Gene Summary

Gene:INHA; inhibin, alpha
Summary:This gene encodes the alpha subunit of inhibins A and B protein complexes. These complexes negatively regulate follicle stimulating hormone secretion from the pituitary gland. Inhibins have also been implicated in regulating numerous cellular processes including cell proliferation, apoptosis, immune response and hormone secretion.[provided by RefSeq, Dec 2010]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:inhibin alpha chain
Source:NCBIAccessed: 25 June, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 25 June 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

Tag cloud generated 25 June, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (6)

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

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

Latest Publications: INHA (cancer-related)

Lee AW, Tyrer JP, Doherty JA, et al.
Evaluating the ovarian cancer gonadotropin hypothesis: a candidate gene study.
Gynecol Oncol. 2015; 136(3):542-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Ovarian cancer is a hormone-related disease with a strong genetic basis. However, none of its high-penetrance susceptibility genes and GWAS-identified variants to date are known to be involved in hormonal pathways. Given the hypothesized etiologic role of gonadotropins, an assessment of how variability in genes involved in the gonadotropin signaling pathway impacts disease risk is warranted.
METHODS: Genetic data from 41 ovarian cancer study sites were pooled and unconditional logistic regression was used to evaluate whether any of the 2185 SNPs from 11 gonadotropin signaling pathway genes was associated with ovarian cancer risk. A burden test using the admixture likelihood (AML) method was also used to evaluate gene-level associations.
RESULTS: We did not find any genome-wide significant associations between individual SNPs and ovarian cancer risk. However, there was some suggestion of gene-level associations for four gonadotropin signaling pathway genes: INHBB (p=0.045, mucinous), LHCGR (p=0.046, high-grade serous), GNRH (p=0.041, high-grade serous), and FSHB (p=0.036, overall invasive). There was also suggestive evidence for INHA (p=0.060, overall invasive).
CONCLUSIONS: Ovarian cancer studies have limited sample numbers, thus fewer genome-wide susceptibility alleles, with only modest associations, have been identified relative to breast and prostate cancers. We have evaluated the majority of ovarian cancer studies with biological samples, to our knowledge, leaving no opportunity for replication. Using both our understanding of biology and powerful gene-level tests, we have identified four putative ovarian cancer loci near INHBB, LHCGR, GNRH, and FSHB that warrant a second look if larger sample sizes and denser genotype chips become available.

Imren S, Heuser M, Gasparetto M, et al.
Modeling de novo leukemogenesis from human cord blood with MN1 and NUP98HOXD13.
Blood. 2014; 124(24):3608-12 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Leukemic transformation of human cells is a complex process. Here we show that forced expression of MN1 in primitive human cord blood cells maintained on stromal cells in vitro induces a transient, but not serially transplantable, myeloproliferation in engrafted mice. However, cotransduction of an activated HOX gene (NUP98HOXD13) with MN1 induces a serially transplantable acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Further characterization of the leukemic cells generated from the dually transduced cells showed the activation of stem cell gene expression signatures also found in primary human AML. These findings show a new forward genetic model of human leukemogenesis and further highlight the relevance of homeobox transcription factors in the transformation process.

Kim L, Tsao MS
Tumour tissue sampling for lung cancer management in the era of personalised therapy: what is good enough for molecular testing?
Eur Respir J. 2014; 44(4):1011-22 [PubMed] Related Publications
In the era of personalised cancer therapy, the demand for molecular profiling of the patient's tumour is steadily increasing. In advanced nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients, testing for epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations and anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) gene rearrangements has become an essential component of clinical practice to select patients who are most likely to benefit from EGFR and ALK tyrosine kinase inhibitors, respectively. Furthermore, obtaining tissue specimens from recurrent or metastatic tumours or from patients who develop resistance to initial effective therapies are essential for our understanding of the molecular basis of tumour progression and development of drug resistance. Therefore, the sampling of tumour tissue that is representative and is adequate in quantity and quality for pathological diagnosis and genomic profiling is crucial. In this review, we will discuss factors that should be considered in obtaining and processing biopsy specimens to enable routine molecular analysis in NSCLC patients.

Kim JJ, Choi YM, Hong MA, et al.
Gene dose effect between a fat mass and obesity-associated polymorphism and body mass index was observed in Korean women with polycystic ovary syndrome but not in control women.
Fertil Steril. 2014; 102(4):1143-1148.e2 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To examine the association between fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) polymorphisms and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) in Korean women.
DESIGN: Case-control study.
SETTING: University department of obstetrics and gynecology.
PATIENT(S): Women with (n = 552) or without (n = 559) PCOS.
INTERVENTION(S): Genotyping was performed.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S): FTO rs9939609 genotype distribution and correlation between variants in this gene and PCOS phenotypes.
RESULT(S): The mean body mass index (BMI) of the patients was significantly higher than that of the control subjects (22.0 ± 4.1 kg/m(2) vs. 20.1 ± 2.5 kg/m(2)), but most (81.3%) of the patients were not obese. FTO rs9939609 was not significantly associated with PCOS itself. However, a positive correlation was observed between the number of variant alleles and BMI in women with PCOS: Each additional copy of the variant allele increased BMI by a mean (95% confidence interval) of 4.8% (1.4%-8.3%) or 1.11 kg/m(2) (1.03-1.20 kg/m(2)) after adjusting for age. This correlation was not observed in the control subjects.
CONCLUSION(S): FTO rs9939609 was not a major determinant of PCOS. However, in the women with PCOS who were primarily nonobese, a gene dose effect was observed for BMI. The FTO gene may play an influential role in predisposition to PCOS via an association with obesity.

Kim DG, Jung KH, Lee DG, et al.
20(S)-Ginsenoside Rg3 is a novel inhibitor of autophagy and sensitizes hepatocellular carcinoma to doxorubicin.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(12):4438-51 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. High mortality from HCC is mainly due to widespread prevalence and the lack of effective treatment, since systemic chemotherapy is ineffective, while the targeted agent Sorafenib extends median survival only briefly. The steroidal saponin 20(S)-ginsenoside Rg3 from Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer is proposed to chemosensitize to various therapeutic drugs through an unknown mechanism. Since autophagy often serves as cell survival mechanism in cancer cells exposed to chemotherapeutic agents, we examined the ability of Rg3 to inhibit autophagy and chemosensitize HCC cell lines to doxorubicin in vitro. We show that Rg3 inhibits late stage autophagy, possibly through changes in gene expression. Doxorubicin-induced autophagy plays a protective role in HCC cells, and therefore Rg3 treatment synergizes with doxorubicin to kill HCC cell lines, but the combination is relatively nontoxic in normal liver cells. In addition, Rg3 was well-tolerated in mice and synergized with doxorubicin to inhibit tumor growth in HCC xenografts in vivo. Since novel in vivo inhibitors of autophagy are desirable for clinical use, we propose that Rg3 is such a compound, and that combination therapy with classical chemotherapeutic drugs may represent an effective therapeutic strategy for HCC treatment.

Jung KH, Yan HH, Fang Z, et al.
HS-104, a PI3K inhibitor, enhances the anticancer efficacy of gemcitabine in pancreatic cancer.
Int J Oncol. 2014; 45(1):311-21 [PubMed] Related Publications
Gemcitabine has limited clinical benefits for pancreatic cancer patients. The phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt signaling pathway is important in cell proliferation and survival, and is frequently dysregulated in pancreatic cancer. To obtain insights into novel therapeutic strategies for treating pancreatic cancer, we investigated whether HS-104, a novel PI3K inhibitor, in combination with gemcitabine would show a synergistic effect in pancreatic cancer. We first evaluated the effect of gemcitabine alone or in combination with HS-104 on cell viability. When administered together, the two drugs synergistically inhibited the viability of AsPC-1 and PANC-1 cells, and decreased mitochondrial membrane potential, thereby inducing apoptosis. Compared to the treatment with either drug alone, the combination treatment resulted in apoptosis accompanied by increased levels of cleaved caspase-3 and Bax. These results were consistent with decreased expression of p-Akt, p-mTOR, p-Mek and p-Erk. Moreover, the combination treatment inhibited blood vessel formation in a Matrigel plug assay in mice. Furthermore, in vivo, the combination significantly inhibited tumor growth and enhanced apoptosis by increasing the number of TUNEL-positive cells, and cleaved caspase-3 together with decreasing the expression of angiogenesis- and proliferation-related effectors such as CD34 and PCNA in tumor tissues, compared with each drug alone. Taken together, our study demonstrates that the combination of gemcitabine and HS-104 had a synergistic anticancer effect and inhibited the PI3K/Akt and RAF/Mek pathways on pancreatic cancers. On the basis of our results, we suggest that the combination of these two drugs may be considered as a new therapeutic regimen for treating pancreatic cancer.

Kim HN, Kim DH, Kim EH, et al.
Sulforaphane inhibits phorbol ester-stimulated IKK-NF-κB signaling and COX-2 expression in human mammary epithelial cells by targeting NF-κB activating kinase and ERK.
Cancer Lett. 2014; 351(1):41-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Sulforaphane, an isothiocyanate present in cruciferous vegetables, has been reported to possess anti-inflammatory and cancer chemopreventive properties. However, the molecular mechanisms by which sulforaphane suppresses inflammation and carcinogenesis are yet to be fully elucidated. Since the aberrant expression of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) links inflammation and cancer, the present study was aimed to elucidate the mechanisms by which sulforaphane modulates COX-2 overexpression in human mammary epithelial (MCF-10A) cells stimulated with a prototypic tumor promoter 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA). Treatment of MCF-10A cells with sulforaphane significantly inhibited TPA-induced expression of COX-2 protein and its mRNA transcript. Transient transfection of cells with deletion mutant constructs of COX-2 promoter revealed that the transcription factor nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-κB) plays a key role in TPA-induced COX-2 expression in MCF-10A cells. Pretreatment with sulforaphane significantly attenuated nuclear localization, DNA binding and the transcriptional activity of NF-κB through inhibition of phosphorylation and subsequent degradation of IκBα in MCF-10A cells stimulated with TPA. Sulforaphane also attenuated TPA-induced activation of IκB kinases (IKK), NF-κB-activating kinase (NAK) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase-1/2 (ERK1/2). Pharmacological inhibition of IKK or transient transfection of cells with dominant-negative mutant forms of this kinase abrogated TPA-induced NF-κB activation and COX-2 expression. In addition, the blockade of ERK1/2 activation negated the catalytic activity of IKKα, but not that of IKKβ, whereas silencing NAK by specific siRNA abrogated the IKKβ activity in TPA-treated cells. Taken together, sulforaphane inhibits TPA-induced NF-κB activation and COX-2 expression in MCF-10A cells by blocking two distinct signaling pathways mediated by ERK1/2-IKKα and NAK-IKKβ.

Kim KH, Choi I, Lee YW, et al.
Target genes involved in antiproliferative effect of modified ginseng extracts in lung cancer A549 cells.
Acta Biochim Biophys Sin (Shanghai). 2014; 46(6):441-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Lung cancer is the most common cancer and the leading cause of cancer-related deaths. Panax ginseng has long been used to treat cancer and other diseases worldwide. Most of the pharmacological actions of ginseng are attributed to a variety of ginsenosides, which are often metabolized by intestinal bacteria into more effective forms. In this study, we found that the antiproliferative activity of ginseng was increased after enzymatic processing of ginseng saponin (50% inhibitory concentration, >70 μg/ml). To elucidate the mechanism by which modified ginseng extract (MGX) induced cell death in human lung cancer cells, the gene expression profiles of A549 cells regulated by MGX were assayed using Agilent PrimeView Human Gene Expression Arrays. The expression of 17 genes involved in the regulation of cell signaling, cell metabolism, transport, and cytoskeleton-regulation was up-regulated, whereas the expression of 16 genes implicated in invasion and metastasis and cellular metabolism was down-regulated in MGX-treated A549 cells. Moreover, nuclear staining with 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole revealed that MGX clearly caused nuclear condensation and fragmentation which are observed in apoptosis cell. These results elucidate crucial anticancer mechanisms of MGX and provide potential new targets for the assessment of anticancer activity of MGX.

Tournier I, Marlin R, Walton K, et al.
Germline mutations of inhibins in early-onset ovarian epithelial tumors.
Hum Mutat. 2014; 35(3):294-7 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
To identify novel genetic bases of early-onset epithelial ovarian tumors, we used the trio exome sequencing strategy in a patient without familial history of cancer who presented metastatic serous ovarian adenocarcinomas at 21 years of age. We identified a single de novo mutation (c.1157A>G/p.Asn386Ser) within the INHBA gene encoding the βA-subunit of inhibins/activins, which play a key role in ovarian development. In vitro, this mutation alters the ratio of secreted activins and inhibins. In a second patient with early-onset serous borderline papillary cystadenoma, we identified an unreported germline mutation (c.179G>T/p.Arg60Leu) of the INHA gene encoding the α-subunit, the partner of the βA-subunit. This mutation also alters the secreted activin/inhibin ratio, by disrupting both inhibin A and inhibin B biosynthesis. In a cohort of 62 cases, we detected an additional unreported germline mutation of the INHBA gene (c.839G>A/p.Gly280Glu). Our results strongly suggest that inhibin mutations contribute to the genetic determinism of epithelial ovarian tumors.

Ko KP, Kim SW, Ma SH, et al.
Dietary intake and breast cancer among carriers and noncarriers of BRCA mutations in the Korean Hereditary Breast Cancer Study.
Am J Clin Nutr. 2013; 98(6):1493-501 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Soy intake is associated with a lower risk of breast cancer. However, it is unclear whether the same reduction in risk associated with high soy intake is also applicable to familial or genetic breast cancer.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to assess the dietary factors among carriers and noncarriers of BRCA mutations in the Korean Hereditary Breast Cancer Study (KOHBRA).
DESIGN: The KOHBRA Study is an ongoing project composed of affected breast cancer patients and familial members of breast cancer cases with BRCA mutations. To assess the association between dietary diversity and breast cancer risk, an HR was estimated by comparing affected subjects with their familial nonaffected members. To assess the interaction between the combination of BRCA mutation and diet diversity, the case-only OR (COR) was estimated by comparing BRCA mutation carriers and noncarriers only in affected subjects.
RESULTS: Soy product intake was associated with a lower risk of breast cancer in carriers (HR: 0.39; 95% CI: 0.19, 0.79 for the highest quartile). The highest quartile of meat intake was associated with a higher risk of breast cancer regardless of BRCA mutation in carriers (HR: 1.97; 95% CI: 1.13, 3.44) and noncarriers (95% CI: 1.41; 1.12, 1.78). The associations of meat intake and soybean intake for breast cancer were more prominent in BRCA2 mutation carriers. In the analysis with only cases, the highest quartile of soy intake, but not meat intake, was associated with BRCA-related breast cancer (COR: 0.57; 95% CI: 0.36, 0.91).
CONCLUSION: Our study suggests that soy product consumption is associated with lower breast cancer risk and it had an interaction with BRCA mutation.

Parviainen H, Schrade A, Kiiveri S, et al.
Expression of Wnt and TGF-β pathway components and key adrenal transcription factors in adrenocortical tumors: association to carcinoma aggressiveness.
Pathol Res Pract. 2013; 209(8):503-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Factors controlling benign and malignant adrenocortical tumorigenesis are largely unknown, but several mouse models suggest an important role for inhibin-alpha (INHA). To show that findings in the mouse are relevant to human tumors and clinical outcome, we investigated the expression of signaling proteins and transcription factors involved in the regulation of INHA in human tumor samples⋅ Thirty-one adrenocortical tumor samples, including 13 adrenocortical carcinomas (ACCs), were categorized according to Weiss score, hormonal profile, and patient survival data and analyzed using immunohistochemistry and RT-PCR. Expression of the TGF-β signaling mediator SMAD3 varied inversely with Weiss score, so that SMAD3 expression was lowest in the most malignant tumors. By contrast, SMAD2 expression was upregulated in most malignant tumors. Wnt pathway co-receptors LRP5 and LRP6 were predominantly expressed in benign adrenocortical tumors. In ACCs, expression of transcription factors GATA-6 and SF-1 correlated with that of their target gene INHA. Moreover, the diminished expression of GATA-6 and SF-1 in ACCs correlated with poor outcome. We conclude that the factors driving INHA expression are reduced in ACCs with poor outcome, implicating a role for INHA as a tumor suppressor in humans.

Hong SW, Jung KH, Lee HS, et al.
SB365, Pulsatilla saponin D, targets c-Met and exerts antiangiogenic and antitumor activities.
Carcinogenesis. 2013; 34(9):2156-69 [PubMed] Related Publications
SB365, Pulsatilla saponin D isolated from the root of Pulsatilla koreana, has exhibited potential beneficial effects as a chemopreventive agent for critical health conditions including cancer. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the activity of SB365 remain unknown. Here, we examined anticancer efficacy of SB365 against gastric cancer and its mechanism of action. SB365 effectively inhibited the growth of gastric cancer cells. Its apoptotic effect was accompanied by increased evidence of cleaved caspase-3 and poly(ADP ribose) polymerase. To elucidate the anticancer mechanism of SB365, we used an array of 42 different receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs). Of the 42 different phospho-RTKs, SB365 strongly inhibited expression of activated c-mesenchymal-epithelial transition factor (c-Met) in gastric cancer cells. Also, the activation of the c-Met signal cascade components, including Akt and mammalian target of rapamycin, was inhibited by SB365 in a dose-dependent manner. In angiogenesis studies, SB365 inhibited tube formation in hepatocyte growth factor (HGF)-induced human umbilical vein endothelial cells and suppressed microvessel sprouting from the rat aortic ring, ex vivo, and blood vessel formation in the Matrigel plug assay in mice. In xenograft animal models, SB365 significantly delayed tumor growth in a dose-dependent manner. In tumor tissue, SB365 suppressed c-Met signaling, proliferation and angiogenesis and induced apoptosis. These findings suggest that SB365 docks at an allosteric site on c-Met and thereby targets c-Met signaling pathway, cell growth/angiogenesis inhibition and apoptosis induction. Therefore, SB365 may be a novel drug candidate for the treatment of gastric cancer.

Yun SM, Lee JH, Jung KH, et al.
Induction of apoptosis and suppression of angiogenesis of hepatocellular carcinoma by HS-159, a novel phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase inhibitor.
Int J Oncol. 2013; 43(1):201-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
The phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway plays a central role in cell proliferation and survival in human cancer and is emerging as an attractive therapeutic target. In this study, we synthesized a novel PI3Kα inhibitor, HS-159 [N-(5-(3-(3-cyanophenyl)imidazo[1,2-a]pyridin-6-yl)pyridin-3-yl)benzenesulfonamide] and evaluated its anticancer effects on Huh-7 human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells. HS-159 effectively inhibited the phosphorylation of downstream PI3K effectors such as Akt, mTOR and P70S6 kinases in a dose-dependent manner. This compound also induced apoptosis and increased the fraction of apoptotic cells in the sub-G1 phase as well as the levels of cleaved PARP, caspase-3 and -9. Furthermore, HS-159 decreased the expression of hypoxia inducible factor-1α and vascular endothelial growth factor which play important roles in angiogenesis. The anti-angiogenic effect of HS-159 was confirmed by the suppression of tube formation and migration of human umbilical vein endothelial cells in vitro. Collectively, our results demonstrate that HS-159 exhibited anticancer activities including the induction of apoptosis and inhibition of angiogenesis by blocking the PI3K/Akt pathway in Huh-7 cells. Therefore, we suggest that this drug may be potentially used for targeted HCC therapy.

Oh ET, Park MT, Song MJ, et al.
Radiation-induced angiogenic signaling pathway in endothelial cells obtained from normal and cancer tissue of human breast.
Oncogene. 2014; 33(10):1229-38 [PubMed] Related Publications
Despite strong possibility that endothelial cells (ECs) of tumors and normal tissues may differ in various aspects, most previous studies on ECs have used normal cells. Here, we purified ECs from tumorous and normal human breast tissues, and studied the effect of radiation on angiogenesis and relevant molecular mechanisms in these cells. We found that in normal tissue-derived ECs (NECs), 4 Gy irradiation increased tube formation, matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2) expression and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) pathway activation. In cancer-derived ECs (CECs), however, 4 Gy irradiation significantly reduced tube formation, increased the production of angiostatin and interleukin-6 (IL-6), and upregulated AKT and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) pathway activation. Knockdown experiments showed that siMMP-2 efficiently inhibited tube formation by irradiated NECs, whereas siPlasminogen effectively attenuated the radiation-induced suppression of tube formation and the upregulation of angiostatin in CECs. Moreover, siIL-6 clearly inhibited the radiation-induced generation of angiostatin in CECs. Inhibition of ERK with a pharmacological inhibitor or small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) markedly suppressed the radiation-induced tube formation and MMP-2 upregulation in NECs, whereas the inhibition of either AKT or JNK with pharmacological inhibitor or siRNA treatment of CECs markedly attenuated the inhibition of tube formation and the upregulation of angiostatin and IL-6 caused by 4 Gy irradiation. These observations collectively demonstrate that there are distinct differences in the radiation responses of NECs and CECs, and might provide important clues for improving the efficacy of radiation therapy.

Ryu JS, Kim HJ, Shin ES, et al.
Lack of association of genetic variations of deoxycytidine kinase with toxicity or survival of non-small-cell lung cancer patients treated with gemcitabine plus cisplatin.
Oncol Res. 2012; 20(1):25-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of this study was to determine whether tagging polymorphisms (tSNPs) of deoxycytidine kinase (DCK) have an effect on toxicity or prognosis in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treated with gemcitabine plus cisplatin. Three tSNPs (-201 C>T, rs2306744; IVS2+9846 G>A, rs12648166; IVS6+1392 T>C, rs4694362) were chosen using the international HapMap Project and Japanese Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms. We evaluated the associations of the tSNPs with hematologic toxicity or overall survival of 139 NSCLC patients at stages IIIA/IIIB (59) and IV (80). Hematologic toxicity such as neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, and anemia were not different by the three tSNPs or haplotypes (CGT, CAT, and CAC) of DCK. The genetic variations did not affect survival of the patients (log-rank p: 0.248 for -201 C>T, 0.571 for IVS2+9846 G>A, 0.686 for IVS6+1392 T>C, 0.556 for CGT, 0.453 for CAT, and 0.845 for CAC). In a Cox model, these tSNPs and haplotypes did not reveal prognostic relevance (aHR and 95% CI: 0.954 and 0.611 to 1.489 for -201 C>T; 1.193 and 0.719 to 1.979 for IVS2+9846 G>A; 1.072 and 0.674 to 1.706 for IVS6+1392 T>C, 0,668 and 0.205 to 2.175 for CGT, 1.043 and 0.713 to 1.525 for CAT, and 1.043 and 0.701 to 1.550 for CAC). This is the first study to focus on the association of tSNPs and their haplotypes of DCK with toxicity and survival in NSCLC patients. This suggests that genetic variations of DCK have no effect on the outcomes in the patients treated with gemcitabine-based chemotherapy.

Ryu JS, Shin ES, Nam HS, et al.
Differential effect of polymorphisms of CMPK1 and RRM1 on survival in advanced non-small cell lung cancer patients treated with gemcitabine or taxane/cisplatinum.
J Thorac Oncol. 2011; 6(8):1320-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: To determine whether genetic variations in CMPK1 or RRM1, which impact the pharmacodynamics of gemcitabine, differentially affect the outcomes of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients treated with gemcitabine or taxane/cisplatinum.
METHODS: We conducted retrospective study evaluating the associations between overall survival in 298 NSCLC patients at stages IIIA/IIIB (140) and IV (158), treated with gemcitabine (139) or taxane (159)/cisplatinum and 14 tagging single-nucleotide polymorphisms (tSNPs): 4 in CMPK1 and 10 in RRM1.
RESULTS: The wild-type genotypes of CMPK1 IVS1+1057 and IVS1-928 were associated with shorter overall survival in patients treated with the gemcitabine/cisplatinum (adjusted hazards ratio = 1.97 and 1.89; Cox pBonferroni = 0.008 and 0.020), whereas this effect was not observed in patients treated with taxane/cisplatinum. No associations were observed for the other 2 CMPK1 or 10 RRM1 tSNPs. Analysis of the interaction between the CMPK1 and RRM1 genes showed that the survival of patients with CMPK1 IVS1+1057 CC and RRM1 IVS1-2374 TT, IVS7+25 AA, IVS7-425 AA, or IVS8+287 TT was significantly shorter when they were treated with the gemcitabine/cisplatinum (adjusted hazards ratio = 3.00, 2.89, 3.14, and 3.00; Cox pBonferroni = 0.007, 0.012, 0.006, and 0.007). However, these effects were not observed in patients treated with taxane/cisplatinum.
CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that polymorphisms of CMPK1 and their combination with those of RRM1 are helpful in identifying patients who will benefit less from a gemcitabine/cisplatinum as the first-line regimen.

Jang EH, Park CS, Kang JH
Bupropion, an atypical antidepressant, induces endoplasmic reticulum stress and caspase-dependent cytotoxicity in SH-SY5Y cells.
Toxicology. 2011; 285(1-2):1-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Bupropion is an atypical antidepressant that is currently used as a smoking cessation aid. Bupropion interferes with monoamine reuptake and is potentially neurotoxic, although this is yet to be confirmed. In this study, we evaluated the cytotoxicity of bupropion using SH-SY5Y human catecholaminergic cells as the in vitro model. Exposure of the cells to bupropion for 24h reduced their viability in a concentration-dependent manner. Treatment of the cells with a toxic concentration of bupropion (100μg/mL) induced the phosphorylation of eukaryotic initiation factor alpha (EIF-2α), c-JUN N-terminal kinase (JNK), and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) within 1h, which later declined to baseline levels. However, bupropion failed to splice X-box binding protein 1 (XBP1) mRNA. Bupropion caused mitochondrial cytochrome c release and activated caspases 9, 8, and 3 in a time-dependent manner. The reduction in cell viability was significantly inhibited by a caspase 3 inhibitor. Bupropion also induced the mRNA expression of the death receptors DR4 (TRAILR1) and DR5 (TRAILR2). However, bupropion did not increase the level of cellular oxidative stress. Taken together, our data indicate that bupropion activates caspase 3 through the induction of endoplasmic reticulum stress responses and activation of JNK, and consequently induces apoptotic cell death in SH-SY5Y cells.

Jang MJ, Baek SH, Kim JH
UCH-L1 promotes cancer metastasis in prostate cancer cells through EMT induction.
Cancer Lett. 2011; 302(2):128-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
Ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolse-L1 (UCH-L1) is a deubiquitinating enzyme (DUB) that cleaves the ubiquitin (ub) moiety from ub precursors or protein substrates. The correlation between UCH-L1 and cancer has been reported in various tissues, but the role of UCH-L1 in prostate cancer has not been thoroughly researched. Here we found that UCH-L1 is specifically highly expressed in the metastatic DU145 prostate cancer cell line, but not in the benign or weakly metastatic prostate cancer cells. To determine the role of UCH-L1 in prostate cancer metastasis, we constructed UCH-L1-knockdown DU145 and UCH-L1 or the active site mutant form of UCH-L1 (UCH-L1 C90S) expressing RWPE1 stable cells. Notably, the expression of UCH-L1 in RWPE1 cells promotes epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), and this is an important process for cancer cell invasion and metastasis. On the contrary, knockdown of UCH-L1 in DU145 cells induces MET, the reverse program of EMT. Furthermore, the change of EMT status caused by altering the UCH-L1 level affects the migration and invasiveness of prostate cancer cells. Our results indicate that UCH-L1 promotes prostate cancer metastasis through EMT induction and UCH-L1 could be a novel diagnostic and therapeutic target for prostate cancer treatment.

Oh ET, Park MT, Choi BH, et al.
Novel histone deacetylase inhibitor CG200745 induces clonogenic cell death by modulating acetylation of p53 in cancer cells.
Invest New Drugs. 2012; 30(2):435-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
Histone deacetylase (HDAC) plays an important role in cancer onset and progression. Therefore, inhibition of HDAC offers potential as an effective cancer treatment regimen. CG200745, (E)-N(1)-(3-(dimethylamino)propyl)-N(8)-hydroxy-2-((naphthalene-1-loxy)methyl)oct-2-enediamide, is a novel HDAC inhibitor presently undergoing a phase I clinical trial. Enhancement of p53 acetylation by HDAC inhibitors induces cell cycle arrest, differentiation, and apoptosis in cancer cells. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the role of p53 acetylation in the cancer cell death caused by CG200745. CG200745-induced clonogenic cell death was 2-fold greater in RKO cells expressing wild-type p53 than in p53-deficient RC10.1 cells. CG200745 treatment was also cytotoxic to PC-3 human prostate cancer cells, which express wild-type p53. CG200745 increased acetylation of p53 lysine residues K320, K373, and K382. CG200745 induced the accumulation of p53, promoted p53-dependent transactivation, and enhanced the expression of MDM2 and p21(Waf1/Cip1) proteins, which are encoded by p53 target genes. An examination of CG200745 effects on p53 acetylation using cells transfected with various p53 mutants showed that cells expressing p53 K382R mutants were significantly resistant to CG200745-induced clonogenic cell death compared with wild-type p53 cells. Moreover, p53 transactivation in response to CG200745 was suppressed in all cells carrying mutant forms of p53, especially K382R. Taken together, these results suggest that acetylation of p53 at K382 plays an important role in CG200745-induced p53 transactivation and clonogenic cell death.

Dong GZ, Oh ET, Lee H, et al.
Beta-lapachone suppresses radiation-induced activation of nuclear factor-kappaB.
Exp Mol Med. 2010; 42(5):327-34 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Anticancer effects of beta-lapachone (beta-lap) are due to generation of ROS and metabolic catastrophes as a result of NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase (NQO1)-mediated futile cycling between the oxidized and reduced forms of beta-lap. It has been shown that NQO1 is also essential for the TNF-induced activation of NF-kappaB and that beta-lap suppresses the TNF-induced NF-kappaB activation. We investigated whether or not NQO1 is involved and beta-lap suppresses the radiation-induced NF-kappaB activation using A549 human lung cancer cells and NQO1-knock down A549 cells (shNQO1 A549 cells). Irradiation with 4 Gy markedly increased the DNA binding activity of NF-kappaB in A549 cells, but not in the shNQO1 A549 cells, thus demonstrating that NQO1 plays a pivotal role in irradiation-induced NF-kappaB activation. Treatment with 10 micronM beta-lap for 4 h almost completely abrogated the radiation-induced increase in NF-kappaB activation and the transcription of NF-kappaB target genes such as bcl2, gadd45beta and cyclinD1. Moreover, beta-lap markedly suppressed the activation of IkappaB kinase gamma (IKKgamma) and the subsequent phosphorylation of IkappaBalpha, thereby inhibiting NF-kappaB activation. It is concluded that beta-lap suppresses the radiation-induced activation of NF-kappaB by interrupting the involvement of NQO1 in the activation of NF-kappaB, thereby inhibiting the transcription of survival signals. The radiosensitization caused by beta-lap may, in part, be attributed to beta-lap-induced suppression of NF-kappaB activation.

Kong T, Choi JK, Park H, et al.
Reduction in programmed cell death and improvement in functional outcome of transient focal cerebral ischemia after administration of granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor in rats. Laboratory investigation.
J Neurosurg. 2009; 111(1):155-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECT: Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) is a potent hematopoietic growth factor that both enhances the survival and drives the differentiation and proliferation of myeloid lineage cells. Recent studies have suggested that GM-CSF has a neuroprotective effect against CNS injury. In this paper, the authors investigated the neuroprotective effect of GM-CSF on neuron survival and locomotor behavior in a rat model of focal cerebral ischemic injury.
MATERIALS: To understand its neuroprotective effect in vitro, GM-CSF was administered to a glutamate-induced excitotoxicity neuronal injury cell culture model that mimics the pathophysiology of focal hypoxic cerebral injury. In the animal study, the authors prepared a rat focal cerebral ischemia model by occluding the unilateral middle cerebral artery. They then examined the effects of GM-CSF administration on changes in infarct volume, apoptosis-related gene expression, and improvement in locomotor behavior.
RESULTS: Treatment with GM-CSF significantly increased cell viability in a cell culture model of glutamate-induced neuronal injury. Furthermore, in vivo administration of GM-CSF at 60 microg/kg body weight daily for 5 consecutive days beginning immediately after injury decreased infarction volume, altered the expression of several apoptosis-related genes (Bcl-2, Bax, caspase 3, and p53), and improved locomotor behavior in the focal cerebral ischemia model.
CONCLUSIONS: The GM-CSF had neuroprotective effects in in vitro and in vivo experiments and resulted in decreased infarction volume and improved locomotor behavior. Although the specific mechanism involved in stroke recovery was not fully elucidated as it was not the primary focus of this study, administration of GM-CSF appeared to decrease the extent of neuronal apoptosis by modulating the expression of several apoptosis-related genes such as Bcl-2, Bax, caspase 3, and p53. Further investigations are necessary to better understand the role of GM-CSF on neural regeneration during the recovery phase of a stroke, as well as the intracellular signal transduction pathways that mediate neuroprotection.

Bilandzic M, Chu S, Farnworth PG, et al.
Loss of betaglycan contributes to the malignant properties of human granulosa tumor cells.
Mol Endocrinol. 2009; 23(4):539-48 [PubMed] Related Publications
Betaglycan is a type III TGFbeta receptor that modulates cellular sensitivity to inhibins and TGFbeta. Previous studies have suggested that betaglycan acts as a tumor suppressor in certain human epithelial cancers. However, the roles of betaglycan in ovarian granulosa cell tumors (GCTs) are poorly understood. The objective of this study was to determine whether human GCTs exhibit betaglycan expression and, if so, what impact this receptor has on tumor biology. Real-time PCR was used to quantify betaglycan transcripts in human GCTs (n = 17) and normal premenopausal ovaries (n = 11). This analysis established that GCTs exhibited a significant 2-fold lower mean betaglycan mRNA level as compared with the normal ovary (P < 0.05). Similarly, two human GCT cell lines, KGN and COV434, exhibited low betaglycan expression and poor responsiveness to TGFbeta and inhibin A in luciferase reporter assays, which was restored by stable transfection of wild-type betaglycan. Betaglycan significantly increased the adhesion of COV434 (P < 0.05) and KGN (P < 0.0001) cells, decreased cellular invasion through Matrigel, and inhibited wound healing. Expression of mutant forms of betaglycan that are defective in TGFbeta and/or inhibin binding in each GCT cell line revealed that the inhibitory effects of betaglycan on wound healing were most strongly linked to the inhibin-binding region of betaglycan. Furthermore, knockdown of INHA mRNA expression abrogated the betaglycan-mediated inhibition of wound healing and invasion, whereas both INHA silencing and TGFbeta neutralization abolished the betaglycan-mediated increase in adhesion to substrate. These data suggest that loss of betaglycan contributes to the pathogenesis of GCTs.

Purdue MP, Graubard BI, Chanock SJ, et al.
Genetic variation in the inhibin pathway and risk of testicular germ cell tumors.
Cancer Res. 2008; 68(8):3043-8 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Gene-knockout studies in mice suggest that INHA, encoding a subunit of gonadotropin-regulating proteins known as inhibins, is a tumor suppressor for testicular stromal cell tumors. It is not known whether genetic variation in the inhibin pathway also influences susceptibility to testicular germ cell tumors (TGCT), the most common testicular cancer in young men. To address this question, we conducted a case-control analysis (577 cases; 707 controls) of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in genes in the inhibin pathway among participants in the U.S. Servicemen's Testicular Tumor Environmental and Endocrine Determinants Study. Thirty-eight tagging SNPs in six genes (INHA, INHBA, INHBB, INHBC, INHBE, and SMAD4) were genotyped. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) relating variant genotypes to TGCT risk were calculated using unconditional logistic regression. Among White subjects, an elevated risk of TGCT was observed for carriers of the T allele of the INHA variant rs2059693 (CT genotype: OR, 1.33; 95% CI, 1.04-1.71; TT: OR, 1.60; 95% CI, 1.01-2.52; P(trend) = 0.008). The association with rs2059693 was stronger for nonseminomas, and for teratomas and teratocarcinomas in particular (N = 58; CT: OR, 1.63; 95% CI, 0.89-2.99; TT: OR, 4.54; 95% CI 2.00-10.3; P(trend) = 0.0008). We found no evidence of association with variants in the other investigated genes. These findings suggest that genetic variation in the INHA locus influences TGCT development.

Park S, Kim JH, Jang JH
Aberrant hypermethylation of the FGFR2 gene in human gastric cancer cell lines.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2007; 357(4):1011-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
We have previously shown that fibroblast growth factor receptor 2 (FGFR2) plays an important role in gastric carcinogenesis. In this study, we assessed DNA methylation status in the promoter region of FGFR2 gene in gastric cancer cell lines, and indicated that this region was highly methylated, compared with FGFR2-expressing gastric cancer cell lines. Moreover, the restoration of FGFR2 expression by treating methylated cells with the DNA methyltransferase inhibitor 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine strongly suggests that the loss of FGFR2 expression may be due to the aberrant hypermethylation in the promoter region of the FGFR2 gene. Thus, our results suggest that the epigenetic silencing of FGFR2 through DNA methylation in gastric cancer may contribute to tumor progression.

Lu Y, Lemon W, Liu PY, et al.
A gene expression signature predicts survival of patients with stage I non-small cell lung cancer.
PLoS Med. 2006; 3(12):e467 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States. Nearly 50% of patients with stages I and II non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) will die from recurrent disease despite surgical resection. No reliable clinical or molecular predictors are currently available for identifying those at high risk for developing recurrent disease. As a consequence, it is not possible to select those high-risk patients for more aggressive therapies and assign less aggressive treatments to patients at low risk for recurrence.
METHODS AND FINDINGS: In this study, we applied a meta-analysis of datasets from seven different microarray studies on NSCLC for differentially expressed genes related to survival time (under 2 y and over 5 y). A consensus set of 4,905 genes from these studies was selected, and systematic bias adjustment in the datasets was performed by distance-weighted discrimination (DWD). We identified a gene expression signature consisting of 64 genes that is highly predictive of which stage I lung cancer patients may benefit from more aggressive therapy. Kaplan-Meier analysis of the overall survival of stage I NSCLC patients with the 64-gene expression signature demonstrated that the high- and low-risk groups are significantly different in their overall survival. Of the 64 genes, 11 are related to cancer metastasis (APC, CDH8, IL8RB, LY6D, PCDHGA12, DSP, NID, ENPP2, CCR2, CASP8, and CASP10) and eight are involved in apoptosis (CASP8, CASP10, PIK3R1, BCL2, SON, INHA, PSEN1, and BIK).
CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate that gene expression signatures from several datasets can be reconciled. The resulting signature is useful in predicting survival of stage I NSCLC and might be useful in informing treatment decisions.

Jang EH, Park CS, Lee SK, et al.
Excessive nitric oxide attenuates leptin-mediated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 activation.
Life Sci. 2007; 80(7):609-17 [PubMed] Related Publications
The mechanisms of leptin resistance observed in most cases of human obesity are poorly understood. Therefore, we evaluated the effects of nitric oxide (NO) on the leptin-induced activation of Janus kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (JAK/STAT3) pathways and on the leptin receptor (LEPR) expression using SH-SY5Y cells. Here, we show that the NO donor spermine/NONOate inhibited leptin-induced activation of STAT3 in vitro. The inhibition of leptin-mediated STAT3 phosphorylation caused by excessive NO was partially prevented by a sulfhydryl reducing agent, ascorbic acid. Cellular experiments show that reduced expression of long form leptin receptor (LEPR-b) and STAT3 protein instability induced by NO may be mechanisms of the NO-mediated inhibition of leptin-STAT3 signaling. We also present data showing that the hypothalamic NO content of high-fat (HF)-diet-induced obese mice was higher than that of control mice; this is likely caused by decreased caveolin-1 expression and increased nNOS expression induced by HF diet over 19 weeks. Concurrently with the overproduction of NO, the decrease of hypothalamic LEPR-b in obese mice also supports these in vitro data. Combined results suggest that excess of NO can induce the attenuation of leptin-mediated STAT3 activation through reduced expression of LEPR-b mRNA and instability of STAT3 protein at least in part. Furthermore, our in vivo data indicate that long-term HF diet induces hypothalamic overproduction of NO, which may be related with leptin insensitivity. However, further study is required to warrant direct in vivo evidence of a causal relationship between endogenous excess of hypothalamic NO and central leptin resistance.

Bae SY, Choi SK, Kim KR, et al.
Effects of genetic polymorphisms of MDR1, FMO3 and CYP1A2 on susceptibility to colorectal cancer in Koreans.
Cancer Sci. 2006; 97(8):774-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects on the susceptibility to colorectal cancer (CRC) of genetic polymorphisms in P-glycoprotein (PGP) and the metabolic enzymes cytochrome P450 1A2 (CYP1A2) and flavin-containing monooxygenase 3 (FMO3). We analyzed five single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in 93 cancer-free volunteers and 111 patients with CRC: one common genetic variant of the PGP-encoding MDR1 gene and four SNP in genes for metabolic enzymes (two SNP in FMO3 and two SNP in CYP1A2). The genotypes and allele frequencies of the MDR1/C3435T, FMO3/G488A, FMO3/A923G and CYP1A2/G-3860 A polymorphisms were not significantly different in cancer-free subjects and CRC patients. However, a significant association was found between the CYP1A2/A-163C polymorphism and the risk of CRC, particularly in elderly (>55 years) subjects and smokers. A phenotyping study in normal smokers showed that the CYP1A2 activity of subjects with the CYP1A2/-163 AA genotype was significantly lower than that of subjects carrying the CYP1A2/-163C allele. Combined results show that the CYP1A2/-163C allele is significantly associated with an increase in CYP1A2 activity and a consequent increased risk of CRC in Koreans, particularly in elderly people and smokers.

Jeong S, Lee DH, Lee JI, et al.
Expression of Ki-67, p53, and K-ras in chronic pancreatitis and pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma.
World J Gastroenterol. 2005; 11(43):6765-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM: To examine surgical specimens of pancreas with either chronic pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer in order to study whether ductal hyperplasia and dysplasia in pancreas represent precursor lesions for pancreatic cancer.
METHODS: We examined expression of Ki-67, CEA, p53, and K-ras, in the surgical specimens of pancreas with adenocarcinomas (n=11) and chronic pancreatitis (n=12). Cellular proliferation was assessed by Ki-67 proliferation index using the proliferation marker Ki-67. In specimens with pancreas cancer, we divided pancreas epithelium into normal (n=7), ductal hyperplasia (n=3), dysplasia (n=4), and cancerous lesion (n=11) after hematoxylin and eosin staining, Ki-67, and CEA immunohistochemical staining. In cases with chronic pancreatitis, the specimen was pathologically examined as in cases with pancreas cancer, and they were also determined as normal (n=10), ductal hyperplasia (n=4), or dysplasia (n=5). p53 and K-ras expression were also studied by immunohistochemical staining.
RESULTS: In pancreatic cancer, the Ki-67 index was 3.73+/-3.58 in normal site, 6.62+/-4.39 in ductal hyperplasia, 13.47+/-4.02 in dysplasia and 37.03+/-10.05 in cancer tissue, respectively. Overall, p53 was positive in normal ducts, ductal hyperplasia, dysplasia, and carcinoma cells in 0 of 14 (0%), 0 of 7 (0%), 7 of 9 (78%), and 10 of 11 (91%), respectively, and K-ras was positive in 0 of 8 (0%), 1 of 3 (33%), 4 of 6 (67%), 4 of 5 (80%), respectively.
CONCLUSION: Our results favorably support the hypothesis that ductal hyperplasia and dysplasia of the pancreas might be precursor lesions for pancreas cancer. Further evaluation of oncogenes by the molecular study is needed.

Jang JH
FIGC, a novel FGF-induced ubiquitin-protein ligase in gastric cancers.
FEBS Lett. 2004; 578(1-2):21-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
We have previously shown that fibroblast growth factor receptor 2 (FGFR2) plays an important role in gastric carcinogenesis. In this study, we have used a differential display approach to identify basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF)-inducible genes in gastric cancer cells. Here, we report that one of these genes is predicted to encode a RING finger protein, designated FIGC. The FIGC gene was found to encode a polypeptide of 381 amino acids with a novel RING finger module at the NH2-terminus and the COOH-terminal proline-rich region. Using an in vitro ubiquitination assay with recombinant protein, we demonstrate that FIGC has intrinsic E3 ubiquitin ligase activity and promotes ubiquitination. Our data indicate that FIGC upregulation in response to bFGF in gastric cancer might be implicated in carcinogenesis through dysregulation of growth modulator.

Jang JH
Reciprocal relationship in gene expression between FGFR1 and FGFR3: implication for tumorigenesis.
Oncogene. 2005; 24(5):945-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
We have previously demonstrated that the expression of FGFR3 is frequently downregulated in colorectal carcinoma cells. Here we have shown that FGFR1 is overexpressed in colorectal carcinoma cells and the gene expressions between FGFR1 and FGFR3 are mutually exclusive. Moreover, we have also shown that the disruption of FGFR1 expression by introducing of FGFR1 siRNA was effective in elevating FGFR3 expression and tumor suppressive activities. Thus, FGFR1 may confer a selectable advantage on clones of cells in colorectal tumorigenesis, favoring proliferation, whereas FGFR3 may have the effect of an unfavorable negative regulation of progression of the carcinomas to malignancy, promoting differentiation. Our results indicate that the reciprocal relationship in gene expression between FGFR1 and FGFR3 in colorectal tissue plays an important role in the progression of the carcinomas to malignancy.

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