IQGAP1

Gene Summary

Gene:IQGAP1; IQ motif containing GTPase activating protein 1
Aliases: SAR1, p195, HUMORFA01
Location:15q26.1
Summary:This gene encodes a member of the IQGAP family. The protein contains four IQ domains, one calponin homology domain, one Ras-GAP domain and one WW domain. It interacts with components of the cytoskeleton, with cell adhesion molecules, and with several signaling molecules to regulate cell morphology and motility. Expression of the protein is upregulated by gene amplification in two gastric cancer cell lines. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:ras GTPase-activating-like protein IQGAP1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 11 March, 2017

Ontology:

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

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 11 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 11 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (5)

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

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

Latest Publications: IQGAP1 (cancer-related)

Huang JK, Ma L, Song WH, et al.
MALAT1 promotes the proliferation and invasion of thyroid cancer cells via regulating the expression of IQGAP1.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2016; 83:1-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Increasing evidence indicated that metastasis-associated lung adenocarcinoma transcript 1 (MALAT1) acted as a key regulator in the proliferation and invasion of several cancers. However, the function of MALAT1 in the development of thyroid cancer has not been experimentally established.
METHODS: The expression of MALAT1 and IQGAP1 in thyroid cancer tissues and cells were detected by quantitative real-time PCR and western blot. The effects of MALAT1 and IQGAP1 on the cell proliferation and invasion of thyroid cancer cells were detected with a 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol)-2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium 4 (MTT) assay and a Transwell assay, respectively. FTC-133 or SW1736 transfected with si-MALAT1 or pcDNA-MALAT1 were injected subcutaneously into 4-week-olds BALB/c mice to examine the impact of MALAT1 on the tumor development of thyroid cancer in vivo.
RESULTS: In this study, we discovered the higher level of MALAT-1 and expression of IQGAP1 in thyroid cancer tissues and in thyroid cancer cells compared to that in the control. MTT and Transwell assay showed that the proliferation and invasion of FTC-133 cells with MALAT-1 knockdown were inhibited. Moreover, MALAT-1 could upregulate the expression of IQGAP1 in thyroid cancer cells. In addition, IQGAP1 knockdown reversed the decreasing cell proliferation and invasion of thyroid cancer induced by MALAT-1 overexpression. Finally, the study in vivo verified that MALAT-1 promoted the tumor growth of thyroid cancer.
CONCLUSION: Our study indicated that MALAT1 promoted the proliferation and invasion of thyroid cancer cells via regulating the expression of IQGAP1.

Zoheir KM, Abd-Rabou AA, Harisa GI, et al.
IQGAP1 gene silencing induces apoptosis and decreases the invasive capacity of human hepatocellular carcinoma cells.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(10):13927-13939 [PubMed] Related Publications
IQ motif-containing GTPase-activating proteins (IQGAPs) belong to a conserved family, and they are involved in various intracellular processes. IQGAP1 is expressed in all cells, while IQGAP2 and IQGAP3 are mainly expressed in hepatic cells. IQGAP1 has been suggested to be an oncogene, while IQGAP2 is considered a tumor-suppressor gene. However, the relationship between RAS family genes and IQGAP genes remains unclear. We recently demonstrated this interaction in a chemically induced mouse liver cancer. In this study, IQGAP1 expression was partially silenced in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HepG2) cells. We investigated the impact of IQGAP1 silencing on the interactions of IQGAP and RAS with several apoptotic proteins, including caspase-3 (CASP3), BCL2-associated X protein (BAX), and B-cell leukemia/lymphoma 2 (BCL2). Additionally, we investigated the effects of the interactions of these genes on cell viability, proliferation, apoptosis, and invasive capacity. IQGAP1 siRNA-treated HepG2 cells showed lower invasive capacity than the control cells, and this reduction was time- and vector concentration-dependent. In addition, IQGAP1 silencing resulted in significantly lower IQGAP1 level and subsequently higher IQGAP2 and IQGAP3 expression in HepG2 cells than in the control. Flow cytometry analyses indicated that the silencing of IQGAP1 can induce early and late apoptosis in HepG2 cells. Additionally, IQGAP2, IQGAP3, CASP3, and BAX were upregulated whereas IQGAP1 and BCL2 were downregulated in the siRNA-treated cells. Furthermore, we observed that the mRNA levels of HRAS, KRAS, NRAS, and MRAS decreased upon IQGAP1 silencing. These findings indicate that IQGAP1 potentially regulates the expression of IQGAP and RAS gene families and demonstrate its regulatory role in the apoptotic network. Taken together, our findings suggest that IQGAP1 silencing plays crucial roles in the apoptosis of HepG2 cells and lowers their proliferative and invasive capacities.

Arienti C, Zanoni M, Pignatta S, et al.
Preclinical evidence of multiple mechanisms underlying trastuzumab resistance in gastric cancer.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(14):18424-39 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
HER2-positive advanced gastric cancer patients frequently develop resistance to trastuzumab through mechanisms still poorly understood. In breast cancer, other members of the HER-family are known to be involved in trastuzumab-resistance, as is overexpression of the scaffold protein IQGAP1. In the present work, we investigated acquired resistance to trastuzumab in gastric cancer experimental models. Trastuzumab-resistant (HR) subclones derived from 3 HER2-overexpressing gastric cancer cells were generated and characterized for alterations in HER2-signaling mechanisms by next-generation sequencing, immunohistochemical, western blot and qRT-PCR techniques, and molecular modeling analysis. All subclones showed a reduced growth rate with respect to parental cell lines but each had a different resistance mechanism. In NCI N87 HR cells, characterized by a marked increase in HER2-signaling pathways with respect to the parental cell line, trastuzumab sensitivity was restored when IQGAP1 expression was silenced. AKG HR subclone showed higher HER3 protein expression than the parental line. High nuclear HER4 levels were observed in KKP HR cells. In conclusion, our study revealed that high IQGAP1 expression leads to resistance to trastuzumab in gastric cancer. Furthermore, 2 new mutations of the HER2 gene that may be involved in acquired resistance were identified in AKG HR and KKP HR subclones.

Sun G, Liu Y, Wang K, Xu Z
miR-506 regulates breast cancer cell metastasis by targeting IQGAP1.
Int J Oncol. 2015; 47(5):1963-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNA (miRNA or miR)-506 is a novel miRNA related to the survival of breast cancer patients. However, the mechanism underlying miRNA-506 involvement in breast carcinogenesis remains unclear. In the present study, we found that miR-506 was downregulated in human breast malignant tissues and breast cancer cell lines by RT-qPCR analysis, and the expression level of miR-506 was decreased with the increasing of tumor stage. Subsequently, gain-of-function and loss-of-function experiments were performed in vitro, and the results from MTT assay, Transwell-Matrigel invasion assay and cell adhesion assay revealed that miR-506 suppresses cell proliferation, invasion and adhesion of breast cancer cells. Luciferase reporter assay revealed that IQ motif containing GTPase activating protein 1 (IQGAP1) is a direct target of miR-506. miR-506 represses the expression of IQGAP1 and its downstream extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK) mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathways, as demonstrated by the RT-qPCR and western blot analysis. Furthermore, we found that IQGAP1 rescues the effect of miR-506 on cell proliferation, invasion, adhesion, and the activation of ERK MAPK signaling. In conclusion, the present study is the first to provide evidence that miR-506 acts as a tumor suppressor, at least partially, by directly downregulating IQGAP1 in breast cancer cells. The miR-506/IQGAP1/ERK pathway may be a novel therapeutic target in breast cancer.

Jin X, Liu Y, Liu J, et al.
The Overexpression of IQGAP1 and β-Catenin Is Associated with Tumor Progression in Hepatocellular Carcinoma In Vitro and In Vivo.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(8):e0133770 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The IQ-domain GTPase-activating protein 1 (IQGAP1) is a multifunctional scaffold protein, which interacts with diverse proteins to regulate cell adhesion and cell migration. The abnormal expression of IQGAP1 widely exists in many cancers, but biological roles of IQGAP1 cooperation with its interacting proteins to involve in tumorigenesis remain to clarify. In this study, we have found that IQGAP1 interacts with β-catenin and regulates β-catenin expression in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells. The expression levels of IQGAP1 and β-catenin and their associations have a positive correlation with cell metastasis ability in several HCC cell lines. The up-regulation of IQGAP1 and β-catenin improves cell proliferation and migration ability of HCC cells, whereas the knockdown of IQGAP1 by small interfering RNA can decrease β-catenin expression, which results in the reduction of cell proliferation and migration ability in vitro. In addition, a significantly higher expression of IQGAP1 and β-catenin also usually exists in human HCC tissues, especially their overexpression is clinicopathologically associated with tumor malignancy. Generally the overexpression and interactions of IQGAP1 and β-catenin contribute to HCC progression by promoting cell proliferation and migration.

Hensel J, Duex JE, Owens C, et al.
Patient Mutation Directed shRNA Screen Uncovers Novel Bladder Tumor Growth Suppressors.
Mol Cancer Res. 2015; 13(9):1306-15 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
UNLABELLED: Next-generation sequencing (NGS) of human bladder cancer has revealed many gene alterations compared with normal tissue, with most being predicted to be "loss of function." However, given the high number of alterations, evaluating the functional impact of each is impractical. Here, we develop and use a high-throughput, in vivo strategy to determine which alterations are loss of function in tumor growth suppressors. Genes reported as altered by NGS in bladder cancer patients were bioinformatically processed by MutationTaster and MutationAssessor, with 283 predicted as loss of function. An shRNA lentiviral library targeting these genes was transduced into T24 cells, a nontumorigenic human bladder cancer cell line, followed by injection into mice. Tumors that arose were sequenced and the dominant shRNA constructs were found to target IQGAP1, SAMD9L, PCIF1, MED1, and KATNAL1 genes. In vitro validation experiments revealed that shRNA molecules directed at IQGAP1 showed the most profound increase in anchorage-independent growth of T24 cells. The clinical relevance of IQGAP1 as a tumor growth suppressor is supported by the finding that its expression is lower in bladder cancer compared with benign patient urothelium in multiple independent datasets. Lower IQGAP1 protein expression associated with higher tumor grade and decreased patient survival. Finally, depletion of IQGAP1 leads to increased TGFBR2 with TGFβ signaling, explaining in part how reduced IQGAP1 promotes tumor growth. These findings suggest IQGAP1 is a bladder tumor growth suppressor that works via modulating TGFβ signaling and is a potentially clinically useful biomarker.
IMPLICATIONS: This study used gene mutation information from patient-derived bladder tumor specimens to inform the development of a screen used to identify novel tumor growth suppressors. This included identification of the protein IQGAP1 as a potent bladder cancer growth suppressor.

Meng D, Wu W, Li Z, Qin G
IQGAP1 modulates the proliferation and invasion of thyroid cancer cells in response to estrogen.
Int J Mol Med. 2015; 36(2):588-94 [PubMed] Related Publications
Thyroid cancer is an endocrine malignancy with a high incidence rate, which is affected by female hormones, particularly estrogens, in its growth and progression. IQ-domain GTPase-activating protein 1 (IQGAP1) is overexpressed in a range of types of cancer and is reported to interact with estrogen receptor α (ERα) in breast cancer cells. However, the association between IQGAP1 and ERα in thyroid cancer cells remains to be elucidated. In this study, the role of IQGAP1 in thyroid cancer cells was examined. The expression of IQGAP1 (190 kDa) was analyzed using western blot analysis, which indicated that IQGAP1 was overexpressed in thyroid cancer tissues and FTC133 cells. However, IQGAP1 knockdown in the FTC133 cells led to a significant downregulation in ERα transcriptional activity, cell proliferation, cell adhesion and cell invasion under 17β-estradiol (E2) conditions. Furthermore, ERα knockdown inhibited the enhanced protein expression levels of phosphorylated ERK1/2 and cyclin D1, which were induced by the overexpression of IQGAP1. Co-immunoprecipitation was also performed in thyroid cancer cells and the results suggested that IQGAP1 directly interacted with ERα in the FTC133 cells and the co-transfected COS-7 cells. Taken together, these findings revealed that IQGAP1 may directly interact with ERα and serve as a signal integrator, mediating ERα transcriptional activity, cell proliferation and cell invasion during the progression of thyroid cancer.

Gong X, Yi J, Carmon KS, et al.
Aberrant RSPO3-LGR4 signaling in Keap1-deficient lung adenocarcinomas promotes tumor aggressiveness.
Oncogene. 2015; 34(36):4692-701 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The four R-spondins (RSPO1-4) and their three related receptors LGR4, 5 and 6 (LGR4-6) have emerged as a major ligand-receptor system with critical roles in development and stem cell survival through modulation of Wnt signaling. Recurrent, gain-of-expression gene fusions of RSPO2 (to EIF3E) and RSPO3 (to PTPRK) occur in a subset of human colorectal cancer. However, the exact roles and mechanisms of the RSPO-LGR system in oncogenesis remain largely unknown. We found that RSPO3 is aberrantly expressed at high levels in approximately half of Keap1-mutated lung adenocarcinomas (ADs). This high RSPO3 expression is driven by a combination of demethylation of its own promoter region and deficiency in Keap1 instead of gene fusion as in colon cancer. Patients with RSPO3-high tumors (~9%, 36/412) displayed much poorer survival than the rest of the cohort (median survival of 28 vs 163 months, log-rank test P<0.0001). Knockdown (KD) of RSPO3, LGR4 or their signaling mediator IQGAP1 in lung cancer cell lines with Keap1 deficiency and high RSPO3-LGR4 expression led to reduction in cell proliferation and migration in vitro, and KD of LGR4 or IQGAP1 resulted in decrease in tumor growth and metastasis in vivo. These findings suggest that aberrant RSPO3-LGR4 signaling potentially acts as a driving mechanism in the aggressiveness of Keap1-deficient lung ADs.

Lu SH, Jiang XJ, Xiao GL, et al.
miR-124a restoration inhibits glioma cell proliferation and invasion by suppressing IQGAP1 and β-catenin.
Oncol Rep. 2014; 32(5):2104-10 [PubMed] Related Publications
A number of microRNAs have been identified to be important regulators of tumorigenesis. Previous research has shown that miR-124 is abundantly expressed in normal brain tissue; however, only a few reports have focused on the biological impact of miR-124 on glioma cells, and the underlying mechanisms need to be elucidated. Therefore, we investigated the effect of miR-124a on glioma cell proliferation and invasion; furthermore, the underlying molecular mechanism was examined. The present study demonstrated that miR-124a expression was downregulated in human glioma tissues, and its expression level was negatively correlated with the pathological grade of the glioma. Restoration of miR-124a inhibited glioma cell proliferation and invasion in vitro. Furthermore, we found that miR-124a directly targeted and suppressed IQ motif containing GTPase activating protein 1 (IQGAP1), a well-known regulator of actin dynamics and cell motility. RNA interference assay showed that IQGAP1 knockdown led to downregulation of β-catenin and downstream cyclin D1. Taken together, our study revealed that miR-124a could inhibit glioma cell proliferation and invasion by blocking the expression of the IQGAP1 gene and downstream β-catenin and cyclin D1. This research may provide a useful molecular therapy for gliomas.

Zhang TT, Jiang YY, Shang L, et al.
Overexpression of DNAJB6 promotes colorectal cancer cell invasion through an IQGAP1/ERK-dependent signaling pathway.
Mol Carcinog. 2015; 54(10):1205-13 [PubMed] Related Publications
DNAJB6 is a member of the heat shock protein 40 (Hsp40) family. We here investigated the clinical correlation and biological role of DNAJB6 overexpression in colorectal cancer (CRC). The expression of DNAJB6 protein was examined in 200 cases of colorectal adenocarcinomas by immunohistochemistry (IHC) technology. Gene transfection and RNA interference were performed to determine the effect of DNAJB6 expression on the invasion of CRC cells and to explore the underlying molecular mechanisms in vitro and in vivo. Overexpression of DNAJB6 was found in 39% (78/200) of the CRC tissues, especially in tumors at pT4 as compared with at pT1-3 (P = 0.02). A Kaplan-Meier survival analysis revealed a correlation between DNAJB6 expression and overall survival (OS) times (P = 0.003). Multivariate analysis confirmed that DNAJB6 overexpression was an independent prognostic factor for CRC (P = 0.002). RNA interference-mediated silencing of the DNAJB6 gene inhibited the invasion of CRC cells in vitro were accompanied by a significant reduction in the protein levels of IQ-domain GTPase-activating protein 1 (IQGAP1) and phosphorylated ERK (pERK). An in vivo assay showed that inhibition of DNAJB6 expression decreased the lung metastases of CRC cells. IHC analysis of serial sections showed that there was a positive correlation between DNAJB6 and IQGAP1 expression in primary CRC tissues (P = 0.013). The data suggest that DNAJB6 plays an important oncogenic role in CRC cell invasion by up-regulating IQGAP1 and activating the ERK signaling pathway and that DNAJB6 may be used as a prognostic marker for CRC.

Yang Y, Zhao W, Xu QW, et al.
IQGAP3 promotes EGFR-ERK signaling and the growth and metastasis of lung cancer cells.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(5):e97578 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Proteins of the IQGAP family display complicated and often contradictory activities in tumorigenesis. IQGAP1 has well documented oncogenic potential and IQGAP2 has putative tumor-suppressive function. IQGAP3 is the latest addition to this family and its role in cancer development remains to be defined. Here we demonstrate IQGAP3 expression is markedly increased in lung cancer tissues at both mRNA and protein levels. Overexpression of IQGAP3 promoted tumor cell growth, and migration and invasion, whereas knockdown of IQGAP3 exhibited opposite effects. Moreover, suppression of IQGAP3 in a lung cancer cell line caused a reduction in the tumorigenicity of these cells in lung tissue after intravenous injection. Furthermore, we showed that IQGAP3 is able to interact with ERK1 and enhance its phosphorylation following treatment with EGF. These data suggest that IQGAP3 may contribute to the pathogenesis of lung cancer by modulating EGFR-ERK signaling.

Wang XX, Wang K, Li XZ, et al.
Targeted knockdown of IQGAP1 inhibits the progression of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma in vitro and in vivo.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(5):e96501 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
IQGAP1 is a scaffolding protein that can regulate several distinct signaling pathways. The accumulating evidence has demonstrated that IQGAP1 plays an important role in tumorigenesis and tumor progression. However, the function of IQGAP1 in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) has not been thoroughly investigated. In the present study, we showed that IQGAP1 was overexpressed in ESCC tumor tissues, and its overexpression was correlated with the invasion depth of ESCC. Importantly, by using RNA interference (RNAi) technology we successfully silenced IQGAP1 gene in two ESCC cell lines, EC9706 and KYSE150, and for the first time found that suppressing IQGAP1 expression not only obviously reduced the tumor cell growth, migration and invasion in vitro but also markedly inhibited the tumor growth, invasion, lymph node and lung metastasis in xenograft mice. Furthermore, Knockdown of IQGAP1 expression in ESCC cell lines led to a reversion of epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) progress. These results suggest that IQGAP1 plays crucial roles in regulating ESCC occurrence and progression. IQGAP1 silencing may therefore develop into a promising novel anticancer therapy.

Sharma M, Johnson M, Brocardo M, et al.
Wnt signaling proteins associate with the nuclear pore complex: implications for cancer.
Adv Exp Med Biol. 2014; 773:353-72 [PubMed] Related Publications
Several components of the Wnt signaling pathway have in recent years been linked to the nuclear pore complex. β-catenin, the primary transducer of Wnt signals from the plasma membrane to the nucleus, has been shown to transiently associate with different FG-repeat containing nucleoporins (Nups) and to translocate bidirectionally through pores of the nuclear envelope in a manner independent of classical transport receptors and the Ran GTPase. Two key regulators of β-catenin, IQGAP1 and APC, have also been reported to bind specific Nups or to locate at the nuclear pore complex. The interaction between these Wnt signaling proteins and different Nups may have functional implications beyond nuclear transport in cellular processes that include mitotic regulation, centrosome positioning and cell migration, nuclear envelope assembly/disassembly, and the DNA replication checkpoint. The broad implications of interactions between Wnt signaling proteins and Nups will be discussed in the context of cancer.

Ma Y, Jin Z, Huang J, et al.
Quercetin suppresses the proliferation of multiple myeloma cells by down-regulating IQ motif-containing GTPase activating protein 1 expression and extracellular signal-regulated kinase activation.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2014; 55(11):2597-604 [PubMed] Related Publications
The flavonoid quercetin has shown anti-tumor effects against a variety of solid tumors. However, its effects on multiple myeloma (MM) remain unclear. In this study we examined the proliferation of human myeloma cell lines U266, KM3 and RPMI8226 and MM derived cells from four patients with MM after quercetin treatment, and detected the expression of IQ motif-containing GTPase activating protein 1 (IQGAP1), a scaffold protein involved in mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling, by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and Western blot analysis. We found that quercetin inhibited the proliferation of MM cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner, accompanied by reduced IQGAP1 expression at mRNA and protein levels, and reduced extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) activation. Furthermore, we found that quercetin inhibited the interaction between IQGAP1 and ERK1/2 in RPMI8226 cells. In summary, our results suggest that quercetin suppresses the proliferation of MM cells by down-regulating IQGAP1 expression and ERK activation, and has potential as a novel agent to target oncogenic kinase cascades for MM therapy.

Mercurio S, Padovani L, Colin C, et al.
Evidence for new targets and synergistic effect of metronomic celecoxib/fluvastatin combination in pilocytic astrocytoma.
Acta Neuropathol Commun. 2013; 1:17 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Pilocytic astrocytomas occur predominantly in childhood. In contrast to the posterior fossa location, hypothalamo-chiasmatic pilocytic astrocytomas display a worse prognosis often leading to multiple surgical procedures and/or several lines of chemotherapy and radiotherapy to achieve long-term control. Hypothalamo-chiasmatic pilocytic astrocytomas and cerebellar pilocytic astrocytomas have a distinctive gene signature and several differential expressed genes (ICAM1, CRK, CD36, and IQGAP1) are targets for available drugs: fluvastatin and/or celecoxib.
RESULTS: Quantification by RT-Q-PCR of the expression of these genes was performed in a series of 51 pilocytic astrocytomas and 10 glioblastomas: they were all significantly overexpressed in hypothalamo-chiasmatic pilocytic astrocytomas relative to cerebellar pilocytic astrocytomas, and CRK and ICAM1 were significantly overexpressed in pilocytic astrocytomas versus glioblastomas.We used two commercially available glioblastoma cell lines and three pilocytic astrocytoma explant cultures to investigate the effect of celecoxib/fluvastatin alone or in combination. Glioblastoma cell lines were sensitive to both drugs and a combination of 100 μM celecoxib and 240 μM fluvastatin was the most synergistic. This synergistic combination was used on the explant cultures and led to massive cell death of pilocytic astrocytoma cells.As a proof of concept, a patient with a refractory multifocal pilocytic astrocytoma was successfully treated with the fluvastatin/celecoxib combination used for 18 months. It was well tolerated and led to a partial tumor response.
CONCLUSION: This study reports evidence for new targets and synergistic effect of celecoxib/fluvastatin combination in pilocytic astrocytoma. Because it is non-toxic, this new strategy offers hope for the treatment of patients with refractory pilocytic astrocytoma.

Ma Y, Jin Z, Huang J, et al.
IQGAP1 plays an important role in the cell proliferation of multiple myeloma via the MAP kinase (ERK) pathway.
Oncol Rep. 2013; 30(6):3032-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The present study was designed to explore the role of IQ motif-containing GTPase activating protein 1 (IQGAP1) in the cell proliferation of multiple myeloma (MM) via the MAP kinase (ERK) pathway. Reverse transcription‑polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and western blot analysis were carried out to evaluate the expression of IQGAP1 in RPMI8226, U266 and KM3 cell lines and in primary MM cells from 4 MM patients. shRNA-expressing plasmids were used in RPMI8226 cells to knock down IQGAP1 and an MTT assay was used to examine the proliferative activity of the RPMI8226-shIQGAP1 (clone 1), RPMI8226-shRNA negative and untransfected RPMI8226 cells in subgroups stimulated with VEGF/IL-6 or without. Western blot analyses were then performed to examine the protein levels of p-ERK1/2, ERK1/2, AKT, p-AKT, STAT3, p-STAT3 in the RPMI8226-shIQGAP1 (clone 1), RPMI8226-shRNA negative and untransfected RPMI8226 cells. Co-immunoprecipitation was used to verify the interaction between the IQGAP1 scaffold and the MAP ERK kinase. We found that IQGAP1 was overexpressed in the human myeloma cell lines and in the patient MM cells. The proliferation rate in the RPMI8226 cells was decreased when IQGAP1 was knocked down with shRNA. IQGAP1 was found to affect RPMI8226 cell proliferation by regulation of the MAP kinase (ERK1/2) pathway; IQGAP1 scaffold-MAP kinase (ERK) interaction was noted in the human myeloma RPMI8226 cell lines. In conclusion, IQGAP1 plays an important role in the cell proliferation of MM via the MAP kinase (ERK) pathway.

Tamm-Rosenstein K, Simm J, Suhorutshenko M, et al.
Changes in the transcriptome of the human endometrial Ishikawa cancer cell line induced by estrogen, progesterone, tamoxifen, and mifepristone (RU486) as detected by RNA-sequencing.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(7):e68907 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Estrogen (E2) and progesterone (P4) are key players in the maturation of the human endometrium. The corresponding steroid hormone modulators, tamoxifen (TAM) and mifepristone (RU486) are widely used in breast cancer therapy and for contraception purposes, respectively.
METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Gene expression profiling of the human endometrial Ishikawa cancer cell line treated with E2 and P4 for 3 h and 12 h, and TAM and RU486 for 12 h, was performed using RNA-sequencing. High levels of mRNA were detected for genes, including PSAP, ATP5G2, ATP5H, and GNB2L1 following E2 or P4 treatment. A total of 82 biomarkers for endometrial biology were identified among E2 induced genes, and 93 among P4 responsive genes. Identified biomarkers included: EZH2, MDK, MUC1, SLIT2, and IL6ST, which are genes previously associated with endometrial receptivity. Moreover, 98.8% and 98.6% of E2 and P4 responsive genes in Ishikawa cells, respectively, were also detected in two human mid-secretory endometrial biopsy samples. TAM treatment exhibited both antagonistic and agonistic effects of E2, and also regulated a subset of genes independently. The cell cycle regulator cyclin D1 (CCND1) showed significant up-regulation following treatment with TAM. RU486 did not appear to act as a pure antagonist of P4 and a functional analysis of RU486 response identified genes related to adhesion and apoptosis, including down-regulated genes associated with cell-cell contacts and adhesion as CTNND1, JUP, CDH2, IQGAP1, and COL2A1.
CONCLUSIONS: Significant changes in gene expression by the Ishikawa cell line were detected after treatments with E2, P4, TAM, and RU486. These transcriptome data provide valuable insight into potential biomarkers related to endometrial receptivity, and also facilitate an understanding of the molecular changes that take place in the endometrium in the early stages of breast cancer treatment and contraception usage.

Jameson KL, Mazur PK, Zehnder AM, et al.
IQGAP1 scaffold-kinase interaction blockade selectively targets RAS-MAP kinase-driven tumors.
Nat Med. 2013; 19(5):626-30 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Upregulation of the ERK1 and ERK2 (ERK1/2) MAP kinase (MAPK) cascade occurs in >30% of cancers, often through mutational activation of receptor tyrosine kinases or other upstream genes, including KRAS and BRAF. Efforts to target endogenous MAPKs are challenged by the fact that these kinases are required for viability in mammals. Additionally, the effectiveness of new inhibitors of mutant BRAF has been diminished by acquired tumor resistance through selection for BRAF-independent mechanisms of ERK1/2 induction. Furthermore, recently identified ERK1/2-inducing mutations in MEK1 and MEK2 (MEK1/2) MAPK genes in melanoma confer resistance to emerging therapeutic MEK inhibitors, underscoring the challenges facing direct kinase inhibition in cancer. MAPK scaffolds, such as IQ motif-containing GTPase activating protein 1 (IQGAP1), assemble pathway kinases to affect signal transmission, and disrupting scaffold function therefore offers an orthogonal approach to MAPK cascade inhibition. Consistent with this, we found a requirement for IQGAP1 in RAS-driven tumorigenesis in mouse and human tissue. In addition, the ERK1/2-binding IQGAP1 WW domain peptide disrupted IQGAP1-ERK1/2 interactions, inhibited RAS- and RAF-driven tumorigenesis, bypassed acquired resistance to the BRAF inhibitor vemurafenib (PLX-4032) and acted as a systemically deliverable therapeutic to significantly increase the lifespan of tumor-bearing mice. Scaffold-kinase interaction blockade acts by a mechanism distinct from direct kinase inhibition and may be a strategy to target overactive oncogenic kinase cascades in cancer.

Tóthová V, Gibadulinová A
S100P, a peculiar member of S100 family of calcium-binding proteins implicated in cancer.
Acta Virol. 2013; 57(2):238-46 [PubMed] Related Publications
S100P belongs to several members of the S100 family of calcium-binding proteins, associated with malignant phenotype. Altered levels of S100P expression have been described at different stages and types of cancer. Transcriptional regulation involves different pathways activated by glucocorticoids, growth factors and bone morphogenic factor via the corresponding receptors. Signals coming from these pathways appear to be transmitted through ERK1/2 (extracellular-signal regulated kinase) and mediated presumably by STAT, SMAD, NFkB transcription factors. The secreted form of S100P can bind to extracellular ligand-binding site of RAGE (receptor for advanced glycation end-products), and via activation of ERK/MAPK pathway can influence gene expression, cell proliferation and survival. In addition, S100P interacts and modulates the activity of several targets with multiple binding modes and simultaneous coordination of further target proteins in larger multiprotein complexes, e.g. scaffolding proteins -IQGAP1 and ezrin, known to promote and regulate signal transduction pathways. The majority of S100P binding partners are proteins involved in cytoskeletal dynamics, and their physical interactions with S100P lead to defects in cellular morphogenesis and tissue disruption, the acquisition of uncontrolled migratory and invasive features. Finally, the evidence for S100P role in cancer metastasis opens a new direction for the future research efforts.

Cvetkovic D, Dragan M, Leith SJ, et al.
KISS1R induces invasiveness of estrogen receptor-negative human mammary epithelial and breast cancer cells.
Endocrinology. 2013; 154(6):1999-2014 [PubMed] Related Publications
Kisspeptins (KPs), peptide products of the KISS1 metastasis-suppressor gene, are endogenous ligands for a G protein-coupled receptor (KISS1R). KISS1 acts as a metastasis suppressor in numerous human cancers. However, recent studies have demonstrated that an increase in KISS1 and KISS1R expression in patient breast tumors correlates with higher tumor grade and metastatic potential. We have shown that KP-10 stimulates invasion of estrogen receptor α (ERα)-negative MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells via transactivation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). Here, we report that either KP-10 treatment of ERα-negative nonmalignant mammary epithelial MCF10A cells or expression of KISS1R in MCF10A cells induced a mesenchymal phenotype and stimulated invasiveness. Similarly, exogenous expression of KISS1R in ERα-negative SKBR3 breast cancer cells was sufficient to trigger invasion and induced extravasation in vivo. In contrast, KP-10 failed to transactivate EGFR or stimulate invasiveness in the ERα-positive MCF7 and T47D breast cancer cells. This suggested that ERα negatively regulates KISS1R-dependent breast cancer cell migration, invasion, and EGFR transactivation. In support of this, we found that these KP-10-induced effects were ablated upon exogenous expression of ERα in the MDA-MB-231 cells, by down-regulating KISS1R expression. Lastly, we have identified IQGAP1, an actin cytoskeletal binding protein as a novel binding partner of KISS1R, and have shown that KISS1R regulates EGFR transactivation in breast cancer cells in an IQGAP1-dependent manner. Overall, our data strongly suggest that the ERα status of mammary cells dictates whether KISS1R may be a novel clinical target for treating breast cancer metastasis.

Wu Y, Tao Y, Chen Y, Xu W
RhoC regulates the proliferation of gastric cancer cells through interaction with IQGAP1.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(11):e48917 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Our previous research results showed that both Ras homolog family member C (RhoC) and IQ-domain GTPase-activating protein 1 (IQGAP1) were over-expressed in gastric cancer tissues and cells, but their role in tumorigenensis has not been addressed clearly. Herein we reported the proliferation stimulating effect of RhoC and IQGAP1 on gastric cancer cells and the interaction between two proteins in regulating the proliferation of gastric cancer cells. Plasmids and viral constructs encoding target siRNA and DNA were used to alter the expression of RhoC and IQGAP1. MTT method and BrdU incorporation assay were used for analyzing the effect of RhoC and different structures of IQGAP1 on proliferation. Protein levels of IQGAP1 and RhoC in cell lines were detected by Western blotting. Immunofluorescence and Co-Immunoprecipitation assays were applied to investigate the localization and binding between RhoC and IQGAP1. The results showed that RhoC, IQGAP1 and the C-terminal fragment of IQGAP1 significantly stimulated the proliferation of gastric cancer cells, and enhanced the expression of cyclin E and cyclin D1. By contrast, reduction of endogenous IQGAP1 or RhoC by siRNA attenuated cell proliferation. The depletion of IQGAP1 expression by siRNA significantly blocked the proliferative activity of constitutively active RhoC, while RhoC silencing by siRNA had no effect on IQGAP1-induced proliferation in gastric cancer cells. Co-immunoprecipitation and Immunofluorescence assays showed that RhoC and IQGAP1 bound each other. In conclusion, our results suggest that RhoC stimulates the proliferation of gastric cancer cells through recruiting IQGAP1 as an effector.

White CD, Li Z, Dillon DA, Sacks DB
IQGAP1 protein binds human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) and modulates trastuzumab resistance.
J Biol Chem. 2011; 286(34):29734-47 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) is overexpressed in 20-25% of breast cancers. Increased HER2 expression is an adverse prognostic factor and correlates with decreased patient survival. HER2-positive (HER2(+)) breast cancer is treated with trastuzumab. Unfortunately, some patients are intrinsically refractory to therapy, and many who do respond initially become resistant within 1 year. Understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying HER2 signaling and trastuzumab resistance is essential to reduce breast cancer mortality. IQGAP1 is a ubiquitously expressed scaffold protein that contains multiple protein interaction domains. By regulating its binding partners IQGAP1 integrates signaling pathways, several of which contribute to breast tumorigenesis. We show here that IQGAP1 is overexpressed in HER2(+) breast cancer tissue and binds directly to HER2. Knockdown of IQGAP1 decreases HER2 expression, phosphorylation, signaling, and HER2-stimulated cell proliferation, effects that are all reversed by reconstituting cells with IQGAP1. Reducing IQGAP1 up-regulates p27, and blocking this increase attenuates the growth inhibitory effects of IQGAP1 knockdown. Importantly, IQGAP1 is overexpressed in trastuzumab-resistant breast epithelial cells, and reducing IQGAP1 both augments the inhibitory effects of trastuzumab and restores trastuzumab sensitivity to trastuzumab-resistant SkBR3 cells. These data suggest that inhibiting IQGAP1 function may represent a rational strategy for treating HER2(+) breast carcinoma.

Shaw EJ, Haylock B, Husband D, et al.
Gene expression in oligodendroglial tumors.
Cell Oncol (Dordr). 2011; 34(4):355-67 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Oligodendroglial tumors with 1p/19q loss are more likely to be chemosensitive and have longer survival than those with intact 1p/19q, but not all respond to chemotherapy, warranting investigation of the biological basis of chemosensitivity.
METHODS: Gene expression profiling was performed using amplified antisense RNA from 28 oligodendroglial tumors treated with chemotherapy [26 serial stereotactic biopsy, 2 resection]. Expression of differentially expressed genes was validated by real-time PCR.
RESULTS: Unsupervised hierarchical clustering showed clustering of multiple samples from the same case in 14/17 cases and identified subgroups associated with tumor grade and 1p/19q status. 176 genes were differentially expressed, 164 being associated with 1p/19q loss (86% not on 1p or 19q). 94 genes differed between responders and non-responders to chemotherapy; 12 were not associated with 1p/19q loss. Significant differential expression was confirmed in 11/13 selected genes. Novel genes associated with response to therapy included SSBP2, GFRA1, FAP and RASD1. IQGAP1, INA, TGIF1, NR2F2 and MYCBP were differentially expressed in oligodendroglial tumors with 1p/19q loss.
CONCLUSION: Gene expression profiling using serial stereotactic biopsies indicated greater homogeneity within tumors than between tumors. Genes associated with 1p/19q status or response were identified warranting further elucidation of their role in oligodendroglial tumors.

Wu Y, Chen YC, Sang JR, Xu WR
RhoC protein stimulates migration of gastric cancer cells through interaction with scaffold protein IQGAP1.
Mol Med Rep. 2011 Jul-Aug; 4(4):697-703 [PubMed] Related Publications
The scaffold protein IQGAP1 is closely related to certain Rho GTPases. Research has revealed that IQGAP1 acts as an effector of Cdc42 and Rac1 in the regulation of cell activity such as proliferation and migration. However, whether IQGAP1 is associated with RhoC, another important Rho GTPase, is unclear. Previous results from our laboratory indicated that IQGAP1 and RhoC are highly expressed in gastric cancer tissues and cells. This study was designed to investigate the possible interaction between IQGAP1 and RhoC in the regulation of the migration of cancer cells. The expression of IQGAP1 and RhoC in gastric cancer tissues and cell lines was detected by Western blotting. siRNAs targeting IQGAP1 or RhoC were transfected into gastric cancer cells to knock down the expression of the proteins. Adenoviral constructs encoding full length IQGAP1, the C‑terminal fragment of IQGAP1, and the constitutively active RhoC gene were used to infect gastric cancer cells to increase the expression of the proteins. The migratory activity of a gastric cancer cell line was measured by a transwell migration assay. Western blotting revealed that the IQGAP1 and RhoC proteins were highly expressed in gastric cancer tissues and cells. Spearman's rank correlation analysis indicated that the increases in the expression of IQGAP1 and RhoC were closely correlated. The transwell migration assay revealed that both IQGAP1 and RhoC stimulated the migration activity of the gastric cancer cell line AGS. The knockdown of IQGAP1 expression by siRNA blocked the migration‑stimulating activity of RhoC, while the knockdown of RhoC expression had no effect on the migration-stimulatory activity of IQGAP1. Co-IP results showed that RhoC and IQGAP1 bound to each other. These results reveal a previously unrecognized interaction between IQGAP1 and RhoC, and demonstrate that IQGAP1 is a downstream effector of RhoC in the regulation of the migration activity of gastric cancer cells.

Zheng H, Song F, Zhang L, et al.
Genetic variants at the miR-124 binding site on the cytoskeleton-organizing IQGAP1 gene confer differential predisposition to breast cancer.
Int J Oncol. 2011; 38(4):1153-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
IQGAP1 knockout mice develop gastric cancer, but the IQGAP1 protein is associated with some advanced-stage human cancers. IQGAP1 expression is regulated by a microRNA, miR-124, through a binding site at the 3'-untranslated region, where a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) exists in the core binding region. We asked whether IQGAP1 expression is associated with breast cancer development and whether genetic variants at the miR-124 binding site are important. We genotyped the IQGAP1 SNP rs1042538 A/T in 1,541 breast cancer cases and 1,598 controls and analyzed the frequency of the variant and interactions with major risk factors in these populations. We also measured the expression of IQGAP1 at both mRNA and protein levels in different IQGAP1 genotypes. The IQGAP1 TT genotype, compared with the AA genotype, was associated with a significantly lower risk of developing breast cancer [P=0.049, odds ratio (OR), 0.78; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.61-0.99]. In case-only analyses, the TT, compared with the AA, genotype was associated with progesterone receptor-positive subjects (OR, 1.35; 95% CI, 1.00-1.83). The expression levels of IQGAP1 protein were significantly higher in the TT genotype compated to the AA genotype. The presence of SNPs at the miR-124 binding site may be a marker for predicting breast cancer risk and prognosis.

Karaczyn A, Bani-Yaghoub M, Tremblay R, et al.
Two novel human NUMB isoforms provide a potential link between development and cancer.
Neural Dev. 2010; 5:31 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
We previously identified four functionally distinct human NUMB isoforms. Here, we report the identification of two additional isoforms and propose a link between the expression of these isoforms and cancer. These novel isoforms, NUMB5 and NUMB6, lack exon 10 and are expressed in cells known for polarity and migratory behavior, such as human amniotic fluid cells, glioblastoma and metastatic tumor cells. RT-PCR and luciferase assays demonstrate that NUMB5 and NUMB6 are less antagonistic to NOTCH signaling than other NUMB isoforms. Immunocytochemistry analyses show that NUMB5 and NUMB6 interact and complex with CDC42, vimentin and the CDC42 regulator IQGAP1 (IQ (motif) GTPase activating protein 1). Furthermore, the ectopic expression of NUMB5 and NUMB6 induces the formation of lamellipodia (NUMB5) and filopodia (NUMB6) in a CDC42- and RAC1-dependent manner. These results are complemented by in vitro and in vivo studies, demonstrating that NUMB5 and NUMB6 alter the migratory behavior of cells. Together, these novel isoforms may play a role in further understanding the NUMB function in development and cancer.

Yang JD, Sun Z, Hu C, et al.
Sulfatase 1 and sulfatase 2 in hepatocellular carcinoma: associated signaling pathways, tumor phenotypes, and survival.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2011; 50(2):122-35 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The heparin-degrading endosulfatases sulfatase 1 (SULF1) and sulfatase 2 (SULF2) have opposing effects in hepatocarcinogenesis despite structural similarity. Using mRNA expression arrays, we analyzed the correlations of SULF expression with signaling networks in human hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) and the associations of SULF expression with tumor phenotype and patient survival. Data from two mRNA microarray analyses of 139 and 36 HCCs and adjacent tissues were used as training and validation sets. Partek and Metacore software were used to identify SULF correlated genes and their associated signaling pathways. Associations between SULF expression, the hepatoblast subtype of HCC, and survival were examined. Both SULF1 and 2 had strong positive correlations with periostin, IQGAP1, TGFB1, and vimentin and inverse correlations with HNF4A and IQGAP2. Genes correlated with both SULFs were highly associated with the cell adhesion, cytoskeletal remodeling, blood coagulation, TGFB, and Wnt/β-catenin and epithelial mesenchymal transition signaling pathways. Genes uniquely correlated with SULF2 were more associated with neoplastic processes than genes uniquely correlated with SULF1. High SULF expression was associated with the hepatoblast subtype of HCC. There was a bimodal effect of SULF1 expression on prognosis, with patients in the lowest or highest tertile having a worse prognosis than those in the middle tertile. SULFs have complex effects on HCC signaling and patient survival. There are functionally similar associations with cell adhesion, ECM remodeling, TGFB, and WNT pathways, but also unique associations of SULF1 and SULF2. The roles and targeting of the SULFs in cancer require further investigation.

White CD, Khurana H, Gnatenko DV, et al.
IQGAP1 and IQGAP2 are reciprocally altered in hepatocellular carcinoma.
BMC Gastroenterol. 2010; 10:125 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: IQGAP1 and IQGAP2 are homologous members of the IQGAP family of scaffold proteins. Accumulating evidence implicates IQGAPs in tumorigenesis. We recently reported that IQGAP2 deficiency leads to the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in mice. In the current study we extend these findings, and investigate IQGAP1 and IQGAP2 expression in human HCC.
METHODS: IQGAP1 and IQGAP2 protein expression was assessed by Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. IQGAP mRNA was measured by quantitative RT-PCR. The methylation status of the Iqgap2 promoter was determined by pyrosequencing of bisulfite-treated genomic DNA.
RESULTS: IQGAP1 and IQGAP2 expression was reciprocally altered in 6/6 liver cancer cell lines. Similarly, immunohistochemical staining of 82 HCC samples showed that IQGAP2 protein expression was reduced in 64/82 (78.0%), while IQGAP1 was present in 69/82 (84.1%). No IQGAP1 staining was detected in 23/28 (82.1%) normal livers, 4/4 (100.0%) hepatic adenomas and 23/23 (100.0%) cirrhosis cases, while IQGAP2 was increased in 22/28 (78.6%), 4/4 (100.0%) and 23/23 (100.0%), respectively. Although the Iqgap2 promoter was not hypermethylated in HCC at any of the 25 CpG sites studied (N = 17), IQGAP2 mRNA levels were significantly lower in HCC specimens (N = 23) than normal livers (N = 6).
CONCLUSIONS: We conclude that increased IQGAP1 and/or decreased IQGAP2 contribute to the pathogenesis of human HCC. Furthermore, downregulation of IQGAP2 in HCC occurs independently of hypermethylation of the Iqgap2 promoter. Immunostaining of IQGAP1 and IQGAP2 may aid in the diagnosis of HCC, and their pharmacologic modulation may represent a novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of liver cancer.

Shaw EJ, Haylock B, Husband D, et al.
Gene expression in oligodendroglial tumors.
Anal Cell Pathol (Amst). 2010; 33(2):81-94 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Oligodendroglial tumors with 1p/19q loss are more likely to be chemosensitive and have longer survival than those with intact 1p/19q, but not all respond to chemotherapy, warranting investigation of the biological basis of chemosensitivity.
METHODS: Gene expression profiling was performed using amplified antisense RNA from 28 oligodendroglial tumors treated with chemotherapy (26 serial stereotactic biopsy, 2 resection). Expression of differentially expressed genes was validated by real-time PCR.
RESULTS: Unsupervised hierarchical clustering showed clustering of multiple samples from the same case in 14/17 cases and identified subgroups associated with tumor grade and 1p/19q status. 176 genes were differentially expressed, 164 being associated with 1p/19q loss (86% not on 1p or 19q). 94 genes differed between responders and non-responders to chemotherapy; 12 were not associated with 1p/19q loss. Significant differential expression was confirmed in 11/13 selected genes. Novel genes associated with response to therapy included SSBP2, GFRA1, FAP and RASD1. IQGAP1, INA, TGIF1, NR2F2 and MYCBP were differentially expressed in oligodendroglial tumors with 1p/19q loss.
CONCLUSION: Gene expression profiling using serial stereotactic biopsies indicated greater homogeneity within tumors than between tumors. Genes associated with 1p/19q status or response were identified warranting further elucidation of their role in oligodendroglial tumors.

Liu Z, Liu D, Bojdani E, et al.
IQGAP1 plays an important role in the invasiveness of thyroid cancer.
Clin Cancer Res. 2010; 16(24):6009-18 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: This study was designed to explore the role of IQGAP1 in the invasiveness of thyroid cancer and its potential as a novel prognostic marker and therapeutic target in this cancer.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: We examined IQGAP1 copy gain and its relationship with clinicopathologic outcomes of thyroid cancer and investigated its role in cell invasion and molecules involved in the process.
RESULTS: We found IQGAP1 copy number (CN) gain ≥ 3 in 1 of 30 (3%), 24 of 74 (32%), 44 of 107 (41%), 8 of 16 (50%), and 27 of 41 (66%) of benign thyroid tumor, follicular variant papillary thyroid cancer (FVPTC), follicular thyroid cancer (FTC), tall cell papillary thyroid cancer (PTC), and anaplastic thyroid cancer, respectively, in the increasing order of invasiveness of these tumors. A similar tumor distribution trend of CN ≥ 4 was also seen. IQGAP1 copy gain was positively correlated with IQGAP1 protein expression. It was significantly associated with extrathyroidal and vascular invasion of FVPTC and FTC and, remarkably, a 50%-60% rate of multifocality and recurrence of BRAF mutation-positive PTC (P = 0.01 and 0.02, respectively). The siRNA knockdown of IQGAP1 dramatically inhibited thyroid cancer cell invasion and colony formation. Coimmunoprecipitation assay showed direct interaction of IQGAP1 with E-cadherin, a known invasion-suppressing molecule, which was upregulated when IQGAP1 was knocked down. This provided a mechanism for the invasive role of IQGAP1 in thyroid cancer. In contrast, IQGAP3 lacked all these functions.
CONCLUSIONS: IQGAP1, through genetic copy gain, plays an important role in the invasiveness of thyroid cancer and may represent a novel prognostic marker and therapeutic target for this cancer.

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