HMOX1

Gene Summary

Gene:HMOX1; heme oxygenase 1
Aliases: HO-1, HSP32, HMOX1D, bK286B10
Location:22q12.3
Summary:Heme oxygenase, an essential enzyme in heme catabolism, cleaves heme to form biliverdin, which is subsequently converted to bilirubin by biliverdin reductase, and carbon monoxide, a putative neurotransmitter. Heme oxygenase activity is induced by its substrate heme and by various nonheme substances. Heme oxygenase occurs as 2 isozymes, an inducible heme oxygenase-1 and a constitutive heme oxygenase-2. HMOX1 and HMOX2 belong to the heme oxygenase family. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:heme oxygenase 1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 13 March, 2017

Ontology:

What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 13 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 13 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (5)

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: HMOX1 (cancer-related)

Wu S, Zhang T, Du J
Ursolic acid sensitizes cisplatin-resistant HepG2/DDP cells to cisplatin via inhibiting Nrf2/ARE pathway.
Drug Des Devel Ther. 2016; 10:3471-3481 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Combinations of adjuvant sensitizers with anticancer drugs is a promising new strategy to reverse chemoresistance. Ursolic acid (UA) is one of the natural pentacyclic triterpene compounds known to have many pharmacological characteristics such as anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties. This study investigates whether UA can sensitize hepatocellular carcinoma cells to cisplatin.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Cells were transfected with nuclear factor erythroid-2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) small interfering RNA and Nrf2 complementary DNA by using Lipofectin 2000. The cytotoxicity of cells was investigated by Cell Counting Kit 8 assay. Cell apoptosis, cell cycle, reactive oxygen species, and mitochondrial membrane potential were detected by flow cytometry fluorescence-activated cell sorting. The protein level of Nrf2, NAD(P)H quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1), glutathione S-transferase (GST), and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) was detected by Western blot analysis.
RESULTS: The results showed that the reverse index was 2.9- and 9.69-fold by UA of 1.125 μg/mL and 2.25 μg/mL, respectively, for cisplatin to HepG2/DDP cells. UA-cisplatin combination induced cell apoptosis and reactive oxygen species, blocked the cell cycle in G0/G1 phase, and reduced the mitochondrial membrane potential. Mechanistically, UA-cisplatin dramatically decreased the expression of Nrf2 and its downstream genes. The sensibilization of UA-cisplatin combination was diminished in Nrf2 small interfering RNA-transfected HepG2/DDP cells, as well as in Nrf2 complementary DNA-transfected HepG2/DDP cells.
CONCLUSION: The results confirmed the sensibilization of UA on HepG2/DDP cells to cisplatin, which was possibly mediated via the Nrf2/antioxidant response element pathway.

Kubícková KN, Subhanová I, Konícková R, et al.
Predictive role BLVRA mRNA expression in hepatocellular cancer.
Ann Hepatol. 2016 Nov-Dec 2016; 15(6):881-887 [PubMed] Related Publications
 Introduction and aim. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common primary malignant liver tumor. It is primarily caused by hepatic cirrhosis or chronic viral hepatitis. Hepatic carcinogenesis is associated with increased oxidative stress. Thus, the aim of our study was to assess expression of the genes involved in the homeostasis of oxidative stress in patients with HCC.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: The study was performed on 32 patients with primary HCC (verified by liver histology in 29 patients) and 27 control subjects (in 11 subjects, liver histology was available either with no or minimal changes in the liver tissue). Gene expressions of heme oxygenase 1 (HMOX1), biliverdin reductase A/B (BLVRA/B), NADPH oxidase 2 (NOX2) and p22phox were analyzed in the liver and peripheral blood leukocytes (PBL) in the subjects.
RESULTS: Compared to controls, almost a 3 times higher mRNA level of BLVRA was detected in livers of HCC patients (p = 0.002); while those of BLVRB as well as HMOX1 were unchanged (p > 0.05). In accord with these results in the liver tissue, BLVRA mRNA levels in PBL were also significantly increased in HCC patients (p = 0.012). mRNA levels of NOX2 and p22phox in the liver tissue, although higher in HCC patients, did not differ significantly compared to control subjects (p > 0.05). Nevertheless, NOX2 mRNA level in PBL was significantly higher in HCC patients (p = 0.003).
CONCLUSIONS: BLVRA mRNA levels in the liver as well as in PBL are significantly higher in HCC patients most likely as a feedback mechanism to control increased oxidative stress associated with HCC progression.

Lu Y, Wu D, Wang J, et al.
Identification of Heme Oxygenase-1 as a Novel Predictor of Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Outcomes in Acute Leukemia.
Cell Physiol Biochem. 2016; 39(4):1495-502 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The main aim of this study was to determine the correlation between clinical outcome and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) expression before and after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in acute leukemia.
METHODS: HO-1 mRNA levels in 83 patients were measured using qRT-PCR. In a comparative analysis of HO-1 levels in relation to different post-transplant outcomes, the HO-1 threshold, determined via the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve, was effectively used to predict clinical relapse and acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD). The correlations among clinical relapse, aGVHD and HO-1 expression were analyzed based on this threshold.
RESULTS: Leukemia risk stratification and relative expression of HO-1 before pretreatment had significant effects on clinical relapse. Leukemia risk stratification, relative expression of HO-1 after HSCT and the interval from diagnosis to transplantation had a significant influence on aGVHD. Both relapse and aGVHD appeared to be associated with relative HO-1 expression. The relative expression rate of HO-1 was 1.131-1.186 before pretreatment, and strongly associated with post-transplantation relapse. The relative expression rate of HO-1 was 1.102-1.144 after transplantation, and closely related to aGVHD. ROC curve analysis revealed high specificity and sensitivity of HO-1 expression in predicting relapse and aGVHD after allo-HSCT.
CONCLUSIONS: HO-1 expression can be effectively used as a predictor of relapse as well as a diagnostic factor of aGVHD after transplantation for allo-HSCT patients with acute leukemia.

Acquaviva R, Sorrenti V, Santangelo R, et al.
Effects of an extract of Celtis aetnensis (Tornab.) Strobl twigs on human colon cancer cell cultures.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 36(4):2298-304 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancers of the digestive tract, in particular colorectal cancer (CRC), are among those most responsive to dietary modification. Research has shown that approximately 75% of all sporadic cases of CRC are directly influenced by diet. Many natural compounds have been investigated for their potential usefulness as cancer chemopreventive agents as they have been thought to suppress carcinogenesis mainly during the initiation phase due to their radical scavenger activity. Since there is an increasing interest in the in vivo protective effects of natural compounds contained in plants against oxidative damage involved in several human diseases such as cancer, the aim of the present research was to test the effects of a Celtis aetnensis (Tornab.) Strobl twig extract on a human colon carcinoma cell line (Caco2). In order to elucidate the mechanisms of action of this extract, LDH release, GSH content, ROS levels, caspase-3 and γ-GCS expression were also evaluated. The results revealed that the Celtis aetnensis extract reduced the cell viability of the Caco2 cells inducing apoptosis at the lowest concentration and necrosis at higher dosages. In addition, this extract caused an increase in the levels of ROS, a decrease in RSH levels and in the expression of HO-1. The expression of γ-GCS was not modified in the Celtis aetnensis-treated Caco-2 cells. These results suggest an interference of this extract on the oxidant/antioxidant cell balance with consequent cell damage. The present study supports the growing body of data suggesting the bioactivities of Celtis aetnensis (Tornab.) Strobl and its potential impact on cancer therapy and on human health.

Tang D, Tang WJ, Shi XL, et al.
Association of the microsatellite (GT)n repeat polymorphisms of the HO-1 gene promoter and corresponding serum levels with the risk of laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma.
Acta Otolaryngol. 2016; 136(8):806-11 [PubMed] Related Publications
CONCLUSION: Long (GT)n repeat polymorphisms in the heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) gene promoter and decreased serum HO-1 levels are associated with a higher susceptibility to laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC).
OBJECTIVE: In this case-control study, the association of HO-1 microsatellite (GT)n repeat polymorphisms and serum levels with the risk of LSCC was investigated.
METHODS: A total of 142 LSCC patients, 54 vocal leukoplakia patients and 98 healthy controls, were examined for (GT)n polymorphisms by sequencing, and the serum HO-1 levels were detected in a sub-set from participants above by ELISA.
RESULTS: Compared with the controls, the LSCC group had significantly higher frequencies of L-allele (> 29 repeats) and L-allele carriers (p < 0.001, OR = 2.037 and p = 0.005, OR = 2.152, respectively). The frequencies of lymph node metastasis and of moderate or poor differentiation were significantly higher in L-allele carriers compared to non-L-allele carriers (p < 0.05). Significantly lower serum HO-1 levels were detected in LSCC patients (p < 0.001), and patients with lower serum HO-1 levels had more advanced cancer stage and a higher lymph node metastasis rate (p < 0.05). Furthermore, the L-allele carriers had lower serum HO-1 concentrations compared with the non-L-allele carriers (p = 0.019).

Okamoto S, Tsujioka T, Suemori S, et al.
Withaferin A suppresses the growth of myelodysplasia and leukemia cell lines by inhibiting cell cycle progression.
Cancer Sci. 2016; 107(9):1302-14 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Treatment outcomes for acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) remain unsatisfactory despite progress in various types of chemotherapy and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Therefore, there is a need for the development of new treatment options. We investigated the growth-suppressive effects of withaferin A (WA), a natural plant steroidal lactone, on myelodysplasia and leukemia cell lines. WA exhibited growth-suppressive effects on the cell lines, MDS-L, HL-60, THP-1, Jurkat and Ramos, and induction of cell cycle arrest at G2/M phase at relatively low doses. Evaluation by annexin V/PI also confirmed the induction of partial apoptosis. Gene expression profiling and subsequent gene set enrichment analysis revealed increased expression of heme oxygenase-1 (HMOX1). HMOX1 is known to induce autophagy during anticancer chemotherapy and is considered to be involved in the treatment resistance. Our study indicated increased HMOX1 protein levels and simultaneous increases in the autophagy-related protein LC3A/B in MDS-L cells treated with WA, suggesting increased autophagy. Combined use of WA with chloroquine, an autophagy inhibitor, enhanced early apoptosis and growth suppression. Together with the knowledge that WA had no apparent suppressive effect on the growth of human normal bone marrow CD34-positive cells in the short-term culture, this drug may have a potential for a novel therapeutic approach to the treatment of leukemia or MDS.

Dhillon H, Mamidi S, McClean P, Reindl KM
Transcriptome Analysis of Piperlongumine-Treated Human Pancreatic Cancer Cells Reveals Involvement of Oxidative Stress and Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress Pathways.
J Med Food. 2016; 19(6):578-85 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Piperlongumine (PL), an alkaloid obtained from long peppers, displays antitumorigenic properties for a variety of human cell- and animal-based models. The aim of this study was to identify the underlying molecular mechanisms for PL anticancer effects on human pancreatic cancer cells. RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) was used to identify the effects of PL on the transcriptome of MIA PaCa-2 human pancreatic cancer cells. PL treatment of pancreatic cancer cells resulted in differential expression of 683 mRNA transcripts with known protein functions, 351 of which were upregulated and 332 of which were downregulated compared to control-treated cells. Transcripts associated with oxidative stress, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, and unfolded protein response pathways were significantly overexpressed with PL treatment. Reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction and western blotting were used to validate the RNA-seq results, which included upregulation of HO-1, IRE1α, cytochrome c, and ASNS. The results provide key insight into the mechanisms by which PL alters cancer cell physiology and identify that activation of oxidative stress and ER stress pathways is a critical avenue for PL anticancer effects.

Davudian S, Mansoori B, Shajari N, et al.
BACH1, the master regulator gene: A novel candidate target for cancer therapy.
Gene. 2016; 588(1):30-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACH1 (BTB and CNC homology 1, basic leucine zipper transcription factor 1) is a transcriptional factor and a member of cap 'n' collar (CNC) and basic region leucine zipper factor family. In contrast to other bZIP family members, BACH1 appeared as a comparatively specific transcription factor. It acts as transcription regulator and is recognized as a recently hypoxia regulator and functions as an inducible repressor for the HO-1 gene in many human cell types in response to stress oxidative. In regard to studies lately, although, BACH1 has been related to the regulation of oxidative stress and heme oxidation, it has never been linked to invasion and metastasis. Recent studies have showed that BACH1 is involved in bone metastasis of breast cancer by up-regulating vital metastatic genes like CXCR4 and MMP1. This newly discovered aspect of BACH1 gene provides new insight into cancer progression study and stands on its master regulator role in metastasis process, raising the possibility of considering it as a potential target for cancer therapy.

Furfaro AL, Piras S, Domenicotti C, et al.
Role of Nrf2, HO-1 and GSH in Neuroblastoma Cell Resistance to Bortezomib.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(3):e0152465 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
The activation of Nrf2 has been demonstrated to play a crucial role in cancer cell resistance to different anticancer therapies. The inhibition of proteasome activity has been proposed as a chemosensitizing therapy but the activation of Nrf2 could reduce its efficacy. Using the highly chemoresistant neuroblastoma cells HTLA-230, here we show that the strong reduction in proteasome activity, obtained by using low concentration of bortezomib (BTZ, 2.5 nM), fails in reducing cell viability. BTZ treatment favours the binding of Nrf2 to the ARE sequences in the promoter regions of target genes such as heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1), the modulatory subunit of γ-glutamylcysteine ligase (GCLM) and the transporter for cysteine (x-CT), enabling their transcription. GSH level is also increased after BTZ treatment. The up-regulation of Nrf2 target genes is responsible for cell resistance since HO-1 silencing and GSH depletion synergistically decrease BTZ-treated cell viability. Moreover, cell exposure to all-trans-Retinoic acid (ATRA, 3 μM) reduces the binding of Nrf2 to the ARE sequences, decreases HO-1 induction and lowers GSH level increasing the efficacy of bortezomib. These data suggest the role of Nrf2, HO-1 and GSH as molecular targets to improve the efficacy of low doses of bortezomib in the treatment of malignant neuroblastoma.

Samatiwat P, Prawan A, Senggunprai L, et al.
Nrf2 inhibition sensitizes cholangiocarcinoma cells to cytotoxic and antiproliferative activities of chemotherapeutic agents.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(8):11495-507 [PubMed] Related Publications
Nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), a key transcription factor regulating antioxidant, cytoprotective, and metabolic enzymes, plays important roles in drug resistance and proliferation in cancer cells. The present study was aimed to examine the expression of Nrf2 in connection with chemotherapeutic drug sensitivity on cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) cells. The basal levels of Nrf2 protein in cytosol and nuclear fractions of CCA cells were determined using Western blot analysis. Nrf2 mRNA expression of KKU-M156 and KKU-100 cells, representatives of low and high-Nrf2-expressing CCA cells, were silenced using siRNA. After knockdown of Nrf2, the sensitivity of those cells to the cytotoxicity of cisplatin (Cis) was enhanced in association with the increased release of AIF and downregulation of Bcl-xl in both cells. Also, knockdown of Nrf2 suppressed the replicative capability of those cells in colony-forming assay and enhanced their sensitivity to antiproliferative activity of Cis and 5-fluorouracil. The chemosensitizing effect was associated with the suppressed expression of Nrf2-regulated and Cis-induced antioxidant and metabolic genes including NQO1, HO-1, GCLC, TXN, MRP2, TKT, and G6PD. In cell cycle analysis, Nrf2 knockdown cells were arrested at G0/G1 phase and combination with Cis increased the accumulation of cells at S phase. The suppression of KKU-M156 cell proliferation was associated with the downregulation of cyclin D1 and increased level of p21. Inhibition of Nrf2 could be a novel strategy in enhancing antitumor activity of chemotherapeutic agent in control of resistant cancer.

Hong B, Su Z, Zhang C, et al.
Reserpine Inhibit the JB6 P+ Cell Transformation Through Epigenetic Reactivation of Nrf2-Mediated Anti-oxidative Stress Pathway.
AAPS J. 2016; 18(3):659-69 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
UNLABELLED: Nuclear factor erythroid-2 related factor 2 (Nrf2) is a crucial transcription factor that regulates the expression of defensive antioxidants and detoxification enzymes in cells. In a previous study, we showed that expression of the Nrf2 gene is regulated by an epigenetic modification. Rauvolfia verticillata, a traditional Chinese herbal medicine widely used in China, possesses anticancer and antioxidant effects. In this study, we investigated how Nrf2 is epigenetically regulated by reserpine, the main active component in R. verticillata, in mouse skin epidermal JB6 P+ cells. Reserpine induced ARE (antioxidant response element)-luciferase activity in HepG2-C8 cells. Accordingly, in JB6 P+ cells, it upregulated the mRNA and protein levels of Nrf2 and its downstream target genes heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and
NAD(P)H: quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1), while it only increased the protein level of UDP-glucuronosyltransferase 1A1 (UGT1A1). Furthermore, reserpine decreased the TPA (12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate)-induced colony formation of JB6 cells in a dose-dependent manner. DNA sequencing and methylated DNA immunoprecipitation further demonstrated the demethylation effect of reserpine on the first 15 CpGs of the Nrf2 promoter in JB6 P+ cells. Reserpine also reduced the mRNA and protein expression of DNMT1 (DNA methyltransferase 1), DNMT3a (DNA methyltransferases 3a), and DNMT3b (DNA methyltransferases 3b). Moreover, reserpine induced Nrf2 expression via an epigenetic pathway in skin epidermal JB6 P+ cells, enhancing the protective antioxidant activity and decreasing TPA-induced cell transformation. These results suggest that reserpine exhibits a cancer preventive effect by reactivating Nrf2 and inducing the expression of target genes involved in cellular protection, potentially providing new insight into the chemoprevention of skin cancer using reserpine.

Cao L, Wang J, Ma D, et al.
Heme oxygenase-1 contributes to imatinib resistance by promoting autophagy in chronic myeloid leukemia through disrupting the mTOR signaling pathway.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2016; 78:30-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) has been verified to play an important role in imatinib (IM)-resistant chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) cells, but the mechanism remains unclear. In drug resistant CML cells, HO-1 expression abnormally increased and that of autophagy-related protein LC-3I/II also increased, so we herein postulated HO-1 was associated with autophagy. HO-1 expressions in IM-sensitive/resistant K562/K562R cells were regulated through lentiviral mediation. K562 cells transfected with HO-1 resisted IM and underwent obvious autophagy. After HO-1 expression was silenced in K562R cells, autophagy was inhibited and the sensitivity to IM was increased. The findings were related with the inhibitory effects of high HO-1 expression on the mTOR signaling pathway that negatively regulated autophagy. High HO-1 expression promoted autophagy by inhibiting mTOR. Similar to the cell line results, mononuclear cells of IM-resistant CML patients became significantly sensitive to IM when HO-1 expression was inhibited. In summary, HO-1, which is involved in the development of chemoresistance in leukemia cells by regulating autophagy, may be a novel target for improving leukemia therapy.

Chung MJ, Lee S, Park YI, et al.
Neuroprotective effects of phytosterols and flavonoids from Cirsium setidens and Aster scaber in human brain neuroblastoma SK-N-SH cells.
Life Sci. 2016; 148:173-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: We investigated the neuroprotective effects and action mechanism of three major compounds [daucosterol (Dau), pectolinarin (Pec), and astragalin (Ast)] isolated from edible plants against H2O2-induced cell death of human brain neuroblastoma SK-N-SH cells.
MAIN METHODS: Cytotoxicity was determined by MTT and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) assays. Apoptotic cell death was monitored by annexin V-FITC/PI double staining and by TUNEL assay. The formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), expression of antioxidant enzymes and phosphorylation of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) were determined by 2,7-dichlorofluorescein diacetate (DCF-DA) assay, RT-PCR, and western blotting, respectively.
KEY FINDINGS: The ethyl acetate fractions from Cirsium setidens (CSEA) and Aster scaber (ASEA) showed neuroprotective effects in SK-N-SH cells. The phytochemicals were isolated from CSEA and ASEA and identified by spectral analyses, as β-sitosterol, Dau, Pec, Ast, or isoquercitrin. Pretreatment with Dau, Pec, or Ast showed protective effects against H2O2-induced cell death and inhibited ROS generation by oxidative stress. HO-1 mRNA and protein levels were increased by the presence of H2O2 and were further elevated by pretreatment with Dau and Ast. Dau pretreatment resulted in further increases of H2O2-induced enhancement in levels of CAT and SOD2. Pretreatment with Dau, Pec, and Ast inhibited phosphorylation of MAPK, such as extracellular protein regulated protein kinase, p38, and c-Jun N-terminal kinase by H2O2.
SIGNIFICANCE: Dau exerts its neuroprotective effects by down regulation of MAPK pathways and upregulation of the HO-1, CAT and SOD2 antioxidant genes and is associated with reduced oxidative stress in SK-N-SH cells.

Khan AU, Rathore MG, Allende-Vega N, et al.
Human Leukemic Cells performing Oxidative Phosphorylation (OXPHOS) Generate an Antioxidant Response Independently of Reactive Oxygen species (ROS) Production.
EBioMedicine. 2016; 3:43-53 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
Tumor cell metabolism is altered during leukemogenesis. Cells performing oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) through mitochondrial activity. To limit the deleterious effects of excess ROS, certain gene promoters contain antioxidant response elements (ARE), e.g. the genes NQO-1 and HO-1. ROS induces conformational changes in KEAP1 and releases NRF2, which activates AREs. We show in vitro and in vivo that OXPHOS induces, both in primary leukemic cells and cell lines, de novo expression of NQO-1 and HO-1 and also the MAPK ERK5 and decreases KEAP1 mRNA. ERK5 activates the transcription factor MEF2, which binds to the promoter of the miR-23a-27a-24-2 cluster. Newly generated miR-23a destabilizes KEAP1 mRNA by binding to its 3'UTR. Lower KEAP1 levels increase the basal expression of the NRF2-dependent genes NQO-1 and HO-1. Hence, leukemic cells performing OXPHOS, independently of de novo ROS production, generate an antioxidant response to protect themselves from ROS.

Dai L, Qiao J, Nguyen D, et al.
Role of heme oxygenase-1 in the pathogenesis and tumorigenicity of Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(9):10459-71 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
Kaposi's Sarcoma-associated Herpesvirus (KSHV) is the etiologic agent of several malignancies, including Kaposi's Sarcoma (KS), which preferentially arise in immunocompromised patients such as HIV+ subpopulation and lack effective therapeutic options. Heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) has been reported as an important regulator of endothelial cell cycle control, proliferation and angiogenesis. HO-1 has also been found to be highly expressed in KSHV-infected endothelial cells and oral AIDS-KS lesions. We previously demonstrate that the multifunctional glycoprotein CD147 is required for KSHV/LANA-induced endothelial cell invasiveness. During the identification of CD147 controlled downstream genes by microarray analysis, we found that the expression of HO-1 is significantly elevated in both CD147-overexpressing and KSHV-infected HUVEC cells when compared to control cells. In the current study, we further identify the regulation of HO-1 expression and mediated cellular functions by both CD147 and KSHV-encoded LANA proteins. Targeting HO-1 by either RNAi or the chemical inhibitor, SnPP, effectively induces cell death of KSHV-infected endothelial cells (the major cellular components of KS) through DNA damage and necrosis process. By using a KS-like nude mouse model, we found that SnPP treatment significantly suppressed KSHV-induced tumorigenesis in vivo. Taken together, our data demonstrate the important role of HO-1 in the pathogenesis and tumorigenesis of KSHV-infected endothelial cells, the underlying regulatory mechanisms for HO-1 expression and targeting HO-1 may represent a promising therapeutic strategy against KSHV-related malignancies.

Koyani CN, Kitz K, Rossmann C, et al.
Activation of the MAPK/Akt/Nrf2-Egr1/HO-1-GCLc axis protects MG-63 osteosarcoma cells against 15d-PGJ2-mediated cell death.
Biochem Pharmacol. 2016; 104:29-41 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
Despite considerable efforts to improve treatment modalities for osteosarcoma (OS), patient survival remains poor mainly due to pro-survival pathways in OS cells. Among others, prostaglandins (PGs) are the potent regulators of bone homoeostasis and OS pathophysiology. Therefore, the present study aimed to elucidate the impact of 15-deoxy-Δ(12,14)-PGJ2 (15d-PGJ2, a stable PGD2 degradation product) on cell death/cell survival pathways in p53-deficient MG-63 OS cells. Our findings show that 15d-PGJ2 induces generation of reactive oxygen species that promote p38 MAPK activation and subsequent Akt phosphorylation. This pathway induced nuclear expression of Nrf2 and Egr1, and increased transcription of haem oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and the catalytic subunit of glutamate cysteine ligase (GCLc), catalysing the first step in GSH synthesis. Silencing of Nrf2, Egr1 and HO-1 significantly elevated 15d-PGJ2-mediated reduction of cellular metabolic activity. Activation of cell survival genes including HO-1 and GCLc inhibited 15d-PGJ2-induced cleavage of pro-caspase-3 and PARP. Annexin V/propidium iodide staining showed an increase in early/late apoptotic cells in response to 15d-PGJ2. The observed 15d-PGJ2-mediated signalling events are independent of PGD2 receptors (DP1 and DP2) and PPARγ. In addition, the electrophilic carbon atom C9 is a prerequisite for the observed activity of 15d-PGJ2. The present data show that the intracellular redox imbalance acted as a node and triggered both death and survival pathways in response to 15d-PGJ2. Pharmacological or genetic interference of the pro-survival pathway, the p38 MAPK/Akt/Nrf2-Egr1/HO-1-GCLc axis, sensitizes MG-63 cells towards 15d-PGJ2-mediated apoptosis.

Ren QG, Yang SL, Hu JL, et al.
Evaluation of HO-1 expression, cellular ROS production, cellular proliferation and cellular apoptosis in human esophageal squamous cell carcinoma tumors and cell lines.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 35(4):2270-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Patients with esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) have a poor prognosis. However, the related mechanisms are unclear, thus we investigated the expression of HO-1 in ESCC tissue and explored possible mechanisms of tumor progression. Expression of HO-1 was examined by immunohistochemistry in 143 ESCC tumors. The correlation of HO-1 with clinicopathological characteristics was also examined. Two human ESCC cell lines, TE-13 and Eca109 were studied. Silencing of cell line HO-1 by specific small interfering RNA (siRNA) was evaluated using real-time quantitative PCR. Cell line viability, apoptosis and intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) after transfection were determined using MTT and flow cytometry, respectively. HO-1, Bax, Bcl-2 and A-caspase-3/-9 expression was evaluated using western blot analyses. We found that HO-1 was expressed in 58 of 143 ESCC tumors, mainly in the cytoplasm. There was a significant association between HO-1 expression and tumor grade (P<0.001). Knockdown of HO-1 expression in cell lines was associated with significantly decreased cellular proliferation (P<0.05) and a higher rate of apoptosis (P<0.001) 48 h after treatment. Treatment of the cell lines with the ROS inhibitor N-acetylcysteine abrogated this effect. Knockdown of HO-1 was associated with increased A-caspase-3 and -9 expression, but no change in Bax or Bcl-2 expression or Bax/Bcl-2 ratio was observed. Thus, the present study identified that ESCC tumors frequently expressed HO-1. Knockdown of HO-1 promoted apoptosis through activation of a ROS-mediated caspase apoptosis pathway.

Shono Y, Tuckett AZ, Liou HC, et al.
Characterization of a c-Rel Inhibitor That Mediates Anticancer Properties in Hematologic Malignancies by Blocking NF-κB-Controlled Oxidative Stress Responses.
Cancer Res. 2016; 76(2):377-89 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
NF-κB plays a variety of roles in oncogenesis and immunity that may be beneficial for therapeutic targeting, but strategies to selectively inhibit NF-κB to exert antitumor activity have been elusive. Here, we describe IT-901, a bioactive naphthalenethiobarbiturate derivative that potently inhibits the NF-κB subunit c-Rel. IT-901 suppressed graft-versus-host disease while preserving graft-versus-lymphoma activity during allogeneic transplantation. Further preclinical assessment of IT-901 for the treatment of human B-cell lymphoma revealed antitumor properties in vitro and in vivo without restriction to NF-κB-dependent lymphoma. This nondiscriminatory, antilymphoma effect was attributed to modulation of the redox homeostasis in lymphoma cells resulting in oxidative stress. Moreover, NF-κB inhibition by IT-901 resulted in reduced stimulation of the oxidative stress response gene heme oxygenase-1, and we demonstrated that NF-κB inhibition exacerbated oxidative stress induction to inhibit growth of lymphoma cells. Notably, IT-901 did not elicit increased levels of reactive oxygen species in normal leukocytes, illustrating its cancer selective properties. Taken together, our results provide mechanistic insight and preclinical proof of concept for IT-901 as a novel therapeutic agent to treat human lymphoid tumors and ameliorate graft-versus-host disease.

Mihaila RG
A minireview on NHE1 inhibitors. A rediscovered hope in oncohematology.
Biomed Pap Med Fac Univ Palacky Olomouc Czech Repub. 2015; 159(4):519-26 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Na(+)/H(+) exchanger-1 (NHE-1) is involved in pH regulation and is up-regulated in different malignancies. Activation of NHE-1 is one way for allowing cells to avoid intracellular acidification and protect them against apoptosis. Inhibitors of NHE-1 are able to decrease intracellular pH and induce apoptosis. Some statins can also act by partial inhibition of NHE-1. This review presents progress in understanding the mechanisms of action of these inhibitors, connections with certain genetic mutations and acquired treatment resistance, as well as new patents on them.
METHODS: A MEDLINE search for original and review articles using key terms, Na(+)/H(+) exchanger, leukemia, cariporide, and amiloride. Recent patents with NHE-1 inhibitors published by United States Patent and Trademark Office are also presented.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: Sorafenib is used for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia patients carrying internal tandem duplication of fms-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3-ITD) mutation. 5-(N, N-hexamethylene)-amiloride can increase the suppression of FLT3 signaling by sorafenib. NHE-1 inhibitors are able to increase the sensitivity of chronic myeloid leukemia cells to tyrosine kinase inhibitors, including through the inhibition of P-glycoprotein. NHE-1 inhibitors are promising adjuvant drugs for overcoming acquired resistance to treatment in various malignant hemopathies.

Furfaro AL, Traverso N, Domenicotti C, et al.
The Nrf2/HO-1 Axis in Cancer Cell Growth and Chemoresistance.
Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2016; 2016:1958174 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
The transcription factor, nuclear factor erythroid 2 p45-related factor 2 (Nrf2), acts as a sensor of oxidative or electrophilic stresses and plays a pivotal role in redox homeostasis. Oxidative or electrophilic agents cause a conformational change in the Nrf2 inhibitory protein Keap1 inducing the nuclear translocation of the transcription factor which, through its binding to the antioxidant/electrophilic response element (ARE/EpRE), regulates the expression of antioxidant and detoxifying genes such as heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1). Nrf2 and HO-1 are frequently upregulated in different types of tumours and correlate with tumour progression, aggressiveness, resistance to therapy, and poor prognosis. This review focuses on the Nrf2/HO-1 stress response mechanism as a promising target for anticancer treatment which is able to overcome resistance to therapies.

Li Y, Li D, Yang W, et al.
Overexpression of the transcription factor FOXP3 in lung adenocarcinoma sustains malignant character by promoting G1/S transition gene CCND1.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(6):7395-404 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Forkhead box P3 (FOXP3) transcription factor is the key driver of the differentiation and immunosuppressive function of regulatory T cells (Tregs). Additionally, FOXP3 has been reported to be expressed in many solid tumor cell lines and tissues. However, its role in tumorigenesis and tumor progression is conflicting, both tumor suppressive and promoting functions have been described. In this study, we demonstrated that FOXP3 was expressed in both lung adenocarcinoma tissues and the lung adenocarcinoma cell line A549. FOXP3 inhibition decreased cell proliferation, migration, and invasion as well as the secretion of inhibitory cytokines (e.g., transforming growth factor beta 1 (TGF-β1), interleukin 35 (IL-35), and heme oxygenase-1 (HMOX1)), suggesting a positive role for FOXP3 in tumor development. Importantly, we found that FOXP3 could enhance lung adenocarcinoma cell proliferation via upregulating the levels of the cell cycle G1/S checkpoint gene CCND1. These data demonstrated that FOXP3 could be regarded as a novel therapeutic target for inhibiting lung adenocarcinoma progression.

Jakstaite A, Maziukiene A, Silkuniene G, et al.
HuR mediated post-transcriptional regulation as a new potential adjuvant therapeutic target in chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer.
World J Gastroenterol. 2015; 21(46):13004-19 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
AIM: To investigate the expression of HuR in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) and to assess the effects of HuR silencing on the expression of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and the in vitro response to gemcitabine (GEM) treatment in pancreatic cell lines.
METHODS: We compared the expression of HuR, COX-2, and HO-1 in PDA and normal pancreatic tissue using quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) and western blot. In addition, the HuR, COX-2 and HO-1 were analyzed in four types of cancer cell lines (MiaPaca2, Su.86.86, Capan-1, and Capan-2) with and without GEM treatment. Immunocytofluorescence analysis was used to investigate HuR localization in cells. Cell viability and response to GEM after HuR silencing were determined with the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-Yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide test and the crystal violet clonogenic assay, respectively. To measure apoptosis, activation of caspases 3/7 was evaluated using immunofluorescence.
RESULTS: In PDA tissue obtained from patients not treated with GEM, HuR mRNA expression was 3.2 times lower (P < 0.05) and COX-2 and HO-1 mRNA expression was 2.3-fold and 7.2-fold higher (P < 0.05), respectively, than normal pancreatic tissue (from organ donor). qRT-PCR analysis showed that HuR, COX-2, and HO-1 mRNA were overexpressed in all cancer cell lines treated with the half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) dose of GEM compared with control cells (P < 0.05). Western blot analysis revealed that COX-2 and HO-1 levels were significantly decreased in cancer cells after HuR silencing. Furthermore, HuR silencing increased the response to GEM treatment and decreased cell viability by 11.6%-53.7% compared to control cell lines. Caspases 3 and 7 were activated after HuR silencing and GEM treatment in all pancreatic cancer cell lines. In comparison, treatment with GEM alone did not activate caspases 3 and 7 in the same cell lines.
CONCLUSION: HuR mediated post-transcriptional upregulation of COX-2 and HO-1 expression after GEM treatment in pancreatic cancer cells. HuR silencing significantly increased the effectiveness of GEM treatment in vitro.

Deepak V, Ramachandran S, Balahmar RM, et al.
In vitro evaluation of anticancer properties of exopolysaccharides from Lactobacillus acidophilus in colon cancer cell lines.
In Vitro Cell Dev Biol Anim. 2016; 52(2):163-73 [PubMed] Related Publications
The present work aims at studying the effect of exopolysaccharides (EPS) from Lactobacillus acidophilus on the colon cancer cell lines in vitro. Initial analysis showed that EPS has antioxidative properties. EPS was also found to induce cytotoxicity in two colon cancer cell lines, viz. HCT15 and CaCo2 under normoxia and hypoxia. The membrane integrity was also found to be affected in EPS-treated cells. Once the toxic concentration was determined (5 mg/ml), the effect of EPS on the messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of various genes was studied by quantitative real-time (RT)-PCR under both normoxic and hypoxic conditions. The results suggest that EPS downregulated the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) and upregulated the expression of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-3 (TIMP-3), hypoxia-inducible factor-2α (HIF-2α), and hemeoxygenase-1 (HO-1). An increase in plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) was also observed. These results show that EPS may inhibit the expressions of genes involved in tumor angiogenesis and survival. Increase in the expression of HO-1 also shows that EPS have antioxidative properties.

Sahoo S, Singh P, Kalha B, et al.
Gonadotropin-mediated chemoresistance: Delineation of molecular pathways and targets.
BMC Cancer. 2015; 15:931 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) has essential roles in pregnancy. Reports linking hCG in non-trophoblastic tumors with poor patient prognosis has spurred interest in patho-physiological roles the hormone might play.
METHODS: The ability of hCG to prevent tumor cell death and sustain viability in the presence of chemotherapeutic drugs was assessed and potential synergies with TLR ligands explored. hCG-induced up-modulation of genes involved in chemoresistance was documented and targets validated by siRNA knock-down. Whether hCG could drive collaboration between tumor cells and macrophages in the production of IL-6 and consequent chemoresistance was assessed. The effects of concurrent anti-hCG immunization and chemotherapy on the growth of syngeneic murine tumors were evaluated.
RESULTS: hCG maintained basal levels of cytokine secretion by tumor cells exposed to chemotherapeutic drugs, and enhanced viability and proliferation; pre-treatment with hCG also decreased apoptosis, as assessed by Annexin-V binding and the cleavage of caspase 3. While co-incubation with hCG along with several TLR ligands mediated heightened chemo-resistance, TLR-2/6 and TLR-9 ligands increased the phosphorylation of JNK, and TLR-2 and TLR-8 ligands the phosphorylation of ERK in presence of hCG and curcumin, providing evidence of tri-molecular synergy. The hormone increased the transcription and/or expression of molecular intermediates (SURVIVIN, HIF-1α, PARP-1, Bcl-2, c-FLIP, KLK-10, XIAP, c-IAP-1) associated with chemo-resistance and increased levels of stress modulators (PON2, HO-1, HSP27 and NRF-2). siRNAs to SURVIVIN, NRF-2, HO-1 and HIF-1α attenuated hCG-mediated chemo-resistance. hCG-conditioned tumor cell supernatants induced heightened secretion of IL-6 and TNF-α from peripheral blood adherent cells and secreted IL-6 imparted chemo-resistance to naïve tumor cells. Co-administration of curcumin along with an anti-hCG vaccine (hCGβ conjugated to Tetanus Toxoid (TT)) to mice carrying syngeneic tumors resulted in significantly enhanced benefits on animal survival; synergy was demonstrated between anti-hCG antibodies and curcumin in the reduction of tumor cell viability.
CONCLUSIONS: The data suggest that hCG, via direct as well as collaborative effects with TLR ligands and accessory cell-secreted cytokines, mediates chemo-resistance in gonadotropin-sensitive tumors and outlines the potential benefits of combination therapy.

Wu MM, Lee CH, Hsu LI, et al.
Effect of heme oxygenase-1 gene promoter polymorphism on cancer risk by histological subtype: A prospective study in arseniasis-endemic areas in Taiwan.
Int J Cancer. 2016; 138(8):1875-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
Heme oxygenase (HO)-1 is upregulated by many stressful stimuli, including arsenic. A GT-repeat ((GT)n) polymorphism in the HO-1 gene promoter inversely modulates the levels of HO-1 induction. Previous HO-1 (GT)n polymorphism studies in relation to cancer risk have shown disparate results. We prospectively investigated the associations between HO-1 (GT)n polymorphism and cancer risk related to arsenic from drinking water. Totally, 1,013 participants from community-based cohorts of arseniasis-endemic areas in Taiwan were followed for 13 years. Allelic polymorphisms were classified into long (L, ≥ 27 (GT)n) and short (S, <27 (GT)n). Newly developed cases were identified through linkage with National Cancer Registry of Taiwan. Multivariate Cox proportional hazard methods were used to evaluate effects of the HO-1 polymorphism alone or combined with arsenic exposure. Results showed that participants with the S/S genotype had an increased risk of Bowen's disease (HR = 10.49; 95% CI: 2.77-39.7), invasive skin cancer (HR = 2.99; 95% CI: 1.13-7.87), and lung squamous cell carcinoma (HR = 3.39; 95% CI: 1.15-9.95) versus those with L/S or L/L genotype. The S/S genotype combined with high arsenic exposure (>300 μg/L) had a greater risk of skin cancer compared to the genotype alone. Consistent with previous findings, participants with the S-allele had a reduced risk of lung adenocarcinoma (HR = 0.21; 95% CI: 0.03-0.68) versus those with L/L genotype. There were no significant differences in risk of urothelial carcinoma among the three genotypes. Associations of HO-1 (GT)n polymorphism with cancer risk differs by histological subtype and the polymorphism should be considered a modifier in the risk assessment of arsenic exposure.

Tung MC, Lin PL, Wang YC, et al.
Mutant p53 confers chemoresistance in non-small cell lung cancer by upregulating Nrf2.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(39):41692-705 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
Nrf2 is a key transcription factor for genes coding for antioxidants, detoxification enzymes, and multiple drug resistance and it also confers resistance to anticancer drugs. Here, we hypothesized that mutant p53 could upregulate Nrf2 expression at the transcriptional level, thereby conferring cisplatin resistance in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Luciferase reporter assays and real-time PCR analysis indicated that the Nrf2 promoter activity and its mRNA levels were markedly suppressed by wild-type p53, but not by mutant p53. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) further confirmed that wild-type p53 binds at the p53 putative binding site to block Sp1 binding to the Nrf2 promoter and consequently to suppress the Nrf2 promoter activity. The MTT assay indicated that an increase in Nrf2 expression by mutant p53 is responsible for cisplatin resistance. Among the Nrf2 downstream genes, Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL contribute more strongly to Nrf2-mediated cisplatin resistance when compared with heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1). Cox regression analysis showed that patients with high-Nrf2, high-Bcl-2, high-Bcl-xL mRNA tumors were more commonly occurred unfavorable response to cisplatin-based chemotherapy than their counterparts. The prognostic significance of Nrf2 mRNA levels on OS and RFS was also observed in patients who have received cisplatin-based chemotherapy, particularly in p53-mutant patients. Collectively, mutant p53 may confer cisplatin resistance via upregulation of Nrf2 expression, and Nrf2 mRNA level may predict chemotherapeutic response and outcomes in NSCLC.

Smith E, Palethorpe HM, Ruszkiewicz AR, et al.
Androgen Receptor and Androgen-Responsive Gene FKBP5 Are Independent Prognostic Indicators for Esophageal Adenocarcinoma.
Dig Dis Sci. 2016; 61(2):433-43 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Esophageal adenocarcinoma is a male-dominant disease, but the role of androgens is unclear.
AIMS: To examine the expression and clinical correlates of the androgen receptor (AR) and the androgen-responsive gene FK506-binding protein 5 (FKBP5) in esophageal adenocarcinoma.
METHODS: Expression of AR and FKBP5 was determined by immunohistochemistry. The effect of the AR ligand 5α-dihydrotestosterone (DHT) on the expression of a panel of androgen-responsive genes was measured in AR-positive and AR-negative esophageal adenocarcinoma cell lines. Correlations in expression between androgen-responsive genes were analyzed in an independent cohort of esophageal adenocarcinoma tissues.
RESULTS: There was AR staining in 75 of 77 cases (97 %), and FKBP5 staining in 49 (64 %), all of which had nuclear AR. Nuclear AR with FKBP5 expression was associated with decreased median survival (451 vs. 2800 days) and was an independent prognostic indicator (HR 2.894, 95 % CI 1.396–6.002, p = 0.0043) in multivariable Cox proportional hazards models. DHT induced a significant increase in expression of the androgen-responsive genes FKBP5, HMOX1, FBXO32, VEGFA, WNT5A, and KLK3 only in AR-positive cells in vitro. Significant correlations in expression were observed between these androgen-responsive genes in an independent cohort of esophageal adenocarcinoma tissues.
CONCLUSION: Nuclear AR and expression of FKBP5 is associated with decreased survival in esophageal adenocarcinoma.

Cheng ML, Lu YF, Chen H, et al.
Liver expression of Nrf2-related genes in different liver diseases.
Hepatobiliary Pancreat Dis Int. 2015; 14(5):485-91 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The KEAP1-Nrf2 antioxidant signaling pathway is important in protecting liver from various insults. However, little is known about the expression of Nrf2-related genes in human liver in different diseases.
METHODS: This study utilized normal donor liver tissues (n=35), samples from patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC, n=24), HBV-related cirrhosis (n=27), alcoholic cirrhosis (n=5) and end-stage liver disease (n=13). All of the liver tissues were from the Oriental Liver Transplant Center, Beijing, China. The expressions of Nrf2 and Nrf2-related genes, including its negative regulator Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 (KEAP1), its targeted gene NAD(P)H-quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1), glutamate-cysteine ligase catalytic subunit (GCLC) and modified subunit (GCLM), heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1) and peroxiredoxin-1 (PRDX1) were evaluated.
RESULTS: The expression of Nrf2 was decreased in HCC, increased in alcoholic cirrhosis and end-stage liver disease. The expression of KEAP1 was increased in all of the liver samples. The most notable finding was the increased expression of NQO1 in HCC (18-fold), alcoholic cirrhosis (6-fold), end-stage liver disease (5-fold) and HBV-related cirrhosis (3-fold). Peri-HCC also had 4-fold higher NQO1 mRNA as compared to the normal livers. GCLC mRNA levels were lower only in HCC, as compared to the normal livers and peri-HCC tissues. GCLM mRNA levels were higher in HBV-related cirrhosis and end-stage liver disease. HO-1 mRNA levels were increased in all liver tissues except for HCC. Peri-HCC had higher PRDX1 mRNA levels compared with HCC and normal livers.
CONCLUSION: Nrf2 and Nrf2-related genes are aberrantly expressed in the liver in different diseases and the increase of NQO1 was the most notable finding, especially in HCC.

Nemeth Z, Li M, Csizmadia E, et al.
Heme oxygenase-1 in macrophages controls prostate cancer progression.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(32):33675-88 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/03/2017 Related Publications
Innate immune cells strongly influence cancer growth and progression via multiple mechanisms including regulation of epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT). In this study, we investigated whether expression of the metabolic gene, heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) in tumor microenvironment imparts significant effects on prostate cancer progression.We showed that HO-1 is expressed in MARCO-positive macrophages in prostate cancer (PCa) xenografts and human prostate cancers. We demonstrated that macrophage specific (LyzM-Cre) conditional deletion of HO-1 suppressed growth of PC3 xenografts in vivo and delayed progression of prostate intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN) in TRAMP mice. However, initiation and progression of cancer xenografts in the presence of macrophages lacking HO-1 resulted in loss of E-cadherin, a known marker of poor prognosis as well as EMT. Application of CO, a product of HO-1 catalysis, increased levels of E-cadherin in the adherens junctions between cancer cells. We further showed that HO-1-driven expression of E-cadherin in cancer cells cultured in the presence of macrophages is dependent on mitochondrial activity of cancer cells.In summary, these data suggest that HO-1-derived CO from tumor-associated macrophages influences, in part, E-cadherin expression and thus tumor initiation and progression.

Luo H, Shao Y, Yao N, et al.
Association of heme oxygenase-1 polymorphisms with cancer risk: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
J BUON. 2015 Jul-Aug; 20(4):1142-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Observational studies have recently focused on the association between heme oxygenase-1 (HMOX1) gene promoter polymorphisms and cancer risk. However, conflicting results have been obtained. To derive a precise estimate of the association, a systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted.
METHODS: This study followed the guidelines for Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses. PubMed, Medline, Embase and Web of Knowledge were systematically searched for relevant studies. Summary odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated for the allelic and genotypic comparisons according to the homozygous, heterozygous, dominant, and recessive genetic models. Between-study heterogeneity was quantified through I2 statistics, and publication bias was appraised by using funnel plots. Sensitivity analyses were conducted to evaluate the robustness of the meta-analysis findings.
RESULTS: Meta-analysis of 9 studies involving 2491 cases and 3380 controls did not reveal any significant association of the HMOX-1 (GT)n and 413A>T polymorphisms with cancer risk. Stratified analysis by ethnicity showed a statistically significant association between (GT)n repeat length variant and susceptibility to cancer for the heterozygous genetic model among Asian populations (OR=1.42, 95% CI: 1.04-1.95, Pheterogeneity=0.218), which is a robust finding according to sensitivity analysis. Funnel plot inspection did not reveal any publication bias.
CONCLUSION: In conclusion, this study comprehensively examined the available literature on the association of HMOX-1 (GT)n and 413A>T polymorphisms with cancer risk. Meta-analysis results suggest (GT)n repeat length polymorphism as a potential susceptibility variant for cancer in Asians. Additional large-scale and well-designed studies are needed to confirm these results.

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