Research IndicatorsGraph generated 31 August 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.
Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic. Tag cloud generated 31 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex
Specific Cancers (7)
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).
OMIM, Johns Hopkin University
Referenced article focusing on the relationship between phenotype and genotype.
International Cancer Genome Consortium.
Summary of gene and mutations by cancer type from ICGC
Cancer Genome Anatomy Project, NCI
COSMIC, Sanger Institute
Somatic mutation information and related details
GEO Profiles, NCBI
Search the gene expression profiles from curated DataSets in the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) repository.
Latest Publications: HOXC6 (cancer-related)
Haese A, Trooskens G, Steyaert S, et al.Multicenter Optimization and Validation of a 2-Gene mRNA Urine Test for Detection of Clinically Significant Prostate Cancer before Initial Prostate Biopsy.
J Urol. 2019; 202(2):256-263 [PubMed
] Related Publications
PURPOSE: A 2-gene, urine based molecular test that combines mRNA biomarkers with clinical factors can risk stratify patients for clinically significant prostate cancer. To ensure the generalizability of assay results we optimized and validated the clinical model for men with serum prostate specific antigen less than 10 ng/ml who were undergoing initial prostate biopsy.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Urine samples were collected from 1,955 men from The Netherlands, France and Germany prior to an initial prostate biopsy and study subjects were divided into training and validation cohorts. Urinary HOXC6 and DLX1 mRNA levels were quantified and RNA results were then combined with other risk factors in a clinical model optimized to detect ISUP (International Society of Urological Pathology) Grade Group 2 or greater prostate cancer in men with prostate specific antigen less than 10 ng/ml. Results in the validation cohort were compared with the PCPTRC (Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial Risk Calculator), version 2.0.
RESULTS: The optimal clinical model included urinary HOXC6 and DLX1 mRNA levels, patient age, digital rectal examination and prostate specific antigen density (serum prostate specific antigen/prostate volume). In the 715 validation cohort subjects with prostate specific antigen less than 10 ng/ml the AUC was 0.82 with 89% sensitivity, 53% specificity and 95% negative predictive value. The PCPTRC AUC was 0.70. The full validation cohort of 916 men including all prostate specific antigen levels yielded an AUC of 0.85 with 93% sensitivity, 47% specificity and 95% negative predictive value. The PCPTRC AUC was 0.76.
CONCLUSIONS: The 2-gene based urine assay, which is optimized for biopsy naïve patients with serum prostate specific antigen less than 10 ng/ml, demonstrated high sensitivity and negative predictive value to detect clinically significant prostate cancer. These data support using the test to help guide initial prostate biopsy decisions.
Homeobox genes are known to be classic examples of the intimate relationship between embryogenesis and tumorigenesis, which are a family of transcriptional factors involved in determining cell identity during early development, and also dysregulated in many malignancies. Previously, HOXB7, HOXC6 and HOXC8 were found abnormally upregulated in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) tissues compared with normal mucosa and seen as poor prognostic predictors for ESCC patients, and were shown to promote cell proliferation and anti-apoptosis in ESCC cells. These three HOX members have a high level of functional redundancy, making it difficult to target a single HOX gene. The aim of the present study was to explore whether ESCC cells are sensitive to HXR9 disrupting the interaction between multiple HOX proteins and their cofactor PBX, which is required for HOX functions. ESCC cell lines (KYSE70, KYSE150, KYSE450) were treated with HXR9 or CXR9, and coimmunoprecipitation and immunofluorescent colocalization were carried out to observe HOX/PBX dimer formation. To further investigate whether HXR9 disrupts the HOX pro-oncogenic function, CCK-8 assay and colony formation assay were carried out. Apoptosis was assessed by flow cytometry, and tumor growth in vivo was investigated in a xenograft model. RNA-seq was used to study the transcriptome of HXR9-treated cells. Results showed that HXR9 blocked HOX/PBX interaction, leading to subsequent transcription alteration of their potential target genes, which are involved in JAK-signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) activation and apoptosis inducement. Meanwhile, HXR9 showed an antitumor phenotype, such as inhibiting cell proliferation, inducing cell apoptosis and significantly retarding tumor growth. Therefore, it is suggested that targeting HOX/PBX may be a novel effective treatment for ESCC.
Yan TF, Wu MJ, Xiao B, et al.Knockdown of HOXC6 inhibits glioma cell proliferation and induces cell cycle arrest by targeting WIF-1 in vitro and vivo.
Pathol Res Pract. 2018; 214(11):1818-1824 [PubMed
] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Homeobox C6 (HOXC6) is one of several HOXC genes and is frequently overexpressed in multiple cancers. However, the function and mechanism of HOXC6 in glioma remain unclear.
METHODS: The expression level of HOXC6 and its relationship with prognosis in glioma were determined through the TCGA database. The expressions of HOXC6 mRNA in glioblastoma tissues and normal brain tissues were detected by qRT-PCR and Western blot. To explore the role of HOXC6 in glioma, a lentiviral vector that expressed HOXC6-shRNA was constructed and transfected into glioma U87 cells. The expression levels of HOXC6 and WNT inhibitory factor 1 (WIF-1) in the glioma U87 cells after transfection with HOXC6-shRNA were measured by real-time PCR and Western blot． CCK-8, colony formation and EdU assays were used to measure the effects of HOXC6 on U87 cell proliferation, and flow cytometry was used to monitor the changes in the cell cycle and cell apoptosis after transfection with HOXC6-shRNA. Xenograft tumors were examined in vivo for the carcinogenic effects and prognostic value of HOXC6 in glioma tissues.
RESULTS: In this study, HOXC6 was highly expressed in human glioma tissues, and a high expression of HOXC6 was associated with poor prognosis in GBM patients. We demonstrated that HOXC6 was highly expressed in human GBM tissues and three glioma cell lines. The knockdown of HOXC6 expression significantly inhibited the proliferation and colony formation ability of U87 cells by blocking cell cycle progression in the G0/G1 phase and induced apoptosis. In addition, we found that the mRNA and protein levels of WIF-1 were substantially increased after transfection with HOXC6-shRNA compared with Ctrl-shRNA in vitro. Consistent with the results of the in vitro assays, the xenograft assay and immunohistochemistry also demonstrated that in response to HOXC6 inhibition, the tumor growth and Ki-67 expression level were inhibited and the WIF-1 expression was increased in vivo.
CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, the results of the current study indicate that HOXC6 promotes glioma U87 cell growth through the WIF-1/Wnt signaling pathway and HOXC6 might be a novel target in clinical treatment for gliomas.
The development of more specific biomarkers for prostate cancer and/or high-risk prostate cancer is necessary, because the prostate-specific antigen test lacks specificity for the detection of prostate cancer and can lead to unnecessary prostate biopsies. Urine is a promising source for the development of new biomarkers of prostate cancer. Biomarkers derived from prostate cancer cells are released into prostatic fluids and then into urine. Urine after manipulation of the prostate is enriched with prostate cancer biomarkers, which include prostate cancer cells, DNAs, RNAs, proteins and other small molecules. The urinary prostate cancer antigen 3 test is the first Food and Drug Administration-approved RNA-based urinary marker, and it helps in the detection of prostate cancer on repeat biopsy. The SelectMDx test is based on messenger RNA detection of DLX1 and HOXC6 in urine after prostate massage, and helps in the detection of high-risk prostate cancer on prostate biopsy. Exosomes are extracellular vesicles with a diameter of 30-200 nm that are secreted from various types of cells. Urinary prostate cancer-derived exosomes also contain RNAs and proteins specific for prostate cancer (e.g. PCA3 and TMPRSS2-ERG), and could be promising sources of novel biomarker discovery. The ExoDx Prostate test is a commercially available test based on the detection of three genes (PCA3, ERG and SPDEF) in urinary exosomes. Advancement of comprehensive analysis (microarray, mass spectrometry and next-generation sequencing) has resulted in the discovery of several urinary biomarkers. Non-invasive urinary markers can help in the decision to carry out prostate biopsy or in the design of a therapeutic strategy.
Kim KT, Lee CH, Chung CK, Kim JHIs NF2 a Key Player of the Differentially Expressed Gene Between Spinal Cord Ependymoma and Intracranial Ependymoma?
World Neurosurg. 2018; 118:e906-e917 [PubMed
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BACKGROUND: Although intracranial and spinal ependymomas are histopathologically similar, the molecular landscape is heterogeneous. An urgent need exists to identify differences in the genomic profiles to tailor treatment strategies. In the present study, we delineated differential gene expression patterns between intracranial and spinal ependymomas.
METHODS: We searched the Gene Expression Omnibus database using the term "ependymoma" and analyzed the raw gene expression profiles of 292 ependymomas (31 spinal and 261 intracranial). The gene expression data were analyzed to find differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between 2 regions. The fold change (FC) and false discovery rate (FDR) were used to assess DEGs after gene integration (|log
RESULTS: A total of 201 genes (105 upregulated and 96 downregulated) were significant DEGs in the data sets. The underexpression of NF2 in spinal ependymomas was statistically significant (FDR P = 7.91 × 10
CONCLUSIONS: The most substantial magnitude of DEGs in ependymoma might be HOX genes. However, whether the differential expression of these genes is the cause or consequence of the disease remains to be elucidated in a larger prospective study.
Liang L, Zeng JH, Qin XG, et al.Distinguishable Prognostic Signatures of Left- and Right-Sided Colon Cancer: a Study Based on Sequencing Data.
Cell Physiol Biochem. 2018; 48(2):475-490 [PubMed
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BACKGROUND/AIMS: Left- and right-sided colon cancers are considered to be two different diseases and have altered outcomes. However, specific molecules to predict the prognosis of left- and right-sided colon cancers are currently lacking.
METHODS: Expression profiling of colon cancer were downloaded from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) of left- and right-sided colon cancers were compared by DESeq analysis. The prognostic values of DEGs were assessed by univariate and multivariate Cox regression. Prognostic index models of two side colon cancers were conducted with prognostic values genes, respectively. Interaction of DEGs was then analyzed by the protein-protein interaction (PPI). Different biology function of two sides of colon cancer was assessed by Gene Set Enrichment Analysis (GSEA).
RESULTS: A total of 167 DEGs were identified between left- and right-sided colon cancers based on TCGA data. Using univariate COX regression analysis, five genes (PHACTR3, CKMT2, CYP2W1, ERFE, HOXC4) were related to overall survival in left-sided, and eight distinguishable genes (EREG, ERFE, HOXC6, SLC22A31, TFF1, GFI1, ZG16, RASL10B) in right-sided. Further, left-sided prognostic model was established with PHACTR3 and CKMT2 (HR=2.040; 95%CI=1.004-4.145; P=0.049). Distinguishable prognostic signature for right-sided colon cancer was established based on EREG, ERFE, GFI1, and RASL10B (HR=3.530; 95%CI: 1.934-6.444; P< 0.001) in multivariate analysis. PPI analysis of 167 DEGs showed that CCL5, GNG4, GNLY, GZMH, DRD2, and FASLG genes were at the core of interaction network. In GSEA function analysis, four pathways, including antigen processing and presentation, natural killer cell mediated cytotoxicity, intestinal immune network for Iga production, and type I diabetes mellitus, were significantly enriched in the DEGs of the right-sided colon cancer.
CONCLUSIONS: This study constructs a panel of potential prognostic model of left- and right-sided colon cancers, respectively. We also provide molecular biological alterations between left- and right-sided colon cancers.
Cheng JZ, Chen JJ, Wang ZG, Yu DMicroRNA-185 inhibits cell proliferation while promoting apoptosis and autophagy through negative regulation of TGF-β1/mTOR axis and HOXC6 in nasopharyngeal carcinoma.
Cancer Biomark. 2018; 23(1):107-123 [PubMed
] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Accumulating studies have revealed that microRNAs (miRs) play a critical role in the development and progression of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC), which is a disease with a remarkable racial and geographical distribution. In our study, through the alteration in the expression of microRNA-185 (miR-185) in NPC cells by microarray-based gene expression profiling, we subsequently evaluated its ability to influence NPC cells and associated mechanism.
METHODS: The expressions of miR-185 and HOXC6 in NPC and paracancerous tissues collected from patients with NPC were detected. The CNE-2 cells with the lowest miR-185 among the five NPC cell lines (CNE-1, CNE-2, HNE-1, HNE-2, and 5-8F) were selected and transfected with a series of mimic or inhibitor of miR-185, or shRNA-against HOXC6. The Kaplan-Meier method was used to analyze the survival of patients. Besides, the reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) and western blot analysis were used to determine the levels of related genes/proteins. By means of cell counting kit-8 (CCK-8) assay, transwell assay, flow cytometry, and AO staining, the influences miR-185 has on the processes associated with NPC, including cell proliferation, invasion, apoptosis and autophagy were evaluated.
RESULTS: NPC was observed to decrease miR-185 but increase HOXC6. Dual luciferase reporter gene assay demonstrated that HOXC6 is a target gene of miR-185. Increased mRNA and protein levels of Bax, caspase-3, LC3 and Beclin1 and reduced levels of HOXC6, TGF-β1, mTOR, Cyclin D1, PCNA, Bcl-2 were found by overexpression of miR-185. High expression of miR-185 and low expression of HOXC6 had longer survival time of NPC patients. Overexpressed miR-185 enhanced cell apoptosis and autophagy, and reduced cell proliferation and invasion, while miR-185 inhibitor was observed to have induced effects on the CNE-2 cells.
CONCLUSION: Overall, the data show that miR-185 could negatively target HOXC6 to suppress cell proliferation, promotes apoptosis and autophagy through inhibiting TGF-β1/mTOR axis in NPC. Thus, miR-185 is useful strategy for the treatment of NPC.
Androgen-ablation therapies, which are the standard treatment for metastatic prostate cancer, invariably lead to acquired resistance. Hence, a systematic identification of additional drivers may provide useful insights into the development of effective therapies. Numerous microRNAs that are critical for metastasis are dysregulated in metastatic prostate cancer, but the underlying molecular mechanism is poorly understood. We perform an integrative analysis of transcription factor (TF) and microRNA expression profiles and computationally identify three master TFs, AR, HOXC6 and NKX2-2, which induce the aberrant metastatic microRNA expression in a mutually exclusive fashion. Experimental validations confirm that the three TFs co-dysregulate a large number of metastasis-associated microRNAs. Moreover, their overexpression substantially enhances cell motility and is consistently associated with a poor clinical outcome. Finally, the mutually exclusive overexpression between AR, HOXC6 and NKX2-2 is preserved across various tissues and cancers, suggesting that mutual exclusivity may represent an intrinsic characteristic of driver TFs during tumorigenesis.
Shen ZH, Zhao KM, Du THOXA10 promotes nasopharyngeal carcinoma cell proliferation and invasion via inducing the expression of ZIC2.
Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2017; 21(5):945-952 [PubMed
] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: In this study, we aimed to explore the dysregulated genes in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) and to investigate the regulative effect of HOXA10 on ZIC2 expression and their involvement in NPC cell proliferation and invasion.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Microarray data that compared the transcription profile of NPC tissues and normal tissues was searched in GEO datasets and was re-analyzed. The expression of HOXA10 and ZIC2 mRNA were retrieved in TCGA database. CNE1 and CNE2 cells were used as an in-vitro cell model. Luciferase reporters carrying truncated ZIC2 promoter sequences were generated to verify the predicted HOXA10 binding site. CCK-8 assay and transwell assay were applied to assess cell proliferation and invasion respectively.
RESULTS: HOXC6, HOXA3, and HOXA10 were upregulated in NPC tissues. Data mining in TCGA database showed that HOXA10, but not HOXC6 or HOXA3 is positively correlated to ZIC2 expression. Enforced HOXA10 expression significantly elevated ZIC2 expression at both mRNA and protein levels in both CNE1 and CNE2 cells. HOXA10 can directly bind to the promoter of ZIC2 and upregulate ZIC2 transcription. ZIC2 knockdown significantly reduced cell proliferation and invasion capability of CNE1 cells and also partly abrogated the effect of HOXA10 overexpression on enhancing cell proliferation and invasion.
CONCLUSIONS: Both HOXA10 and ZIC2 are upregulated in NPC tissues compared to the normal tissues. HOXA10 can increase ZIC2 expression via binding to the ZIC2 promoter. Functionally, the HOXA10-ZIC2 axis can enhance NPC cell proliferation and invasion.
CD133 has been shown to be an important stem cell factor that promotes glioma progression. However, the mechanism for CD133-mediated glioma progression has yet to be fully elucidated. In this study, we found that CD133 mRNA expression was a prognostic marker in three independent glioma patient cohorts, corroborating a putative role for CD133 in glioma progression. Importantly, we found that CD133 expression in glioma was highly correlated with the expression of HOX gene stem cell factors (HOXA5, HOXA7, HOXA10, HOXC4 and HOXC6). The expression of these HOX genes individually was significantly associated with survival. Interestingly, the prognostic significance of CD133 was dependent on the expression level of HOX genes, and vice versa. CD133 (p = 0.021) and HOXA7 (p = 0.001) were independent prognostic markers when the three glioma patient cohorts were combined (n = 231). Our results suggest that HOX genes may play a more important role in progression of glioma when CD133 expression is low. Furthermore, we showed that low-level expression of LIM2 in CD133-high glioma was associated with poorer survival, suggesting that LIM2 could be a therapeutic target for glioma expressing a high level of CD133. Connectivity mapping identified vinblastine and vincristine as agents that could reverse the CD133/HOX genes/LIM2-signature, and we confirmed this by in vitro analysis in glioma cell lines, demonstrating that CD133 and HOX genes were co-expressed and could be downregulated by vincristine. In conclusion, our data show that CD133 and HOX genes are important prognostic markers in glioma and shed light on possible treatment strategies for glioma expressing a high level of CD133.
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the fourth-ranked cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Despite recent advances in CRC management, distant recurrence (DR) remains the major cause of mortality in patients with preoperative chemotherapy and radiotherapy, underscoring a need to precisely identify novel gene signatures for predicting the risk of systemic relapse. Herein, we integrated two independent CRC gene expression datasets: the GSE71222 dataset, including 26 patients who developed DR and 126 patients who did not develop DR, and the GSE21510 dataset, including 23 patients who developed DR and 76 patients who did not develop DR. Our data revealed 37 common upregulated genes (fold change (FC) ≥ 1.5, P < 0.05) and three common downregulated genes (FC ≤ 1.5, P < 0.05) between DR and non-recurrent patients from the two datasets. We subsequently validated the upregulated gene panel in the Cancer Genome Atlas CRC datasets (379 patients), which identified a five-gene signature (S100A2, VIP, HOXC6, DACT1, KIF26B) associated with poor overall survival (OS, log-rank test P-value: 1.19 × 10-4) and poor disease-free survival (DFS, log-rank test P-value: 0.002). In a Cox proportional hazards multiple regression model, the five-gene signature and tumor stage retained their significance as independent prognostic factors for CRC DFS and OS. Therefore, our data identified a novel DR gene expression signature associated with worse prognosis in CRC.
Rhie SK, Guo Y, Tak YG, et al.Identification of activated enhancers and linked transcription factors in breast, prostate, and kidney tumors by tracing enhancer networks using epigenetic traits.
Epigenetics Chromatin. 2016; 9:50 [PubMed
] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Although technological advances now allow increased tumor profiling, a detailed understanding of the mechanisms leading to the development of different cancers remains elusive. Our approach toward understanding the molecular events that lead to cancer is to characterize changes in transcriptional regulatory networks between normal and tumor tissue. Because enhancer activity is thought to be critical in regulating cell fate decisions, we have focused our studies on distal regulatory elements and transcription factors that bind to these elements.
RESULTS: Using DNA methylation data, we identified more than 25,000 enhancers that are differentially activated in breast, prostate, and kidney tumor tissues, as compared to normal tissues. We then developed an analytical approach called Tracing Enhancer Networks using Epigenetic Traits that correlates DNA methylation levels at enhancers with gene expression to identify more than 800,000 genome-wide links from enhancers to genes and from genes to enhancers. We found more than 1200 transcription factors to be involved in these tumor-specific enhancer networks. We further characterized several transcription factors linked to a large number of enhancers in each tumor type, including GATA3 in non-basal breast tumors, HOXC6 and DLX1 in prostate tumors, and ZNF395 in kidney tumors. We showed that HOXC6 and DLX1 are associated with different clusters of prostate tumor-specific enhancers and confer distinct transcriptomic changes upon knockdown in C42B prostate cancer cells. We also discovered de novo motifs enriched in enhancers linked to ZNF395 in kidney tumors.
CONCLUSIONS: Our studies characterized tumor-specific enhancers and revealed key transcription factors involved in enhancer networks for specific tumor types and subgroups. Our findings, which include a large set of identified enhancers and transcription factors linked to those enhancers in breast, prostate, and kidney cancers, will facilitate understanding of enhancer networks and mechanisms leading to the development of these cancers.
Boi M, Todaro M, Vurchio V, et al.Therapeutic efficacy of the bromodomain inhibitor OTX015/MK-8628 in ALK-positive anaplastic large cell lymphoma: an alternative modality to overcome resistant phenotypes.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(48):79637-79653 [PubMed
] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Anaplastic large cell lymphomas (ALCL) represent a peripheral T-cell lymphoma subgroup, stratified based on the presence or absence of anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) chimeras. Although ALK-positive ALCLs have a more favorable outcome than ALK-negative ALCL, refractory and/or relapsed forms are common and novel treatments are needed. Here we investigated the therapeutic potential of a novel bromodomain inhibitor, OTX015/MK-8628 in ALK-positive ALCLs.The effects of OTX015 on a panel of ALK+ ALCL cell lines was evaluated in terms of proliferation, cell cycle and downstream signaling, including gene expression profiling analyses. Synergy was tested with combination targeted therapies.Bromodomain inhibition with OTX015 led primarily to ALCL cell cycle arrest in a dose-dependent manner, along with downregulation of MYC and its downstream regulated genes. MYC overexpression did not compensate this OTX015-mediated phenotype. Transcriptomic analysis of OTX015-treated ALCL cells identified a gene signature common to various hematologic malignancies treated with bromodomain inhibitors, notably large cell lymphoma. OTX015-modulated genes included transcription factors (E2F2, NFKBIZ, FOS, JUNB, ID1, HOXA5 and HOXC6), members of multiple signaling pathways (ITK, PRKCH, and MKNK2), and histones (clusters 1-3). Combination of OTX015 with the Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor ibrutinib led to cell cycle arrest then cell death, and combination with suboptimal doses of the ALK inhibitor CEP28122 caused cell cycle arrest. When OTX015 was associated with GANT61, a selective GLI1/2 inhibitor, C1156Y-resistant ALK ALCL growth was impaired.These findings support OTX015 clinical trials in refractory ALCL in combination with inhibitors of interleukin-2-inducible kinase or SHH/GLI1.
Chen SW, Zhang Q, Xu ZF, et al.HOXC6 promotes gastric cancer cell invasion by upregulating the expression of MMP9.
Mol Med Rep. 2016; 14(4):3261-8 [PubMed
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Previous studies have demonstrated that the homoebox C6 (HOXC6) gene is highly expressed in gastric cancer tissues and is associated with the depth of tumor invasion, and is associated with poor prognosis of gastric cancer patients expressing HOXC6. The present study investigated the effect and underlying mechanism of HOXC6 on the proliferation and metastasis of gastric cancer cells in vitro. Reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain (PCR) reaction was used to investigate the expression levels of HOXC6 in different gastric cancer cell lines and the effect of different levels of expression on the proliferation of gastric cancer cells was determined by cell growth curve and plate colony formation. The effect of HOXC6 on the anchorage‑independent proliferation of gastric cancer cells was determined by soft agar colony formation assay while the Transwell invasion assay was used to investigate the effect of different levels of HOXC6 expression on the invasive and metastatic abilities of gastric cancer cells. Semi‑quantitative PCR was used to detect the effect of different levels of HOXC6 expression on the expression of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)2 and MMP9 in gastric cancer cells. Immunoblotting was used to assess MMP9 signaling in the gastric cancer cells. The HOXC6 gene is highly expressed in the majority of the gastric cancer cell lines. Overexpression of HOXC6 promoted gastric cancer cell proliferation and colony formation ability while HOXC6 downregulation inhibited cell proliferation and clone forming ability. HOXC6 overexpression also enhanced the soft agar colony formation ability of gastric cancer cells while HOXC6 downregulation decreased the colony formation ability. Upregulated HOXC6 increased the migration and invasion abilities of gastric cancer cells while interfering with HOXC6 expression inhibited the migration and invasion of the gastric cancer cells. The expression of MMP9 was enhanced with an upregulation of HOXC6 expression while HOXC6 downregulation lowered MMP9 gene expression levels. Increased expression of HOXC6 in gastric cancer cell lines significantly activated extracellular signal‑regulated kinase signaling and upregulated MMP9. The HOXC6 gene promotes the proliferation of gastric cancer cells while upregulation of MMP9 promotes migration and invasion of gastric cancer cells.
Homeobox C6 (HOXC6), a member of the homeobox family that encodes highly conserved transcription factors, plays a vital role in various carcinomas. In this study, we used a tissue microarray (TMA) consisting of 462 CRC samples to demonstrate that HOXC6 is more abundantly expressed in colorectal cancer (CRC) tissues than adjacent normal mucosa. Clinicopathological data indicated that higher HOXC6 expression correlated with poor overall survival and was associated with primary tumor location in the right colon, primary tumor (pT) stage 3/4 and primary node (pN) stage 1/2. Multivariate analysis showed that high HOXC6 expression was an independent risk factor for poor CRC patient prognosis. HOXC6 downregulation via lentivirus-mediated expression of HOXC6-targeting shRNA reduced HCT116 cell viability and colony formation in vitro, and reduced growth of subcutaneous xenografts in nude mouse. HOXC6 thus appears to promote CRC cell proliferation and tumorigenesis through autophagy inhibition and mTOR pathway activation.
Zhao MY, Yu Y, Xie M, et al.Digital gene expression profiling analysis of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Mol Med Rep. 2016; 13(5):4321-8 [PubMed
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Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most commonly diagnosed malignancy in children. It is a heterogeneous disease, and is determined by multiple gene alterations and chromosomal rearrangements. To improve current understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms of ALL, the present study profiled genome‑wide digital gene expression (DGE) in a population of children with ALL in China. Using second‑generation sequencing technology, the profiling revealed that 2,825 genes were upregulated and 1,952 were downregulated in the ALL group. Based on the DGE profiling data, the present study further investigated seven genes (WT1, RPS26, MSX1, CD70, HOXC4, HOXA5 and HOXC6) using reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis. Gene Ontology analysis suggested that the differentially expressed genes were predominantly involved in immune cell differentiation, metabolic processes and programmed cell death. The results of the present study provided novel insights into the gene expression patterns in children with ALL.
Tolkach Y, Merseburger A, Herrmann T, et al.Signatures of Adverse Pathological Features, Androgen Insensitivity and Metastatic Potential in Prostate Cancer.
Anticancer Res. 2015; 35(10):5443-51 [PubMed
] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIM: The genetic characterization of prostate tumors is important for personalized therapy. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of previously described prostate cancer-related genes in the genetic characterization of prostate tumors.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Forty-two genes were selected for expression analysis (real time-quantitative polymerase chain reaction). One normal prostatic epithelial cell line and three standardized prostate cancer cell lines were used. Twenty-eight patients treated with radical prostatectomy were included in the study.
RESULTS: The following genes appeared to be possibly related to the metastatic potential of the tumor: ELOVL fatty acid elongase 7 (ELOVL7), enhancer of zeste 2 polycomb repressive complex 2 subunit (EZH2), gastrulation brain homeobox 2 (GBX2), golgi membrane protein 1 (GOLM1), homeobox C6 (HOXC6), minichromosome maintenance complex component 6 (MCM6), marker of proliferation Ki-67 (MKI67), mucin 1, cell surface associated (MUC1), MYC binding protein 2, E3 ubiquitin protein ligase (MYCBP2), somatostatin receptor 1 (SSTR1), topoisomerase (DNA) II alpha 170 kDa (TOP2A) and exportin 6 (XPO6). Six genes were differentially expressed in patients with localized and locally advanced cancer (GOLM1, GBX2, XPO6, SSTR1, TOP2A and cell division cycle associated 5, CDCA5) and three genes (HOXC6, Cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 2A (CDKN2A) and MYC binding protein 2, E3 ubiquitin protein ligase, MYCBP2) in patients with a low vs. high Gleason grade/sum.
CONCLUSION: Some of the investigated genes show promising prognostic and classification features, which might be useful in a clinical setting, warranting for further validation.
Hamid AR, Hoogland AM, Smit F, et al.The role of HOXC6 in prostate cancer development.
Prostate. 2015; 75(16):1868-76 [PubMed
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BACKGROUND: Homeobox (HOX) genes, which are involved in organ development and homeostasis, have been shown to be involved in normal prostate- and PCa development. In this study, we investigate the expression levels of the HOX A-D genes in PCa. The functional relevance and potential of HOX gene as biomarkers are explored.
METHODS: We evaluated HOX gene expression in prostate tissues of different grade and stage and related the outcome to clinical parameters. We analyzed AR regulation and function of HOXC6 in PCa cell lines. We developed a urine-based HOXC6 mRNA assay for diagnostic purposes.
RESULTS: HOXC6 was one of the most upregulated HOX genes in all primary, metastasized, and castration-resistant PCa. HOXC6 upregulation was specific to the epithelial component of PCa, and HOXC6 was shown to be involved in epithelial cell proliferation. HOXC6 expression was not influenced by androgens nor by treatments targeting the AR signaling pathway. HOXC6 expression was not related to a prognosis after radical prostatectomy, that is, biochemical or local recurrence. We successfully developed an assay for HOXC6 mRNA detection in urine and confirmed that HOXC6 levels are higher in PCa patients.
CONCLUSIONS: HOXC6 has a role in all PCa stages, particularly in PCa cell proliferation. Due to its stable expression, HOXC6 is a novel candidate biomarker for PCa not only in early detection but also for monitoring of progression or response to therapy.
Tait DL, Bahrani-Mostafavi Z, Vestal CG, et al.Downregulation of HOXC6 in Serous Ovarian Cancer.
Cancer Invest. 2015; 33(7):303-11 [PubMed
] Related Publications
Homeobox (HOX) genes encode transcription factors critical to morphogenesis and cell differentiation. Although dysregulation of several HOX genes in ovarian cancer has been reported, little is known about HOXC6 expression in epithelial ovarian cancer. In this report, analysis of laser capture microdissected samples determined HOXC6 expression patterns in normal versus malignant serous ovarian carcinoma tissues. HOXC6 protein was quantified by ELISA in parallel serum samples and further validated in a larger cohort of serum samples collected from women with and without serous ovarian carcinoma. These data demonstrate significant downregulation of HOXC6 in serous ovarian cancer.
Leyten GH, Hessels D, Smit FP, et al.Identification of a Candidate Gene Panel for the Early Diagnosis of Prostate Cancer.
Clin Cancer Res. 2015; 21(13):3061-70 [PubMed
] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Serum PSA (sPSA) testing has led to the identification of patients with indolent prostate cancer, and inevitably overtreatment has become a concern. Progensa PCA3 urine testing was shown to improve the diagnosis of prostate cancer, but its diagnostic value for aggressive prostate cancer is limited. Therefore, urinary biomarkers that can be used for prediction of Gleason score ≥7 prostate cancer in biopsies are urgently needed.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Using gene expression profiling data, 39 prostate cancer biomarkers were identified. After quantitative PCR analysis on tissue specimens and urinary sediments, eight promising biomarkers for the urinary detection of prostate cancer were selected (ONECUT2, HOXC4, HOXC6, DLX1, TDRD1, NKAIN1, MS4A8B, PPFIA2). The hypothesis that biomarker combinations improve the diagnostic value for aggressive prostate cancer was tested on 358 urinary sediments of an intention-to-treat cohort.
RESULTS: A urinary three-gene panel (HOXC6, TDRD1, and DLX1) had higher accuracy [area under the curve (AUC), 0.77; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.71-0.83] to predict Gleason score ≥7 prostate cancer in biopsies compared with Progensa PCA3 (AUC, 0.68; 95% CI, 0.62-0.75) or sPSA (AUC, 0.72; 95% CI, 0.65-0.78). Combining the three-gene panel with sPSA further improved the predictive accuracy (AUC, 0.81; 95% CI, 0.75-0.86). The accuracy of the three-gene predictive model was maintained in subgroups with low sPSA concentrations.
CONCLUSIONS: The urinary three-gene panel (HOXC6, TDRD1, and DLX1) represents a promising tool to identify patients with aggressive prostate cancer, also in those with low sPSA values. The combination of the urinary three-gene panel with sPSA bears great potential for the early diagnosis of patients with clinically significant prostate cancer.
HOXC6 is a homeobox-containing gene associated with mammary gland development and is overexpressed in variety of cancers including breast and prostate cancers. Here, we have examined the expression of HOXC6 in breast cancer tissue, investigated its transcriptional regulation via estradiol (E2) and bisphenol-A (BPA, an estrogenic endocrine disruptor) in vitro and in vivo. We observed that HOXC6 is differentially over-expressed in breast cancer tissue. E2 induces HOXC6 expression in cultured breast cancer cells and in mammary glands of Sprague Dawley rats. HOXC6 expression is also induced upon exposure to BPA both in vitro and in vivo. Estrogen-receptor-alpha (ERα) and ER-coregulators such as MLL-histone methylases are bound to the HOXC6 promoter upon exposure to E2 or BPA and that resulted in increased histone H3K4-trimethylation, histone acetylation, and recruitment of RNA polymerase II at the HOXC6 promoter. HOXC6 overexpression induces expression of tumor growth factors and facilitates growth 3D-colony formation, indicating its potential roles in tumor growth. Our studies demonstrate that HOXC6, which is a critical player in mammary gland development, is upregulated in multiple cases of breast cancer, and is transcriptionally regulated by E2 and BPA, in vitro and in vivo.
Wang DD, Xu Y, Tu YL, et al.Comparison analysis in synchronous and metachronous metastatic colorectal cancer based on microarray expression profile.
Hepatogastroenterology. 2014 Nov-Dec; 61(136):2215-8 [PubMed
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BACKGROUND/AIMS: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the most common malignancies, and liver metastasis is one of the major causes of death of CRC. This study aimed to compare the genetic difference between metachronous lesions (MC) and synchronous lesions (SC) and explore the molecular pathology of CRC metastasis.
METHODOLOGY: Microarray expression profile data (GSE10961) including 8 MC and 10 SC was downloaded from Gene Expression Omnibus. The differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between the two groups were identified based on T test. Furthermore, GO enrichment analysis was performed for the down-regulated DEGs using DAVID. Finally, Classify validation of known CRC genes based on previous studies between MC and SC samples was conducted.
RESULTS: Total of 36 DEGs including 35 down-regulated DEGs and 1 up-regulated DEGs were identified. The expressional differences of the 5 informative oncogenes: EGFr, PIK3R1, PTGS2 (COX-2), PTGS1 (COX1), and ALOX5AP between SC and MC were really tiny.
CONCLUSIONS: Some DEGs, such as NFAT5, OLR1, ERAP2, HOXC6 and TWIST1 might play crucial roles in the regulation of CRC metastasis (both SC and MC) and by disrupting some pathways. However, our results indeed demand further research and experiment.
BACKGROUND: We analysed critically the potential usefulness of RNA- and DNA-based biomarkers in supporting conventional histological diagnostic tests for prostate carcinoma (PCa) detection.
METHODS: Microarray profiling of gene expression and DNA methylation was performed on 16 benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and 32 cancerous and non-cancerous prostate samples extracted by radical prostatectomy. The predictive value of the selected biomarkers was validated by qPCR-based methods using tissue samples extracted from the 58 prostates and, separately, using 227 prostate core biopsies.
RESULTS: HOXC6, AMACR and PCA3 expression showed the best discrimination between PCa and BPH. All three genes were previously reported as the most promising mRNA-based markers for distinguishing cancerous lesions from benign prostate lesions; however, none were sufficiently sensitive and specific to meet the criteria for a PCa diagnostic biomarker. By contrast, DNA methylation levels of the APC, TACC2, RARB, DGKZ and HES5 promoter regions achieved high discriminating sensitivity and specificity, with area under the curve (AUCs) reaching 0.95-1.0. Only a small overlap was detected between the DNA methylation levels of PCa-positive and PCa-negative needle biopsies, with AUCs ranging between 0.854 and 0.899.
CONCLUSIONS: DNA methylation-based biomarkers reflect the prostate malignancy and might be useful in supporting clinical decisions for suspected PCa following an initial negative prostate biopsy.
Tumor suppressor genes (TSGs) are commonly inactivated by somatic mutation and/or promoter methylation; yet, recent high-throughput genomic studies have not identified key TSGs inactivated by both mechanisms. We pursued an integrated molecular analysis based on methylation binding domain sequencing (MBD-seq), 450K Methylation arrays, whole exome sequencing, and whole genome gene expression arrays in primary head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) tumors and matched uvulopalatopharyngoplasty tissue samples (UPPPs). We uncovered 186 downregulated genes harboring cancer specific promoter methylation including PAX1 and PAX5 and we identified 10 key tumor suppressor genes (GABRB3, HOXC12, PARP15, SLCO4C1, CDKN2A, PAX1, PIK3AP1, HOXC6, PLCB1, and ZIC4) inactivated by both promoter methylation and/or somatic mutation. Among the novel tumor suppressor genes discovered with dual mechanisms of inactivation, we found a high frequency of genomic and epigenomic alterations in the PAX gene family of transcription factors, which selectively impact canonical NOTCH and TP53 pathways to determine cell fate, cell survival, and genome maintenance. Our results highlight the importance of assessing TSGs at the genomic and epigenomic level to identify key pathways in HNSCC, deregulated by simultaneous promoter methylation and somatic mutations.
Du YB, Dong B, Shen LY, et al.The survival predictive significance of HOXC6 and HOXC8 in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
J Surg Res. 2014; 188(2):442-50 [PubMed
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BACKGROUND & AIM: Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), a common disease in China, is mainly treated surgically. We established a prospective database of patients with esophageal cancer between January 2000 and December 2010, including 486 subjects with ESCC who underwent surgical treatment. In this study, we explored the prognostic significance of the expressions of HOXC6 and HOXC8, responsible for embryonic development, by studying the specimens collected from clinical subjects during strict follow-up periods.
MATERIALS & METHODS: Immunohistochemistry was used to detect the expressions of HOXC6 and HOXC8 in 274 ESCC subjects including 138 ESCC subjects treated with surgery alone and 136 ESCC subjects treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Survival analysis was performed from the day of surgery to August 2013.
RESULTS: The 5-y survival rate of the 274 ESCC subjects was 44.2%, with a median survival time of 44.12 mo. For the 274 ESCC subjects involved in the investigation of HOXC6 and HOXC8 expressions, the median survival time of subjects with high-level expressions of HOXC6 and HOXC8 was shorter than that for subjects with low-level expressions (P = 0.001, P < 0.001, respectively). Similar results were obtained from the analysis of the prognostic value of HOXC6 and HOXC8 in the group treated with surgery alone and the group treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that HOXC6 and HOXC8 expressions were independent prognostic factors in patients with ESCC.
CONCLUSIONS: The HOXC6 and HOXC8 genes can be used as prognostic markers in patients with ESCC, but prospective studies are still needed to confirm.
Multiple epigenetic alterations contribute to prostate cancer progression by deregulating gene expression. Epigenetic mechanisms, especially differential DNA methylation at imprinting control regions (termed DMRs), normally ensure the exclusive expression of imprinted genes from one specific parental allele. We therefore wondered to which extent imprinted genes become deregulated in prostate cancer and, if so, whether deregulation is due to altered DNA methylation at DMRs. Therefore, we selected presumptive deregulated imprinted genes from a previously conducted in silico analysis and from the literature and analyzed their expression in prostate cancer tissues by qRT-PCR. We found significantly diminished expression of PLAGL1/ZAC1, MEG3, NDN, CDKN1C, IGF2, and H19, while LIT1 was significantly overexpressed. The PPP1R9A gene, which is imprinted in selected tissues only, was strongly overexpressed, but was expressed biallelically in benign and cancerous prostatic tissues. Expression of many of these genes was strongly correlated, suggesting co-regulation, as in an imprinted gene network (IGN) reported in mice. Deregulation of the network genes also correlated with EZH2 and HOXC6 overexpression. Pyrosequencing analysis of all relevant DMRs revealed generally stable DNA methylation between benign and cancerous prostatic tissues, but frequent hypo- and hyper-methylation was observed at the H19 DMR in both benign and cancerous tissues. Re-expression of the ZAC1 transcription factor induced H19, CDKN1C and IGF2, supporting its function as a nodal regulator of the IGN. Our results indicate that a group of imprinted genes are coordinately deregulated in prostate cancers, independently of DNA methylation changes.
Mengual L, Ars E, Lozano JJ, et al.Gene expression profiles in prostate cancer: identification of candidate non-invasive diagnostic markers.
Actas Urol Esp. 2014; 38(3):143-9 [PubMed
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OBJECTIVE: To analyze gene expression profiles of prostate cancer (PCa) with the aim of determining the relevant differentially expressed genes and subsequently ascertain whether this differential expression is maintained in post-prostatic massage (PPM) urine samples.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Forty-six tissue specimens (36 from PCa patients and 10 controls) and 158 urine PPM-urines (113 from PCa patients and 45 controls) were collected between December 2003 and May 2007. DNA microarrays were used to identify genes differentially expressed between tumour and control samples. Ten genes were technically validated in the same tissue samples by quantitative RT-PCR (RT-qPCR). Forty two selected differentially expressed genes were validated in an independent set of PPM-urines by qRT-PCR.
RESULTS: Multidimensional scaling plot according to the expression of all the microarray genes showed a clear distinction between control and tumour samples. A total of 1047 differentially expressed genes (FDR≤.1) were indentified between both groups of samples. We found a high correlation in the comparison of microarray and RT-qPCR gene expression levels (r=.928, P<.001). Thirteen genes maintained the same fold change direction when analyzed in PPM-urine samples and in four of them (HOXC6, PCA3, PDK4 and TMPRSS2-ERG), these differences were statistically significant (P<.05).
CONCLUSION: The analysis of PCa by DNA microarrays provides new putative mRNA markers for PCa diagnosis that, with caution, can be extrapolated to PPM-urines.
DeInnocentes P, Perry AL, Graff EC, et al.Characterization of HOX gene expression in canine mammary tumour cell lines from spontaneous tumours.
Vet Comp Oncol. 2015; 13(3):322-36 [PubMed
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Spatial/temporal controls of development are regulated by the homeotic (HOX) gene complex and require integration with oncogenes and tumour suppressors regulating cell cycle exit. Spontaneously derived neoplastic canine mammary carcinoma cell models were investigated to determine if HOX expression profiles were associated with neoplasia as HOX genes promote neoplastic potential in human cancers. Comparative assessment of human and canine breast cancer expression profiles revealed remarkable similarity for all four paralogous HOX gene clusters and several unlinked HOX genes. Five canine HOX genes were overexpressed with expression profiles consistent with oncogene-like character (HOXA1, HOXA13, HOXD4, HOXD9 and SIX1) and three HOX genes with underexpressed profiles (HOXA11, HOXC8 and HOXC9) were also identified as was an apparent nonsense mutation in HOXC6. This data, as well as a comparative analysis of similar data from human breast cancers suggested expression of selected HOX genes in canine mammary carcinoma could be contributing to the neoplastic phenotype.
Chen EY, Dobrinski KP, Brown KH, et al.Cross-species array comparative genomic hybridization identifies novel oncogenic events in zebrafish and human embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma.
PLoS Genet. 2013; 9(8):e1003727 [PubMed
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Human cancer genomes are highly complex, making it challenging to identify specific drivers of cancer growth, progression, and tumor maintenance. To bypass this obstacle, we have applied array comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) to zebrafish embryonal rhabdomyosaroma (ERMS) and utilized cross-species comparison to rapidly identify genomic copy number aberrations and novel candidate oncogenes in human disease. Zebrafish ERMS contain small, focal regions of low-copy amplification. These same regions were commonly amplified in human disease. For example, 16 of 19 chromosomal gains identified in zebrafish ERMS also exhibited focal, low-copy gains in human disease. Genes found in amplified genomic regions were assessed for functional roles in promoting continued tumor growth in human and zebrafish ERMS--identifying critical genes associated with tumor maintenance. Knockdown studies identified important roles for Cyclin D2 (CCND2), Homeobox Protein C6 (HOXC6) and PlexinA1 (PLXNA1) in human ERMS cell proliferation. PLXNA1 knockdown also enhanced differentiation, reduced migration, and altered anchorage-independent growth. By contrast, chemical inhibition of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) signaling reduced angiogenesis and tumor size in ERMS-bearing zebrafish. Importantly, VEGFA expression correlated with poor clinical outcome in patients with ERMS, implicating inhibitors of the VEGF pathway as a promising therapy for improving patient survival. Our results demonstrate the utility of array CGH and cross-species comparisons to identify candidate oncogenes essential for the pathogenesis of human cancer.
Zhang Q, Jin XS, Yang ZY, et al.Upregulated Hoxc6 expression is associated with poor survival in gastric cancer patients.
Neoplasma. 2013; 60(4):439-45 [PubMed
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Human Hox genes (Homeobox) have crucial roles in development and differentiation, regulating numerous processes including apoptosis, receptor signalling, differentiation, motility and angiogenesis. Aberrant expression of Hoxc6 gene has been reported in several tumor tissues and cancer cell lines. The prognostic significance of Hoxc6 in gastric cancer remains largely unknown.This study was aimed to investigate the clinical significance of Hoxc6 in gastric cancer.Total RNA of paired tissue samples (n=25) and a tissue microarray containing 161 paired tissues from patients with gastric cancers at different stages were collected. Quantitative real-time PCR and immunochemistry assay were carried out to investigate the expression of Hoxc6. Hoxc6 mRNA was increased in gastric cancer tissues ( 16 of 25) compared with the adjacent normal mucosa (P<0.05). Immunohistochemical detection showed that expression of Hoxc6 was associated with the depth of tumor invasion (P<0.05). Patients with higher expression levels of Hoxc6 had a shorter overall survival rate (P<0.05).Hoxc6 might contribute to the progression of gastric carcinogenesis and may be a significant predictor of poor survival in patients with gastric cancer after curative operations.