Gene Summary

Gene:SLIT2; slit guidance ligand 2
Aliases: SLIL3, Slit-2
Summary:This gene encodes a member of the slit family of secreted glycoproteins, which are ligands for the Robo family of immunoglobulin receptors. Slit proteins play highly conserved roles in axon guidance and neuronal migration and may also have functions during other cell migration processes including leukocyte migration. Members of the slit family are characterized by an N-terminal signal peptide, four leucine-rich repeats, nine epidermal growth factor repeats, and a C-terminal cysteine knot. Proteolytic processing of this protein gives rise to an N-terminal fragment that contains the four leucine-rich repeats and five epidermal growth factor repeats and a C-terminal fragment that contains four epidermal growth factor repeats and the cysteine knot. Both full length and cleaved proteins are secreted extracellularly and can function in axon repulsion as well as other specific processes. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants. [provided by RefSeq, Sep 2015]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:slit homolog 2 protein
Source:NCBIAccessed: 01 September, 2019


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 (1994-2019)
Graph generated 01 September 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 01 September, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (5)

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

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

Latest Publications: SLIT2 (cancer-related)

Xia Y, Wang L, Xu Z, et al.
Reduced USP33 expression in gastric cancer decreases inhibitory effects of Slit2-Robo1 signalling on cell migration and EMT.
Cell Prolif. 2019; 52(3):e12606 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Gastric cancer (GC) is one of the most common cancers in the world, causing a large number of deaths every year. The Slit-Robo signalling pathway, initially discovered for its critical role in neuronal guidance, has recently been shown to modulate tumour invasion and metastasis in several human cancers. However, the role of Slit-Robo signalling and the molecular mechanisms underlying its role in the pathogenesis of gastric cancer remains to be elucidated.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Slit2, Robo1 and USP33 expressions were analysed in datasets obtained from the Oncomine database and measured in human gastric cancer specimens. The function of Slit2-Robo1-USP33 signalling on gastric cancer cells migration and epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) was studied both in vitro and in vivo. The mechanism of the interaction between Robo1 and USP33 was explored by co-IP and ubiquitination protein analysis.
RESULTS: The mRNA and protein levels of Slit2 and Robo1 are lower in GC tissues relative to those in adjacent healthy tissues. Importantly, Slit2 inhibits GC cell migration and suppresses EMT process in a Robo-dependent manner. The inhibitory function of Slit2-Robo1 is mediated by ubiquitin-specific protease 33 (USP33) via deubiquitinating and stabilizing Robo1. USP33 expression is decreased in GC tissues, and reduced USP33 level is correlated with poor patient survival.
CONCLUSIONS: Our study reveals the inhibitory function of Slit-Robo signalling in GC and uncovers a role of USP33 in suppressing cancer cell migration and EMT by enhancing Slit2-Robo1 signalling. USP33 represents a feasible choice as a prognostic biomarker for GC.

Gołos A, Jesionek-Kupnicka D, Gil L, et al.
The Expression of the SLIT-ROBO Family in Adult Patients with Acute Myeloid Leukemia.
Arch Immunol Ther Exp (Warsz). 2019; 67(2):109-123 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: SLIT-ROBO is a ligand-receptor family of neuronal guidance cues that has been involved in pathological and physiological angiogenesis. SLIT-ROBO expression is altered in many tumours. However, no data exist about the role of the whole family in acute myelogenous myeloid leukemia (AML).
PURPOSE: Herein, we assessed the expression of all SLIT-ROBO family in bone marrow (BM) biopsy of AML patients and control group on both protein and RNA levels.
METHODS: The paraffin-embedded tissue blocks were subjected to immunohistochemistry for SLIT1, SLIT2, SLIT3, ROBO1, ROBO2, ROBO3, and ROBO4. Microvessel density (MVD) was evaluated by CD34 immunohistochemistry. An in silico analysis using The Cancer Genome Atlas data repository was conducted for assessment of RNA level.
RESULTS: Acute myeloid leukemia patients were generally high expressers of ROBO1 and ROBO2 compared to the controls (p < 0.0001, p < 0.001, respectively). In contrast, low expression of SLIT1, SLIT2, and SLIT3 ligands has been noted more commonly in AML than in control BM samples (p < 0.0001, p = 0.003, and p = 0.001, respectively). ROBO4 expression correlated with MVD. The in silico analysis showed a poor prognostic value of high ROBO3 and low SLIT2 RNA levels (p = 0.0003 and p = 0.0008, respectively), as well as high ROBO3 and ROBO4 RNA levels in cytogenetic poor risk groups of patients (p = 0.0029 and p = 0.0003, respectively).
CONCLUSIONS: These data indicate that SLIT-ROBO family members play a role in the biology of AML. Low expression of SLIT in BM of AML patients may suggest its expression alterations in AML. Increased expression of ROBO1 and ROBO2 in AML patients suggests their participation in AML pathogenesis.

Guo Z, Hu Y, Yuan L, et al.
A prospective study on the predictive value of DNA methylation in cervical intraepithelial neoplasia prognosis.
Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2018; 298(3):589-596 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: To study the predictive value of the DNA methylation levels of JAM3, SOX1, SLIT2, C13ORF18, and TERT in the cervical intraepithelial neoplasia prognosis.
METHOD: In the present study, 139 cases were collected and followed up for 24 months. The DNA methylation levels of JAM3, SOX1, SLIT2, C13ORF18, and TERT were tested from their exfoliated cells. One-way ANOVA, receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analyses were conducted to analyze the data.
RESULTS: The DNA methylation of the five genes was associated with prognosis of CIN. The levels of methylation increased as the progression of lesion for the prognosis. For CIN1, difference between DNA methylation of JAM3, SOX1, SLIT2, and C13ORF18 had significance statistically (P < 0.001). Sensitivity (95.2%) and specificity (93.1%) of JAM3 were the highest compared with other genes for the prognosis of CIN1. In addition, for CIN2/3, DNA methylation of JAM3, SOX1, SLIT2, TERT, and C13ORF18 had difference statistically (P < 0.001). JAM3 were also the highest in sensitivity (95.2%) and specificity (93.1%) compared with other genes for the prognosis of CIN2/3.
CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest for the first time that DNA methylation levels are associated with prognosis of CIN significantly. DNA methylation levels of some genes, especially JAM3, may serve as markers for the prediction of the CIN prognosis, including CIN1 nature prognosis and CIN2/3 after treatment.

Zhang Y, Stovall DB, Wan M, et al.
SOX7 Target Genes and Their Contribution to Its Tumor Suppressive Function.
Int J Mol Sci. 2018; 19(5) [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
SOX7 is a transcription factor and acts as a tumor suppressor, but its target genes in cancers are poorly explored. We revealed SOX7-mediated gene expression profile in breast cancer cells using microarray chips and discovered multiple altered signaling pathways. When combinatorially analyzing the microarray data with a gene array dataset from 759 breast cancer patients, we identified four genes as potential targets of SOX7 and validated them by quantitative PCR and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays. Among these four genes, we determined that SOX7-activated

Li J, Zhou C, Wang G, et al.
Promoter hypermethylation of SLIT2 is a risk factor and potential diagnostic biomarker for nasopharyngeal carcinoma.
Gene. 2018; 644:74-79 [PubMed] Related Publications
SLIT2 is a candidate tumor suppressor gene and recent studies have shown that SLIT2 expression is suppressed or reduced by hypermethylation in the promoter region in various cancers. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between SLIT2 promoter methylation and nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) and its relative diagnostic ability for NPC. Bisulfite pyrosequencing technology was performed to measure methylation levels of the SLIT2 promoter in tissue and plasma samples from 61 NPC patients and 38 normal volunteers. The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve and area under the curve (AUC) were used to evaluate the diagnostic ability of SLIT2 methylation for diagnosing NPC. Our results showed that methylation levels of the SLIT2 promoter were significantly higher in NPC patients compared with individuals, both in tissue samples (P=2.57E-10) and plasma samples (plasma: P=3.86E-13). In addition, the frequency of SLIT2 promoter methylation markedly increased in the advanced stage (tissue: P=3.50E-05; plasma: P=1.14E-04) and advanced T classified (tissue: P=9.00E-06; plasma: P=3.80E-05), as well as in lymph node metastasis patients (tissue: P=1.82E-03; plasma: P=2.22E-03). In addition, the AUCs according to tissue and plasma samples were 0.846 and 0.866, respectively. When these two sample-types were combined, the AUC increased slightly to 0.874. Our study revealed that elevated SLIT2 promoter methylation contributed to the risk of NPC, as well as being involved in its progression and metastasis. Therefore, the methylated SLIT2 promoter could serve as a potential biomarker for diagnosing NPC.

Sun G, Zhang C, Feng M, et al.
Methylation analysis of p16, SLIT2, SCARA5, and Runx3 genes in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Medicine (Baltimore). 2017; 96(41):e8279 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
This study is to investigate the methylation status of multiple tumor suppressor 1 (p16), secreted glycoprotein 2 (SLIT2), scavenger receptor class A, member 5 putative (SCARA5), and human runt-related transcription factor 3 (Runx3) genes in the peripheral blood of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).This is a case-control study. The peripheral blood samples were collected from 25 HCC patients, 25 patients with high risk of HCC (defined as "internal control group"), and 25 healthy individuals (defined as "external control group"), respectively. Then the methylation status of p16, SLIT2, SCARA5, and Runx3 genes in the blood samples were analyzed by pyrosequencing. The relationship between the methylation and the clinical features of HCC patients were evaluated.The methylation levels in the 7 CpG loci of p16 gene in HCC patients were low and without statistically significant difference (P > .05) compared to the control groups. Although the methylation levels of CpG3 and CpG4 in SLIT2 gene loci were higher than those of the control groups, there was no statistically significant difference (P > .05). However, the methylation rate of CpG2 locus in SCARA5 gene in HCC patients was significantly higher (P < .05). And the methylation rates of CpG1, CpG2, CpG3, CpG4, CpG5, and CpG8 in Runx3 gene in HCC patients were significantly different to that of control groups (P < .05). We also have analyzed the correlations between the CpG islands methylation of Runx3 or SCARA5 genes and the age, gender, hepatitis B, liver cirrhosis, alpha fetal protein, or hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) of the HCC patients, which all showed no significant correlations (P > .05).The methylation status of SCARA5 and Runx3 genes are abnormal in HCC patients, which may further be used as molecular markers for early auxiliary diagnosis of liver cancer.

Yang Y, Ding L, Hu Q, et al.
MicroRNA-218 functions as a tumor suppressor in lung cancer by targeting IL-6/STAT3 and negatively correlates with poor prognosis.
Mol Cancer. 2017; 16(1):141 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Aberrant expression of microRNAs in different human cancer types has been widely reported. MiR-218 acts as a tumor suppressor in diverse human cancer types impacting regulation of multiple genes in oncogenic pathways. Here, we evaluated the expression and function of miR-218 in human lung cancer and ALDH positive lung cancer cells to understand the potential mechanisms responsible for disease pathology. Also, the association between its host genes and the target genes could be useful towards the better understanding of prognosis in clinical settings.
METHODS: Publicly-available data from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) was mined to compare the levels of miR-218 and its host gene SLIT2/3 between lung cancer tissues and normal lung tissues. Transfection of miR-218 to investigate its function in lung cancer cells was done and in vivo effects were determined using miR-218 expressing lentiviruses. Aldefluor assay and Flow cytometry was used to quantify and enrich ALDH positive lung cancer cells. Levels of miR-218, IL-6R, JAK3 and phosphorylated STAT3 were compared in ALDH1A1 positive and ALDH1A1 negative cells. Overexpression of miR-218 in ALDH positive cells was carried to test the survival by tumorsphere culture. Finally, utilizing TCGA data we studied the association of target genes of miR-218 with the prognosis of lung cancer.
RESULTS: We observed that the expression of miR-218 was significantly down-regulated in lung cancer tissues compared to normal lung tissues. Overexpression of miR-218 decreased cell proliferation, invasion, colony formation, and tumor sphere formation in vitro and repressed tumor growth in vivo. We further found that miR-218 negatively regulated IL-6 receptor and JAK3 gene expression by directly targeting the 3'-UTR of their mRNAs. In addition, the levels of both miR-218 host genes and the components of IL-6/STAT3 pathway correlated with prognosis of lung cancer patients.
CONCLUSIONS: MiR-218 acts as a tumor suppressor in lung cancer via IL-6/STAT3 signaling pathway regulation.

Alsofyani AA, Alsiary RA, Samkari A, et al.
Prognostic potential of KLOTHO and SFRP1 promoter methylation in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
J Appl Genet. 2017; 58(4):459-465 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hypermethylation in the CpG island promoter regions of tumor suppressors is known to play a significant role in the development of HNSCC and the detection of which can aid the classification and prognosis of HNSCC. This study aims to profile the methylation patterns in a panel of key genes including CDKN2A, CDKN2B, KLOTHO (KL), RASSF1A, RARB, SLIT2, and SFRP1, in a group of HNSCC samples from Saudi Arabia. The extent of methylation in these genes is determined using the MethyLight assay and correlated with known clinicopathological parameters in our samples of 156 formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded HNSCC tissues. SLIT2 methylation had the highest frequency (64.6%), followed by RASSF1A (41.3%), RARB (40.7%), SFRP1 (34.9), KL (30.7%), CKDN2B (29.6%), and CKDN2A (29.1%). KL and SFRP1 methylation were more predominant in nasopharyngeal tumors (P = 0.001 and P = 0.031 respectively). Kaplan Meier analysis showed that patients with moderately differentiated tumors who display SFRP1 methylation have significantly worse overall survival in comparison with other samples. In contrast, better clinical outcomes were seen in patients with KL methylation. In conclusion, our findings suggest that the detection of frequent methylation in SFRP1 and KL genes' promoters could serve as prognostic biomarkers for HNSCC.

Deng M, Zeng C, Lu X, et al.
miR-218 suppresses gastric cancer cell cycle progression through the CDK6/Cyclin D1/E2F1 axis in a feedback loop.
Cancer Lett. 2017; 403:175-185 [PubMed] Related Publications
Studies in several cancers have suggested that miR-218 has anti-tumor activities, but its function is yet to be elucidated. In this study, we investigated the regulation and function of miR-218 (miR-218-5p) in the cell cycle progression of gastric cancer (GC). We found that miR-218 could suppress proliferation of gastric cancer cells, induce cell cycle arrest at the G1 phase and inhibit tumor growth and metastasis in vivo. We also demonstrated that miR-218 specifically targeted the 3'-UTR regions of CDK6 and cyclin D1 and inhibited the expression of these molecules, which in turn repressed the pRb/E2F1 signaling pathway. Overexpression of CDK6 and Cyclin D1 reversed miR-218-mediated inhibition of pRB/E2F1 signaling and attenuated the miR-218-induced cell cycle arrest. More importantly, miR-218 expression was significantly reduced and inversely correlated with the levels of CDK6 and Cyclin D1 in gastric cancer tissues. Decreased miR-218 expression was also correlated with advanced clinical stage, lymph node metastasis, and poor prognosis in gastric cancer patients. Furthermore, we showed that miR-218 expression was directly activated by E2F1 through the transactivation of miR-218 host genes, SLIT2 and SLIT3, revealing a negative feedback regulation of miR-218 expression. Taken together, our results describe a regulatory loop miR-218-CDK6/CyclinD1-E2F1 whose disruption may contribute to cell cycle progression in gastric cancer and indicate the potential application of miR-218 in cancer therapy.

Sirohi VK, Popli P, Sankhwar P, et al.
Curcumin exhibits anti-tumor effect and attenuates cellular migration via Slit-2 mediated down-regulation of SDF-1 and CXCR4 in endometrial adenocarcinoma cells.
J Nutr Biochem. 2017; 44:60-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although curcumin shows anti-proliferative and anti-inflammatory activities in various cancers, the effect of curcumin on cellular migration in endometrial adenocarcinoma cells remains to be understood. The current investigation was aimed to explore the anti-proliferative and anti-migratory effects of curcumin and its mechanism of action in endometrial cancer cells. Our in-vitro and in-vivo experimental studies showed that curcumin inhibited the proliferation of endometrial cancer cells and suppressed the tumor growth in Ishikawa xenograft mouse model. Curcumin induced ROS-mediated apoptosis in endometrial cancer cells. Curcumin suppressed the migration rate of Ishikawa and Hec-1B cells as analyzed by scratch wound assay. In transwell migration studies, knock down of Slit-2 reversed the anti-migratory effect of curcumin in these cell lines. Curcumin significantly up-regulated the expression of Slit-2 in Ishikawa, Hec-1B and primary endometrial cancer cells while it down-regulated the expression of stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) and CXCR4 which in turn, suppressed the expression of matrix metallopeptidases (MMP) 2 and 9, thus attenuating the migration of endometrial cancer cells. In summary, we have demonstrated that curcumin has inhibitory effect on cellular migration via Slit-2 mediated down-regulation of CXCR4, SDF-1, and MMP2/MMP9 in endometrial carcinoma cells. These findings helped explore the role of Slit-2 in endometrial cancer cells.

Hata T, Dal Molin M, Hong SM, et al.
Predicting the Grade of Dysplasia of Pancreatic Cystic Neoplasms Using Cyst Fluid DNA Methylation Markers.
Clin Cancer Res. 2017; 23(14):3935-3944 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications

Ho TH, Serie DJ, Parasramka M, et al.
Differential gene expression profiling of matched primary renal cell carcinoma and metastases reveals upregulation of extracellular matrix genes.
Ann Oncol. 2017; 28(3):604-610 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Background: The majority of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) studies analyze primary tumors, and the corresponding results are extrapolated to metastatic RCC tumors. However, it is unknown if gene expression profiles from primary RCC tumors differs from patient-matched metastatic tumors. Thus, we sought to identify differentially expressed genes between patient-matched primary and metastatic RCC tumors in order to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying the development of RCC metastases.
Patients and methods: We compared gene expression profiles between patient-matched primary and metastatic RCC tumors using a two-stage design. First, we used Affymetrix microarrays on 15 pairs of primary RCC [14 clear cell RCC (ccRCC), 1 papillary] tumors and patient-matched pulmonary metastases. Second, we used a custom NanoString panel to validate seven candidate genes in an independent cohort of 114 ccRCC patients. Differential gene expression was evaluated using a mixed effect linear model; a random effect denoting patient was included to account for the paired data. Third, The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) data were used to evaluate associations with metastasis-free and overall survival in primary ccRCC tumors.
Results: We identified and validated up regulation of seven genes functionally involved in the formation of the extracellular matrix (ECM): DCN, SLIT2, LUM, LAMA2, ADAMTS12, CEACAM6 and LMO3. In primary ccRCC, CEACAM6 and LUM were significantly associated with metastasis-free and overall survival (P < 0.01).
Conclusions: We evaluated gene expression profiles using the largest set to date, to our knowledge, of patient-matched primary and metastatic ccRCC tumors and identified up regulation of ECM genes in metastases. Our study implicates up regulation of ECM genes as a critical molecular event leading to visceral, bone and soft tissue metastases in ccRCC.

Feng Y, Feng L, Yu D, et al.
srGAP1 mediates the migration inhibition effect of Slit2-Robo1 in colorectal cancer.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2016; 35(1):191 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The neuronal guidance molecule Slit2 plays suppressive role in tumorigenesis and progression. We previously showed that Slit2-Robo1 inhibit cell migration in colorectal cancer (CRC). However, little is known about its downstream effectors in CRC. This study tries to identify whether the Slit-Robo Rho GTPase activating protein 1 (srGAP1) could mediate the inhibitory effect of Slit2-Robo1 on CRC cell migration.
METHODS: The protein expression of srGAP1 in clinical CRC tissues was tested by immunohistochemistry staining. Conditioned medium was prepared from HEK293 cells stably expressing Slit2-myc, Robo1-HA or RoboN (a soluble extracellular domain of Robo1). Immunoprecipitation (IP) was applied to check the interaction between Robo1 and srGAP1, and immunofluorescence (IF) was used to observe the subcellular localization of Robo1 and srGAP1. Small GTPase pull-down assay was used to determine the activity of Cdc42. A modified wound healing assay was performed to detect cell migration.
RESULTS: The protein expression of srGAP1 was remarkably decreased in 47.5% of CRC tissues compared with adjacent noncancerous tissues, and the decreased srGAP1 expression was associated with lymphatic invasion, poor tumor differentiation, high TNM stage, and poor survival (P < 0.05). IP and IF assays revealed that srGAP1 was a Robo1-interacting protein and exhibited similar dynamic subcellular distribution after Slit2 treatment in CRC cells. Small GTPase pull-down assay and migration assay indicated that Slit2-Robo1 signaling inhibited Cdc42 activity and CRC cell motility through srGAP1.
CONCLUSION: Downregulation of srGAP1 in CRC was associated with tumor progression and poor prognosis. srGAP1 is an important downstream molecule of Slit2 signalling in CRC, and mediates the anti-migration function of Slit2 by inhibiting Cdc42.

Brea-Fernandez AJ, Fernandez-Rozadilla C, Alvarez-Barona M, et al.
Candidate predisposing germline copy number variants in early onset colorectal cancer patients.
Clin Transl Oncol. 2017; 19(5):625-632 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: A great proportion of the heritability of colorectal cancer (CRC) still remains unexplained, and rare variants, as well as copy number changes, have been proposed as potential candidates to explain the so-called 'missing heritability'. We aimed to identify rare high-to-moderately penetrant copy number variants (CNVs) in patients suspected of having hereditary CRC due to an early onset.
METHODS/PATIENTS: We have selected for genome-wide copy number analysis, 27 MMR-proficient early onset CRC patients (<50 years) without identifiable germline mutations in Mendelian genes related to this phenotype. Rare CNVs were selected by removing all CNVs detected at MAF >1% in the in-house control CNV database (n = 629 healthy controls). Copy number assignment was checked by duplex real-time quantitative PCR or multiplex ligation probe amplification. Somatic mutation analysis in candidate genes included: loss of heterozygosity studies, point mutation screening, and methylation status of the promoter.
RESULTS: We have identified two rare germline deletions involving the AK3 and SLIT2 genes in two patients. The search for a second somatic mutational event in the corresponding CRC tumors showed loss of heterozygosity in AK3, and promoter hypermethylation in SLIT2. Both genes have been previously related to colorectal carcinogenesis.
CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that AK3 and SLIT2 may be potential candidates involved in genetic susceptibility to CRC.

Bhattacharya R, Mukherjee N, Dasgupta H, et al.
Frequent alterations of SLIT2-ROBO1-CDC42 signalling pathway in breast cancer: clinicopathological correlation.
J Genet. 2016; 95(3):551-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of the study was to understand the role of SLIT2-ROBO1/2-CDC42 signalling pathways in development of breast cancer (BC). Primary BC samples (n = 150), comprising of almost equal proportion of four subtypes were tested for molecular alterations of SLIT2, ROBO1, ROBO2 and CDC42, the key regulator genes of this pathway. Deletion and methylation frequencies of the candidate genes were seen in the following order: deletion, SLIT2 (38.6%) > ROBO1 (30%) > ROBO2 (7.3%); methylation, SLIT2 (63.3%) > ROBO1 (26.6%) >ROBO2 (9.3%). Majority (80%, 120/150) of the tumours showed alterations (deletion/methylation) in at least one of the candidate genes. Overall, alterations of the candidate genes were as follows: SLIT2, 75.3% (101/150); ROBO1, 45.3% (68/150); ROBO2, 15.3% (23/150). Significantly, higher alteration of SLIT2 locus was observed in triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) over HER2 subtype (P = 0.0014). Similar trend is also seen in overall alterations of SLIT2 and/or ROBO1, in TNBC than HER2 subtype (P = 0.0012); of SLIT2 and/or ROBO2 in TNBC than luminal A (P = 0.014) and HER2 subtype (P = 0.048). Immunohistochemical analysis of SLIT2, ROBO1/2 showed reduced expression, concordant with their molecular alterations. Also, high expression of total CDC42 (49/52; 94.2%) and reduced expression of phospho Serine-71 CDC42 (41/52; 78.8%) was observed. Coalterations of SLIT2 and/or ROBO1, SLIT2 and/or ROBO2 had significant association with reduced expression of phospho Serine-71 CDC42 (P = 0.0012-0.0038). Alterations of SLIT2 and/or ROBO1, reduced expression of phospho Serine-71 CDC42 predicted poor survival of BC patients. Results indicate the importance of SLIT2-ROBO1-CDC42 signalling pathway in predicting tumour progression.

Roperch JP, Grandchamp B, Desgrandchamps F, et al.
Promoter hypermethylation of HS3ST2, SEPTIN9 and SLIT2 combined with FGFR3 mutations as a sensitive/specific urinary assay for diagnosis and surveillance in patients with low or high-risk non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer.
BMC Cancer. 2016; 16:704 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) is a high incidence form of bladder cancer (BCa), where genetic and epigenetic alterations occur frequently. We assessed the performance of associating a FGFR3 mutation assay and a DNA methylation analysis to improve bladder cancer detection and to predict disease recurrence of NMIBC patients.
METHODS: We used allele specific PCR to determine the FGFR3 mutation status for R248C, S249C, G372C, and Y375C. We preselected 18 candidate genes reported in the literature as being hypermethylated in cancer and measured their methylation levels by quantitative multiplex-methylation specific PCR. We selected HS3ST2, SLIT2 and SEPTIN9 as the most discriminative between control and NMIBC patients and we assayed these markers on urine DNA from a diagnostic study consisting of 167 NMIBC and 105 controls and a follow-up study consisting of 158 NMIBC at diagnosis time's and 425 at follow-up time. ROC analysis was performed to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of each assay alone and in combination.
RESULTS: For Diagnosis: Using a logistic regression analysis with a model consisting of the 3 markers' methylation values, FGFR3 status, age and known smoker status at the diagnosis time we obtained sensitivity/specificity of 97.6 %/84.8 % and an optimism-corrected AUC of 0.96. With an estimated BCa prevalence of 12.1 % in a hematuria cohort, this corresponds to a negative predictive value (NPV) of 99.6 %. For Follow-up: Using a logistic regression with FGFR3 mutation and the CMI at two time points (beginning of the follow-up and current time point), we got sensitivity/specificity/NPV of 90.3 %/65.1 %/97.0 % and a corrected AUC of 0.84. We also tested a thresholding algorithm with FGFR3 mutation and the two time points as described above, obtaining sensitivity/specificity/NPV values of, respectively, 94.5 %/75.9 %/98.5 % and an AUC of 0.82.
CONCLUSIONS: We showed that combined analysis of FGFR3 mutation and DNA methylation markers on urine can be a useful strategy in diagnosis, surveillance and for risk stratification of patients with NMIBC. These results provide the basis for a highly accurate noninvasive test for population screening and allowing to decrease the frequency of cystoscopy, an important feature for both patient quality of life improvement and care cost reduction.

Ilm K, Fuchs S, Mudduluru G, Stein U
MACC1 is post-transcriptionally regulated by miR-218 in colorectal cancer.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(33):53443-53458 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Metastasis is a multistep molecular network process, which is lethal for more than 90% of the cancer patients. Understanding the regulatory functions of metastasis-inducing molecules is in high demand for improved therapeutic cancer approaches. Thus, we studied the post-transcriptional regulation of the crucial carcinogenic and metastasis-mediating molecule metastasis associated in colon cancer 1 (MACC1). In silico analysis revealed MACC1 as a potential target of miR-218, a tumor suppressor miRNA. Expression of these two molecules inversely correlated in colorectal cancer (CRC) cell lines. In a cohort of CRC patient tissues (n = 59), miR-218 is significantly downregulated and MACC1 is upregulated compared with normal mucosa. Luciferase reporter assays with a construct of the MACC1-3'-UTR harboring either the wild type or the mutated miR-218 seed sequence confirmed the specificity of the targeting. miR-218 inhibited significantly MACC1 protein expression, and consistently, MACC1-mediated migration, invasion and colony formation in CRC cells. Anti-miR-218 enhanced the MACC1-mediated migration, invasion and colony formation. Similar findings were observed in the gastric cancer cell line MKN-45. Further, we performed methylation-specific PCR of the SLIT2 and SLIT3 promoter, where miR-218 is encoded in intronic regions. The SLIT2 and SLIT3 promoters are hypermethylated in CRC cell lines. miR-218 and SLIT2 expressions correlated positively. Methyltransferase inhibitor 5-Azacytidine induced miR-218 expression and inhibited the expression of its target MACC1. We also determined that MACC1 has alternative polyadenylation (APA) sites, which results in different lengths of 3'-UTR variants in a CRC cell line. Taken together, miR-218 is post-transcriptionally inhibiting the MACC1 expression and its metastasis-inducing abilities.

Zhao Y, Zhou FL, Li WP, et al.
Slit2‑Robo1 signaling promotes the adhesion, invasion and migration of tongue carcinoma cells via upregulating matrix metalloproteinases 2 and 9, and downregulating E‑cadherin.
Mol Med Rep. 2016; 14(3):1901-6 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Whether Slit homologue 2 (Slit2) inhibits or promotes tumor cell migration remains controversial, and the role of Slit2‑Roundabout 1 (Robo1) signaling in oral cancer remains to be fully elucidated. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of Slit2‑Robo1 signaling in the adhesion, invasion and migration of tongue carcinoma cells, and the mechanism by which Slit2‑Robo1 signaling inhibits or promotes tumor cell migration. Tca8113 tongue carcinoma cells were treated with the monoclonal anti‑human Robo1 antibody, R5, to inhibit the Slit2‑Robo1 signaling pathway, with immunoglobulin (Ig)G2b treatment as a negative control. The expression levels of Slit2 and Robo1 were determined using flow cytometry. The effects of R5 on the adhesion, invasion and migration of Tca8113 tongue carcinoma cells were investigated. Gelatin zymography was used to investigate the activity of matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP2) and MMP9. Western blot analysis was used to evaluate the expression levels of E‑cadherin in Tca8113 cells treated with 10 µg/ml of either R5 or IgG2b. Slit2 and Robo1 proteins were found to be expressed in the Tca8113 cells. R5 significantly inhibited the adhesion, invasion and migration of Tca8113 cells in vitro. R5 also inhibited the activities of MMP2 and MMP9, and increased the expression of E‑cadherin in the Tca8113 cells. These results suggested that Slit2‑Robo1 signaling promoted the adhesion, invasion and migration of tongue carcinoma cells by upregulating the expression levels of MMP2 and MMP9 and, downregulating the expression of E‑cadherin.

Li L, Li C, Mao H, et al.
Epigenetic inactivation of the CpG demethylase TET1 as a DNA methylation feedback loop in human cancers.
Sci Rep. 2016; 6:26591 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Promoter CpG methylation is a fundamental regulatory process of gene expression. TET proteins are active CpG demethylases converting 5-methylcytosine to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, with loss of 5 hmC as an epigenetic hallmark of cancers, indicating critical roles of TET proteins in epigenetic tumorigenesis. Through analysis of tumor methylomes, we discovered TET1 as a methylated target, and further confirmed its frequent downregulation/methylation in cell lines and primary tumors of multiple carcinomas and lymphomas, including nasopharyngeal, esophageal, gastric, colorectal, renal, breast and cervical carcinomas, as well as non-Hodgkin, Hodgkin and nasal natural killer/T-cell lymphomas, although all three TET family genes are ubiquitously expressed in normal tissues. Ectopic expression of TET1 catalytic domain suppressed colony formation and induced apoptosis of tumor cells of multiple tissue types, supporting its role as a broad bona fide tumor suppressor. Furthermore, TET1 catalytic domain possessed demethylase activity in cancer cells, being able to inhibit the CpG methylation of tumor suppressor gene (TSG) promoters and reactivate their expression, such as SLIT2, ZNF382 and HOXA9. As only infrequent mutations of TET1 have been reported, compared to TET2, epigenetic silencing therefore appears to be the dominant mechanism for TET1 inactivation in cancers, which also forms a feedback loop of CpG methylation during tumorigenesis.

Yuan M, Guo H, Li J, et al.
Slit2 and Robo1 induce opposing effects on metastasis of hepatocellular carcinoma Sk-hep-1 cells.
Int J Oncol. 2016; 49(1):305-15 [PubMed] Related Publications
The neural guidance molecular, Slit2, and its cognate receptor, Robo1, play critical roles in the development of the nervous system, nevertheless, their functions are not limited to this system. Numerous studies have shown decreased Slit2 expression in a wide variety of cancers, highlighting its potential as a tumor suppressor. However, the Slit2/Robo1 signaling axis was reported to induce either suppressive or stimulatory effects on tumor growth and metastasis, depending on cellular context. There is a paucity of information on the effects of the Slit2/Robo1 signaling axis on the growth and metastasis of human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Large-scale data mining of the Oncomine database has revealed heterogeneous expression of Slit2 in HCC. We screened the Sk-hep-1, a cell line showing a relatively high level of Slit2, and low level of Robo1 expression. After Slit2 knockdown and Robo1 overexpression in these cells, we found Slit2 and Robo1 exerted opposing effects on tumor growth and metastasis both in in vitro and in vivo models. Slit2 knockdown and Robo1 overexpression in Sk-hep-1 cells promoted tumor growth and metastasis, suggesting a negative and positive role for Slit2 and Robo1, respectively, in tumor progression. Robo1 overexpression upregulated matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)2, -9 and membrane-type1 MMP (MT1-MMP) expression, stimulated MMP2, but not MMP9 activation, and downregulated expression of TIMP1 and 2. The PI3K/Akt signaling pathway is of importance in regulating MMP2 expression in Sk-hep-1 cells, since Robo1 overexpression stimulated phosphorylation of Akt while the PI3K inhibitor LY294002, significantly inhibited the upregulation of MMP2 and also the enhanced cell invasion induced by Robo1 overexpression. We postulate that Robo1 promotes tumor invasion partly by the upregulation of MMP2 after activation of PI3K/Akt signaling pathway. Notably, Slit2 knockdown caused the upregulation of Robo1 expression both at the mRNA and protein levels. Thus, the stimulatory effects of Slit2 knockdown on tumor progression can be ascribed, at least in part, to the upregulation of Robo1 and its positive role in tumor progression.

Kim M, Kim JH, Baek SJ, et al.
Specific expression and methylation of SLIT1, SLIT2, SLIT3, and miR-218 in gastric cancer subtypes.
Int J Oncol. 2016; 48(6):2497-507 [PubMed] Related Publications
SLIT has been suggested as a key regulator of cancer development and a promising therapeutic target for cancer treatment. Herein, we analyzed expression and methylation of SLIT1/SLIT2/SLIT3 in 11 gastric cancer cell lines, 96 paired gastric tumors and adjacent normal gastric tissues, and 250 gastric cancers provided by The Cancer Genome Atlas. Methylation of SLIT1/SLIT2/SLIT3 was found both in early gastric cancers, and in advanced gastric cancers. Even normal gastric tissue showed increased methylation of SLIT1 and SLIT3 that correlated with patient age. Furthermore, epigenetic inactivation of SLIT occurred in a gastric cancer subtype-dependent manner. SLIT2 and SLIT3 expression was reduced in Epstein-Barr virus-positive and microsatellite instability subtypes, but increased in the genomically stable subtype. Expression of miR‑218 correlated negatively with methylation of SLIT2 or SLIT3. These findings suggest that a molecular subtype-specific therapeutic strategy is needed for targeting SLITs and miR-218 in treatment of gastric cancer.

Shi RL, Qu N, Liao T, et al.
Expression, clinical significance and mechanism of Slit2 in papillary thyroid cancer.
Int J Oncol. 2016; 48(5):2055-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
Thyroid cancer is a common endocrine malignancy. The last decade has seen exciting progress in understanding thyroid cancer molecular pathogenesis. Several major signaling pathways and related molecular derangements have been elucidated, which represent novel diagnostic and prognostic molecular markers for thyroid cancer. Based on the molecular biology of thyroid cancer, a series of therapeutic targets have been developed, which provide unprecedented opportunities. Thus, histological characterization of subgroups of patients and the correct molecular characterization of patients are thought to be key aspects for future clinical management of these patients. In the present study, we identified Slit2 as a prognostic marker for thyroid cancer oncogenesis and recurrence. Mechanistically, Slit2 regulated Warburg effect in thyroid cancer cells through regulation of HIF1α and HIF1α transcriptional activity. Taken together, our present data uncovered Slit2 as a novel predictive marker for thyroid cancer. The mechanism study indicated that Slit2 regulated the Warburg effect. Additional study on the function of Slit2 in thyroid cancer is required to provide new insights into the potential mechanisms of oncogenesis and recurrence potential of thyroid cancer.

Ke C, Gao F, Tian X, et al.
Slit2/Robo1 Mediation of Synaptic Plasticity Contributes to Bone Cancer Pain.
Mol Neurobiol. 2017; 54(1):295-307 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synaptic plasticity is fundamental to spinal sensitivity of bone cancer pain. Here, we have shown that excitatory synaptogenesis contributes to bone cancer pain. New synapse formation requires neurite outgrowth and an interaction between axons and dendrites, accompanied by the appositional organization of presynaptic and postsynaptic specializations. We have shown that Slit2, Robo1, and RhoA act as such cues that promote neurite outgrowth and guide the axon for synapse formation. Sarcoma inoculation induces excitatory synaptogenesis and bone cancer pain which are reversed by Slit2 knockdown but aggravated by Robo1 knockdown. Synaptogenesis of cultured neurons are inhibited by Slit2 knockdown but enhanced by Robo1 knockdown. Sarcoma implantation induces an increase in Slit2 and decreases Robo1 and RhoA, while Slit2 knockdown results in an increase of Robo1 and RhoA. These results have demonstrated a molecular mechanism of synaptogenesis in bone cancer pain.

Gu F, Ma Y, Zhang J, et al.
Function of Slit/Robo signaling in breast cancer.
Front Med. 2015; 9(4):431-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Slit and Robo are considered tumor suppressors because they are frequently inactivated in various tumor tissue. These genes are closely correlated with CpG hypermethylation in their promoters. The Slit/Robo signaling pathway is reportedly involved in breast cancer development and metastasis. Overexpression of Slit/ Robo induces its tumor suppressive effects possibly by inactivating the β-catenin/LEF/TCF and PI3K/Akt signaling pathways or by altering β-catenin/E-cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion in breast cancer cells. Furthermore, loss of Slit proteins or their Robo receptors upregulates the CXCL12/CXCR4 signaling axis in human breast carcinoma. In addition, this pathway regulates the distant migration of breast cancer cells not only by mediating the phosphorylation of the downstream molecules of CXCL12/CXCR4 and srGAPs, such as PI3K/ Src, RAFTK/ Pyk2, and CDC42, but also by regulating the activities of MAP kinases. This review includes recent studies on the functions of Slit/Robo signaling in breast cancer and its molecular mechanisms.

Qin F, Zhang H, Ma L, et al.
Low Expression of Slit2 and Robo1 is Associated with Poor Prognosis and Brain-specific Metastasis of Breast Cancer Patients.
Sci Rep. 2015; 5:14430 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Brain metastasis is a significant unmet clinical problem in breast cancer treatment. It is always associated with poor prognosis and high morbidity. Recently, Slit2/Robo1 pathway has been demonstrated to be involved in the progression of breast carcinoma. However, until present, there are no convincing reports that suggest whether the Slit2/Robo1 axis has any role in brain metastasis of breast cancer. In this study, we investigated the correlation between Slit2/Robo1 signaling and breast cancer brain metastasis for the first time. Our results demonstrated that (1) Invasive ductal carcinoma patients with low expression of Slit2 or Robo1 exhibited worse prognosis and brain-specific metastasis, but not liver, bone or lung. (2) Lower expression of Slit2 and Robo1 were observed in patients with brain metastasis, especially in their brain metastasis tumors, compared with patients without brain metastasis. (3) The interval from diagnosis of breast cancer to brain metastasis and brain metastasis to death were both much shorter in patients with low expression of Slit2 or Robo1 compared with the high expression group. Overall, our findings indicated that Slit2/Robo1 axis possibly be regarded as a significant clinical parameter for predicting brain metastasis in breast cancer patients.

Patai ÁV, Valcz G, Hollósi P, et al.
Comprehensive DNA Methylation Analysis Reveals a Common Ten-Gene Methylation Signature in Colorectal Adenomas and Carcinomas.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(8):e0133836 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Microarray analysis of promoter hypermethylation provides insight into the role and extent of DNA methylation in the development of colorectal cancer (CRC) and may be co-monitored with the appearance of driver mutations. Colonic biopsy samples were obtained endoscopically from 10 normal, 23 adenoma (17 low-grade (LGD) and 6 high-grade dysplasia (HGD)), and 8 ulcerative colitis (UC) patients (4 active and 4 inactive). CRC samples were obtained from 24 patients (17 primary, 7 metastatic (MCRC)), 7 of them with synchronous LGD. Field effects were analyzed in tissues 1 cm (n = 5) and 10 cm (n = 5) from the margin of CRC. Tissue materials were studied for DNA methylation status using a 96 gene panel and for KRAS and BRAF mutations. Expression levels were assayed using whole genomic mRNA arrays. SFRP1 was further examined by immunohistochemistry. HT29 cells were treated with 5-aza-2' deoxycytidine to analyze the reversal possibility of DNA methylation. More than 85% of tumor samples showed hypermethylation in 10 genes (SFRP1, SST, BNC1, MAL, SLIT2, SFRP2, SLIT3, ALDH1A3, TMEFF2, WIF1), whereas the frequency of examined mutations were below 25%. These genes distinguished precancerous and cancerous lesions from inflamed and healthy tissue. The mRNA alterations that might be caused by systematic methylation could be partly reversed by demethylation treatment. Systematic changes in methylation patterns were observed early in CRC carcinogenesis, occuring in precursor lesions and CRC. Thus we conclude that DNA hypermethylation is an early and systematic event in colorectal carcinogenesis, and it could be potentially reversed by systematic demethylation therapy, but it would need more in vitro and in vivo experiments to support this theory.

Zhang C, Guo H, Li B, et al.
Effects of Slit3 silencing on the invasive ability of lung carcinoma A549 cells.
Oncol Rep. 2015; 34(2):952-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
Slit proteins function as chemorepellents in axon guidance and neuronal migration by binding to cognate Robo receptors. The Slit/Robo signaling pathway is also involved in the regulation of tumor cell metastasis. However, whether the Slit/Robo signaling pathway exerts prometastatic or antimetastasis functions remains controversial. To date, most of the research on Slit/Robo has focused on Slit2, and the effects of Slit3 on metastasis remain largely unknown. Based on the Oncomine database, overall expression of Slit3 is low in tumor tissues compared to its level in normal tissues. The underlying mechanism for slit3 silencing in tumor tissues is likely related to hypermethylation of the slit3 promoter. However, lung carcinomas appear to be an exception. Several studies have reported that the frequency of Slit3 methylation in lung cancers is far lower than the frequency of Slit2. In the present study, high Slit3 expression at the mRNA level, yet not at the protein level, was detected in lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells. The function of Slit3 in tumor migration and invasion was examined by silencing of Slit3 expression in A549 cells. Silencing of Slit3 promoted proliferation, migration and invasion of A549 cells and induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition by downregulation of E-cadherin and upregulation of vimentin. The inhibitory effects of Slit3 on tumor migration and invasion are likely related to matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). Silencing of Slit3 in the A549 cells enhanced MMP2 and MMP9 expression. These results indicate that Slit3 is a potential tumor suppressor in lung adenocarcinoma.

Hara R, Kikuchi H, Setoguchi T, et al.
Microarray analysis reveals distinct gene set profiles for gastric and intestinal gastrointestinal stromal tumors.
Anticancer Res. 2015; 35(6):3289-98 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM: We sought to address the mechanisms by which intestinal gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) have a markedly higher risk of recurrence than gastric GISTs.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Gene expression levels were compared among six primary gastric, three intestinal and six metastatic liver GISTs using cDNA microarray. Protein levels of Slit homolog 2 (SLIT2) were analyzed by immunohistochemistry in 25 primary gastric and 10 intestinal GIST.
RESULTS: Intestinal GIST had gene expression profiles similar to clinically malignant and metastatic GIST. In gene set-enrichment analysis, the gene sets MITOTIC_CELL CYCLE and NEURON_DIFFERENTIATION were up-regulated and down-regulated, respectively, in intestinal GIST compared to gastric GIST. High-risk gastric GISTs and intestinal GIST, expressed similar levels of SLIT2 protein, which were lower than those of low-risk gastric GISTs.
CONCLUSION: The gene-expression profile of intestinal GISTs was similar to that of metastatic liver GISTs. Besides higher proliferative activity, down-regulation of SLIT2 might be involved in clinically malignant phenotypes of intestinal GIST.

Wang SM, Tie J, Wang WL, et al.
POU2F2-oriented network promotes human gastric cancer metastasis.
Gut. 2016; 65(9):1427-38 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Aberrant upregulation of POU2F2 expression has been discovered in metastatic gastric cancer (GC). However, the mechanisms underlying the aberrant upregulation and the potential functions of POU2F2 remain uncertain.
DESIGN: The role and mechanism of POU2F2 in GC metastasis were investigated in gastric epithelial cells, GC cell lines and an experimental metastasis animal model by gain of function and loss of function. Upstream and downstream targets of POU2F2 were selected by bioinformatics and identified by luciferase reporter assay, electrophoretic mobility shift assay and chromatin immunoprecipitation PCR. The influence of miR-218 on its putative target genes (POU2F2, ROBO1 and IKK-β) and GC metastasis was further explored via in vitro and in vivo approaches.
RESULTS: Increased POU2F2 expression was detected in metastatic GC cell lines and patient samples. POU2F2 was induced by the activation of nuclear factor (NF)-κB and, in turn, regulated ROBO1 transcription, thus functionally contributing to GC metastasis. Finally, miR-218 was found to suppress GC metastasis by simultaneously mediating multiple molecules in the POU2F2-oriented network.
CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrated that NF-κB and the SLIT2/ROBO1 interaction network with POU2F2 as the central part may exert critical effects on tumour metastasis. Blocking the activation of the POU2F2-oriented metastasis network using miR-218 precursors exemplified a promising approach that sheds light on new strategies for GC treatment.

Lai X, Chen Q, Zhu C, et al.
Regulation of RPTPα-c-Src signalling pathway by miR-218.
FEBS J. 2015; 282(14):2722-34 [PubMed] Related Publications
Receptor protein tyrosine phosphatase alpha (RPTPα), an activator of Src family kinases, is found significantly overexpressed in human cancer tissues. However, little is known about the regulation of RPTPα expression. miRNAs target multiple genes and play important roles in many cancer processes. Here, we identified a miRNA, miR-218 that binds directly to the 3'-UTR of RPTPα. Ectopic overexpression of miR-218 decreased RPTPα protein leading to decreased dephosphorylation of c-Src and decreased tumour growth in vitro and in vivo. A feedback loop between c-Src and miR-218 was revealed where c-Src inhibits transcription of SLIT2, which intronically hosts miR-218. These results show a novel regulatory pathway for RPTPα-c-Src signalling.

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