Gene Summary

Gene:PELP1; proline, glutamate and leucine rich protein 1
Aliases: MNAR, P160
Summary:This gene encodes a transcription factor which coactivates transcription of estrogen receptor responsive genes and corepresses genes activated by other hormone receptors or sequence-specific transcription factors. Expression of this gene is regulated by both members of the estrogen receptor family. This gene may be involved in the progression of several types of cancer. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants. [provided by RefSeq, May 2013]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:proline-, glutamic acid- and leucine-rich protein 1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 11 March, 2017


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

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

  • Signal Transduction
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Co-Repressor Proteins
  • Cell Proliferation
  • MAP Kinase Signaling System
  • Messenger RNA
  • Promoter Regions
  • Chromatin Immunoprecipitation
  • Mutation
  • Up-Regulation
  • Epigenetics
  • p300-CBP Transcription Factors
  • Cell Cycle
  • Drug Resistance
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Transcription Factors
  • Trans-Activators
  • Triple Negative Breast Cancer
  • Estradiol
  • Gene Knockdown Techniques
  • Chromosome 17
  • Phosphorylation
  • Tamoxifen
  • Western Blotting
  • Histones
  • Breast Cancer
  • Estrogen Receptor alpha
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Glutamic Acid
  • siRNA
  • Transcription
  • Xenograft Models
  • Transfection
  • HeLa Cells
  • Estrogens
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Protein Binding
  • p53 Protein
  • Estrogen Receptors
Tag cloud generated 11 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (3)

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: PELP1 (cancer-related)

Sareddy GR, Vadlamudi RK
PELP1: Structure, biological function and clinical significance.
Gene. 2016; 585(1):128-34 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/07/2017 Related Publications
Proline-, glutamic acid-, and leucine-rich protein 1 (PELP1) is a scaffolding protein that functions as a coregulator of several transcription factors and nuclear receptors. Notably, the PELP1 protein has a histone-binding domain, recognizes histone modifications and interacts with several chromatin-modifying complexes. PELP1 serves as a substrate of multitude of kinases, and phosphorylation regulates its functions in various complexes. Further, PELP1 plays essential roles in several pathways including hormonal signaling, cell cycle progression, ribosomal biogenesis, and the DNA damage response. PELP1 expression is upregulated in several cancers, its deregulation contributes to therapy resistance, and it is a prognostic biomarker for breast cancer survival. Recent evidence suggests that PELP1 represents a novel therapeutic target for many hormonal cancers. In this review, we summarized the emerging biological properties and functions of PELP1.

Regan Anderson TM, Ma SH, Raj GV, et al.
Breast Tumor Kinase (Brk/PTK6) Is Induced by HIF, Glucocorticoid Receptor, and PELP1-Mediated Stress Signaling in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer.
Cancer Res. 2016; 76(6):1653-63 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Cancer cells use stress response pathways to sustain their pathogenic behavior. In breast cancer, stress response-associated phenotypes are mediated by the breast tumor kinase, Brk (PTK6), via the hypoxia-inducible factors HIF-1α and HIF-2α. Given that glucocorticoid receptor (GR) is highly expressed in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC), we investigated cross-talk between stress hormone-driven GR signaling and HIF-regulated physiologic stress. Primary TNBC tumor explants or cell lines treated with the GR ligand dexamethasone exhibited robust induction of Brk mRNA and protein that was HIF1/2-dependent. HIF and GR coassembled on the BRK promoter in response to either hypoxia or dexamethasone, indicating that Brk is a direct GR/HIF target. Notably, HIF-2α, not HIF-1α, expression was induced by GR signaling, and the important steroid receptor coactivator PELP1 was also found to be induced in a HIF-dependent manner. Mechanistic investigations showed how PELP1 interacted with GR to activate Brk expression and demonstrated that physiologic cell stress, including hypoxia, promoted phosphorylation of GR serine 134, initiating a feed-forward signaling loop that contributed significantly to Brk upregulation. Collectively, our findings linked cellular stress (HIF) and stress hormone (cortisol) signaling in TNBC, identifying the phospho-GR/HIF/PELP1 complex as a potential therapeutic target to limit Brk-driven progression and metastasis in TNBC patients.

Słowikowski BK, Gałęcki B, Dyszkiewicz W, Jagodziński PP
Increased expression of proline-, glutamic acid- and leucine-rich protein PELP1 in non-small cell lung cancer.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2015; 73:97-101 [PubMed] Related Publications
It has been demonstrated that estrogens are able to enhance lung tumorigenesis by estrogen receptor (ER) pathway. ER signaling is a highly complex process that requires a number of different coactivators, including proline-, glutamic acid- and leucine-rich protein-1 (PELP1). We studied PELP1 transcript and protein levels in cancerous and histopathologically unchanged lung tissues obtained from 73 patients diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We observed increased levels of PELP1 transcript (P=0.00001) and protein (P=0.00001) in tumor tissues compared to adjacent histopathologically unchanged tissues. Significant increase of PELP1 transcript/protein level was found in all patients, regardless of gender (males: P=0.0003/P=0.000003; females: P=0.0005/P=0.02), age (≤ 60 patients: P=0.042/P=0.016; >60 patients: P=0.00001/P=0.00001) or histopathological type of tumor (adenocarcinoma [ADC]: P=0.004/P=0.0006; squamous cell carcinoma [SSC]: P=0.0009/P=0.0008). Increased PELP1 transcript/protein levels were also correlated with some lung cancer stage (1a: P=0.07/P=0.02; 1b: P=0.001/P=0.03; 2a: P=0.012/P=0.001), tumor size (T2a: P=0.0006/P=0.001) and lymph node metastasis (N0: P=0.0003/P=0.0006; N1: P=0.017/P=0.003). Moreover, significant increase in PELP1 transcript level in cancer stage 1a (P=0.02) was observed. PELP1 protein content was higher in tumor tissues of patients with cancer stage 3a (P=0.04) and in T1a tumor size (P=0.03). Our studies demonstrate significantly higher amounts of PELP1 transcript and protein in tumor tissues in patients with NSCLC. Moreover, we also determined the association of PELP1 transcript and protein level with some clinicopathological features of NSCLC.

Ayala G, Frolov A, Chatterjee D, et al.
Expression of ERG protein in prostate cancer: variability and biological correlates.
Endocr Relat Cancer. 2015; 22(3):277-87 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death of men in the USA. The TMPRSS2/ERG (T/E) fusion gene is present in approximately 50% of prostate cancers and promotes tumor progression in vivo. The presence of the T/E fusion gene is strongly associated with the expression of ERG protein, but emerging evidence indicates a significant interfocal and intrafocal variability in the levels of ERG protein expression. We therefore analyzed ERG protein expression by image analysis to objectively quantitate the extent of such heterogeneity, and confirmed significant interfocal and intrafocal variability of ERG protein expression levels in cancer expressing ERG. To define the pathways associated with ERG and its variable expression in prostate cancer, we have analyzed the correlations of ERG expression, as evaluated by immunohistochemistry, with 46 key proteins associated with signal transduction, transcriptional control, and other processes using a large tissue microarray with more than 500 prostate cancers. We found a significant correlation of ERG expression with the markers of activation of the PI3K, MYC, and NFκB pathways, which had previously been linked directly or indirectly to ERG expression. We have also identified significant correlations with novel proteins that have not been previously linked to ERG expression, including serum response factor, the p160 coactivator SRC1, and Sprouty1. Notably, SKP2 only correlated with a high level of ERG protein expression. Thus ERG expression is variable in prostate cancer and is associated with activation of multiple pathways and proteins including several potentially targetable pathways.

Shi J, Liu W, Sui F, et al.
Frequent amplification of AIB1, a critical oncogene modulating major signaling pathways, is associated with poor survival in gastric cancer.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(16):14344-59 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Amplified in breast cancer 1 (AIB1) is a member of p160 steroid receptor coactivator (SRC) family that mediates the transcriptional activities of nuclear receptors and other transcription factors. It acts as a major oncogene in diverse cancers, whereas biological function of AIB1 in gastric cancer remains largely unclear. This study was designed to explore the role of AIB1 in gastric tumorigenesis and its potential as a useful prognostic marker and therapeutic target in this cancer. Our data demonstrated that AIB1 was significantly up-regulated in gastric cancer tissues as compared with control subjects. Moreover, AIB1 amplification was found in 47 of 133 (35.3%) gastric cancer cases, but not in control subjects. AIB1 amplification was positively associated with its protein expression, and was significantly correlated with poor patient survival. AIB1 knockdown in gastric cancer cells dramatically inhibited cell proliferation, invasiveness and tumorigenic potential in nude mice, and induced cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. Mechanically, AIB1 promotes gastric cancer cell proliferation, survival and invasiveness through modulating major signaling pathways such as ErbB and Wnt/β-catenin pathways. Collectively, these findings suggest that AIB1 plays an important role in the pathogenesis of gastric cancer and represents a potential prognostic marker and therapeutic target for this cancer.

Girard BJ, Regan Anderson TM, Welch SL, et al.
Cytoplasmic PELP1 and ERRgamma protect human mammary epithelial cells from Tam-induced cell death.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(3):e0121206 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Tamoxifen (Tam) is the only FDA-approved chemoprevention agent for pre-menopausal women at high risk for developing breast cancer. While Tam reduces a woman's risk of developing estrogen receptor positive (ER+) breast cancer, the molecular mechanisms associated with risk reduction are poorly understood. Prior studies have shown that cytoplasmic proline, glutamic acid and leucine rich protein 1 (PELP1) promotes Tam resistance in breast cancer cell lines. Herein, we tested for PELP1 localization in breast epithelial cells from women at high risk for developing breast cancer and found that PELP1 was localized to the cytoplasm in 36% of samples. In vitro, immortalized HMECs expressing a nuclear localization signal (NLS) mutant of PELP1 (PELP1-cyto) were resistant to Tam-induced death. Furthermore, PELP1-cyto signaling through estrogen-related receptor gamma (ERRγ) promoted cell survival in the presence of Tam. Overexpression of ERRγ in immortalized HMECs protected cells from Tam-induced death, while knockdown of ERRγ sensitized PELP1-cyto expressing HMECs to Tam. Moreover, Tam-induced HMEC cell death was independent of apoptosis and involved accumulation of the autophagy marker LC3-II. Expression of PELP1-cyto and ERRγ reduced Tam-induced LC3-II accumulation, and knockdown of ERRγ increased LC3-II levels in response to Tam. Additionally, PELP1-cyto expression led to the upregulation of MMP-3 and MAOB, known PELP1 and ERRγ target genes, respectively. Our data indicate that cytoplasmic PELP1 induces signaling pathways that converge on ERRγ to promote cell survival in the presence of Tam. These data suggest that PELP1 localization and/or ERRγ activation could be developed as tissue biomarkers for Tam responsiveness.

Krishnan SR, Nair BC, Sareddy GR, et al.
Novel role of PELP1 in regulating chemotherapy response in mutant p53-expressing triple negative breast cancer cells.
Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2015; 150(3):487-99 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC), the most aggressive breast cancer subtype, occurs in younger women and is associated with poor prognosis. Gain-of-function mutations in TP53 are a frequent occurrence in TNBC and have been demonstrated to repress apoptosis and up-regulate cell cycle progression. Even though TNBC responds to initial chemotherapy, resistance to chemotherapy develops and is a major clinical problem. Tumor recurrence eventually occurs and most patients die from their disease. An urgent need exists to identify molecular-targeted therapies that can enhance chemotherapy response. In the present study, we report that targeting PELP1, an oncogenic co-regulator molecule, could enhance the chemotherapeutic response of TNBC through the inhibition of cell cycle progression and activation of apoptosis. We demonstrate that PELP1 interacts with MTp53, regulates its recruitment, and alters epigenetic marks at the target gene promoters. PELP1 knockdown reduced MTp53 target gene expression, resulting in decreased cell survival and increased apoptosis upon genotoxic stress. Mechanistic studies revealed that PELP1 depletion contributes to increased stability of E2F1, a transcription factor that regulates both cell cycle and apoptosis in a context-dependent manner. Further, PELP1 regulates E2F1 stability in a KDM1A-dependent manner, and PELP1 phosphorylation at the S1033 residue plays an important role in mediating its oncogenic functions in TNBC cells. Accordingly, depletion of PELP1 increased the expression of E2F1 target genes and reduced TNBC cell survival in response to genotoxic agents. PELP1 phosphorylation was significantly greater in the TNBC tumors than in the other subtypes of breast cancer and in the normal tissues. These findings suggest that PELP1 is an important molecular target in TNBC, and that PELP1-targeted therapies may enhance response to chemotherapies.

Cortez V, Samayoa C, Zamora A, et al.
PELP1 overexpression in the mouse mammary gland results in the development of hyperplasia and carcinoma.
Cancer Res. 2014; 74(24):7395-405 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Estrogen receptor (ER) coregulator overexpression promotes carcinogenesis and/or progression of endocrine related-cancers in which steroid hormones are powerful mitogenic agents. Recent studies in our laboratory, as well as others, demonstrated that the estrogen receptor coregulator PELP1 is a proto-oncogene. PELP1 interactions with histone demethylase KDM1 play a critical role in its oncogenic functions and PELP1 is a prognostic indicator of decreased survival in patients with breast cancer. However, the in vivo significance of PELP1 deregulation during initiation and progression of breast cancer remains unknown. We generated an inducible, mammary gland-specific PELP1-expressing transgenic (Tg) mouse (MMTVrtTA-TetOPELP1). We found more proliferation, extensive side branching, and precocious differentiation in PELP1-overexpressing mammary glands than in control glands. Aged MMTVrtTA-TetOPELP1 Tg mice had hyperplasia and preneoplastic changes as early as 12 weeks, and ER-positive mammary tumors occurred at a latency of 14 to 16 months. Mechanistic studies revealed that PELP1 deregulation altered expression of a number of known ER target genes involved in cellular proliferation (cyclin D1, CDKs) and morphogenesis (EGFR, MMPs) and such changes facilitated altered mammary gland morphogenesis and tumor progression. Furthermore, PELP1 was hyper-phosphorylated at its CDK phosphorylation site, suggesting an autocrine loop involving the CDK-cyclin D1-PELP1 axis in promoting mammary tumorigenesis. Treatment of PELP1 Tg mice with a KDM1 inhibitor significantly reduced PELP1-driven hyperbranching, reversed alterations in cyclin D1 expression levels, and reduced CDK-driven PELP1 phosphorylation. These results further support the hypothesis that PELP1 deregulation has the potential to promote breast tumorigenesis in vivo and represent a novel model for future investigation into molecular mechanisms of PELP1-mediated tumorigenesis.

de León FC, Gordillo-Domínguez LF, González-Carranza V, et al.
Brachmann-Cornelia de Lange syndrome with a papilloma of the choroid plexus: analyses of molecular genetic characteristics of the patient and the tumor. A single-case study.
Childs Nerv Syst. 2015; 31(1):141-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: A 10-month-old girl with a Brachmann-Cornelia de Lange syndrome and a choroid plexus papilloma of the brain was studied at the Hospital Infantil de México Federico Gómez (HIMFG) in Mexico City.
METHODS AND RESULTS: Presumptive papilloma of the third ventricle was evidenced on CT and MR images and removed. Pathological analysis confirmed its origin. A posterior radiosurgery was required due to a tumor relapse. Karyotypes (GTG bands) of the patient and her parents undertaken at HIMFG were normal. Array comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) analyses of blood DNA of the patient and her parents carried out at BlueGnome's Laboratory in Cambridge, UK, set in evidence amplification of genes SPNS2, GGT6, SMTNL2, PELP1, MYBBP1A, and ALOX15 in chromosome 17p of the patient. Since MYBBP1A is a proto-oncogene and ALOX15 participates in the development of cancer and metastases of tumors, further fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) analyses of these two genes were implemented at HIMFG. Amplification of the two genes was found in the tumor of the case under study but not in an unrelated papilloma of the choroid plexus.
DISCUSSION: Further analyses of the association of choroid plexus papillomas with disorders of psycho-neural development and its relationship to molecular genetic modifications at chromosome 17p are now under way at HIMFG.

Gonugunta VK, Sareddy GR, Krishnan SR, et al.
Inhibition of mTOR signaling reduces PELP1-mediated tumor growth and therapy resistance.
Mol Cancer Ther. 2014; 13(6):1578-88 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Proline, Glutamic acid-, and Leucine-rich Protein 1 (PELP1) is a proto-oncogene that modulates estrogen receptor (ER) signaling. PELP1 expression is upregulated in breast cancer, contributes to therapy resistance, and is a prognostic marker of poor survival. In a subset of breast tumors, PELP1 is predominantly localized in the cytoplasm and PELP1 participates in extranuclear signaling by facilitating ER interactions with Src and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K). However, the mechanism by which PELP1 extranuclear actions contributes to cancer progression and therapy resistance remains unclear. In this study, we discovered that PELP1 cross-talked with the serine/threonine protein kinase mTOR and modulated mTOR signaling. PELP1 knockdown significantly reduced the activation of mTOR downstream signaling components. Conversely, PELP1 overexpression excessively activated mTOR signaling components. We detected the presence of the mTOR signaling complex proteins in PELP1 immunoprecipitates. mTOR-targeting drugs (rapamycin and AZD8055) significantly reduced proliferation of PELP1-overexpressed breast cancer cells in both in vitro and in vivo xenograft tumor models. MCF7 cells that uniquely retain PELP1 in the cytoplasm showed resistance to hormonal therapy and mTOR inhibitors sensitized PELP1cyto cells to hormonal therapy in xenograft assays. Notably, immunohistochemical studies using xenograft tumors derived from PELP1 overexpression model cells showed increased mTOR signaling and inhibition of mTOR rendered PELP1-driven tumors to be highly sensitive to therapeutic inhibition. Collectively, our data identified the PELP1-mTOR axis as a novel component of PELP1 oncogenic functions and suggest that mTOR inhibitor(s) will be effective chemotherapeutic agents for downregulating PELP1 oncogenic functions.

Zhang Y, Wang P, Shi M, et al.
The pattern of proline, glutamic acid, and leucine-rich protein 1 expression in Chinese women with primary breast cancer.
Int J Biol Markers. 2014; 29(1):e1-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Disparities of biomarkers' expression in breast cancer across different races and ethnicities have been well documented. Proline, glutamic acid, and leucine-rich protein 1 (PELP1), a novel ER coregulator, has been considered as a promising biomarker of breast cancer prognosis; however, the pattern of PELP1 expression in Chinese women with breast cancer has never been investigated. This study aims to provide useful reference on possible racial or ethnic differences of PELP1 expression in breast cancer by exploring the pattern of PELP1 expression in Chinese women with primary breast cancer.
METHODS: The expression of PELP1 in primary breast cancer samples from 130 Chinese female patients was detected by immunohistochemistry and correlated to other clinicopathological parameters; for comparison, the expression of PELP1 in 26 benign breast fibroadenomas was also examined.
RESULTS: The overall value of the PELP1 H-score in breast cancer was significantly higher than that in breast fibroadenoma (p<0.001). In our breast cancer patients, the ER/HER-2-positive group had significantly higher PELP1 H-scores than their negative counterparts (p=0.003 for ER and p=0.022 for HER-2); the Ki-67-high group also showed significantly higher PELP1 H-scores than the Ki-67-low group (p=0.008). No significant association between PELP1 H-scores and other clinicopathological parameters was found. Finally, the PELP1 H-score in breast cancers of the luminal B subtype was significantly higher than that in the triple negative subtype (p=0.002).
CONCLUSION: Overexpression of PELP1 in Chinese women with primary breast cancer appears to be associated with biomarkers of poor outcome; these results are similar to other reports based on Western populations.

Daniel AR, Gaviglio AL, Knutson TP, et al.
Progesterone receptor-B enhances estrogen responsiveness of breast cancer cells via scaffolding PELP1- and estrogen receptor-containing transcription complexes.
Oncogene. 2015; 34(4):506-15 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Progesterone and estrogen are important drivers of breast cancer proliferation. Herein, we probed estrogen receptor-α (ER) and progesterone receptor (PR) cross-talk in breast cancer models. Stable expression of PR-B in PR-low/ER+ MCF7 cells increased cellular sensitivity to estradiol and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1), as measured in growth assays performed in the absence of exogenous progestin; similar results were obtained in PR-null/ER+ T47D cells stably expressing PR-B. Genome-wide microarray analyses revealed that unliganded PR-B induced robust expression of a subset of estradiol-responsive ER target genes, including cathepsin-D (CTSD). Estradiol-treated MCF7 cells stably expressing PR-B exhibited enhanced ER Ser167 phosphorylation and recruitment of ER, PR and the proline-, glutamate- and leucine-rich protein 1 (PELP1) to an estrogen response element in the CTSD distal promoter; this complex co-immunoprecipitated with IGF1 receptor (IGFR1) in whole-cell lysates. Importantly, ER/PR/PELP1 complexes were also detected in human breast cancer samples. Inhibition of IGF1R or phosphoinositide 3-kinase blocked PR-B-dependent CTSD mRNA upregulation in response to estradiol. Similarly, inhibition of IGF1R or PR significantly reduced ER recruitment to the CTSD promoter. Stable knockdown of endogenous PR or onapristone treatment of multiple unmodified breast cancer cell lines blocked estradiol-mediated CTSD induction, inhibited growth in soft agar and partially restored tamoxifen sensitivity of resistant cells. Further, combination treatment of breast cancer cells with both onapristone and IGF1R tyrosine kinase inhibitor AEW541 was more effective than either agent alone. In summary, unliganded PR-B enhanced proliferative responses to estradiol and IGF1 via scaffolding of ER-α/PELP1/IGF1R-containing complexes. Our data provide a strong rationale for targeting PR in combination with ER and IGF1R in patients with luminal breast cancer.

Mann M, Zou Y, Chen Y, et al.
PELP1 oncogenic functions involve alternative splicing via PRMT6.
Mol Oncol. 2014; 8(2):389-400 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Proline-, glutamic acid-, and leucine-rich protein 1 (PELP1) is a proto-oncogene that functions as coactivator of the estrogen receptor and is an independent prognostic predictor of shorter survival of breast cancer patients. The dysregulation of PELP1 in breast cancer has been implicated in oncogenesis, metastasis, and therapy resistance. Although several aspects of PELP1 have been studied, a complete list of PELP1 target genes remains unknown, and the molecular mechanisms of PELP1 mediated oncogenesis remain elusive. In this study, we have performed a whole genome analysis to profile the PELP1 transcriptome by RNA-sequencing and identified 318 genes as PELP1 regulated genes. Pathway analysis revealed that PELP1 modulates several pathways including the molecular mechanisms of cancer, estrogen signaling, and breast cancer progression. Interestingly, RNA-seq analysis also revealed that PELP1 regulates the expression of several genes involved in alternative splicing. Accordingly, the PELP1 regulated genome includes several uniquely spliced isoforms. Mechanistic studies show that PELP1 binds RNA with a preference to poly-C, co-localizes with the splicing factor SC35 at nuclear speckles, and participates in alternative splicing. Further, PELP1 interacts with the arginine methyltransferase PRMT6 and modifies PRMT6 functions. Inhibition of PRMT6 reduced PELP1-mediated estrogen receptor activation, cellular proliferation, and colony formation. PELP1 and PRMT6 are co-recruited to estrogen receptor target genes, PELP1 knockdown affects the enrichment of histone H3R2 di-methylation, and PELP1 and PRMT6 coordinate to regulate the alternative splicing of genes involved in cancer. Collectively, our data suggest that PELP1 oncogenic functions involve alternative splicing leading to the activation of unique pathways that support tumor progression and that the PELP1-PRMT6 axis may be a potential target for breast cancer therapy.

Han W, Jones FE
HER4 selectively coregulates estrogen stimulated genes associated with breast tumor cell proliferation.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2014; 443(2):458-63 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
The EGFR-family member HER4 undergoes regulated intramembrane proteolysis (RIP) to generate an intracellular domain (4ICD) that functions as a transcriptional coactivator. Accordingly, 4ICD coactivates the estrogen receptor (ER) and associates with ER at target gene promoters in breast tumor cells. However, the extent of 4ICD coactivation of ER and the functional significance of the 4ICD/ER transcriptional complex is unclear. To identify 4ICD coactivated genes we performed a microarray gene expression analysis of β-estradiol treated cells comparing control MCF-7 breast cancer cells to MCF-7 cells where HER4 expression was stably suppressed using a shRNA. In the MCF-7 cell line, β-estradiol significantly stimulated or repressed by 2-fold or more 726 or 53 genes, respectively. Significantly, HER4/4ICD was an obligate coactivator for 277 or 38% of the β-estradiol stimulated genes. Ingenuity Pathway Analysis of β-estradiol regulated genes identified significant associations with multiple cellular functions regulating cellular growth and proliferation, cell cycle progression, cancer metastasis, decreased hypoplasia, tumor cell migration, apoptotic resistance of tumor cells, and increased transcription. Genes coactivated by 4ICD displayed functional specificity by only significantly contributing to cellular growth and proliferation, cell cycle progression, and decreased hypoplasia. In direct concordance with these in situ results we show that HER4 knockdown in MCF-7 cells results in a loss of estrogen stimulated tumor cell proliferation and cell cycle progression, whereas, estrogen stimulated tumor cell migration was unaffected by loss of HER4 expression. In summary, we demonstrate for the first time that a cell surface receptor functions as an obligate ER coactivator with functional specificity associated with breast tumor cell proliferation and cell cycle progression. Nearly 90% of ER positive tumors coexpress HER4, therefore we predict that the majority of breast cancer patients would benefit from a strategy to therapeutic disengage ER/4ICD coregulated tumor cell proliferation.

Wagner M, Koslowski M, Paret C, et al.
NCOA3 is a selective co-activator of estrogen receptor α-mediated transactivation of PLAC1 in MCF-7 breast cancer cells.
BMC Cancer. 2013; 13:570 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The placenta-specific 1 (PLAC1) gene encodes a membrane-associated protein which is selectively expressed in the placental syncytiotrophoblast and in murine fetal tissues during embryonic development. In contrast to its transcriptional repression in all other adult normal tissues, PLAC1 is frequently activated and highly expressed in a variety of human cancers, in particular breast cancer, where it associates with estrogen receptor α (ERα) positivity. In a previous study, we showed that ERα-signaling in breast cancer cells transactivates PLAC1 expression in a non-classical pathway. As the members of the p160/nuclear receptor co-activator (NCOA) family, NCOA1, NCOA2 and NCOA3 are known to be overexpressed in breast cancer and essentially involved in estrogen-mediated cancer cell proliferation we asked if these proteins are involved in the ERα-mediated transactivation of PLAC1 in breast cancer cells.
METHODS: Applying quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR), Western Blot analysis and chromatin immunoprecipitation, we analyzed the involvement of NCOA1, NCOA2, NCOA3 in the ERα-mediated transactivation of PLAC1 in the breast cancer cell lines MCF-7 and SK-BR-3. RNAi-mediated silencing of NCOA3, qRT-PCR, Western blot analysis and ERα activation assays were used to examine the role of NCOA3 in the ERα-mediated regulation of PLAC1 in further detail. Transcript expression of NCOA3 and PLAC1 in 48 human breast cancer samples was examined by qRT-PCR and statistical analysis was performed using Student's t-test.
RESULTS: We detected selective recruitment of NCOA3 but not NCOA1 or NCOA2 to the PLAC1 promoter only in ERα-positive MCF-7 cells but not in ERα-negative SK-BR-3 breast cancer cells. In addition, we demonstrate that silencing of NCOA3 results in a remarkable decrease of PLAC1 expression levels in MCF-7 cells which cannot be restored by treatment with estradiol (E₂). Moreover, significant higher transcript levels of PLAC1 were found only in ERα-positive human breast cancer samples which also show a NCOA3 overexpression.
CONCLUSIONS: In this study, we identified NCOA3 as a selective co-activator of ERα-mediated transactivation of PLAC1 in MCF-7 breast cancer cells. Our data introduce PLAC1 as novel target gene of NCOA3 in breast cancer, supporting the important role of both factors in breast cancer biology.

Tan JA, Bai S, Grossman G, et al.
Mechanism of androgen receptor corepression by CKβBP2/CRIF1, a multifunctional transcription factor coregulator expressed in prostate cancer.
Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2014; 382(1):302-13 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
The transcription factor coregulator Casein kinase IIβ-binding protein 2 or CR6-interacting factor 1 (CKβBP2/CRIF1) binds the androgen receptor (AR) in prostate cancer cells and in response to dihydrotestosterone localizes with AR on the prostate-specific antigen gene enhancer, but does not bind DNA suggesting CKβBP2/CRIF1 localization in chromatin is determined by AR. In this study we show also that CKβBP2/CRIF1 inhibits wild-type AR and AR N-terminal transcriptional activity, binds to the AR C-terminal region, inhibits interaction of the AR N- and C-terminal domains (N/C interaction) and competes with p160 coactivator binding to the AR C-terminal domain, suggesting CKβBP2/CRIF1 interferes with AR activation functions 1 and 2. CKβBP2/CRIF1 is expressed mainly in stromal cells of benign prostatic hyperplasia and in stroma and epithelium of prostate cancer. CKβBP2/CRIF1 protein is increased in epithelium of androgen-dependent prostate cancer compared to benign prostatic hyperplasia and decreased slightly in castration recurrent epithelium compared to androgen-dependent prostate cancer. The multifunctional CKβBP2/CRIF1 is a STAT3 interacting protein and reported to be a coactivator of STAT3. CKβBP2/CRIF1 is expressed with STAT3 in prostate cancer where STAT3 may help to offset the AR repressor effect of CKβBP2/CRIF1 and allow AR regulation of prostate cancer growth.

Roy SS, Gonugunta VK, Bandyopadhyay A, et al.
Significance of PELP1/HDAC2/miR-200 regulatory network in EMT and metastasis of breast cancer.
Oncogene. 2014; 33(28):3707-16 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Tumor metastasis is the leading cause of death among breast cancer patients. PELP1 (proline, glutamic acid and leucine rich protein 1) is a nuclear receptor coregulator that is upregulated during breast cancer progression to metastasis and is an independent prognostic predictor of shorter survival of breast cancer patients. Here, we show that PELP1 modulates expression of metastasis-influencing microRNAs (miRs) to promote cancer metastasis. Whole genome miR array analysis using PELP1-overexpressing and PELP1-underexpressing model cells revealed that miR-200 and miR-141 levels inversely correlated with PELP1 expression. Consistent with this, PELP1 knockdown resulted in lower expression of miR-200a target genes ZEB1 and ZEB2. PELP1 knockdown significantly reduced tumor growth and metastasis compared with parental cells in an orthotopic xenograft tumor model. Furthermore, re-introduction of miR-200a and miR-141 mimetics into PELP1-overexpressing cells reversed PELP1 target gene expression, decreased PELP1-driven migration/invasion in vitro and significantly reduced in vivo metastatic potential in a preclinical model of experimental metastasis. Our results demonstrated that PELP1 binds to miR-200a and miR-141 promoters and regulates their expression by recruiting chromatin modifier histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2) as revealed by chromatin immunoprecipitation, small interfering RNA and HDAC inhibitor assays. Taken together, our results suggest that PELP1 regulates tumor metastasis by controlling the expression and functions of the tumor metastasis suppressors miR-200a and miR-141.

Fenne IS, Helland T, Flågeng MH, et al.
Downregulation of steroid receptor coactivator-2 modulates estrogen-responsive genes and stimulates proliferation of mcf-7 breast cancer cells.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(7):e70096 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
The p160/Steroid Receptor Coactivators SRC-1, SRC-2/GRIP1, and SRC-3/AIB1 are important regulators of Estrogen Receptor alpha (ERα) activity. However, whereas the functions of SRC-1 and SRC-3 in breast tumourigenesis have been extensively studied, little is known about the role of SRC-2. Previously, we reported that activation of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase, PKA, facilitates ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation of SRC-2 which in turn leads to inhibition of SRC-2-coactivation of ERα and changed expression of the ERα target gene, pS2. Here we have characterized the global program of transcription in SRC-2-depleted MCF-7 breast cancer cells using short-hairpin RNA technology, and in MCF-7 cells exposed to PKA activating agents. In order to identify genes that may be regulated through PKA-induced downregulation of SRC-2, overlapping transcriptional targets in response to the respective treatments were characterized. Interestingly, we observed decreased expression of several breast cancer tumour suppressor genes (e.g., TAGLN, EGR1, BCL11b, CAV1) in response to both SRC-2 knockdown and PKA activation, whereas the expression of a number of other genes implicated in cancer progression (e.g., RET, BCAS1, TFF3, CXCR4, ADM) was increased. In line with this, knockdown of SRC-2 also stimulated proliferation of MCF-7 cells. Together, these results suggest that SRC-2 may have an antiproliferative function in breast cancer cells.

Zhang Y, Wang JH, Liu B, Qu PB
Steroid receptor coactivator-3 promotes bladder cancer through upregulation of CXCR4.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2013; 14(6):3847-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
The three homologous members of the p160 SRC family (SRC-1, SRC-2 and SRC-3) mediate the transcriptional functions of nuclear receptors and other transcription factors, and are the most studied of all the transcriptional co-activators. Recent work has indicated that the SRC-3 gene is subject to amplification and overexpression in various human cancers. Some of the molecular mechanisms responsible for SRC overexpression, along with the mechanisms by which SRC-3 promotes breast and prostate cancer cell proliferation and survival, have been identified. However, the function of SRC-3 in bladder cancer remains poorly understood. In the present study, our results indicate that overexpression of SRC-3 promotes bladder cancer cell proliferation whereas knockdown of SRC-3 results in inhibition. At the molecular level, we further established that CXCR4 is a transcriptional target of SRC-3. Therefore, our study first identified that SRC-3 plays a critical role in the bladder cancer, which may be a target beneficial for its prevention and treatment.

Kalet BT, Anglin SR, Handschy A, et al.
Transcription factor Ets1 cooperates with estrogen receptor α to stimulate estradiol-dependent growth in breast cancer cells and tumors.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(7):e68815 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
The purpose of this study was to explore the role of transcription factor Ets1 in estrogen receptor α (ERα)-positive breast cancer progression. We expressed human Ets1 or empty vector in four human ERα-positive breast cancer cell lines and observed increased colony formation. Further examination of cellular responses in stable Ets1-expressing MCF7 clones displayed increased proliferation, migration, and invasion. Ets1-expressing MCF7 tumors grown in the mammary fat pads of nude mice exhibited increased rates of tumor growth (7.36±2.47 mm(3)/day) compared to control MCF7 tumors (2.52±1.70 mm(3)/day), but maintained their dependence on estradiol for tumor growth. Proliferation marker Ki-67 staining was not different between control and Ets1-expressing tumors, but Ets1-expressing tumors exhibited large necrotic centers and elevated apoptotic staining. Ets1 was shown to cooperate with ERα and the p160 nuclear receptor coactivator (NCOA/SRC) family to increase activation of a consensus estrogen response element luciferase reporter construct. Ets1-expressing MCF7 cells also exhibited elevated expression of the ERα target genes, progesterone receptor and trefoil factor 1. Using GST-pulldown assays, Ets1 formed stable complexes containing both ERα and p160 nuclear receptor coactivators. Taken together, these data suggest that the Ets1-dependent estradiol sensitization of breast cancer cells and tumors may be partially due to the ability of Ets1 to cooperate with ERα and nuclear receptor coactivators to stimulate transcriptional activity of estrogen-dependent genes.

Zhang MZ, Yu Y, Yu RN, et al.
Tracking the down-regulation of folate receptor-α in cancer cells through target specific delivery of quantum dots coupled with antisense oligonucleotide and targeted peptide.
Small. 2013; 9(24):4183-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
Based on the multivalent binding capability of streptavidin (SA) to biotin, a multifunctional quantum dot probe (QD-(AS-ODN+p160)) coupled with antisense oligonucleotide (AS-ODN) and peptide p160 is designed for real-time tracking of targeted delivery of AS-ODN and regulation of folate receptor-α (hFR-α) in MCF-7 breast cancer cells. Fluorescence spectra, capillary electrophoresis (CE) and dynamic light scattering (DLS) are used to characterize the conjugation of AS-ODN and p160 with quantum dots (QDs), DLS results confirm the well stability of the probe in aqueous media. Confocal imaging and quantitative flow cytometry show that QD-(AS-ODN+p160) is able to specifically target human breast cancer MCF-7 cells. Low temperature and ATP depletion treatments reveal the cellular uptake of QD-(AS-ODN+p160) is energy-dependent, and the effects of inhibition agents and co-localization imaging further confirm the endocytic pathway is mainly receptor-mediated. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) shows the intracellular delivery and endosomal escape of QD probe along with incubation time extended. Two transfection concentrations of QD probe (10 nM and 50 nM) below half inhibitory concentration (IC50 ) value are chosen according to MTT assay. Real-time PCR shows at these two concentration cases the relative mRNA expression levels of hFR-α reduce to 72.5 ± 3.9% and 17.6 ± 1.0%, respectively. However, western blot and quantitative ELISA analysis show the expression level of hFR-α protein has a significant decrease only at 50 nM, indicating that gene silence is concentration-dependent. These results demonstrate that the QD-(AS-ODN+p160) probe not only achieves gene silence in a cell-specific manner but also achieves real-time tracking during AS-ODN intracellular delivery.

Geng C, He B, Xu L, et al.
Prostate cancer-associated mutations in speckle-type POZ protein (SPOP) regulate steroid receptor coactivator 3 protein turnover.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013; 110(17):6997-7002 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
The p160 steroid receptor coactivators (SRCs) SRC-1, SRC-2 [nuclear receptor coactivator (NCOA)2], and SRC-3 [amplified in breast cancer 1 (AIB1)/NCOA3] are key pleiotropic "master regulators" of transcription factor activity necessary for cancer cell proliferation, survival, metabolism, and metastasis. SRC overexpression and overactivation occur in numerous human cancers and are associated with poor clinical outcomes and resistance to therapy. In prostate cancer (PC), the p160 SRCs play critical roles in androgen receptor transcriptional activity, cell proliferation, and resistance to androgen deprivation therapy. We recently demonstrated that the E3 ubiquitin ligase adaptor speckle-type poxvirus and zinc finger (POZ) domain protein (SPOP) interacts directly with SRC-3 and promotes its cullin 3-dependent ubiquitination and proteolysis in breast cancer, thus functioning as a potential tumor suppressor. Interestingly, somatic heterozygous missense mutations in the SPOP substrate-binding cleft recently were identified in up to 15% of human PCs (making SPOP the gene most commonly affected by nonsynonymous point mutations in PC), but their contribution to PC pathophysiology remains unknown. We now report that PC-associated SPOP mutants cannot interact with SRC-3 protein or promote its ubiquitination and degradation. Our data suggest that wild-type SPOP plays a critical tumor suppressor role in PC cells, promoting the turnover of SRC-3 protein and suppressing androgen receptor transcriptional activity. This tumor suppressor effect is abrogated by the PC-associated SPOP mutations. These studies provide a possible explanation for the role of SPOP mutations in PC, and highlight the potential of SRC-3 as a therapeutic target in PC.

Mann M, Cortez V, Vadlamudi R
PELP1 oncogenic functions involve CARM1 regulation.
Carcinogenesis. 2013; 34(7):1468-75 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) is implicated in the initiation and progression of breast cancer and its transcription depends on the modulation of epigenetic changes at target gene promoters via coregulators. There is a critical need to understand the molecular mechanism(s) by which deregulation of epigenetic changes occurs during breast cancer progression. The ERα coregulator PELP1 plays an important role in ERα signaling and is a proto-oncogene with aberrant expression in breast cancer. PELP1 interacts with histones and may be a reader of chromatin modifications. We profiled PELP1's epigenetic interactome using a histone peptide array. Our results show that PELP1 recognizes histones modified by arginine and lysine dimethylation. PELP1 functionally interacts with the arginine methyltransferase CARM1 and their interaction is enhanced by ERα. PELP1-CARM1 interactions synergistically enhance ERα transactivation. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays revealed that PELP1 alters histone H3 arginine methylation status at ERα target gene promoters. Pharmacological inhibition or small interfering RNA knockdown of CARM1 substantially reduced PELP1 oncogenic functions. The critical role of PELP1 status in modulating arginine methylation status was also observed through in vivo studies where PELP1 knockdown mediated decreased tumorigenesis correlated with decreased arginine dimethylation. Further, immunohistochemical analysis of human breast tumor tissues revealed co-overexpression of PELP1 and CARM1 in a subset of ERα-positive breast tumors. Our findings show PELP1 is a reader of histone arginine methyl modifications and deregulation promotes tumor proliferation via epigenetic alterations at ERα target promoters. Targeting these epigenetic alterations through inhibition of PELP1 and the arginine methyltransferases could be a promising cancer therapeutic.

Bohrer LR, Liu P, Zhong J, et al.
FOXO1 binds to the TAU5 motif and inhibits constitutively active androgen receptor splice variants.
Prostate. 2013; 73(10):1017-27 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Aberrant activation of the androgen receptor (AR) is a major factor highly relevant to castration-resistant progression of prostate cancer (PCa). FOXO1, a key downstream effector of PTEN, inhibits androgen-independent activation of the AR. However, the underlying mechanism remains elusive.
METHODS: The inhibitory effect of FOXO1 on full-length and constitutively active splice variants of the AR was examined by luciferase reporter assays and real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). In vitro protein binding assays and western blot analyses were used to determine the regions in FOXO1 and AR responsible for their interaction.
RESULTS: We found that a putative transcription repression domain in the NH2-terminus of FOXO1 is dispensable for FOXO1 inhibition of the AR. In vitro protein binding assays showed that FOXO1 binds to the transcription activation unit 5 (TAU5) motif in the AR NH2-terminal domain (NTD), a region required for recruitment of p160 activators including SRC-1. Ectopic expression of SRC-1 augmented transcriptional activity of some, but not all AR splice variants examined. Forced expression of FOXO1 blocked the effect of SRC-1 on AR variants' transcriptional activity by decreasing the binding of SRC-1 to the AR NTD. Ectopic expression of FOXO1 inhibited expression of endogenous genes activated primarily by alternatively spliced AR variants in human castration-resistant PCa 22Rv1 cells.
CONCLUSIONS: FOXO1 binds to the TAU5 motif in the AR NTD and inhibits ligand-independent activation of AR splice variants, suggesting the PTEN/FOXO1 pathway as a potential therapeutic target for inhibition of aberrant AR activation and castration-resistant PCa growth.

Nakka M, Agoulnik IU, Weigel NL
Targeted disruption of the p160 coactivator interface of androgen receptor (AR) selectively inhibits AR activity in both androgen-dependent and castration-resistant AR-expressing prostate cancer cells.
Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2013; 45(4):763-72 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
The evidence that androgen blockade-resistant prostate cancer, termed castration resistant, remains androgen receptor (AR) dependent is compelling. AR is re-activated through multiple mechanisms including expression of constitutively active splice variants that lack hormone binding domains (HBDs). This highlights the need to develop therapies that target regions other than the HBD. Because the p160 coactivators interact most strongly with the amino-terminus of AR, we examined the consequences of disrupting this interaction. We identified two overlapping SRC-1 peptides that interact with AR, but not with progesterone receptor. These peptides reduce AR and AR variant AR-V7 dependent induction of an AR responsive reporter. Using mammalian two hybrid assays, we found that the peptides interrupt the AR/SRC-1, AR/SRC-2 and AR N/C interactions, but not SRC-1/CARM-1 interactions. Consistent with the SRC-1 dependence of induced, but not repressed genes, in LNCaP cells, the peptides inhibited hormone dependent induction of endogenous target genes including PSA and TMPRSS2, but did not block AR dependent repression of UGT2B17 or inhibit vitamin D receptor activity. Simultaneous detection of SRC-1 peptides and PSA by double immunofluorescence in transfected LNCaP cells clearly demonstrated a strong reduction in PSA levels in cells expressing the peptides. The peptides also inhibited the AR dependent expression of PSA in castration resistant C4-2 cells. Moreover they inhibited androgen dependent proliferation of LNCaP cells and proliferation of C4-2 cells in androgen depleted medium without affecting AR negative PC-3 cells. Thus, the p160 coactivator binding site is a novel potential therapeutic target to inhibit AR activity.

Renoir JM, Marsaud V, Lazennec G
Estrogen receptor signaling as a target for novel breast cancer therapeutics.
Biochem Pharmacol. 2013; 85(4):449-65 [PubMed] Related Publications
In breast cancer (BC) epithelial cells, the mitogenic action of estradiol is transduced through binding to two receptors, ERα and ERβ, which act as transcription factors. Anti-estrogens (AEs) and aromatase inhibitors (AIs) are used clinically to arrest the estrogen-dependent growth of BC. In the case of AE or AI resistance, Herceptin or lapatinib may be used to inhibit growth factors. Estrogen effects are mediated not only through nuclear ERs but also through cytoplasmic/membrane ERs and G-protein-coupled ERs. These estrogen-binding systems associate with various proteins that direct cell cycle signaling, proliferation and survival. The partners of nuclear ER include SRC1-3, HDACs and ERβ itself as well as newly identified proteins, such as E6-AP, LKB1, PELP1, PAX-2 and FOXA1. The partners of extra-nuclear ERα include PI3K and the tyrosine kinase Src. These various factors are all potential targets for therapeutic intervention. In addition, BC proliferation is enhanced by insulin and EGF, which stimulate signaling through the MAPK and PI3K/AKT pathways by activation of the IGF-1R and EGFR axes, respectively. These pathways are tightly interconnected with ER-activated signaling, and membrane ERα forms complexes with Src and PI3K. Chemokine-mediated signaling also modulates the estrogen response. Inhibiting these pathways with specific inhibitors or activating some of the pathways by gene manipulation may be therapeutically valuable for arresting BC cell cycle progression and for inducing apoptosis to antagonize hormone-resistance. Here, we review some newly identified putatively targetable ER partners and highlight the need to develop tumor-targeting drug carrier systems affecting both the tumor cells and the tumor environment.

Wan J, Li X
PELP1/MNAR suppression inhibits proliferation and metastasis of endometrial carcinoma cells.
Oncol Rep. 2012; 28(6):2035-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
Proline-, glutamic acid- and leucine-rich protein-1/modulator of non-genomic activity of estrogen receptor (ER) (PELP1/MNAR) is a novel nuclear receptor (NR) co-activator that plays an essential role in the actions of ER. Emerging findings suggest that PELP1/MNAR is a novel proto-oncogene, whose expression is deregulated in several hormone-responsive cancers, including endometrial cancer. In this study, we demonstrate that PELP1/MNAR is widely expressed in endometrial carcinoma cell lines. To investigate its possible role in endometrial carcinoma progression, we adopted an RNA interference technology to downregulate PELP1/MNAR expression in Ishikawa endometrial carcinoma cells. PELP1/MNAR downregulation substantially reduced cell proliferation, and the cells in which PELP1/MNAR expression was knocked down also exhibited a decreased migration and invasion ability, as shown by Boyden chamber and invasion assays. The results showed that the expression of MMP-2 and MMP-9 was also decreased. These results suggest that PELP1/MNAR plays a role in endometrial cancer progression and metastasis, and that PELP1/MNAR may be a potential therapeutic target for endometrial cancer.

Bennani-Baiti IM
Integration of ERα-PELP1-HER2 signaling by LSD1 (KDM1A/AOF2) offers combinatorial therapeutic opportunities to circumventing hormone resistance in breast cancer.
Breast Cancer Res. 2012; 14(5):112 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
LSD1, an epigenetic modifier, and PELP1, an estrogen receptor co-activator, integrate estrogen receptor ERα and HER2 receptor tyrosine kinase signaling to promote aromatase expression and hormone resistance in a preclinical model of post-menopausal breast cancer. In the previous issue of Breast Cancer Research, Cortez et al. show, for the first time, that knockdown or drug-mediated inhibition of PELP1 or LSD1 suppresses LSD1-mediated transcriptionally activating histone marks at ERα target genes, inhibits aromatase gene expression, and sensitizes hormone refractory breast cancer cells to tamoxifen or letrozole treatments. The relevance of PELP1-LSD1 signaling to other nuclear hormone receptor-dependent cancers and structural considerations for the selective drug targeting of LSD1 are further discussed in this editorial.

Izumi K, Zheng Y, Li Y, et al.
Epidermal growth factor induces bladder cancer cell proliferation through activation of the androgen receptor.
Int J Oncol. 2012; 41(5):1587-92 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
Androgen receptor (AR) signals have been suggested to contribute to bladder tumorigenesis and cancer progression. Activation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) also leads to stimulation of bladder tumor growth. However, crosstalk between AR and EGFR pathways in bladder cancer remains uncharacterized. We have recently shown that androgens activate the EGFR pathway in bladder cancer cells. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of EGF on AR activity in bladder cancer. EGF increased AR transcriptional activity by 1.2-, 1.9- and 2.0-fold in UMUC3, 5637-AR and J82-AR cell lines, respectively, over mock treatment and a specific EGFR inhibitor, PD168393, antagonized the EGF effect. Combined treatment of EGF and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) further induced AR transactivation while an AR antagonist, hydroxyflutamide (HF), abolished the effect of not only DHT but also EGF. In growth assays, EGF alone/DHT alone/EGF+DHT increased cell numbers by 16/12/19%, 6/14/18% and 30/12/38% in UMUC3-control-shRNA, 5637-AR and J82-AR, respectively, whereas the effects of EGF were marginal or less significant in UMUC3-AR-shRNA (8%) or AR-negative 5637-V (<1%) and J82-V (17%) cells. HF treatment at least partially counteracted the EGF effect on the growth of AR-positive cells. Western blotting demonstrated that EGF, especially in the presence of DHT, upregulated the expression of the p160 coactivator TIF2 and HF again blocked this stimulation. Co-immunoprecipitation revealed the association between AR and estrogen receptor (ER)-β or Src in UMUC3 cells and stronger associations with EGF treatment, implying the involvement of the AR/ER/Src complex in EGF-increased AR transactivation and cell growth. Current results, thus, suggest that EGF promotes bladder cancer cell proliferation via modulation of AR signals. Taken together with our previous findings, crosstalk between EGFR and AR pathways can play an important role in the progression of bladder cancer.

Cortez V, Mann M, Tekmal S, et al.
Targeting the PELP1-KDM1 axis as a potential therapeutic strategy for breast cancer.
Breast Cancer Res. 2012; 14(4):R108 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/03/2017 Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: The estrogen receptor (ER) co-regulator proline glutamic acid and leucine-rich protein 1 (PELP1) is a proto-oncogene that modulates epigenetic changes on ER target gene promoters via interactions with lysine-specific histone demethylase 1 (KDM1). In this study, we assessed the therapeutic potential of targeting the PELP1-KDM1 axis in vivo using liposomal (1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidylcholine; DOPC) siRNA to downregulate PELP1 expression and KDM1 inhibitors, pargyline and N-((1S)-3-(3-(trans-2-aminocyclopropyl)phenoxy)-1-(benzylcarbamoyl)propyl)benzamide using preclinical models.
METHODS: Preclinical xenograft models were used to test the efficacy of drugs in vivo. Ki-67 and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end-labeling immunohistochemical analysis of epigenetic markers was performed on tumor tissues. The in vitro effect of PELP1-KDM axis blockers was tested using proliferation, reporter gene, chromatin immunoprecipitation and real-time RT-PCR assays. The efficacy of the KDM1 targeting drugs alone or in combination with letrozole and tamoxifen was tested using therapy-resistant model cells.
RESULTS: Treatment of ER-positive xenograft-based breast tumors with PELP1-siRNA-DOPC or pargyline reduced tumor volume by 58.6% and 62%, respectively. In a postmenopausal model, in which tumor growth is stimulated solely by local estrogen synthesis, daily pargyline treatment reduced tumor volume by 78%. Immunohistochemical analysis of excised tumors revealed a combined decrease in cellular proliferation, induction of apoptosis and upregulation of inhibitory epigenetic modifications. Pharmacological inhibition of KDM1 in vitro increased inhibitory histone mark dimethylation of histone H3 at lysine 9 (H3K9me2) and decreased histone activation mark acetylation of H3K9 (H3K9Ac) on ER target gene promoters. Combining KDM1 targeting drugs with current endocrine therapies substantially impeded growth and restored sensitivity of therapy-resistant breast cancer cells to treatment.
CONCLUSION: Our results suggest inhibition of PELP1-KDM1-mediated histone modifications as a potential therapeutic strategy for blocking breast cancer progression and therapy resistance.

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