Jan 2016]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:hepatoma-derived growth factor
Source:NCBIAccessed: 01 September, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

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

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 01 September, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (8)

Latest Publications: HDGF (cancer-related)

Zheng Y, Lu S, Xu Y, Zheng J
Long non-coding RNA AGAP2-AS1 promotes the proliferation of glioma cells by sponging miR-15a/b-5p to upregulate the expression of HDGF and activating Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway.
Int J Biol Macromol. 2019; 128:521-530 [PubMed] Related Publications
Glioma is a kind of malignant brain tumor which damages the central nervous system of adults. Recent years, the molecular mechanism involved in the initiation and progression of glioma has been widely reported. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been proved to be significant modulators in the biological processes of glioma. In this study, we found that lncRNA AGAP2-AS1 was differentially expressed in glioma tissue samples and cell lines. Kaplan-Meier method was used to analyze the correlation between AGAP2-AS1 expression and the overall survival of glioma patients. Higher expression of AGAP2-AS1 was correlated with the lower overall survival of glioma patients. Functionally, AGAP2-AS1 knockdown inhibited glioma cell proliferation and accelerated glioma cell apoptosis. Mechanistically, AGAP2-AS1 upregulated HDGF by sponging miR-15a/b-5p. The function of AGAP2-AS1-miR-15a/b-5p-HDGF axis was confirmed by performing rescue assays. Experimental results suggested that miR-15a/b-5p and HDGF involved in AGAP2-AS1-mediated glioma cell proliferation. Moreover, AGAP2-AS1 and HDGF were found to activate Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway in glioma cell lines. In summary, this study demonstrated that AGAP2-AS1 promoted glioma cell proliferation by sponging miR-15a/b-5p to upregulate the expression of HDGF.

Kim MK, Moon YA, Song CK, et al.
Tumor-suppressing miR-141 gene complex-loaded tissue-adhesive glue for the locoregional treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma.
Theranostics. 2018; 8(14):3891-3901 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
microRNAs (miRNAs) regulate gene expression post-transcriptionally and have been extensively tested as therapeutic molecules against several human diseases.

Ercan A, Çelebier M, Varan G, et al.
Global omics strategies to investigate the effect of cyclodextrin nanoparticles on MCF-7 breast cancer cells.
Eur J Pharm Sci. 2018; 123:377-386 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cyclodextrins (CD) are natural macrocyclic oligosaccharides linked by α(1,4) glycosidic bonds. Hydrophobic cavity of CDs are able to incorporate small molecules, ions, macromolecules which makes them excellent delegates for forming nanoparticulate carriers upon chemical modification to render amphiphilicity to CDs. In this study, blank 6OCaproβCD nanoparticle was prepared and administered to MCF-7 breast cancer cells. The effects of these nanoparticles on the cells were investigated in depth through biochemical and proteomic tests following 48 h of incubation. Proteomics studies revealed that apoptosis-related protein levels of hnRNP and CBX1 were increased while HDGF was not affected supporting the idea that 6OCaproβCD nanoparticles prevent cell proliferation. Gene expression studies were generally in correlation with protein levels since gene expression was significantly stimulated while protein levels were lower compared to the control group suggesting that a post-transcriptional modification must have occurred. Furthermore, 6OCaproβCD was observed to not trigger multidrug resistance as proved with RT-PCR that effectuates another exquisite characteristic of 6OCaproβCD nanoparticle as carrier of chemotherapeutic drugs. Metabolomic pathways of CD effect on MCF7 cells were elucidated with HMDB as serine biosynthesis, transmembrane transport of small molecules, metabolism of steroid hormones, estrogen biosynthesis and phospholipid biosynthesis. In conclusion, 6OCaproβCD is a promising nanoparticulate carrier for chemotherapeutic drugs with intrinsic apoptotic effect to be employed in treatment of breast cancer and further studies should be conducted in order to comprehend the exact mechanism of action.

Min X, Wen J, Zhao L, et al.
Role of hepatoma-derived growth factor in promoting de novo lipogenesis and tumorigenesis in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Mol Oncol. 2018; 12(9):1480-1497 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Although identified as a growth factor, the mechanism by which hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) promotes cancer development remains unclear. We found that nuclear but not cytoplasmic HDGF is closely associated with prognosis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). RNA-sequencing analysis further demonstrated that the nuclear role of HDGF involved regulation of transcription of lipid metabolism genes. HDGF-induced expression of lipogenic genes was mainly associated with activation of sterol regulatory element binding protein (SREBP) transcription factor. Coexpression of SREBP-1 and nuclear HDGF predicts poor prognosis for HCC. In addition, by changing the first amino acid of the PWWP domain from proline to alanine, the type of PWWP domain changed from P- to A-type, resulting in inability to induce SREBP-1-mediated gene transcription. The type of PWWP domain affects the recruitment of the C-terminal binding protein-1 transcriptional repressor on the promoter of the lipogenic gene. Our data indicate that HDGF acts as a coactivator of SREBP1-mediated transcription of lipogenic genes. The PWWP domain is crucial for HDGF to promote lipogenesis. Moreover, transcriptional regulation of nuclear HDGF plays important roles in the development of HCC.

Yang F, Yu N, Wang H, et al.
Downregulated expression of hepatoma-derived growth factor inhibits migration and invasion of prostate cancer cells by suppressing epithelial-mesenchymal transition and MMP2, MMP9.
PLoS One. 2018; 13(1):e0190725 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) is commonly over-expressed and plays critical roles in the development and progression in a variety of cancers. It has previously been shown that HDGF is overregulated in prostate cancer cells compared to normal prostate cells, which is correlated with cellular migration and invasion of prostate cancer. Here, the molecular mechanisms of HDGF in prostate cancer is investigated. It is shown that HDGF knockdown reduces prostate cancer cellular migration and invasion in both androgen-sensitive LNCaP cells and androgen-insensitive DU145 and PC3 cells. Furthermore, Western blot analysis reveals that HDGF knockdown inhibits epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) of prostate cancer cells by upregulation of protein E-cadherin and downregulation of proteins N-cadherin, Vimentin, Snail and Slug. In addition, mechanistic studies reveal that proteins MMP2 and MMP9 are down-regulated. In conclusion, our data suggested that HDGF knockdown inhibits cellular migration and invasion in vitro of prostate cancer via modulating epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) signaling pathway, as well as MMP2 and MMP9 signaling pathway. These results supported that HDGF is a relevant protein in the progression of prostate cancer and may serve as a potentially therapeutic target for prostate cancer as well as its downstream targets.

Fu Q, Song X, Liu Z, et al.
miRomics and Proteomics Reveal a miR-296-3p/PRKCA/FAK/Ras/c-Myc Feedback Loop Modulated by HDGF/DDX5/β-catenin Complex in Lung Adenocarcinoma.
Clin Cancer Res. 2017; 23(20):6336-6350 [PubMed] Related Publications

Liu J, Jin S, Wang R
MicroRNA‑139 suppressed tumor cell proliferation, migration and invasion by directly targeting HDGF in epithelial ovarian cancer.
Mol Med Rep. 2017; 16(3):3379-3386 [PubMed] Related Publications
The current study investigated the expression and functional roles of microRNA‑139 (miR‑139) on human epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). Reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT‑qPCR) was performed to measure miR‑139 expression in EOC tissues and cell lines. The effects of miR‑139 on EOC cell proliferation, migration and invasion were assessed using MTT, cell migration and invasion assays, respectively. Subsequently, the molecular mechanism underlying the tumor suppressive roles of miR‑139 on EOC was determined by bioinformatics analysis, RT‑qPCR, western blotting and the luciferase reporter assay. According to the results, it was identified that miR‑139 was significantly downregulated in EOC tissues and cell lines. In addition, restoration of miR‑139 suppressed tumor cell proliferation, migration and invasion in EOC. Furthermore, hepatoma‑derived growth factor (HDGF) was identified as a target of miR‑139 in EOC. Upregulation of HDGF could rescue the inhibitory effects exerted by miR‑139 overexpression on EOC cell proliferation, migration and invasion. Collectively, the results indicated that miR‑139 was downregulated in EOC, and acted as a tumor suppressor by directly targeting HDGF. To the best of our knowledge, this was the first study to identify that miR‑139 contributes to the growth and metastasis of EOC.

Cipollini M, Landi S, Gemignani F
Bonafide Targets of Deregulated microRNAs in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer as Tool to Identify Novel Therapeutic Targets: A Review.
Curr Pharm Des. 2017; 23(1):55-72 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is an aggressive neoplasm with a poor survival and novel therapies are urgently needed. The study of deregulated micro- RNAs (dereg-miRs) could constitute a strategy helping to detect specific genes playing a relevant role in the disease. Thus, the oncoproteins encoded by these genes could be exploited as novel therapeutic targets to be inhibited by small molecules, aptamers, or monoclonal antibodies.
METHODS: The present review is focused on candidate genes having convincing biological evidences to be both bona fide targets for dereg-miRs and playing a role in NSCLC progression. These genes were evaluated according to the molecular pathway they belong. Moreover, in the attempt to provide an even broader list of candidate therapeutic targets for NSCLC, the full list of genes was analyzed using the online tool Interactome DB.
RESULTS: Among the identified targets, some of them belong to p53 or MAP kinase signaling pathways, and others include caspases, MCL1, and BCL2L2 (playing a role in apoptosis), ZEB1, ZEB2, and USP25 (epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition), EZH2, SOX9, and HOXA5 (differentiation), Paxillin, LIMK1 and MTDH (cytoskeleton remodeling), and HDGF (angiogenesis). In addition, other targets, such as TIMP-2, PIM-1, and components of the IGF-signaling pathways were suggested following the interactome analysis.
CONCLUSION: Studies on dereg-miRs helped to identify a set of genes whose encoded proteins could constitute candidates for future therapeutic approaches.

Shetty A, Dasari S, Banerjee S, et al.
Hepatoma-derived growth factor: A survival-related protein in prostate oncogenesis and a potential target for vitamin K2.
Urol Oncol. 2016; 34(11):483.e1-483.e8 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) is a heparin-binding growth factor, which has previously been shown to be expressed in a variety of cancers. HDGF overexpression has also previously been correlated with a poor prognosis in several cancers. The significance of HDGF in prostate cancer, however, has not been investigated. Here, we show that HDGF is overexpressed in both androgen-sensitive LNCaP cells and androgen-insensitive DU145, 22RV1, and PC-3 cells. Forced overexpression enhanced cell viability of RWPE-1 cells, whereas HDGF knockdown reduced cell proliferation in human prostate cancer cells. We also show that HDGF may serve as a survival-related protein as ectopic overexpression of HDGF in RWPE cells up-regulated the expression of antiapoptosis proteins cyclin E and BCL-2, whereas simultaneously down-regulating proapoptotic protein BAX. Western blot analysis also showed that HDGF overexpression modulated the activity of phospho-AKT as well as NF-kB, and these results correlated with in vitro migration and invasion assays. We next assessed the therapeutic potential of HDGF inhibition with a HDGF monoclonal antibody and vitamin k

Yang GY, Zhang AQ, Wang J, et al.
Hepatoma-derived growth factor promotes growth and metastasis of hepatocellular carcinoma cells.
Cell Biochem Funct. 2016; 34(4):274-85 [PubMed] Related Publications
We aimed to elucidate the effects of hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) on growth and metastasis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells. Tissue microarrays with 236 HCC specimens and 18 extrahepatic metastases were utilized to detect the HDGF expression by immunohistochemistry. Meanwhile, HDGF expressions in HCC cell lines with different metastatic potentials were examined using immunofluorescence staining, real-time PCR and western blotting. After HDGF silencing, the growth and metastatic potentials of HCC cells were evaluated by soft agar assay, invasion assay, together with tumorigenicity assay in nude mice. The gelatin zymography was performed by detecting MMP-2 and MMP-9 levels. Additionally, western blotting was conducted to determine the levels of total and phosphorylated ERK1/2, JNK, p38 and Akt. The results showed that HDGF was overexpressed in HCC metastasis tumour, and the expression increased with the differentiation degree of tumours (Grade I 44.0%, Grade II 48.4% and Grade III 65.6%). Consistently, HDGF levels were positively associated with the metastatic capability of HCC cells (MHCC97L < MHCC97H < HCCLM3). The growth and metastasis were suppressed by HDGF-siRNA. Gelatinolytic activities were enhanced in the three metastatic HCC cell lines, but had no significant difference among them. The tumourigenicity and metastatic capability of HCCLM3 cells in nude mice were inhibited after silencing HDGF. Meanwhile, HDGF-siRNA specifically suppressed the total and phosphorylated protein levels of ERK1/2, while not JNK, p38 and Akt. In conclusion, HDGF was overexpressed in HCC patients and cells, and HDGF might be closely correlated with HCC metastasis via regulating ERK signalling pathway. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Tang J, Shi H, Li H, et al.
The interaction of hepatoma-derived growth factor and β-catenin promotes tumorigenesis of synovial sarcoma.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(8):10287-301 [PubMed] Related Publications
To clarify the clinicopathological and biological role of hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) and β-catenin in synovial sarcoma. Our results showed that histological type and HDGF/β-catenin expression were the two important independent prognostic factors for overall survival in synovial sarcoma patients. HDGF knockdown dramatically inhibited cellular proliferation, colony formation, and migration but induced G1 phase arrest and apoptosis in SW982 cells. Recombinant HDGF enhanced synovial sarcoma cell growth and partially retrieved the cell growth suppression in SW982 cells upon HDGF knockdown. HDGF knockdown dramatically suppressed β-catenin and its downstream gene expression in SW982 cells. Intriguingly, β-catenin knockdown dramatically suppressed HDGF expression in SW982 cells. A direct interaction of HDGF and β-catenin was found in SW982 cells. Three HDGF-binding elements in β-catenin promoter were found and specific for transcriptional activation of β-catenin in SW982 cells. In conclusion, our findings first indicate that the interaction of HDGF and β-catenin may play a crucial role in tumorigenesis of synovial sarcoma.

Handkiewicz-Junak D, Swierniak M, Rusinek D, et al.
Gene signature of the post-Chernobyl papillary thyroid cancer.
Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging. 2016; 43(7):1267-77 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: Following the nuclear accidents in Chernobyl and later in Fukushima, the nuclear community has been faced with important issues concerning how to search for and diagnose biological consequences of low-dose internal radiation contamination. Although after the Chernobyl accident an increase in childhood papillary thyroid cancer (PTC) was observed, it is still not clear whether the molecular biology of PTCs associated with low-dose radiation exposure differs from that of sporadic PTC.
METHODS: We investigated tissue samples from 65 children/young adults with PTC using DNA microarray (Affymetrix, Human Genome U133 2.0 Plus) with the aim of identifying molecular differences between radiation-induced (exposed to Chernobyl radiation, ECR) and sporadic PTC. All participants were resident in the same region so that confounding factors related to genetics or environment were minimized.
RESULTS: There were small but significant differences in the gene expression profiles between ECR and non-ECR PTC (global test, p < 0.01), with 300 differently expressed probe sets (p < 0.001) corresponding to 239 genes. Multifactorial analysis of variance showed that besides radiation exposure history, the BRAF mutation exhibited independent effects on the PTC expression profile; the histological subset and patient age at diagnosis had negligible effects. Ten genes (PPME1, HDAC11, SOCS7, CIC, THRA, ERBB2, PPP1R9A, HDGF, RAD51AP1, and CDK1) from the 19 investigated with quantitative RT-PCR were confirmed as being associated with radiation exposure in an independent, validation set of samples.
CONCLUSION: Significant, but subtle, differences in gene expression in the post-Chernobyl PTC are associated with previous low-dose radiation exposure.

Wu D, Niu X, Pan H, et al.
MicroRNA-497 targets hepatoma-derived growth factor and suppresses human prostate cancer cell motility.
Mol Med Rep. 2016; 13(3):2287-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNA-497 (miR-497) has been reported to be downregulated in certain types of cancer, including breast, gastric, endometrial, colorectal and prostate cancer as well as hepatocellular and nasopharyngeal carcinoma. The present study aimed to investigate the underlying mechanism of the tumor suppressor function of miR‑497 in prostate cancer. Following transfection with miR‑497, the DU145 and PC‑3 prostate cancer cell lines were subjected to Transwell migration and invasion assays, western blot analysis and a luciferase assay. It was revealed that miRNA‑497 inhibited the migration and invasion of prostate cancer cells. In addition, is was indicated that miRNA‑497 directly targets hepatoma‑derived growth factor (HDGF) in prostate cancer cells. These results suggested that restoration of miR‑497 and the resulting downregulation of HDFG may represent a promising therapeutic strategy for prostate cancer.

Lian J, Tang J, Shi H, et al.
Positive feedback loop of hepatoma-derived growth factor and β-catenin promotes carcinogenesis of colorectal cancer.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(30):29357-74 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
To clarify the role of hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) and β-catenin in carcinogenesis of colorectal cancer (CRC), our results showed that high HDGF expression was found in CRC cells and tissues and significantly related to histological differentiation (p = 0.035) and lymph node metastasis (p = 0.000). Significant positive correlation between HDGF expression and β-catenin abnormal expression was found in CRC tissues. High HDGF and lymph node metastasis were the strong independent prognostic indicators for reduced overall survival in CRC patients. HDGF knockdown dramatically inhibited cellular proliferation, migration, invasion, and tumorigenesis, both in vitro and in vivo, but induced G1 phase arrest and apoptosis in CRC cells. HDGF knock-down dramatically suppressed β-catenin and its down-stream genes expression in CRC cells. Intriguingly, β-catenin knock-down dramatically suppressed HDGF expression in CRC cells. Human recombinant Wnt3a and DKK1 treatment increased and decreased HDGF, β-catenin, c-Myc, cyclin D1, MMP9, and phos-GSK-3β (Ser9) protein expression in nuclear and cytoplasmic fraction of CRC cells upon β-catenin knock-down, respectively. Three HDGF-binding elements in β-catenin promoter were found and specific for transcriptional activation of β-catenin in CRC cells. In conclusion, our results first suggest that HDGF and β-catenin interacts as a positive feedback loop, which plays an important role in carcinogenesis and progression of CRC.

Enomoto H, Nakamura H, Liu W, Nishiguchi S
Hepatoma-Derived Growth Factor: Its Possible Involvement in the Progression of Hepatocellular Carcinoma.
Int J Mol Sci. 2015; 16(6):14086-97 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is an important complication of viral infection induced by hepatitis virus C, and our major research theme is to identify a new growth factor related to the progression of HCC. HDGF (hepatoma-derived growth factor) is a novel growth factor that belongs to a new gene family. HDGF was initially purified from the conditioned medium of a hepatoma cell line. HDGF promotes cellular proliferation as a DNA binding nuclear factor and a secreted protein acting via a receptor-mediated pathway. HDGF is a unique multi-functional protein that can function as a growth factor, angiogenic factor and anti-apoptotic factor and it participates in the development and progression of various malignant diseases. The expression level of HDGF may be an independent prognostic factor for predicting the disease-free and overall survival in patients with various malignancies, including HCC. Furthermore, the overexpression of HDGF promotes the proliferation of HCC cells, while a reduction in the HDGF expression inhibits the proliferation of HCC cells. This article provides an overview of the characteristics of HDGF and describes the potential role of HDGF as a growth-promoting factor for HCC.

Liu Y, Sun J, Yang G, et al.
Downregulation of the expression of HDGF attenuates malignant biological behaviors of hilar cholangiocarcinoma cells.
Mol Med Rep. 2015; 12(3):4713-4719 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) has been reported to be a potential predictive and prognostic marker for several types of cancer and important in malignant biological behaviors. However, its role in human hilar cholangiocarcinoma remains to be elucidated. Our previous study demonstrated that high expression levels of HDGF in hilar cholangiocarcinoma tissues correlates with tumor progression and patient outcome. The present study aimed to elucidate the detailed functions of the HDGF protein. This was performed by downregulating the protein expression of HDGF in the FRH0201 hilar cholangiocarcinoma cell line by RNA interference (RNAi) in vitro, and revealed that downregulation of the HDGF protein significantly inhibited the malignant biological behavior of the FRH0201 cells. In addition, further investigation revealed that downregulation of the protein expression of HDGF significantly decreased the secretion of vascular endothelial growth factor, which may be the mechanism partially responsible for the inhibition of malignant biological behaviors. These findings demonstrated that HDGF is important in promoting malignant biological behaviors, including proliferation, migration and invasion of hilar cholangiocarcinoma FRH0201 cells. Inhibition of the expression of HDGF downregulated the malignant biological behaviors, suggesting that downregulation of the protein expression of HDGF by RNAi may be a novel therapeutic approach to inhibit the progression of hilar cholangiocarcinoma.

Gao K, Xu C, Jin X, et al.
HDGF-related protein-2 (HRP-2) acts as an oncogene to promote cell growth in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2015; 458(4):849-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
HDGFRP2 (HRP-2) belongs to the Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF)-related proteins (HRPs) family, which are characterized by a conserved HATH/PWWP domain at a well-conserved region of the N-terminus. However, the cellular function of HRP-2 remains unknown. In this study, we showed for the first time that HRP-2 is frequently overexpressed in human HCC tissues at mRNA and protein levels. We further showed that HRP-2 can promote HCC cells growth in vitro and xenograft tumors in vivo. Using protein affinity purification methods, we searched for functional partners of HRP-2, and found that HRP-2 interacts with various proteins known to be involved in transcription elongation and processing. Furthermore, we demonstrate HRP-2 interacts and co-localizes with RNA processing regulator IWS1, and positively regulated the mRNA level of Cyclin D1. Together, our study suggests HRP-2 may act as an mRNA processing co-factor to promote cells growth by regulating the mRNA of key oncogenes, which can be explored further for cancer treatment.

Bao CH, Wang XT, Ma W, et al.
Irradiated fibroblasts promote epithelial-mesenchymal transition and HDGF expression of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2015; 458(2):441-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recent evidence suggested that nonirradiated cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) promoted aggressive phenotypes of cancer cells through epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) is a radiosensitive gene of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). This study aimed to investigate the effect of irradiated fibroblasts on EMT and HDGF expression of ESCC. Our study demonstrated that coculture with nonirradiated fibroblasts significantly increased the invasive ability of ESCC cells and the increased invasiveness was further accelerated when they were cocultured with irradiated fibroblasts. Scattering of ESCC cells was also accelerated by the supernatant from irradiated fibroblasts. Exposure of ESCC cells to supernatant from irradiated fibroblasts resulted in decreased E-cadherin, increased vimentin in vitro and β-catenin was demonstrated to localize to the nucleus in tumor cells with irradiated fibroblasts in vivo models. The expression of HDGF and β-catenin were increased in both fibroblasts and ESCC cells of irradiated group in vitro and in vivo models. Interestingly, the tumor cells adjoining the stromal fibroblasts displayed strong nuclear HDGF immunoreactivity, which suggested the occurrence of a paracrine effect of fibroblasts on HDGF expression. These data suggested that irradiated fibroblasts promoted invasion, growth, EMT and HDGF expression of ESCC.

Duchnowska R, Jassem J, Goswami CP, et al.
Predicting early brain metastases based on clinicopathological factors and gene expression analysis in advanced HER2-positive breast cancer patients.
J Neurooncol. 2015; 122(1):205-16 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The overexpression or amplification of the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 gene (HER2/neu) is associated with high risk of brain metastasis (BM). The identification of patients at highest immediate risk of BM could optimize screening and facilitate interventional trials. We performed gene expression analysis using complementary deoxyribonucleic acid-mediated annealing, selection, extension and ligation and real-time quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR) in primary tumor samples from two independent cohorts of advanced HER2 positive breast cancer patients. Additionally, we analyzed predictive relevance of clinicopathological factors in this series. Study group included discovery Cohort A (84 patients) and validation Cohort B (75 patients). The only independent variables associated with the development of early BM in both cohorts were the visceral location of first distant relapse [Cohort A: hazard ratio (HR) 7.4, 95 % CI 2.4-22.3; p < 0.001; Cohort B: HR 6.1, 95 % CI 1.5-25.6; p = 0.01] and the lack of trastuzumab administration in the metastatic setting (Cohort A: HR 5.0, 95 % CI 1.4-10.0; p = 0.009; Cohort B: HR 10.0, 95 % CI 2.0-100.0; p = 0.008). A profile including 13 genes was associated with early (≤36 months) symptomatic BM in the discovery cohort. This was refined by qRT-PCR to a 3-gene classifier (RAD51, HDGF, TPR) highly predictive of early BM (HR 5.3, 95 % CI 1.6-16.7; p = 0.005; multivariate analysis). However, predictive value of the classifier was not confirmed in the independent validation Cohort B. The presence of visceral metastases and the lack of trastuzumab administration in the metastatic setting apparently increase the likelihood of early BM in advanced HER2-positive breast cancer.

Coumans JV, Gau D, Poljak A, et al.
Profilin-1 overexpression in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells is associated with alterations in proteomics biomarkers of cell proliferation, survival, and motility as revealed by global proteomics analyses.
OMICS. 2014; 18(12):778-91 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Despite early screening programs and new therapeutic strategies, metastatic breast cancer is still the leading cause of cancer death in women in industrialized countries and regions. There is a need for novel biomarkers of susceptibility, progression, and therapeutic response. Global analyses or systems science approaches with omics technologies offer concrete ways forward in biomarker discovery for breast cancer. Previous studies have shown that expression of profilin-1 (PFN1), a ubiquitously expressed actin-binding protein, is downregulated in invasive and metastatic breast cancer. It has also been reported that PFN1 overexpression can suppress tumorigenic ability and motility/invasiveness of breast cancer cells. To obtain insights into the underlying molecular mechanisms of how elevating PFN1 level induces these phenotypic changes in breast cancer cells, we investigated the alteration in global protein expression profiles of breast cancer cells upon stable overexpression of PFN1 by a combination of three different proteome analysis methods (2-DE, iTRAQ, label-free). Using MDA-MB-231 as a model breast cancer cell line, we provide evidence that PFN1 overexpression is associated with alterations in the expression of proteins that have been functionally linked to cell proliferation (FKPB1A, HDGF, MIF, PRDX1, TXNRD1, LGALS1, STMN1, LASP1, S100A11, S100A6), survival (HSPE1, HSPB1, HSPD1, HSPA5 and PPIA, YWHAZ, CFL1, NME1) and motility (CFL1, CORO1B, PFN2, PLS3, FLNA, FLNB, NME2, ARHGDIB). In view of the pleotropic effects of PFN1 overexpression in breast cancer cells as suggested by these new findings, we propose that PFN1-induced phenotypic changes in cancer cells involve multiple mechanisms. Our data reported here might also offer innovative strategies for identification and validation of novel therapeutic targets and companion diagnostics for persons with, or susceptibility to, breast cancer.

Tsai CC, Huang SC, Tai MH, et al.
Hepatoma-derived growth factor upregulation is correlated with prognostic factors of early-stage cervical adenocarcinoma.
Int J Mol Sci. 2014; 15(11):21492-504 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) is a unique nuclear/growth factor that plays an important role in the progression of different types of cancer. A total of 63 patients with early-stage cervical adenocarcinoma (Cx) were enrolled in this retrospective study. The expression of HDGF was significantly increased compared with adjacent non-tumor tissue samples (p < 0.001). Moreover, elevated nuclear HDGF levels were correlated with lymph-vascular space invasion (LVSI; p < 0.05), lymph node metastasis (LNM; p < 0.001), recurrence (p < 0.001) and advanced grade (AG; p < 0.001). The growth of cervical cancer cells (Hela cells) was enhanced by HDGF treatment. The HDGF mRNA and protein level were significantly higher in malignant cervical cancer cells compared with primary ones. By adenovirus gene delivery, HDGF overexpression enhanced, whereas HDGF knockdown perturbed the tumorigenic behaviors of cervical cancer cells. HDGF overexpression is common in early-stage cervical adenocarcinoma and is involved in the carcinogenesis of cervical adenocarcinoma. Cytoplasmic HDGF expression is strongly correlated with pelvic lymph node metastasis and recurrence, indicating that HDGF may serve as a novel prognostic marker for patients with Cx.

Guo H, Li W, Zheng T, Liu Z
MiR-195 targets HDGF to inhibit proliferation and invasion of NSCLC cells.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(9):8861-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is one of the most common causes of cancer-related death worldwide. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play critical roles in the development and progression of NSCLC. miR-195 acts as a tumor suppressor in several cancers, however, its role in NSCLC is not well understood. Herein, we found that miR-195 was significantly decreased in both NSCLC tissues and cell lines. Forced expression of miR-195 significantly suppressed proliferation, migration, and invasion of NSCLC cells. Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) was identified as a target of miR-195 in NSCLC cells. Overexpression of HDGF dramatically abolished the tumor suppressive role of miR-195 in NSCLC cells. Our results demonstrated a tumor suppressive role of miR-195 in NSCLC, and suggested a potential therapeutic target for NSCLC.

Wang L, Jiang Q, Hua S, et al.
High nuclear expression of HDGF correlates with disease progression and poor prognosis in human endometrial carcinoma.
Dis Markers. 2014; 2014:298795 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
AIMS: This study examined the correlation between high nuclear expression of hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) and clinicopathologic data in endometrial carcinoma (EC), including patient survival.
METHODS: One hundred and twenty-two endometrial carcinoma (EC) patients from 2002 to 2008 were reviewed in the study. HDGF expression in tumor tissues was examined using immunohistochemistry (IHC), and its association with clinicopathological parameters was evaluated. Tumors with 80% or more nuclei staining were regarded as high expression and tumors with less than 80% nuclei staining considered as low expression.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that HDGF was expressed in both the nucleus and cytoplasm. High nuclear expression of HDGF was positively correlated with FIGO stage (P = 0.032), but not associated with other clinical features, such as histological grading or lymph node status. Patients with high expression of HDGF had poorer overall survival rates than those with low expression of HDGF (P = 0.001). However, multivariate analyses showed that high nuclear expression of HDGF protein was not an independent predictor of prognosis for EC patients (P = 0.111). Our results suggest that high nuclear expression of HDGF is a potential unfavorable factor for the progression and prognosis of EC.

Chen B, Huang T, Jiang J, et al.
miR-141 suppresses proliferation and motility of gastric cancer cells by targeting HDGF.
Mol Cell Biochem. 2014; 388(1-2):211-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
miR-141 belongs to the miR-200 family, and has been found to be associated with numerous human malignancies; however, its role in gastric cancer (GC) has not been examined in detail. Here, we validated that miR-141 was decreased in GC tissues and cell lines. Forced expression of miR-141 significantly repressed GC cell proliferation and colony formation. Furthermore, miR-141 suppressed in vitro migration and invasion of GC cells. Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) was confirmed to be a direct target of miR-141 in GC cells. The suppressive effects of miR-141 on GC cell proliferation, colony formation, in vitro migration, and invasion were partially mediated by suppressing HDGF expression. Moreover, the expression of HDGF was negatively correlated with miR-141 in GC tissues. Our data suggest that miR-141 might be associated and plays essential role in GC progression.

Ke Y, Zhao W, Xiong J, Cao R
Downregulation of miR-16 promotes growth and motility by targeting HDGF in non-small cell lung cancer cells.
FEBS Lett. 2013; 587(18):3153-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNAs play important roles in the development and progression of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). miR-16 functions as a tumor-suppressor and is inhibited in several malignancies. Herein, we validated that miR-16 is downregulated in NSCLC tissue samples and cell lines. Ectopic expression of miR-16 significantly inhibited cell proliferation and colony formation. Moreover, miR-16 suppressed cell migration and invasion in NSCLC cells. Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) was found to be a direct target of miR-16 in NSCLC cell lines. Rescue experiments showed that the suppressive effect of miR-16 on cell proliferation, colony formation, migration, and invasion is partially mediated by inhibiting HDGF expression. This study indicates that miR-16 might be associated with NSCLC progression, and suggests an essential role for miR-16 in NSCLC.

Yang Y, Li H, Zhang F, et al.
Clinical and biological significance of hepatoma-derived growth factor in Ewing's sarcoma.
J Pathol. 2013; 231(3):323-34 [PubMed] Related Publications
We sought to investigate the clinicopathological significance and biological function of hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) in Ewing's sarcoma. Our results showed that HDGF expression is up-regulated in Ewing's sarcoma. Nuclear HDGF expression is significantly associated with tumour volume (p < 0.001), metastases at diagnosis (p < 0.001), low overall survival rate (p < 0.001) and low disease-free survival rate (p < 0.001). HDGF knock-down results in significant reduction of Ewing's sarcoma cell growth, proliferation and enhances tumourigenesis, both in vitro and in vivo. Meanwhile, HDGF knock-down causes cell cycle arrest and enhanced sensitization to serum starvation-induced apoptosis. Furthermore, recombinant HDGF promotes proliferation and colony formation of Ewing's sarcoma cells. Ninety-eight candidate HDGF downstream genes were identified in Ewing's sarcoma cells using cDNA microarray analysis. In addition, we found that HDGF knock-down inhibited FLI1 expression in Ewing's sarcoma cells at the mRNA and protein levels. Our findings suggest that HDGF exhibits oncogenic properties and may be a novel prognostic factor in Ewing's sarcoma. Targeting HDGF might be a potential therapeutic strategy for Ewing's sarcoma.

Zhao J, Ma MZ, Ren H, et al.
Anti-HDGF targets cancer and cancer stromal stem cells resistant to chemotherapy.
Clin Cancer Res. 2013; 19(13):3567-76 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: Approximately one third of the patients with advanced non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) will initially respond to platinum-based chemotherapy, but virtually all tumors will progress (acquired resistance). The remainder will progress during initial treatment (primary resistance). In this study, we test whether the treatment can be improved by inhibiting hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF).
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Thirteen primary NSCLC heterotransplant models were used to test four treatment regimens, including platinum-based chemotherapy with and without bevacizumab (VEGF-neutralizing antibody) or HDGF-H3 (HDGF-neutralizing antibody) and chemotherapy with bevacizumab and HDGF-H3. Expression of stem cell-related genes was measured using quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry.
RESULTS: Among 13 primary NSCLC heterotransplant models, three (23%) responded to chemotherapy but all relapsed within 20 days. The residual tumors after response to the chemotherapy exhibited an increased expression in 51 (61%) of 84 genes related with stem cell proliferation and maintenance, particularly those in Notch and Wnt pathways, suggesting enrichment for stem cell populations in the residual tumors. Interestingly, tumors from two of three models treated with HDGF-H3, bevacizumab, and chemotherapy combination did not relapse during 6 months of posttreatment observation. Importantly, this treatment combination substantially downregulated expression levels in 57 (68%) of 84 stem cell-related genes, including 34 (67%) of 51 genes upregulated after the chemotherapy.
CONCLUSION: These data support the hypothesis that cancer stem cells (CSC) are a mechanism for chemotherapy resistance and suggest HDGF may be a target for repressing CSCs to prevent relapse of NSCLC sensitive to chemotherapy.

Zhao WY, Wang Y, An ZJ, et al.
Downregulation of miR-497 promotes tumor growth and angiogenesis by targeting HDGF in non-small cell lung cancer.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2013; 435(3):466-71 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play important roles in the development of various cancers. MiRNA-497 functions as a tumor-suppressor that is downregulated in several malignancies; however, its role in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has not been examined in detail. Here, we showed that miR-497 is downregulated in NSCLC tumors and cell lines and its ectopic expression significantly inhibits cell proliferation and colony formation. Integrated analysis identified HDGF as a downstream target of miR-497, and the downregulation of HDGF by miR-497 overexpression confirmed their association. Rescue experiments showed that the inhibitory effect of miR-497 on cell proliferation and colony formation is predominantly mediated by the modulation of HDGF levels. Furthermore, tumor samples from NSCLC patients showed an inverse relationship between miR-497 and HDGF levels, and ectopic expression of miR-497 significantly inhibited tumor growth and angiogenesis in a SCID mouse xenograft model. Our results suggest that miR-497 may serve as a biomarker in NSCLC, and the modulation of its activity may represent a novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of NSCLC patients.

Tsai HE, Wu JC, Kung ML, et al.
Up-regulation of hepatoma-derived growth factor facilitates tumor progression in malignant melanoma [corrected].
PLoS One. 2013; 8(3):e59345 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cutaneous malignant melanoma is the fastest increasing malignancy in humans. Hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF) is a novel growth factor identified from human hepatoma cell line. HDGF overexpression is correlated with poor prognosis in various types of cancer including melanoma. However, the underlying mechanism of HDGF overexpression in developing melanoma remains unclear. In this study, human melanoma cell lines (A375, A2058, MEL-RM and MM200) showed higher levels of HDGF gene expression, whereas human epidermal melanocytes (HEMn) expressed less. Exogenous application of HDGF stimulated colony formation and invasion of human melanoma cells. Moreover, HDGF overexpression stimulated the degree of invasion and colony formation of B16-F10 melanoma cells whereas HDGF knockdown exerted opposite effects in vitro. To evaluate the effects of HDGF on tumour growth and metastasis in vivo, syngeneic mouse melanoma and metastatic melanoma models were performed by manipulating the gene expression of HDGF in melanoma cells. It was found that mice injected with HDGF-overexpressing melanoma cells had greater tumour growth and higher metastatic capability. In contrast, mice implanted with HDGF-depleted melanoma cells exhibited reduced tumor burden and lung metastasis. Histological analysis of excised tumors revealed higher degree of cell proliferation and neovascularization in HDGF-overexpressing melanoma. The present study provides evidence that HDGF promotes tumor progression of melanoma and targeting HDGF may constitute a novel strategy for the treatment of melanoma.

Tsai HE, Liu GS, Kung ML, et al.
Downregulation of hepatoma-derived growth factor contributes to retarded lung metastasis via inhibition of epithelial-mesenchymal transition by systemic POMC gene delivery in melanoma.
Mol Cancer Ther. 2013; 12(6):1016-25 [PubMed] Related Publications
The prognosis of malignant melanoma is poor due to high incidence of metastasis, underscoring the demand for development of novel therapeutic strategies. Stress hormone pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) is the precursor for several anti-inflammatory peptides that hold promise for management of cancer-related diseases. The present study evaluated the antimetastatic potential and mechanism of POMC therapy for metastatic melanoma. Adenovirus-mediated POMC gene delivery potently inhibited the invasiveness of human and mouse melanoma cells. Moreover, after induction of lung metastasis, systemic POMC expression significantly reduced the foci formation and neovascularization in lungs. Mechanistic studies revealed that POMC therapy inhibited the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) of melanoma cells by upregulation of E-cadherin and downregulation of vimentin and α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA). In addition, microarray analysis unveiled POMC gene transfer reduced the mRNA level of multiple prometastatic factors, including hepatoma-derived growth factor (HDGF). Cell culture and immunohistochemical studies further confirmed that POMC gene delivery significantly decreased the expression of HDGF in melanoma cells and tissues. Despite stimulating the invasion and EMT, exogenous HDGF supply only partially attenuated the POMC-mediated invasion inhibition and EMT change in melanoma cells. Finally, we delineated the contribution of melanocortins to POMC-induced inhibition of invasion, HDGF downregulation, and E-cadherin upregulation. Together, these results indicate that HDGF downregulation participates in POMC-induced suppression of metastasis and EMT in melanoma.

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