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SLC2A1; solute carrier family 2 (facilitated glucose transporter), member 1 (1p34.2)

Gene Summary

Gene:SLC2A1; solute carrier family 2 (facilitated glucose transporter), member 1
Aliases: PED, DYT9, GLUT, DYT17, DYT18, EIG12, GLUT1, HTLVR, GLUT-1, GLUT1DS
Location:1p34.2
Summary:This gene encodes a major glucose transporter in the mammalian blood-brain barrier. The encoded protein is found primarily in the cell membrane and on the cell surface, where it can also function as a receptor for human T-cell leukemia virus (HTLV) I and II. Mutations in this gene have been found in a family with paroxysmal exertion-induced dyskinesia. [provided by RefSeq, Apr 2013]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:solute carrier family 2, facilitated glucose transporter member 1
HPRD
Source:NCBI
Updated:14 December, 2014

Gene
Ontology:

What does this gene/protein do?
Show (29)

Pathways:

What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
- Vitamin C in the Brain BIOCARTA
- Adipocytokine signaling pathway KEGG
Data from KEGG and BioCarta [BIOCARTA terms] via CGAP

Cancer Overview

Glucose Transporters and Cancer: Rapid tumour growth requires accelerated metabolism and increased glucose uptake. Transport of glucose across the plasma membrane of cells is mediated by facilitative glucose transporter (GLUT) proteins. Increased glucose transport in malignant cells has been associated with increased and deregulated expression of glucose transporter proteins, frequently with overexpression of GLUT1(SLC2A1) and/or GLUT3 (SLC2A3).

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1989-2014)
Graph generated 14 December 2014 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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

Tag cloud generated 14 December, 2014 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Notable (8)

Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Entity Topic PubMed Papers
Soft Tissue SarcomaGLUT1 expression in Soft Tissue Sarcoma View Publications34
Kidney CancerGLUT1 expression in Kidney Cancer View Publications27
Lung CancerGLUT1 Overexpression and Lung CancerPrognostic View Publications27
Breast CancerGLUT1 expression in Breast Cancer View Publications23
Cervical CancerGLUT1 expression in Cervical Cancer View Publications20
Prostate CancerGLUT1 expression in Prostate Cancer View Publications17
Thyroid CancerGLUT1 expression in Thyroid Cancers View Publications16
-Experimental Approaches to GLUT1 Supression Therapy
See: More details below...
View Publications6

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

Related Links

Experimental Approaches to GLUT1 Supression

Latest Publications

Song K, Li M, Xu XJ, et al.
HIF-1α and GLUT1 gene expression is associated with chemoresistance of acute myeloid leukemia.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2014; 15(4):1823-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: Much evidence suggests that increased glucose metabolism in tumor cells might contribute to the development of acquired chemoresistance. However, the molecular mechanisms are not fully clear. Therefore, we investigated a possible correlation of mRNA expression of HIF-1α and GLUT1 with chemoresistance in acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
METHODS: Bone marrow samples were obtained from newly diagnosed and relapsed AML (M3 exclusion) cases. RNA interference with short hairpin RNA (shRNA) was used to stably silence GLUT1 or HIF-1α gene expression in an AML cell line and HIF-1α and GLUT1 mRNA expression was measured by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction assay (qPCR).
RESULTS: High levels of HIF-1α and GLUT1 were associated with poor responsiveness to chemotherapy in AML. Down-regulation of the expression of GLUT1 by RNA interference obviously sensitized drug-resistant HL-60/ADR cells to adriamycin (ADR) in vitro, comparable with RNA interference for the HIF-1α gene.
CONCLUSIONS: Our data revealed that over-expression of HIF-1α and GLUT1 might play a role in the chemoresistance of AML. GLUT1 might be a potential target to reverse such drug resistance.

Related: Doxorubicin Fluorouracil HIF1A Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)


Li S, Yang X, Wang P, Ran X
The effects of GLUT1 on the survival of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
Cell Physiol Biochem. 2013; 32(3):624-34 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Cancer cells require increased nutrient uptake to support a high rate of proliferation, and the overexpression of glucose transporters, in particular GLUT1, is a common characteristic of human malignancies. Here, we investigated the relationship between the expression of GLUT1 and cell viability, colony forming ability and apoptosis of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) in vitro and in a xenograft mouse model in vivo.
METHODS: Lentiviral mediated overexpression and knock-down of GLUT1 was performed in two oral cancer cell lines (CAL27 and SCC25). QRT-PCR and Western blot analysis were used to detect the mRNA and protein expression of GLUT1 and nuclear factor-kappa B (NFκB) p65 subunit. Cell viability and apoptosis were assessed by MTT and flow cytometry analyses, respectively. Colony formation assays were performed by staining with 0.5% crystal violet. The role of GLUT1 in HNSCC was examined in vivo through the generation of a CAL27 (or CAL27 with different transfections) nude mice xenograft model of HNSCC.
RESULTS: GLUT1 overexpression promoted cell viability and colony formation whereas GLUT1 silencing had the opposite effect. GLUT1 knock-down significantly increased the number of Annexin V positive cells in both cell lines and GLUT1 overexpression had the opposite effect, indicating that GLUT1 modulates apoptosis. Xenograft mouse models of GLUT1 knockdown and overexpression showed that GLUT1 expression was associated with poor survival and increased tumor growth. GLUT1 overexpression significantly upregulated the expression of NFκB-p65, and this effect was reversed by inhibition of GLUT1 expression.
CONCLUSIONS: GLUT1 expression plays an important role in the survival of HNSCC, and its effects may be associated with the activation of the NFκB pathway.

Related: Apoptosis Cisplatin Head and Neck Cancers Head and Neck Cancers - Molecular Biology


Wang YD, Li SJ, Liao JX
Inhibition of glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1) chemosensitized head and neck cancer cells to cisplatin.
Technol Cancer Res Treat. 2013; 12(6):525-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
Glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1) facilitates the cellular uptake of glucose and is overexpressed in most cancers. The altered expression of GLUT1 may influence the sensitivity of tumor cells to chemotherapy. This study investigated whether the knockdown of GLUT1 expression to sensitize head and neck cancer cells to the chemotherapy drug cisplatin in vitro. Anti-GLUT1 antibody was used to block activity of GLUT1 protein, and GLUT1-shRNA was used to knock down its mRNA expression in Cal27 cells. Immunocytochemistry, Western blot, and qRT-PCR were used to detect expression of GLUT1 mRNA and protein, respectively. Lentivirus was used to carrying GLUT1-shRNA to knockdown GLUT1 expression in Cal27 cells for MTT and flow cytometry analyses of cell viability and apoptosis, respectively. Glucose uptake assay was used to assess the changes in glucose levels in Cal27 cells. It showed that GLUT1 mRNA and protein were expressed in Cal27 cells, and GLUT1 protein was localized on the cell membrane. Both anti-GLUT1 antibody and GLUT1-shRNA sensitized Cal27 cells to cisplatin treatment under both normoxia and hypoxia conditions. Anti- GLUT1 antibody and GLUT1-shRNA inhibited tumor cell growth in vitro and induced them to undergo apoptosis. GLUT1-shRNA also suppressed tumor cell uptake of glucose into the cells. Our findings suggest that inhibition of GLUT1 activity and expression can sensitize Cal27 cells to cisplatin treatment in both normoxic and hypoxic conditions. These data could be further verified in animal xenografts before potential application as a clinical adjuvant or neoadjuvant therapy of head and neck cancer with cisplatin.

Related: Apoptosis Cisplatin Head and Neck Cancers Head and Neck Cancers - Molecular Biology


Shimanishi M, Ogi K, Sogabe Y, et al.
Silencing of GLUT-1 inhibits sensitization of oral cancer cells to cisplatin during hypoxia.
J Oral Pathol Med. 2013; 42(5):382-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: During tumor development, cells are exposed to a hypoxic microenvironment. Tumor hypoxia also has a profound influence on the sensitivity of cancer chemotherapy. The objective of this study was to investigate the mechanism of cisplatin (CDDP) resistance of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) cells under hypoxia by analyzing gene expression profiles to identify key genes and factors involved.
METHODS: Cell viability was measured following culture of the cells in the presence or absence of CDDP, under normoxic or hypoxic conditions, using a CCK-8 assay. Analysis of the expression of HIF target genes in hypoxia-treated cells was performed using an HIF-regulated cDNA plate array. Changes in the mRNA expression of selected HIF target genes were analyzed using RT-PCR, and changes in the protein levels of these genes were analyzed by Western blotting. Tumor cell apoptosis was assessed by flow cytometry.
RESULTS: The OSCC cell lines responded differently to CDDP under normoxic and hypoxic conditions. The expression of glucose transporter protein-1 (GLUT-1) was up-regulated in human squamous cell carcinoma of mouth (HSC-2) cells under hypoxia. Furthermore, there was little correlation between the cisplatin sensitivity of human squamous cell carcinoma of tongue (SAS) in normoxia and hypoxia. After GLUT-1 knockdown, CDDP treatment resulted in increased rates of apoptosis under hypoxia as compared with normoxia in cell lines HSC-2, Ca9-22, and SAS (P = 0.025).
CONCLUSION: The results of this study suggest that knockdown of GLUT-1 inhibits sensitization of oral squamous cells to CDDP during hypoxia in HSC-2, Ca9-22, and SAS cells.

Related: Apoptosis Cisplatin HIF1A Oral Cancer


Mogi A, Koga K, Aoki M, et al.
Expression and role of GLUT-1, MCT-1, and MCT-4 in malignant pleural mesothelioma.
Virchows Arch. 2013; 462(1):83-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
Malignant cells supply their energy needs through increased glucose consumption, producing large quantities of lactic acid via glycolysis. Glucose transporters (GLUTs) and monocarboxylate transporters (MCTs) are therefore commonly up-regulated in human malignancies to mediate glucose influx and lactic acid efflux, respectively. However, their roles in malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) have not been fully elucidated. Here, we evaluated GLUT-1, MCT-1, and MCT-4 expression in human MPM and reactive mesothelial hyperplasia (RMH) and elucidated their biological role in vitro. GLUT-1, MCT-1, and MCT-4 expression was determined in human MPM (n = 35) and RMH (n = 20) specimens by immunohistochemistry and in frozen tissue, and MPM cell lines, by real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and western blot analysis. GLUT-1, MCT-1, and MCT-4 functions in MPM were evaluated by transfection with small interfering RNA. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed higher levels of GLUT-1, MCT-1, and MCT-4 in MPM than in RMH. Additionally, GLUT-1, MCT-1, and MCT-4 mRNA levels were higher in MPM than in non-neoplastic mesothelial cell lines. The siRNA-mediated knockdown of GLUT-1 or MCT-1 significantly suppressed tumor cell proliferation, and MCT-1 silencing inhibited invasion and induced apoptosis. Taken together, these results indicate that combined application of GLUT-1, MCT-1, and MCT-4 immunohistochemistry might be useful in differentiating MPM from RMH and suggest that MCT-1plays an important biological role.

Related: Apoptosis Lung Cancer Mesothelioma


Luo XM, Zhou SH, Fan J
Glucose transporter-1 as a new therapeutic target in laryngeal carcinoma.
J Int Med Res. 2010; 38(6):1885-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
Treatment options for laryngeal carcinoma, one of the most common head and neck malignancies, consist of radiotherapy, surgery, chemotherapy or a combination thereof. The functional treatment of laryngeal carcinoma poses a considerable challenge because of its resistance to chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and its tendency for local recurrence. Finding ways to inhibit the energy supply of malignant tumours is becoming an increasingly attractive proposition. Glucose transporter-1 (Glut-1; encoded by the SLC2A1 gene in humans) is the main transporter of glucose in solid carcinomas and has become a focus of cancer research. Recently, it was shown that the increased expression of SLC2A1 in head and neck carcinomas is correlated with lymph node metastasis, poor survival and clinical stage, and revealed that the suppression of SLC2A1 expression by antisense oligodeoxynucleotides decreased glucose uptake and inhibited the proliferation of Hep-2 cells. Thus, the authors propose the suppression of SLC2A1 expression as a new therapeutic target for laryngeal carcinoma.

Related: Cancer of the Larynx Laryngeal Cancer - Molecular Biology Signal Transduction


Noguchi Y, Saito A, Miyagi Y, et al.
Suppression of facilitative glucose transporter 1 mRNA can suppress tumor growth.
Cancer Lett. 2000; 154(2):175-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
We attempted to suppress glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1) expression by transfecting MKN45 cells with cDNA for antisense GLUT1. Glucose transport was significantly decreased in cells with antisense GLUT1 compared with wild-type cells or cells with vector alone. Suppression of GLUT1 mRNA resulted in a decreased number of cells in the S phase. This was accompanied by overexpression of p21 protein. Tumorigenicity in the nude mice injected with antisense GLUT1 expressing cells was significantly slower than in those with wild-type MKN45 cells. These results suggest that antisense GLUT1 mRNA inhibits tumor growth through a G(1) arrest and that expression of antisense GLUT1 mRNA via gene therapy can be used as a tool in the treatment of cancer.

Related: Apoptosis Stomach Cancer Gastric Cancer


Latest Publications: SLC2A1 (cancer-related)

Sweet RL, Zastre JA
HIF1-α-mediated gene expression induced by vitamin B1 deficiency.
Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2013; 83(3):188-97 [PubMed] Related Publications
It is well established that thiamine deficiency results in an excess of metabolic intermediates such as lactate and pyruvate, which is likely due to insufficient levels of cofactor for the function of thiamine-dependent enzymes. When in excess, both pyruvate and lactate can increase the stabilization of the hypoxia-inducible factor 1-alpha (HIF-1α) transcription factor, resulting in the trans-activation of HIF-1α regulated genes independent of low oxygen, termed pseudo-hypoxia. Therefore, the resulting dysfunction in cellular metabolism and accumulation of pyruvate and lactate during thiamine deficiency may facilitate a pseudo-hypoxic state. In order to investigate the possibility of a transcriptional relationship between hypoxia and thiamine deficiency, we measured alterations in metabolic intermediates, HIF-1α stabilization, and gene expression. We found an increase in intracellular pyruvate and extracellular lactate levels after thiamine deficiency exposure to the neuroblastoma cell line SK-N-BE. Similar to cells exposed to hypoxia, there was a corresponding increase in HIF-1α stabilization and activation of target gene expression during thiamine deficiency, including glucose transporter-1 (GLUT1), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and aldolase A. Both hypoxia and thiamine deficiency exposure resulted in an increase in the expression of the thiamine transporter SLC19A3. These results indicate thiamine deficiency induces HIF-1α-mediated gene expression similar to that observed in hypoxic stress, and may provide evidence for a central transcriptional response associated with the clinical manifestations of thiamine deficiency.

Related: HIF1A Neuroblastoma


Sun Y, Gu X, Zhang E, et al.
Estradiol promotes pentose phosphate pathway addiction and cell survival via reactivation of Akt in mTORC1 hyperactive cells.
Cell Death Dis. 2014; 5:e1231 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM) is a female-predominant interstitial lung disease that can lead to respiratory failure. LAM cells typically have inactivating TSC2 mutations, leading to mTORC1 activation. The gender specificity of LAM suggests that estradiol contributes to disease development, yet the underlying pathogenic mechanisms are not completely understood. Using metabolomic profiling, we identified an estradiol-enhanced pentose phosphate pathway signature in Tsc2-deficient cells. Estradiol increased levels of cellular NADPH, decreased levels of reactive oxygen species, and enhanced cell survival under oxidative stress. Mechanistically, estradiol reactivated Akt in TSC2-deficient cells in vitro and in vivo, induced membrane translocation of glucose transporters (GLUT1 or GLUT4), and increased glucose uptake in an Akt-dependent manner. (18)F-FDG-PET imaging demonstrated enhanced glucose uptake in xenograft tumors of Tsc2-deficient cells from estradiol-treated mice. Expression array study identified estradiol-enhanced transcript levels of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD), the rate-limiting enzyme of the pentose phosphate pathway. Consistent with this, G6PD was abundant in xenograft tumors and lung metastatic lesions of Tsc2-deficient cells from estradiol-treated mice. Molecular depletion of G6PD attenuated estradiol-enhanced survival in vitro, and treatment with 6-aminonicotinamide, a competitive inhibitor of G6PD, reduced lung colonization of Tsc2-deficient cells. Collectively, these data indicate that estradiol promotes glucose metabolism in mTORC1 hyperactive cells through the pentose phosphate pathway via Akt reactivation and G6PD upregulation, thereby enhancing cell survival under oxidative stress. Interestingly, a strong correlation between estrogen exposure and G6PD was also found in breast cancer cells. Targeting the pentose phosphate pathway may have therapeutic benefit for LAM and possibly other hormonally dependent neoplasms.

Related: Breast Cancer AKT1 Signal Transduction


Krikelis D, Skoura E, Kotoula V, et al.
Lack of association between KRAS mutations and 18F-FDG PET/CT in Caucasian metastatic colorectal cancer patients.
Anticancer Res. 2014; 34(5):2571-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Although Kirsten rat sarcoma (KRAS) gene mutational testing is essential for the optimal design of therapeutic strategies for colorectal cancer, it is not always feasible or reliable. In this retrospective study, we examined whether (18)F-Fluorodeoxyglucose positron-emission tomography/computed tomography ((18)F-FDG PET/CT) scans can serve as a surrogate examination for KRAS mutational testing.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: KRAS codon 12 and 13 mutational status was tested in 44 colorectal primary tumors and was compared with the (18)F-FDG PET/CT maximum standardized uptake value (SUVmax) values of the respective metastatic lesions. Glucose transporter-1 (GLUT1) mRNA levels were also measured in colorectal primary tumors.
RESULTS: No statistically significant correlation between (18)F-FDG PET/CT SUVmax values and KRAS mutation status was found (parametric t-test: p=0.4753; non-parametric Kruskal-Wallis test: p=0.51). This result cannot be attributed to the effect of differing GLUT1 mRNA levels, as shown by multivariate analysis.
CONCLUSION: Our study failed to promote (18)F-FDG PET/CT uptake as a surrogate examination for KRAS mutation testing.

Related: Colorectal (Bowel) Cancer KRAS gene


Song YD, Zhang KF, Liu D, et al.
Inhibition of EGFR-induced glucose metabolism sensitizes chondrosarcoma cells to cisplatin.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(7):7017-24 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chondrosarcomas are malignant cartilage-forming tumors which are resistant to conventional chemotherapy and radiotherapy. By searching in Oncomine which is a cancer microarray database and web-based data mining platform, we found Glut1 and LDHA were upregulated in human chondrosarcoma patient samples. In this study, we reported total epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) expression and phosphorylated EGFR were highly activated in human chondrosarcoma cell lines. In addition, overexpression of EGFR contributed to cisplatin resistance. EGFR promoted glucose metabolism of chondrosarcoma cells through the upregulation of glycolysis key enzymes. Interestingly, cisplatin-resistant chondrosarcoma cells showed upregulated glucose metabolism and EGFR signaling pathway. Finally, we demonstrated that the combination of either EGFR inhibitor or anaerobic glycolysis inhibitor with cisplatin showed synergistically inhibitory effects on cisplatin-resistant chondrosarcoma cells through the inducements of apoptosis and cell cycle arrest. Our project proposed a novel function of EGFR in the regulation of glucose metabolism in chondrosarcoma cells and contributed to the development of therapeutic strategies for the clinical treatment of chondrosarcoma patient.

Related: Chondrosarcoma Cisplatin Signal Transduction EGFR


Lopez-Serra P, Marcilla M, Villanueva A, et al.
A DERL3-associated defect in the degradation of SLC2A1 mediates the Warburg effect.
Nat Commun. 2014; 5:3608 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cancer cells possess aberrant proteomes that can arise by the disruption of genes involved in physiological protein degradation. Here we demonstrate the presence of promoter CpG island hypermethylation-linked inactivation of DERL3 (Derlin-3), a key gene in the endoplasmic reticulum-associated protein degradation pathway, in human tumours. The restoration of in vitro and in vivo DERL3 activity highlights the tumour suppressor features of the gene. Using the stable isotopic labelling of amino acids in cell culture workflow for differential proteome analysis, we identify SLC2A1 (glucose transporter 1, GLUT1) as a downstream target of DERL3. Most importantly, SLC2A1 overexpression mediated by DERL3 epigenetic loss contributes to the Warburg effect in the studied cells and pinpoints a subset of human tumours with greater vulnerability to drugs targeting glycolysis.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction


Song K, Li M, Xu XJ, et al.
HIF-1α and GLUT1 gene expression is associated with chemoresistance of acute myeloid leukemia.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2014; 15(4):1823-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: Much evidence suggests that increased glucose metabolism in tumor cells might contribute to the development of acquired chemoresistance. However, the molecular mechanisms are not fully clear. Therefore, we investigated a possible correlation of mRNA expression of HIF-1α and GLUT1 with chemoresistance in acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
METHODS: Bone marrow samples were obtained from newly diagnosed and relapsed AML (M3 exclusion) cases. RNA interference with short hairpin RNA (shRNA) was used to stably silence GLUT1 or HIF-1α gene expression in an AML cell line and HIF-1α and GLUT1 mRNA expression was measured by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction assay (qPCR).
RESULTS: High levels of HIF-1α and GLUT1 were associated with poor responsiveness to chemotherapy in AML. Down-regulation of the expression of GLUT1 by RNA interference obviously sensitized drug-resistant HL-60/ADR cells to adriamycin (ADR) in vitro, comparable with RNA interference for the HIF-1α gene.
CONCLUSIONS: Our data revealed that over-expression of HIF-1α and GLUT1 might play a role in the chemoresistance of AML. GLUT1 might be a potential target to reverse such drug resistance.

Related: Doxorubicin Fluorouracil HIF1A Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)


Udager AM, Alva A, Chen YB, et al.
Hereditary leiomyomatosis and renal cell carcinoma (HLRCC): a rapid autopsy report of metastatic renal cell carcinoma.
Am J Surg Pathol. 2014; 38(4):567-77 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Rapid ("warm") autopsies of patients with advanced metastatic cancer provide invaluable insight into the natural history, pathobiology, and morphology of advanced and treatment-resistant tumors. Here, we report a rapid autopsy case of a hereditary leiomyomatosis and renal cell carcinoma (HLRCC) patient with advanced metastatic renal cell carcinoma (RCC)-the first such case described for either a primary renal tumor or HLRCC-related cancer. Mutations in the fumarate hydratase (FH) gene underlie HLRCC, a rare syndrome involving cutaneous and uterine leiomyomata and aggressive kidney tumors. Loss of heterozygosity at the wild-type FH gene locus results in profound cellular metabolic derangement, "pseudohypoxic" upregulation of hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF-1α)-dependent transcription, and aberrant protein succination; these molecular changes drive oncogenesis of kidney tumors in HLRCC patients. The current index patient had a high-grade RCC with classic morphologic features of HLRCC, including large nuclei with prominent eosinophilic nucleoli and perinucleolar clearing. In addition, this patient's RCC demonstrated extensive sarcomatoid and rhabdoid features-morphologies not previously well described in HLRCC-associated kidney tumors. Here, we report the extent of metastatic dissemination and supplement this unique tumor morphology with mitochondrial enzyme histochemistry and extended immunohistochemical analysis. Tumor cells strongly expressed PAX8, vimentin, CD10, and the HIF target GLUT1 and showed increased nuclear p53 accumulation; the expression of other RCC markers was negative. We also detail microscopic tubular epithelial changes in the grossly uninvolved ipsilateral renal parenchyma and demonstrate sporadic, aberrant upregulation of the HIF targets GLUT1 and CAIX in dysplastic peritumoral tubules.

Related: Kidney Cancer Skin Cancer


Zhao W, Chang C, Cui Y, et al.
Steroid receptor coactivator-3 regulates glucose metabolism in bladder cancer cells through coactivation of hypoxia inducible factor 1α.
J Biol Chem. 2014; 289(16):11219-29 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/04/2015 Related Publications
Cancer cell proliferation is a metabolically demanding process, requiring high glycolysis, which is known as "Warburg effect," to support anabolic growth. Steroid receptor coactivator-3 (SRC-3), a steroid receptor coactivator, is overexpressed and/or amplified in multiple cancer types, including non-steroid targeted cancers, such as urinary bladder cancer (UBC). However, whether SRC-3 regulates the metabolic reprogramming for cancer cell growth is unknown. Here, we reported that overexpression of SRC-3 accelerated UBC cell growth, accompanied by the increased expression of genes involved in glycolysis. Knockdown of SRC-3 reduced the UBC cell glycolytic rate under hypoxia, decreased tumor growth in nude mice, with reduction of proliferating cell nuclear antigen and lactate dehydrogenase expression levels. We further revealed that SRC-3 could interact with hypoxia inducible factor 1α (HIF1α), which is a key transcription factor required for glycolysis, and coactivate its transcriptional activity. SRC-3 was recruited to the promoters of HIF1α-target genes, such as glut1 and pgk1. The positive correlation of expression levels between SRC-3 and Glut1 proteins was demonstrated in human UBC patient samples. Inhibition of glycolysis through targeting HK2 or LDHA decelerated SRC-3 overexpression-induced cell growth. In summary, overexpression of SRC-3 promoted glycolysis in bladder cancer cells through HIF1α to facilitate tumorigenesis, which may be an intriguing drug target for bladder cancer therapy.

Related: HIF1A PCNA: Proliferating cell nuclear antigen Bladder Cancer Bladder Cancer - Molecular Biology


Chen H, Guan Y, Yuan G, et al.
A perylene derivative regulates HIF-1α and Stat3 signaling pathways.
Bioorg Med Chem. 2014; 22(4):1496-505 [PubMed] Related Publications
It is becoming increasingly evident that improving the cure rate of many cancers will require treatment regimens hit more than one validated tumor targets. Developing an anti-cancer agent that targets two oncoproteins simultaneously is a promising strategy for accomplishing this goal. It would be expected to promote drug efficacy, reduce therapy-resistant without introducing additional toxic side effects. HIF-1α is a key regulator of the cellular response to hypoxia and is involved in tumor angiogenesis and cancer cell survival, glucose metabolism, and invasion. Stat3 has several oncogenic functions, including suppression of anti-tumor immune responses and promotion of inflammation. Recently, we have identified the perylene derivative, TEL03, as a dual inhibitor that targets both HIF-1α and Stat3. TEL03 blocks the expression of both HIF-1α and Stat3, regulated oncogenes (e.g., Bcl-2, VEGF, Glut1, and others) in cancer cells, and induces cancer cell apoptosis. The results demonstrated that: (i) TEL03 blocks Stat3 phosphorylation, and inhibits Stat3 transcriptional activity; and (ii) interferes the binding of HIF-1α to p300/CBP inducing its degradation by proteasomes under hypoxic conditions. Our in vivo tests showed that as a dual inhibitor, TEL03 dramatically inhibited tumor growth, and provided the evidence that targeting both HIF-1α and Stat3 simultaneously could be a promising strategy for breast and pancreatic cancer therapies.

Related: Apoptosis Breast Cancer HIF1A Signal Transduction VEGFA


Sun Z, Dong J, Zhang S, et al.
Identification of chemoresistance-related cell-surface glycoproteins in leukemia cells and functional validation of candidate glycoproteins.
J Proteome Res. 2014; 13(3):1593-601 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chemoresistance remains the most significant obstacle to successful chemotherapy for leukemia, and its exact mechanism is still unknown. In this work, we used the cell-surface capturing method together with quantitative proteomics to investigate differences in the glycoproteomes of adriamycin-sensitive and adriamycin-resistant leukemia cells. Two quantitative methods, isotopic dimethyl labeling and SWATH, were used to quantify glycoproteins, and 35 glycoproteins were quantified by both methods. High correlation was observed between the glycoproteins quantified by the above two methods, and 15 glycoproteins displayed a consistent significant change trend in both sets of quantitative results. These 15 proteins included classical multidrug resistance-related glycoproteins such as ABCB1 as well as a set of novel glycoproteins that have not previously been reported to be associated with chemoresistance in leukemia cells. Further validation with quantitative real-time PCR and Western blotting confirmed the proteomic screening results. Subsequent functional experiments based on RNA interference technology showed that CTSD, FKBP10, and SLC2A1 are novel genes that participate in the acquisition and maintenance of the adriamycin-resistant phenotype in leukemia cells.

Related: Doxorubicin Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)


Wang E, Zhang C, Polavaram N, et al.
The role of factor inhibiting HIF (FIH-1) in inhibiting HIF-1 transcriptional activity in glioblastoma multiforme.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(1):e86102 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/04/2015 Related Publications
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) accounts for about 38% of primary brain tumors in the United States. GBM is characterized by extensive angiogenesis induced by vascular growth factors and cytokines. The transcription of these growth factors and cytokines is regulated by the Hypoxia-Inducible-Factor-1(HIF-1), which is a key regulator mediating the cellular response to hypoxia. It is known that Factor Inhibiting HIF-1, or FIH-1, is also involved in the cellular response to hypoxia and has the capability to physically interact with HIF-1 and block its transcriptional activity under normoxic conditions. Delineation of the regulatory role of FIH-1 will help us to better understand the molecular mechanism responsible for tumor growth and progression and may lead to the design of new therapies targeting cellular pathways in response to hypoxia. Previous studies have shown that the chromosomal region of 10q24 containing the FIH-1 gene is often deleted in GBM, suggesting a role for the FIH-1 in GBM tumorigenesis and progression. In the current study, we found that FIH-1 is able to inhibit HIF-mediated transcription of GLUT1 and VEGF-A, even under hypoxic conditions in human glioblastoma cells. FIH-1 has been found to be more potent in inhibiting HIF function than PTEN. This observation points to the possibility that deletion of 10q23-24 and loss or decreased expression of FIH-1 gene may lead to a constitutive activation of HIF-1 activity, an alteration of HIF-1 targets such as GLUT-1 and VEGF-A, and may contribute to the survival of cancer cells in hypoxia and the development of hypervascularization observed in GBM. Therefore FIH-1 can be potential therapeutic target for the treatment of GBM patients with poor prognosis.

Related: EP300 gene HIF1A VEGFA


Vaughan RA, Gannon NP, Garcia-Smith R, et al.
β-alanine suppresses malignant breast epithelial cell aggressiveness through alterations in metabolism and cellular acidity in vitro.
Mol Cancer. 2014; 13:14 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/04/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Deregulated energetics is a property of most cancer cells. This phenomenon, known as the Warburg Effect or aerobic glycolysis, is characterized by increased glucose uptake, lactate export and extracellular acidification, even in the presence of oxygen. β-alanine is a non-essential amino acid that has previously been shown to be metabolized into carnosine, which functions as an intracellular buffer. Because of this buffering capacity, we investigated the effects of β-alanine on the metabolic cancerous phenotype.
METHODS: Non-malignant MCF-10a and malignant MCF-7 breast epithelial cells were treated with β-alanine at 100 mM for 24 hours. Aerobic glycolysis was quantified by measuring extracellular acidification rate (ECAR) and oxidative metabolism was quantified by measuring oxygen consumption rate (OCR). mRNA of metabolism-related genes was quantified by qRT-PCR with corresponding protein expression quantified by immunoblotting, or by flow cytometry which was verified by confocal microscopy. Mitochondrial content was quantified using a mitochondria-specific dye and measured by flow cytometry.
RESULTS: Cells treated with β-alanine displayed significantly suppressed basal and peak ECAR (aerobic glycolysis), with simultaneous increase in glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1). Additionally, cells treated with β-alanine exhibited significantly reduced basal and peak OCR (oxidative metabolism), which was accompanied by reduction in mitochondrial content with subsequent suppression of genes which promote mitochondrial biosynthesis. Suppression of glycolytic and oxidative metabolism by β-alanine resulted in the reduction of total metabolic rate, although cell viability was not affected. Because β-alanine treatment reduces extracellular acidity, a constituent of the invasive microenvironment that promotes progression, we investigated the effect of β-alanine on breast cell viability and migration. β-alanine was shown to reduce both cell migration and proliferation without acting in a cytotoxic fashion. Moreover, β-alanine significantly increased malignant cell sensitivity to doxorubicin, suggesting a potential role as a co-therapeutic agent.
CONCLUSION: Taken together, our results suggest that β-alanine may elicit several anti-tumor effects. Our observations support the need for further investigation into the mechanism(s) of action and specificity of β-alanine as a co-therapeutic agent in the treatment of breast tumors.

Related: Breast Cancer Mitochondrial Mutations in Cancer


Huang MY, Wu CH, Huang CM, et al.
DPYD, TYMS, TYMP, TK1, and TK2 genetic expressions as response markers in locally advanced rectal cancer patients treated with fluoropyrimidine-based chemoradiotherapy.
Biomed Res Int. 2013; 2013:931028 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/04/2015 Related Publications
This study is to investigate multiple chemotherapeutic agent- and radiation-related genetic biomarkers in locally advanced rectal cancer (LARC) patients following fluoropyrimidine-based concurrent chemoradiotherapy (CCRT) for response prediction. We initially selected 6 fluoropyrimidine metabolism-related genes (DPYD, ORPT, TYMS, TYMP, TK1, and TK2) and 3 radiotherapy response-related genes (GLUT1, HIF-1α, and HIF-2α) as targets for gene expression identification in 60 LARC cancer specimens. Subsequently, a high-sensitivity weighted enzymatic chip array was designed and constructed to predict responses following CCRT. After CCRT, 39 of 60 (65%) LARC patients were classified as responders (pathological tumor regression grade 2 ~ 4). Using a panel of multiple genetic biomarkers (chip), including DPYD, TYMS, TYMP, TK1, and TK2, at a cutoff value for 3 positive genes, a sensitivity of 89.7% and a specificity of 81% were obtained (AUC: 0.915; 95% CI: 0.840-0.991). Negative chip results were significantly correlated to poor CCRT responses (TRG 0-1) (P = 0.014, hazard ratio: 22.704, 95% CI: 3.055-235.448 in multivariate analysis). Disease-free survival analysis showed significantly better survival rate in patients with positive chip results (P = 0.0001). We suggest that a chip including DPYD, TYMS, TYMP, TK1, and TK2 genes is a potential tool to predict response in LARC following fluoropyrimidine-based CCRT.


Natrajan R, Wilkerson PM, Marchiò C, et al.
Characterization of the genomic features and expressed fusion genes in micropapillary carcinomas of the breast.
J Pathol. 2014; 232(5):553-65 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/04/2015 Related Publications
Micropapillary carcinoma (MPC) is a rare histological special type of breast cancer, characterized by an aggressive clinical behaviour and a pattern of copy number aberrations (CNAs) distinct from that of grade- and oestrogen receptor (ER)-matched invasive carcinomas of no special type (IC-NSTs). The aims of this study were to determine whether MPCs are underpinned by a recurrent fusion gene(s) or mutations in 273 genes recurrently mutated in breast cancer. Sixteen MPCs were subjected to microarray-based comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) analysis and Sequenom OncoCarta mutation analysis. Eight and five MPCs were subjected to targeted capture and RNA sequencing, respectively. aCGH analysis confirmed our previous observations about the repertoire of CNAs of MPCs. Sequencing analysis revealed a spectrum of mutations similar to those of luminal B IC-NSTs, and recurrent mutations affecting mitogen-activated protein kinase family genes and NBPF10. RNA-sequencing analysis identified 17 high-confidence fusion genes, eight of which were validated and two of which were in-frame. No recurrent fusions were identified in an independent series of MPCs and IC-NSTs. Forced expression of in-frame fusion genes (SLC2A1-FAF1 and BCAS4-AURKA) resulted in increased viability of breast cancer cells. In addition, genomic disruption of CDK12 caused by out-of-frame rearrangements was found in one MPC and in 13% of HER2-positive breast cancers, identified through a re-analysis of publicly available massively parallel sequencing data. In vitro analyses revealed that CDK12 gene disruption results in sensitivity to PARP inhibition, and forced expression of wild-type CDK12 in a CDK12-null cell line model resulted in relative resistance to PARP inhibition. Our findings demonstrate that MPCs are neither defined by highly recurrent mutations in the 273 genes tested, nor underpinned by a recurrent fusion gene. Although seemingly private genetic events, some of the fusion transcripts found in MPCs may play a role in maintenance of a malignant phenotype and potentially offer therapeutic opportunities.

Related: Breast Cancer CGH


Airley RE, McHugh P, Evans AR, et al.
Role of carbohydrate response element-binding protein (ChREBP) in generating an aerobic metabolic phenotype and in breast cancer progression.
Br J Cancer. 2014; 110(3):715-23 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 04/02/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The lipogenic transcription factor carbohydrate response element-binding protein (ChREBP) may play a key role in malignant progression of breast cancer by allowing metabolic adaptations to take place in response to changes in oxygenation.
METHODS: Immunohistochemical analysis of ChREBP was carried out in human breast tumour tissue microarrays representative of malignant progression from normal breast through to metastatic cancer. The ChREBP protein and mRNA expressions were then analysed in a series of breast cancers for correlative analysis with common and breast-specific hypoxia signatures, and survival.
RESULTS: In invasive ductal carcinoma, ChREBP correlated significantly with mean 'downregulated' hypoxia scores (r=0.3, P<0.015, n=67) and in two distinct breast progression arrays, ChREBP protein also increased with malignant progression (P<0.001). However, bioinformatic analysis of a large data set (2136 cases) revealed an apparent reversal in the relationship between ChREBP mRNA level and clinical outcome - not only being significantly correlated with increased survival (log rank P<0.001), but also downregulated in malignant tissue compared with adjacent normal tissue.
CONCLUSION: The ChREBP expression may be reflective of an aerobic metabolic phenotype that may conflict with hypoxia-induced signalling but provide a mechanism for growth at the oxygenated edge of the tumours.

Related: Breast Cancer


Zhang C, Liu J, Liang Y, et al.
Tumour-associated mutant p53 drives the Warburg effect.
Nat Commun. 2013; 4:2935 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 04/02/2015 Related Publications
Tumour cells primarily utilize aerobic glycolysis for energy production, a phenomenon known as the Warburg effect. Its mechanism is not well understood. The tumour suppressor gene p53 is frequently mutated in tumours. Many tumour-associated mutant p53 (mutp53) proteins not only lose tumour suppressive function but also gain new oncogenic functions that are independent of wild-type p53, defined as mutp53 gain of function (GOF). Here we show that tumour-associated mutp53 stimulates the Warburg effect in cultured cells and mutp53 knockin mice as a new mutp53 GOF. Mutp53 stimulates the Warburg effect through promoting GLUT1 translocation to the plasma membrane, which is mediated by activated RhoA and its downstream effector ROCK. Inhibition of RhoA/ROCK/GLUT1 signalling largely abolishes mutp53 GOF in stimulating the Warburg effect. Furthermore, inhibition of glycolysis in tumour cells greatly compromises mutp53 GOF in promoting tumorigenesis. Thus, our results reveal a new mutp53 GOF and a mechanism for controlling the Warburg effect.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction TP53 RHOA


Lu GY, Huang SM, Liu ST, et al.
Caffeine induces tumor cytotoxicity via the regulation of alternative splicing in subsets of cancer-associated genes.
Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2014; 47:83-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
Caffeine causes a diverse range of pharmacological effects that are time- and concentration-dependent and reversible. The detailed mechanisms of caffeine in tumor suppression via tumor suppressor protein p53 remain unclear. The isoforms of p53 are physiological proteins that are expressed in normal cells and generated via alternative promoters, splicing sites and/or translational initiation sites. In this study, we investigated how caffeine modulated cell cycle arrest and apoptosis via the expression of various alternatively spliced p53 isoforms. Caffeine reduced p53α expression and induced the expression of p53β, which contains an alternatively spliced p53 C-terminus. In HeLa cells, the expression levels of many serine/arginine-rich splicing factors, including serine/arginine-rich splicing factors 2 and 3, were altered by caffeine. Serine/arginine-rich splicing factor 3 was a promising candidate for the serine/arginine-rich splicing factors responsible for the alternative splicing of p53 in response to caffeine treatment. In addition to p53-dependent functions, multiple target genes of serine/arginine-rich splicing factor 3 suggest that caffeine can regulate epithelial-mesenchymal-transition and hypoxic conditions to inhibit the survival of tumor cells. In summary, our data provide a new pathway of caffeine-modulated tumor suppression via the alternative splicing of the target genes of serine/arginine-rich splicing factor 3.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction TP53 Oxaliplatin


Cheng DD, Zhao HG, Yang YS, et al.
GSK3β negatively regulates HIF1α mRNA stability via nucleolin in the MG63 osteosarcoma cell line.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2014; 443(2):598-603 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF1α) is a transcription factor involved in the growth, invasion and metastasis of malignant tumors. Glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta (GSK3β) is a protein kinase involved in a variety of signaling pathways, such as the Wnt and NF-κB pathways; this kinase can affect tumor progress through the regulation of transcription factor expression and apoptosis. Recent studies showed that GSK3β was involved in the expression of HIF1α. However, the effect of GSK3β on HIF1α expression in osteosarcoma cells remains unknown. To understand the relationship between GSK3β and HIF1α comprehensively, small RNA interference techniques, Western blot analyses, quantitative real-time PCR analyses and luciferase assays were used in our study. Experimental data revealed that inhibition of GSK3β could increase HIF1α protein levels and expression of its target genes by increasing the stability of the HIF1α mRNA, not by affecting the HIF1α protein stability, and that this process could be mediated by nucleolin.

Related: HIF1A Osteosarcoma


Jeon HM, Kim do H, Jung WH, Koo JS
Expression of cell metabolism-related genes in different molecular subtypes of triple-negative breast cancer.
Tumori. 2013 Jul-Aug; 99(4):555-64 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS AND BACKGROUND: We evaluated the difference in and significance of cancer cell metabolism by molecular subtyping of triple-negative breast carcinoma.
METHODS: Tissue microarrays from 122 surgical specimens of triple-negative breast carcinoma patients and immunohistochemical staining for CK5/6, epidermal growth factor receptor, claudin 3, claudin 4, claudin 7, E-cadherin, androgen receptor, and gamma-glutamyltransferase 1 were used to classify triple-negative breast carcinoma as follows: basal-like type, molecular apocrine type, claudin low type, mixed type and null type. In addition, immunohistochemical staining for metabolism-related proteins such as c-myc, insulin-like growth factor (g)-1, hypoxia-inducible factor 1-1α, glucose transporter 1, carbonic anhydrase IX antibody, macrophage migration inhibitory factor, and pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase 1 was used to compare the differences according to molecular subtype and clinicopathological factors.
RESULTS: The basal-like type showed the highest proportion of high glucose transporter 1 expression (P = 0.049) and carbonic anhydrase IX antibody expression (P = 0.008). Hypoxia-inducible factor 1-1α expression was associated with lymph node metastasis (P = 0.001) and central fibrotic zone (P = 0.012), and high glucose transporter 1 expression was related to high histologic grade (P = 0.007), cytokeratin 5/6 positivity (P = 0.002), and central fibrotic zone (P = 0.017). Finally, carbonic anhydrase IX antibody was associated with cytokeratin 5/6 positivity (P = 0.001) and central fibrotic zone (P = 0.048).
CONCLUSIONS: Our study revealed the different characteristics of cancer cell metabolism according to the molecular subtypes of triple-negative breast carcinoma. Among them, basal-like type was the most glycolytic and acid-resistant phenotype.

Related: HIF1A IGF1 MIF


Schaefer IM, Ströbel P, Thiha A, et al.
Soft tissue perineurioma and other unusual tumors in a patient with neurofibromatosis type 1.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2013; 6(12):3003-8 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 04/02/2015 Related Publications
Perineurioma is a rare benign peripheral nerve sheath tumor featuring perineurial differentiation. Perineurioma occurs sporadically with only one reported case in the setting of neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF-1). We present a 6.7-cm soft tissue perineurioma of the lower leg in a 51-year-old man with proven NF-1. The tumor displayed whorled and fascicular pattern with infiltrative margins and expressed EMA, GLUT-1, claudin-1, and CD34. Electron microscopy confirmed diagnosis. Furthermore, lipomatosis, cutaneous angiomatous nodules, vasculopathy, and iliac spine lesion consistent with non-ossifying fibroma were observed. Tumor DNA revealed no NF2 mutations or chromosomal aberrations but a germline NF1-deletion (c.449_502delTGTT) was detected in his blood sample. His brother displayed neurofibromas, duodenal ganglioneuroma and colonic juvenile polyp, and his mother a neurofibroma, cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma, and jejunal gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST); both were affected by NF-1. In conclusion, perineurioma may rarely be NF-1 related and should be included in the spectrum of neoplasms occurring in this disorder.

Related: NF1


Zhang T, Niu X, Liao L, et al.
The contributions of HIF-target genes to tumor growth in RCC.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(11):e80544 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 04/02/2015 Related Publications
Somatic mutations or loss of expression of tumor suppressor VHL happen in the vast majority of clear cell Renal Cell Carcinoma, and it's causal for kidney cancer development. Without VHL, constitutively active transcription factor HIF is strongly oncogenic and is essential for tumor growth. However, the contribution of individual HIF-responsive genes to tumor growth is not well understood. In this study we examined the contribution of important HIF-responsive genes such as VEGF, CCND1, ANGPTL4, EGLN3, ENO2, GLUT1 and IGFBP3 to tumor growth in a xenograft model using immune-compromised nude mice. We found that the suppression of VEGF or CCND1 impaired tumor growth, suggesting that they are tumor-promoting genes. We further discovered that the lack of ANGPTL4, EGLN3 or ENO2 expression did not change tumor growth. Surprisingly, depletion of GLUT1 or IGFBP3 significantly increased tumor growth, suggesting that they have tumor-inhibitory functions. Depletion of IGFBP3 did not lead to obvious activation of IGFIR. Unexpectedly, the depletion of IGFIR protein led to significant increase of IGFBP3 at both the protein and mRNA levels. Concomitantly, the tumor growth was greatly impaired, suggesting that IGFBP3 might suppress tumor growth in an IGFIR-independent manner. In summary, although the overall transcriptional activity of HIF is strongly tumor-promoting, the expression of each individual HIF-responsive gene could either enhance, reduce or do nothing to the kidney cancer tumor growth.

Related: IGF1R VEGFA VHL


Xiang L, Gilkes DM, Chaturvedi P, et al.
Ganetespib blocks HIF-1 activity and inhibits tumor growth, vascularization, stem cell maintenance, invasion, and metastasis in orthotopic mouse models of triple-negative breast cancer.
J Mol Med (Berl). 2014; 92(2):151-64 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2015 Related Publications
UNLABELLED: Targeted therapy against triple-negative breast cancers, which lack expression of the estrogen, progesterone, and HER2 receptors, is not available and the overall response to cytotoxic chemotherapy is poor. One of the molecular hallmarks of triple-negative breast cancers is increased expression of genes that are transcriptionally activated by hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs), which are implicated in many critical aspects of cancer progression including metabolism, angiogenesis, invasion, metastasis, and stem cell maintenance. Ganetespib is a second-generation inhibitor of heat shock protein 90 (HSP90), a molecular chaperone that is essential for the stability and function of multiple client proteins in cancer cells including HIF-1α. In this study, human MDA-MB-231 and MDA-MB-435 triple-negative breast cancer cells were injected into the mammary fat pad of immunodeficient mice that received weekly intravenous injections of ganetespib or vehicle following the development of palpable tumors. Ganetespib treatment markedly impaired primary tumor growth and vascularization, and eliminated local tissue invasion and distant metastasis to regional lymph nodes and lungs. Ganetespib treatment also significantly reduced the number of Aldefluor-positive cancer stem cells in the primary tumor. Primary tumors of ganetespib-treated mice had significantly reduced levels of HIF-1α (but not HIF-2α) protein and of HIF-1 target gene mRNAs encoding proteins that play key roles in angiogenesis, metabolism, invasion, and metastasis, thereby providing a molecular basis for observed effects of the drug on the growth and metastasis of triple-negative breast cancer.
KEY MESSAGES: Triple-negative breast cancers (TNBCs) respond poorly to available chemotherapy. TNBCs overexpress genes regulated by hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs). Ganetespib induces degradation of HSP90 client proteins, including HIF-1α. Ganetespib inhibited TNBC orthotopic tumor growth, invasion, and metastasis. Ganetespib inhibited expression of HIF-1 target genes involved in TNBC progression.

Related: Angiogenesis and Cancer VEGFA


Kim S, Kim SY, Ku HJ, et al.
Suppression of tumorigenesis in mitochondrial NADP(+)-dependent isocitrate dehydrogenase knock-out mice.
Biochim Biophys Acta. 2014; 1842(2):135-43 [PubMed] Related Publications
The tumor host microenvironment is increasingly viewed as an important contributor to tumor growth and suppression. Cellular oxidative stress resulting from high levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) contributes to various processes involved in the development and progress of malignant tumors including carcinogenesis, aberrant growth, metastasis, and angiogenesis. In this regard, the stroma induces oxidative stress in adjacent tumor cells, and this in turn causes several changes in tumor cells including modulation of the redox status, inhibition of cell proliferation, and induction of apoptotic or necrotic cell death. Because the levels of ROS are determined by a balance between ROS generation and ROS detoxification, disruption of this system will result in increased or decreased ROS level. Recently, we demonstrated that the control of mitochondrial redox balance and cellular defense against oxidative damage is one of the primary functions of mitochondrial NADP(+)-dependent isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH2) that supplies NADPH for antioxidant systems. To explore the interactions between tumor cells and the host, we evaluated tumorigenesis between IDH2-deficient (knock-out) and wild-type mice in which B16F10 melanoma cells had been implanted. Suppression of B16F10 cell tumorigenesis was reproducibly observed in the IDH2-deficient mice along with significant elevation of oxidative stress in both the tumor and the stroma. In addition, the expression of angiogenesis markers was significantly down-regulated in both the tumor and the stroma of the IDH2-deficient mice. These results support the hypothesis that redox status-associated changes in the host environment of tumor-bearing mice may contribute to cancer progression.

Related: HIF1A VEGFA


Dong CG, Wu WK, Feng SY, et al.
Suppressing the malignant phenotypes of glioma cells by lentiviral delivery of small hairpin RNA targeting hypoxia-inducible factor-1α.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2013; 6(11):2323-32 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2015 Related Publications
Hypoxic microenvironment of solid tumors is known to shape malignant phenotypes of cancer cells through the dimeric transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-1. In the present study, the therapeutic effect of targeting α subunit of HIF-1 in glioma cells via lentiviral delivery of small hairpin RNA (shRNA) was evaluated. Data from quantitative real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry demonstrated that HIF-1α was progressively upregulated during the development of gliomas. Lentiviral shRNA targeting HIF-1α led to substantial loss of cell viability, G0/G1-phase cell cycle arrest, apoptosis, and impairment of cell motility and invasiveness in human glioma U87MG cells. Xenograft experiments in nude mice further showed that HIF-1α-shRNA inhibited tumor growth and caused persistent repression of HIF-1α and its target genes, including VEGF, GLUT1 and MMP2, up to 25 days post-inoculation. Taken together, lentiviral delivery of shRNA is a promising therapeutic approach for targeting HIF-1α in glioma.

Related: Apoptosis HIF1A


Cho H, Lee YS, Kim J, et al.
Overexpression of glucose transporter-1 (GLUT-1) predicts poor prognosis in epithelial ovarian cancer.
Cancer Invest. 2013; 31(9):607-15 [PubMed] Related Publications
Illumina microarray was used to identify differentially expressed genes in three epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) cells. To validate the microarray data, mRNA and protein level of glucose transporter-1 (GLUT-1) was examined. GLUT-1 had an EOC/normal cells ratio of 5.51 based on microarray. Real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry demonstrated that GLUT-1 expression was significantly increased in EOC (p = .029 and p < .001, respectively). On survival analysis, GLUT-1 overexpression (HR = 4.80, p = .027) and lymph node metastases (HR = 8.35, p = .016) conferred a significantly worse overall survival. In conclusion, GLUT-1 expression is remarkably upregulated in EOC and predicts a poor overall survival.


Li W, Peng C, Lee MH, et al.
TRAF4 is a critical molecule for Akt activation in lung cancer.
Cancer Res. 2013; 73(23):6938-50 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2015 Related Publications
TRAF4 is an adapter protein overexpressed in certain cancers, but its contributions to tumorigenesis are unclear. In lung cancer cells and primary lung tumors, we found that TRAF4 is overexpressed. RNA interference-mediated attenuation of TRAF4 expression blunted the malignant phenotype in this setting, exerting inhibitory effects on cell proliferation, anchorage-independent growth, and tumor development in a xenograft mouse model. Unexpectedly, we discovered that TRAF4, but not Skp2, was required for activation of the pivotal cell survival kinase Akt through ubiquitination. Furthermore, TRAF4 attenuation impaired glucose metabolism by inhibiting expression of Glut1 and HK2 mediated by the Akt pathway. Overall, our work suggests that TRAF4 offers a candidate molecular target for lung cancer prevention and therapy.

Related: Lung Cancer


Chen XH, Bao YY, Zhou SH, et al.
Glucose transporter-1 expression in CD133+ laryngeal carcinoma Hep-2 cells.
Mol Med Rep. 2013; 8(6):1695-700 [PubMed] Related Publications
CD133 is a useful putative marker of cancer stem cells (CSCs) in human laryngeal tumors. Numerous studies have demonstrated that CD133+ CSCs possess higher clonogenicity, invasiveness and tumorigenesis compared with CD133- cells. Recently, interest in the Warburg effect in the microenvironment of CSCs has escalated. The Warburg effect dictates that cancer cells rely on glycolysis rather than oxidative phosphorylation under aerobic conditions. In numerous cancer cells, glucose is used mainly for the glycolytic pathway. Stem cells express high levels of glycolytic enzymes and rely mostly on glycolysis to meet their energy demands. Glucose is transported through cell membranes by glucose transporters (Glut). Studies of Glut-1 expression in CSCs are limited. In the present study, we investigated the proliferation of CD133+ Hep-2 cells and whether Glut-1 is expressed in laryngeal carcinoma CD133+ Hep-2 cells. Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) demonstrated that the size of the CD133 product was 213 bp. Dissociation curve analysis demonstrated only the expected peaks at 82.1˚C for CD133. The mean ΔCt of CD133 expression was 10.98. Prior to isolation, the CD133+ fraction was 1.2% by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) analysis. Following isolation, the CD133+ fraction was increased to 76.1%. Successive tests also demonstrated that cells grew well following isolation. The proliferation of CD133+ and CD133- cells was not different during the first 3 days (P>0.05). From day 4, the proliferation capacity of CD133+ cells in vitro was higher than that of CD133- cells (P<0.05). The mean ΔCt of Glut-1 mRNA expression was 1.78 for CD133+ cells and 1.00 for CD133- cells (P<0.05). The mean Glut-1 protein values in CD133+ and CD133- Hep-2 cells relative to β-tubulin were 0.48 ± 0.02 and 0.21 ± 0.03 (µg/µl), respectively (P<0.05). In conclusion, CD133+ cells demonstrated higher proliferation. Glut-1 mRNA and protein levels were higher in CD133+ than in CD133- cells. Our results suggest that Glut-1 is important in the energy supply of laryngeal CD133+ Hep-2 cells and Glut-1 may represent a potential therapeutic target for the inhibition of the proliferation of laryngeal CSCs.

Related: Cancer of the Larynx Laryngeal Cancer - Molecular Biology


Fogarty FM, O'Keeffe J, Zhadanov A, et al.
HRG-1 enhances cancer cell invasive potential and couples glucose metabolism to cytosolic/extracellular pH gradient regulation by the vacuolar-H(+) ATPase.
Oncogene. 2014; 33(38):4653-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
Haeme-responsive gene (HRG)-1 encodes a 16-kDa transmembrane protein that is induced by insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and associates with the vacuolar-(H(+)) ATPase (V-ATPase). We previously reported that HRG-1 is essential for V-ATPase activity in endosomal acidification and receptor trafficking. Here, we show that in highly invasive and migratory cancer cell lines, HRG-1 and the V-ATPase are co-expressed at the plasma membrane, whereas in less invasive cell lines and non-transformed cells HRG-1 over-expression remains confined to intracellular compartments. Stable suppression of HRG-1 in invasive breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cells decreases extracellular pH, cell growth, migration and invasion. Ectopic expression of HRG-1 in non-invasive MCF-7 cells enhances V-ATPase activity, lowers the extracellular pH and increases the pH-dependent activity of MMP2 and MMP9 matrix metalloproteinases. HRG-1 enhances trafficking of the glucose transporter-1 (GLUT-1) with a concomitant increase in glucose uptake and lactate production. HRG-1 also promotes trafficking of the insulin-like growth factor I receptor (IGF-1R), β1-integrin and IGF-1 signalling. Taken together, our findings indicate that HRG-1 expression at the plasma membrane enhances V-ATPase activity, drives glycolytic flux and facilitates cancer cell growth, migration and invasion. Thus, HRG-1 may represent a novel target for selectively disrupting V-ATPase activity and the metastatic potential of cancer cells.

Related: MMP2 MMP9: matrix metallopeptidase 9


Teicher BA
Targets in small cell lung cancer.
Biochem Pharmacol. 2014; 87(2):211-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recurrent small cell lung cancer is a recalcitrant malgnancy. The application of genomic technologies has begun to elucidate the large number of genetic abnormalities in SCLC. Several cell surface receptors are known to be overexpressed by SCLC in clinic specimens and cell in culture including GPCRs such as the bradykinin receptor, the chemokine receptor CXCR4, the vasopression receeptor and the three bomebsin receptors. The glucose transporter GLUT1, the tetraspanin family member PETA/CD151 and the immunoglobulin superfamily member ALCAM/CD166 are also overexpressed by SCLC. NCAM/CD56 is overexpressed by nearly all SCLC and is currently the target for an antibody drug conjugate in Phase II trial. Although SCLC is not considered a RTK driven disease, IGF1R and FGFRs are often overexpressed by SCLC. SCLC abberantly expresses several developmental transcription factors including ASCL1, SOX2, 4, and 11, OCT4, NANOG, PAX5; however, overexpression of MYC may be a driver in SCLC. Like other cancers, SCLC expresses survival factors and uses aerobic glycolysis as a major source of ATP. The drawback of many potential targets overexpressed by SCLC is expression of the same proteins by normal tissues. We are slowly learning more about the molecular abnormalities that occur in SCLC; however, therapeutic impact from new findings remains a goal to work toward.

Related: Lung Cancer Small Cell Lung Cancer


Xu X, Li B, Huang P, et al.
Citrate induces apoptosis of the acute monocytic leukemia U937 cell line through regulation of HIF-1α signaling.
Mol Med Rep. 2013; 8(5):1379-84 [PubMed] Related Publications
The present study aimed to investigate the anti-tumor effect of citrate on acute monocytic leukemia (AML) and its mechanisms. The apoptosis of the AML cell line, U937, was assessed by MTT and Hoechst staining, the expression of Bcl-2, caspases-3 and -9, hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF‑1α) and its target gene GLUT-1, were assayed by western blotting and the role of HIF‑1α was evaluated through siRNA. The results showed that citrate inhibits the expression of Bcl-2, while it induces the activation of caspases-3 and -9. In addition, citrate induces U937 apoptosis in a dose- and time-dependent manner by regulating the expression of HIF‑1α and its downstream target GLUT-1. The results suggest that citrate performs an anti-acute monocytic leukemia action by targeting HIF‑1α signaling and may be a promising clinical approach.

Related: Apoptosis CASP3 HIF1A Signal Transduction


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