Gene Summary

Gene:YWHAZ; tyrosine 3-monooxygenase/tryptophan 5-monooxygenase activation protein zeta
Aliases: HEL4, YWHAD, KCIP-1, HEL-S-3, HEL-S-93, 14-3-3-zeta
Summary:This gene product belongs to the 14-3-3 family of proteins which mediate signal transduction by binding to phosphoserine-containing proteins. This highly conserved protein family is found in both plants and mammals, and this protein is 99% identical to the mouse, rat and sheep orthologs. The encoded protein interacts with IRS1 protein, suggesting a role in regulating insulin sensitivity. Several transcript variants that differ in the 5' UTR but that encode the same protein have been identified for this gene. [provided by RefSeq, Oct 2008]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:14-3-3 protein zeta/delta
Source:NCBIAccessed: 15 March, 2017


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

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 15 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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

Tag cloud generated 15 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (8)

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: YWHAZ (cancer-related)

Tang Y, Lv P, Sun Z, et al.
14-3-3ζ up-regulates hypoxia-inducible factor-1α in hepatocellular carcinoma via activation of PI3K/Akt/NF-кB signal transduction pathway.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2015; 8(12):15845-53 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
14-3-3ζ protein, a member of 14-3-3 family, plays important roles in multiple cellular processes. Our previous study showed that 14-3-3ζ could bind to regulate the expression of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α), which is induced by hypoxia and a crucial factor for induction of tumor metastasis. Moreover, we also have confirmed the response of 14-3-3ζ to hypoxia in our unpublished data as well. Thus, in the present study, we attempted to reveal that whether the regulation effect of 14-3-3ζ on HIF-1α functioned in a similar pattern as hypoxia. Stable regulation of 14-3-3ζ in human HCC cell line SMMC-772 and HCC-LM3 was achieved. The regulation of 14-3-3ζ on HIF-1α mRNA transcription was evaluated by luciferase activity assay and quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR). The effect of 14-3-3ζ on the production of HIF-1α and pathways determining HIF-1α's response to hypoxia was assessed using western blotting assay. Our results showed that regulation of 14-3-3ζ expression influenced the activity of HIF-1α, phosphatidyl inositol 3-kinase (PI3K), Akt, extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2), and nuclear factor kappa B (NF-кB). Blocking of these pathways using indicated inhibitors revealed that 14-3-3ζ enhanced the production of HIF-1α via the activation of PI3K/Akt/NF-кB pathway, which was identical to hypoxia induced HIF-1α expression. For the first time, our study described the key role of 14-3-3ζ in the HIF-1α production in HCC cells. And the molecule exerted its function on HIF-1α both by directly binding to it and via PI3K/Akt/NF-кB signal transduction pathway.

Moraru E, Vîlcea ID, Mirea CS, et al.
c-abl and YWHAZ gene expression in gastric cancer.
Rom J Morphol Embryol. 2015; 56(2 Suppl):717-23 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study aims to determine the gene expression for c-abl and YWHAZ in gastric cancer and the differences between the c-abl and YWHAZ gene expression inside the tumor versus healthy tissue (at the resection edges). This prospective study included 34 patients with gastric neoplasia, 21 men and 13 women, aged between 49 and 79 years (65.5 years median). After the surgical procedure, in these cases, we collected two tissue samples: one sample was obtained from inside the tumoral tissue and another sample from the gastric tissue, which was identified as normal apparently, as far as possible from the tumor (resection edge). For determining the c-abl and YWHAZ gene expression, we used the quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Regarding the c-abl gene expression in gastric cancer, c-abl expression was identified as lower inside tumor cells comparing to the normal gastric tissue (resection limit). This difference of gene expression emphasize the role of the c-abl gene in normal tissue growth and the involvement in apoptosis induction when alteration of DNA occurs, as a result to different agents actions as stress, ionizing radiations. The loss of expression or even the down-regulation of the c-abl is a fundamental event that leads to genesis and progression of tumors. No significant differences of the YWHAZ gene expression between the tumoral and normal gastric tissue probes were recorded in our study.

Mulvey HE, Chang A, Adler J, et al.
Extracellular vesicle-mediated phenotype switching in malignant and non-malignant colon cells.
BMC Cancer. 2015; 15:571 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are secreted from many cells, carrying cargoes including proteins and nucleic acids. Research has shown that EVs play a role in a variety of biological processes including immunity, bone formation and recently they have been implicated in promotion of a metastatic phenotype.
METHODS: EVs were isolated from HCT116 colon cancer cells, 1459 non-malignant colon fibroblast cells, and tumor and normal colon tissue from a patient sample. Co-cultures were performed with 1459 cells and malignant vesicles, as well as HCT116 cells and non-malignant vesicles. Malignant phenotype was measured using soft agar colony formation assay. Co-cultures were also analyzed for protein levels using mass spectrometry. The importance of 14-3-3 zeta/delta in transfer of malignant phenotype was explored using siRNA. Additionally, luciferase reporter assay was used to measure the transcriptional activity of NF-κB.
RESULTS: This study demonstrates the ability of EVs derived from malignant colon cancer cell line and malignant patient tissue to induce the malignant phenotype in non-malignant colon cells. Similarly, EVs derived from non-malignant colon cell lines and normal patient tissue reversed the malignant phenotype of HCT116 cells. Cells expressing an EV-induced malignant phenotype showed increased transcriptional activity of NF-κB which was inhibited by the NF--κB inhibitor, BAY117082. We also demonstrate that knock down of 14-3-3 zeta/delta reduced anchorage-independent growth of HCT116 cells and 1459 cells co-cultured with HCT derived EVs.
CONCLUSIONS: Evidence of EV-mediated induction of malignant phenotype, and reversal of malignant phenotype, provides rational basis for further study of the role of EVs in tumorigenesis. Identification of 14-3-3 zeta/delta as up-regulated in malignancy suggests its potential as a putative drug target for the treatment of colorectal cancer.

Sachnev V, Saraswathi S, Niaz R, et al.
Multi-class BCGA-ELM based classifier that identifies biomarkers associated with hallmarks of cancer.
BMC Bioinformatics. 2015; 16:166 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Traditional cancer treatments have centered on cytotoxic drugs and general purpose chemotherapy that may not be tailored to treat specific cancers. Identification of molecular markers that are related to different types of cancers might lead to discovery of drugs that are patient and disease specific. This study aims to use microarray gene expression cancer data to identify biomarkers that are indicative of different types of cancers. Our aim is to provide a multi-class cancer classifier that can simultaneously differentiate between cancers and identify type-specific biomarkers, through the application of the Binary Coded Genetic Algorithm (BCGA) and a neural network based Extreme Learning Machine (ELM) algorithm.
RESULTS: BCGA and ELM are combined and used to select a subset of genes that are present in the Global Cancer Mapping (GCM) data set. This set of candidate genes contains over 52 biomarkers that are related to multiple cancers, according to the literature. They include APOA1, VEGFC, YWHAZ, B2M, EIF2S1, CCR9 and many other genes that have been associated with the hallmarks of cancer. BCGA-ELM is tested on several cancer data sets and the results are compared to other classification methods. BCGA-ELM compares or exceeds other algorithms in terms of accuracy. We were also able to show that over 50% of genes selected by BCGA-ELM on GCM data are cancer related biomarkers.
CONCLUSIONS: We were able to simultaneously differentiate between 14 different types of cancers, using only 92 genes, to achieve a multi-class classification accuracy of 95.4% which is between 21.6% and 38% higher than other results in the literature for multi-class cancer classification. Our findings suggest that computational algorithms such as BCGA-ELM can facilitate biomarker-driven integrated cancer research that can lead to a detailed understanding of the complexities of cancer.

Sevcikova S, Paszekova H, Besse L, et al.
Extramedullary relapse of multiple myeloma defined as the highest risk group based on deregulated gene expression data.
Biomed Pap Med Fac Univ Palacky Olomouc Czech Repub. 2015; 159(2):288-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Multiple myeloma (MM) is characterized by malignant proliferation of plasma cells (PC) which accumulate in the bone marrow (BM). The advent of new drugs has changed the course of the disease from incurable to treatable, but most patients eventually relapse. One group of MM patients (10-15%) is considered high-risk because they relapse within 24 months. Recently, extramedullary relapse of MM (EM) has been observed more frequently. Due to its aggressivity and shorter survival, EM is also considered high-risk.
AIMS: The goal of this study was to determine if the so-called high-risk genes published by the University of Arkansas group (UAMS) are even more deregulated in EM patients than in high-risk MM patients and if these patients may be considered high-risk.
METHODS: Nine samples of bone marrow plasma cells from MM patients as well as 9 tumors and 9 bone marrow plasma cells from EM patients were used. Quantitative real-time PCR was used for evaluation of expression of 15 genes connected to the high-risk signature of MM patients.
RESULTS: Comparison of high-risk plasma cells vs extramedullary plasma cells revealed 4 significantly deregulated genes (CKS1B, CTBS, NADK, YWHAZ); moreover, comparison of extramedullary plasma cells vs extramedullary tumors revealed significant differences in 9 out of 15 genes. Of these, 6 showed significant changes as described by the UAMS group (ASPM, SLC19A1, NADK, TBRG4, TMPO and LARS2).
CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest that increasing genetic abnormalities as described by the gene expression data are associated with increased risk for EM relapse.

Viedma-Rodríguez R, Ruiz Esparza-Garrido R, Baiza-Gutman LA, et al.
Involvement of multiple cellular pathways in regulating resistance to tamoxifen in BIK-suppressed MCF-7 cells.
Tumour Biol. 2015; 36(9):6991-7005 [PubMed] Related Publications
Majority of women with estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancers initially respond to hormone therapies such as tamoxifen (TAM; antagonist of estrogen). However, many tumors eventually become resistant to TAM. Therefore, understanding the various cellular components involved in causing resistance to TAM is of paramount importance in designing novel entities for efficacious hormone therapy. Previously, we found that suppression of BIK gene expression induced TAM resistance in MCF-7 breast cancer cells. In order to understand the response of these cells to TAM and its association with resistance, a microarray analysis of gene expression was performed in the BIK-suppressed MCF-7 cells and compared it to the TAM-only-treated cells (controls). Several genes participating in various cellular pathways were identified. Molecules identified in the drug resistance pathway were 14-3-3z or YWHAZ, WEE1, PRKACA, NADK, and HSP90AA 1. Further, genes involved in cell cycle control, apoptosis, and cell proliferation were also found differentially expressed in these cells. Transcriptional and translational analysis of key molecules such as STAT2, AKT 3, and 14-3-3z revealed similar changes at the messenger RNA (mRNA) as well as at the protein level. Importantly, there was no cytotoxic effect of TAM on BIK-suppressed MCF-7 cells. Further, these cells were not arrested at the G0-G1 phase of the cell cycle although 30 % of BIK-suppressed cells were arrested at the G2 phase of the cycle on TAM treatment. Furthermore, we found a relevant interaction between 14-3-3z and WEE1, suggesting that the cytotoxic effect of TAM was prevented in BIK-suppressed cells because this interaction leads to transitory arrest in the G2 phase leading to the repair of damaged DNA and allowing the cells to proliferate.

Potashnikova D, Gladkikh A, Vorobjev IA
Selection of superior reference genes' combination for quantitative real-time PCR in B-cell lymphomas.
Ann Clin Lab Sci. 2015; 45(1):64-72 [PubMed] Related Publications
Normalization of real-time quantitative PCR data to appropriate reference genes is crucial to accurately interpret results. Many genes commonly used as reference standards do not perform as expected, depending on cell type and experimental design. In our previous work, we addressed the issue of suitable reference genes for lymphoid tissue and successfully applied the normalization factor-based approach to discriminate lymphoid malignancies according to their cyclin D1 mRNA level. Here, we addressed the problem of reference gene selection and sufficient number on an enlarged sample set with seven candidate genes. The experimental set included 165 samples of spleens, lymph nodes, and peripheral blood mononuclear cells from patients with different types of non-Hodgkin lymphomas along with non-neoplastic lymphoid specimens. For the first time, we compared all major stability ranking algorithms of Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) applets geNorm, BestKeeper, and NormFinder and tested candidate reference genes on a large and heterogeneous set of fresh clinical lymphoid samples. We concluded that a normalization-based approach using three reference genes (YWHAZ, UBC and ACTB) allows for robust reduction of the variance in real-time PCR results and that the further addition of reference genes does not improve data normalization. This creates a clinically applicable tool for PCR-based lymphoma diagnostics.

Xu J, Acharya S, Sahin O, et al.
14-3-3ζ turns TGF-β's function from tumor suppressor to metastasis promoter in breast cancer by contextual changes of Smad partners from p53 to Gli2.
Cancer Cell. 2015; 27(2):177-92 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) functions as a tumor suppressor in premalignant cells but as a metastasis promoter in cancer cells. The dichotomous functions of TGF-β are proposed to be dictated by different partners of its downstream effector Smads. However, the mechanism for the contextual changes of Smad partners remained undefined. Here, we demonstrate that 14-3-3ζ destabilizes p53, a Smad partner in premalignant mammary epithelial cells, by downregulating 14-3-3σ, thus turning off TGF-β's tumor suppression function. Conversely, 14-3-3ζ stabilizes Gli2 in breast cancer cells, and Gli2 partners with Smads to activate PTHrP and promote TGF-β-induced bone metastasis. The 14-3-3ζ-driven contextual changes of Smad partners from p53 to Gli2 may serve as biomarkers and therapeutic targets of TGF-β-mediated cancer progression.

Coumans JV, Gau D, Poljak A, et al.
Profilin-1 overexpression in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells is associated with alterations in proteomics biomarkers of cell proliferation, survival, and motility as revealed by global proteomics analyses.
OMICS. 2014; 18(12):778-91 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Despite early screening programs and new therapeutic strategies, metastatic breast cancer is still the leading cause of cancer death in women in industrialized countries and regions. There is a need for novel biomarkers of susceptibility, progression, and therapeutic response. Global analyses or systems science approaches with omics technologies offer concrete ways forward in biomarker discovery for breast cancer. Previous studies have shown that expression of profilin-1 (PFN1), a ubiquitously expressed actin-binding protein, is downregulated in invasive and metastatic breast cancer. It has also been reported that PFN1 overexpression can suppress tumorigenic ability and motility/invasiveness of breast cancer cells. To obtain insights into the underlying molecular mechanisms of how elevating PFN1 level induces these phenotypic changes in breast cancer cells, we investigated the alteration in global protein expression profiles of breast cancer cells upon stable overexpression of PFN1 by a combination of three different proteome analysis methods (2-DE, iTRAQ, label-free). Using MDA-MB-231 as a model breast cancer cell line, we provide evidence that PFN1 overexpression is associated with alterations in the expression of proteins that have been functionally linked to cell proliferation (FKPB1A, HDGF, MIF, PRDX1, TXNRD1, LGALS1, STMN1, LASP1, S100A11, S100A6), survival (HSPE1, HSPB1, HSPD1, HSPA5 and PPIA, YWHAZ, CFL1, NME1) and motility (CFL1, CORO1B, PFN2, PLS3, FLNA, FLNB, NME2, ARHGDIB). In view of the pleotropic effects of PFN1 overexpression in breast cancer cells as suggested by these new findings, we propose that PFN1-induced phenotypic changes in cancer cells involve multiple mechanisms. Our data reported here might also offer innovative strategies for identification and validation of novel therapeutic targets and companion diagnostics for persons with, or susceptibility to, breast cancer.

Wegdam W, Argmann CA, Kramer G, et al.
Label-free LC-MSe in tissue and serum reveals protein networks underlying differences between benign and malignant serous ovarian tumors.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(9):e108046 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: To identify proteins and (molecular/biological) pathways associated with differences between benign and malignant epithelial ovarian tumors.
EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES: Serum of six patients with a serous adenocarcinoma of the ovary was collected before treatment, with a control group consisting of six matched patients with a serous cystadenoma. In addition to the serum, homogeneous regions of cells exhibiting uniform histology were isolated from benign and cancerous tissue by laser microdissection. We subsequently employed label-free liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MSe) to identify proteins in these serum and tissues samples. Analyses of differential expression between samples were performed using Bioconductor packages and in-house scripts in the statistical software package R. Hierarchical clustering and pathway enrichment analyses were performed, as well as network enrichment and interactome analysis using MetaCore.
RESULTS: In total, we identified 20 and 71 proteins that were significantly differentially expressed between benign and malignant serum and tissue samples, respectively. The differentially expressed protein sets in serum and tissue largely differed with only 2 proteins in common. MetaCore network analysis, however inferred GCR-alpha and Sp1 as common transcriptional regulators. Interactome analysis highlighted 14-3-3 zeta/delta, 14-3-3 beta/alpha, Alpha-actinin 4, HSP60, and PCBP1 as critical proteins in the tumor proteome signature based on their relative overconnectivity. The data have been deposited to the ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD001084.
DISCUSSION: Our analysis identified proteins with both novel and previously known associations to ovarian cancer biology. Despite the small overlap between differentially expressed protein sets in serum and tissue, APOA1 and Serotransferrin were significantly lower expressed in both serum and cancer tissue samples, suggesting a tissue-derived effect in serum. Pathway and subsequent interactome analysis also highlighted common regulators in serum and tissue samples, suggesting a yet unknown role for PCBP1 in ovarian cancer pathophysiology.

Reichl P, Dengler M, van Zijl F, et al.
Axl activates autocrine transforming growth factor-β signaling in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Hepatology. 2015; 61(3):930-41 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
UNLABELLED: In hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), intrahepatic metastasis frequently correlates with epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) of malignant hepatocytes. Several mechanisms have been identified to be essentially involved in hepatocellular EMT, among them transforming growth factor (TGF)-β signaling. Here we show the up-regulation and activation of the receptor tyrosine kinase Axl in EMT-transformed hepatoma cells. Knockdown of Axl expression resulted in abrogation of invasive and transendothelial migratory abilities of mesenchymal HCC cells in vitro and Axl overexpression-induced metastatic colonization of epithelial hepatoma cells in vivo. Importantly, Axl knockdown severely impaired resistance to TGF-β-mediated growth inhibition. Analysis of the Axl interactome revealed binding of Axl to 14-3-3ζ, which is essentially required for Axl-mediated cell invasion, transendothelial migration, and resistance against TGF-β. Axl/14-3-3ζ signaling caused phosphorylation of Smad3 linker region (Smad3L) at Ser213, resulting in the up-regulation of tumor-progressive TGF-β target genes such as PAI1, MMP9, and Snail as well as augmented TGF-β1 secretion in mesenchymal HCC cells. Accordingly, high Axl expression in HCC patient samples correlated with elevated vessel invasion of HCC cells, higher risk of tumor recurrence after liver transplantation, strong phosphorylation of Smad3L, and lower survival. In addition, elevated expression of both Axl and 14-3-3ζ showed strongly reduced survival of HCC patients.
CONCLUSION: Our data suggest that Axl/14-3-3ζ signaling is central for TGF-β-mediated HCC progression and a promising target for HCC therapy.

Chen M, Liu T, Xu L, et al.
Direct interaction of 14-3-3ζ with ezrin promotes cell migration by regulating the formation of membrane ruffle.
J Mol Biol. 2014; 426(18):3118-33 [PubMed] Related Publications
14-3-3 proteins have been shown to regulate the actin cytoskeleton remodeling, cell adhesion and migration. In this study, we identified ezrin, a cross-linker between plasma membrane and actin cytoskeleton, as a novel 14-3-3ζ interacting partner. The direct interaction between 14-3-3ζ and ezrin was validated in the cells and by in vitro assays. We showed that the 14-3-3ζ binding region in ezrin was located within the N-terminal and central α-helical domains and that the αG-to-αI helices of 14-3-3ζ are responsible for the binding to ezrin. Functional analyses revealed that the regulation of cell migration and membrane ruffling by 14-3-3ζ is ezrin dependent, for which the integrity of ezrin protein was required. Conversely, the knockdown of 14-3-3ζ abrogates also the stimulatory effect of ezrin on cell migration and membrane ruffling. Moreover, we found that the phosphorylation of Thr567 in ezrin facilitates the 14-3-3ζ-ezrin interaction and the formation of membrane ruffles. Taken together, these results suggest strongly that the functions of these two proteins in cell migration are linked and might be mediated by their direct physical interaction, which is important for the formation of membrane ruffles.

Krzystek-Korpacka M, Diakowska D, Bania J, Gamian A
Expression stability of common housekeeping genes is differently affected by bowel inflammation and cancer: implications for finding suitable normalizers for inflammatory bowel disease studies.
Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2014; 20(7):1147-56 [PubMed] Related Publications
Instability of housekeeping genes (HKG), supposedly unregulated and hence used as normalizers, may dramatically change conclusions of quantitative PCR experiments. The effect of bowel inflammation on HKG remains unknown. Expression stability of 15 HKG (ACTB, B2M, GAPDH, GUSB, HPRT1, IPO8, MRPL19, PGK1, PPIA, RPLP0, RPS23, SDHA, TBP, UBC, and YWHAZ) in 166 bowel specimens (91 normal, 35 cancerous, and 40 inflamed) was ranked by coefficients of variation (CV%) or using dedicated software: geNorm and NormFinder. The RPS23, PPIA, and RPLP0 were top-ranked, whereas IPO8, UBC and TBP were the lowest-ranked HKG across inflamed/cancerous/normal colonic tissues. The pairs RPS23/RPLP0, PGK1/MRPL19, or PPIA/RPLP0 were optimal reference by CV%, NormFinder, and geNorm, respectively. Colon inflammation affected HKG more pronouncedly than cancer with ACTB significantly down- and B2M upregulated. In inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), different genes were top-ranked in a large and small bowel, whereas TBP, UBC, and IPO8 were lowest-ranked in both. For patients with IBD at large, RPS23/PPIA, PGK1/MRPL19, and PPIA/RPLP0 were found optimal by CV%, NormFinder, and geNorm, respectively. ACTB and B2M expression was related to CRC stage and positively correlated with clinical activity of IBD. Although GAPDH was upregulated neither in CRC nor IBD, it tended to positively correlate with tumor depth and Crohn's disease activity index. Normalizing against GAPDH affected experimental conclusions in a small but not large bowel. Bowel inflammation significantly affects several classic HKG. The pair PPIA/RPLP0 is a common optimal reference for studies encompassing tissues sampled from colorectal cancer and IBD patients. Using ACTB or B2M is not recommended.

Zhao GY, Ding JY, Lu CL, et al.
The overexpression of 14-3-3ζ and Hsp27 promotes non–small cell lung cancer progression.
Cancer. 2014; 120(5):652-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The 14-3-3ζ protein has been identified as a putative oncoprotein in several cancers, including non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, the mechanisms underlying its functions have not been well defined.
METHODS: Proteins that interact with 14-3-3ζ were identified through coimmunoprecipitation and mass spectrometry in NSCLC cells. The interaction of 14-3-3ζ with these molecular partners and their roles in the invasiveness and metastasis of NSCLC cells were assayed through specific disruptions in the 14-3-3ζ signaling network. In addition, the clinical implications of this 14-3-3ζ complex were examined in samples from patients with NSCLC.
RESULTS: Among the identified proteins that interacted with 14-3-3ζ, there were 230 proteins in 95-D cells, 181 proteins in 95-C cells, and 203 proteins in A549 cells; and 16 interacting proteins were identified that overlapped between all cell lines. Further studies revealed 14-3-3ζ complexes within the heat shock protein 27 (Hsp27) protein and demonstrated that the interference of Hsp27 or 14-3-3ζ inhibited the invasion and metastasis of NSCLC cells. The invasive and metastatic capabilities of cells with both Hsp27 and 14-3-3ζ interference could be completely restored only by Hsp27 and 14-3-3ζ complementary DNA transfection and not by either agent alone. Clinically, the postoperative 5-year overall survival (OS) in patients who had high expression of both 14-3-3ζ and Hsp27 was significantly lower than the 5-year OS in patients who had low expression of both 14-3-3ζ and Hsp27 (26.5% vs 59.7%, respectively). Multivariate analysis revealed that the combined expression of 14-3-3ζ and Hsp27 was an independent prognostic indicator of OS(P = .036).
CONCLUSIONS: The current data suggest that the combined expression of 14-3-3ζ and Hsp27 may be a biomarker for predicting survival in patients with NSCLC, and this combination may have potential as a therapeutic target for NSCLC.

Zhang Y, Yang Y, Chen L, Zhang J
Expression analysis of genes and pathways associated with liver metastases of the uveal melanoma.
BMC Med Genet. 2014; 15:29 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Uveal melanoma is an aggressive cancer which has a high percentage metastasizing to the liver, with a worse prognosis. Identification of patients at high risk of metastases may provide information for early detection of metastases and treatment.
METHODS: Expression profiling of ocular tumor tissues from 46 liver metastatic uveal melanoma samples and 45 non-metastatic uveal melanoma samples were got from GEO database. Bioinformatic analyses such as the Gene Oncology and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes were used to identify genes and pathways specifically associated with liver metastases of the uveal melanoma.
RESULTS: A total of 1138 probes were differentially expressed in two group samples. All differential gene interactions in the Signal-Net were analyzed. Of them, 768 probes were up-regulated and 370 down-regulated. They mainly participated in 125 GO terms and 16 pathways. Of the genes differentially expressed between two group cancers, HTR2B, CHL1, the ZNF family, YWHAZ and FYN were the most significantly altered.
CONCLUSIONS: Bioinformatics may help excavate and analyze large amounts of data in microarrays by means of rigorous experimental planning, scientific statistical analysis and collection of complete data about liver metastases of uveal melanoma patients. In the present study, a novel differential gene expression pattern was constructed and advanced study will provide new targets for diagnosis and mechanism of uveal melanoma liver metastases.

Yu H, Lin CC, Li YY, Zhao Z
Dynamic protein interaction modules in human hepatocellular carcinoma progression.
BMC Syst Biol. 2013; 7 Suppl 5:S2 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Gene expression profiles have been frequently integrated with the human protein interactome to uncover functional modules under specific conditions like disease state. Beyond traditional differential expression analysis, differential co-expression analysis has emerged as a robust approach to reveal condition-specific network modules, with successful applications in a few human disease studies. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), which is often interrelated with the Hepatitis C virus, typically develops through multiple stages. A comprehensive investigation of HCC progression-specific differential co-expression modules may advance our understanding of HCC's pathophysiological mechanisms.
RESULTS: Compared with differentially expressed genes, differentially co-expressed genes were found more likely enriched with Hepatitis C virus binding proteins and cancer-mutated genes, and they were clustered more densely in the human reference protein interaction network. These observations indicated that a differential co-expression approach could outperform the standard differential expression network analysis in searching for disease-related modules. We then proposed a differential co-expression network approach to uncover network modules involved in HCC development. Specifically, we discovered subnetworks that enriched differentially co-expressed gene pairs in each HCC transition stage, and further resolved modules with coherent co-expression change patterns over all HCC developmental stages. Our identified network modules were enriched with HCC-related genes and implicated in cancer-related biological functions. In particular, APC and YWHAZ were highlighted as two most remarkable genes in the network modules, and their dynamic interaction partnership was resolved in HCC development.
CONCLUSIONS: We demonstrated that integration of differential co-expression with the protein interactome could outperform the traditional differential expression approach in discovering network modules of human diseases. In our application of this approach to HCC's gene expression data, we successfully identified subnetworks with marked differential co-expression in individual HCC stage transitions and network modules with coherent co-expression change patterns over all HCC developmental stages. Our results shed light on subtle HCC mechanisms, including temporal activation and dismissal of pivotal functions and dynamic interaction partnerships of key genes.

Zhan C, Zhang Y, Ma J, et al.
Identification of reference genes for qRT-PCR in human lung squamous-cell carcinoma by RNA-Seq.
Acta Biochim Biophys Sin (Shanghai). 2014; 46(4):330-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although the accuracy of quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) is highly dependent on the reliable reference genes, many commonly used reference genes are not stably expressed and as such are not suitable for quantification and normalization of qRT-PCR data. The aim of this study was to identify novel reliable reference genes in lung squamous-cell carcinoma. We used RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) to survey the whole genome expression in 5 lung normal samples and 44 lung squamous-cell carcinoma samples. We evaluated the expression profiles of 15 commonly used reference genes and identified five additional candidate reference genes. To validate the RNA-Seq dataset, we used qRT-PCR to verify the expression levels of these 20 genes in a separate set of 100 pairs of normal lung tissue and lung squamous-cell carcinoma samples, and then analyzed these results using geNorm and NormFinder. With respect to 14 of the 15 common reference genes (B2M, GAPDH, GUSB, HMBS, HPRT1, IPO8, PGK1, POLR2A, PPIA, RPLP0, TBP, TFRC, UBC, and YWHAZ), the expression levels were either too low to be easily detected, or exhibited a high degree of variability either between lung normal and squamous-cell carcinoma samples, or even among samples of the same tissue type. In contrast, 1 of the 15 common reference genes (ACTB) and the 5 additional candidate reference genes (EEF1A1, FAU, RPS9, RPS11, and RPS14) were stably and constitutively expressed at high levels in all the samples tested. ACTB, EEF1A1, FAU, RPS9, RPS11, and RPS14 are ideal reference genes for qRT-PCR analysis of lung squamous-cell carcinoma, while 14 commonly used qRT-PCR reference genes are less appropriate in this context.

van Rijn SJ, Riemers FM, van den Heuvel D, et al.
Expression stability of reference genes for quantitative RT-PCR of healthy and diseased pituitary tissue samples varies between humans, mice, and dogs.
Mol Neurobiol. 2014; 49(2):893-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Pituitary surgery generates pituitary tissue for histology, immunohistochemistry, and molecular biological research. In the last decade, the pathogenesis of pituitary adenomas has been extensively studied in humans, and to a lesser degree in dogs, and tumor oncogenesis has been studied in knock-out mice, often by means of quantitative reversed-transcriptase PCR (RT-qPCR). A precondition of such analyses is that so-called reference genes are stably expressed regardless of changes in disease status or treatment. In this study, the expression of six frequently used reference genes, namely, tata box binding protein (tbp), tyrosine 3-monooxygenase/tryptophan 5-monooxygenase activation protein, zeta polypeptide (ywhaz), hydroxymethylbilane synthase (hmbs), beta-2-microglobulin (b2m), succinate dehydrogenase complex subunit A (sdha), and glyceraldehyde 3 phosphate dehydrogenase 1 (gapdh), was studied in pituitary tissue (normal and adenoma) from three species (humans, mice, and dogs). The stability of expression of these reference genes differed between species and between healthy and diseased tissue within one species. Quantitative analysis based on a single reference gene that is assumed to be stably expressed might lead to wrong conclusions. This cross-species analysis clearly emphasizes the need to evaluate the expression stability of reference genes as a standard and integral aspect of study design and data analysis, in order to improve the validity of the conclusions drawn on the basis of quantitative molecular analyses.

Menon R, Deng M, Rüenauver K, et al.
Somatic copy number alterations by whole-exome sequencing implicates YWHAZ and PTK2 in castration-resistant prostate cancer.
J Pathol. 2013; 231(4):505-16 [PubMed] Related Publications
Castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) is the most aggressive form of prostate cancer (PCa) and remains a significant therapeutic challenge. The key to the development of novel therapeutic targets for CRPC is to decipher the molecular alterations underlying this lethal disease. The aim of our study was to identify therapeutic targets for CRPC by assessing somatic copy number alterations (SCNAs) by whole-exome sequencing on five CRPC/normal paired formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) samples, using the SOLiD4 next-generation sequencing (NGS) platform. Data were validated using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) on a PCa progression cohort. PTK2 and YWHAZ amplification, mRNA and protein expression were determined in selected PCa cell lines. Effects of PTK2 inhibition using TAE226 inhibitor and YWHAZ knock-down on cell proliferation and migration were tested in PC3 cells in vitro. In a larger validation cohort, the amplification frequency of YWHAZ was 3% in localized PCa and 48% in CRPC, whereas PTK2 was amplified in 1% of localized PCa and 35% in CRPC. YWHAZ knock-down and PTK2 inhibition significantly affected cell proliferation and migration in the PC3 cells. Our findings suggest that inhibition of YWHAZ and PTK2 could delay the progression of the disease in CRPC patients harbouring amplification of the latter genes. Furthermore, our validated whole-exome sequencing data show that FFPE tissue could be a promising alternative for SCNA screening using next-generation sequencing technologies.

Panagopoulos K, Cross-Knorr S, Dillard C, et al.
Reversal of chemosensitivity and induction of cell malignancy of a non-malignant prostate cancer cell line upon extracellular vesicle exposure.
Mol Cancer. 2013; 12(1):118 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Extracellular vesicle (EV) trafficking is a fundamental cellular process that occurs in cells and is required for different aspects of pathophysiology. EV trafficking leads to changes in cellular function including apoptosis, angiogenesis and proliferation required for increased tumor formation.
RESULTS: We report several phenotypic changes mediated by EVs isolated from non-malignant and malignant prostate cells as well as patient biopsied prostate tumor samples. EVs can reverse the resistance of prostate cancer cells to camptothecin EVs isolated from non-malignant PrECs (Prostate Epithelial Cells) can reverse soft agar colony formation of malignant DU145 cells, with the reciprocal effect observed. Isolation of EVs from 2 Gleason grade 8 prostate cancer patients significantly induced soft agar colony formation of non-malignant PrECs. We have identified proteins via antibody and Mass spectrometry analysis that may be responsible for the phenotypic changes. Mass spectrometry analysis of protein lysates using ProteoIQ revealed protein candidates associated with gene ontology annotations that may be responsible for this phenotypic change. Ingenuity Pathway Analysis was used to identify statistically relevant canonical pathways and functions associated the protein IDs and expression values obtained using ProteoIQ. Western blot analysis confirmed the increase of 14-3-3 zeta, pRKIP and prohibitin protein levels in PrEC cells co-cultured with patient EVs. 14-3-3 proteins were also found as common proteins of 3 other Gleason grade 8 patients.
CONCLUSION: Our study provides a rational basis to further investigate putative proteins, such as 14-3-3 and prohibitin and genetic factors that may be responsible for phenotypic changes that are associated with prostate cancer progression.

Huang YD, Shan W, Zeng L, Wu Y
Screening of differentially expressed genes related to bladder cancer and functional analysis with DNA microarray.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2013; 14(8):4553-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to identify genes related to bladder cancer with samples from normal and disease cases by microarray chip.
METHODS: After downloading the gene expression profile GSE3167 from Gene Expression Omnibus database which includes 50 bladder samples, comprising 9 normal and 41 disease samples, differentially expressed genes were identified with packages in R language. The selected differentially expressed genes were further analyzed using bioinformatics methods. Firstly, molecular functions, biological processes and cell component analysis were researched by software Gestalt. Then, software String was used to search interaction relationships among differentially expressed genes, and hub genes of the network were selected. Finally, by using plugins of software Cytoscape, Mcode and Bingo, module analysis of hub-genes was performed.
RESULTS: A total of 221 genes were identified as differentially expressed by comparing normal and disease bladder samples, and a network as well as the hub gene C1QBP was obtained from the network. The C1QBP module had the closest relationship to production of molecular mediators involved in inflammatory responses.
CONCLUSION: We obtained differentially expressed genes of bladder cancer by microarray, and both PRDX2 and YWHAZ in the module with hub gene C1QBP were most significantly related to production of molecular mediators involved in inflammatory responses. From knowledge of inflammatory responses and cancer, our results showed that, the hub gene and its module could induce inflammation in bladder cancer. These related genes are candidate bio-markers for bladder cancer diagnosis and might be helpful in designing novel therapies.

Wu C, Wang X, Zhong M, et al.
Evaluation of potential reference genes for qRT-PCR studies in human hepatoma cell lines treated with TNF-α.
Acta Biochim Biophys Sin (Shanghai). 2013; 45(9):780-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
In this study, the expression of eight candidate reference genes, B2M, ACTB, GAPDH, HMBS, HPRT1, TBP, UBC, and YWHAZ, was examined to identify optimal reference genes by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) analysis in two human hepatoma cell lines, BEL-7402 and SMMC-7721, treated with tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) for different time periods. The expression stability of these genes was analyzed by three independent algorithms: geNorm, NormFinder, and BestKeeper. Results showed that TBP was the most stably expressed gene in BEL-7402 and SMMC-7721 cell lines under current experimental conditions, and that the optimal set of reference genes required for accurate normalization was TBP and HMBS, based on the pairwise variation value determined with geNorm. UBC and ACTB were ranked as the least stable genes by same algorithms. Our findings provide evidence that using TBP alone or in combination with HMBS as endogenous controls could be a reliable method for normalizing qRT-PCR data in human hepatoma cell lines treated with TNF-α.

Mu Y, Chen Y, Zhang G, et al.
Identification of stromal differentially expressed proteins in the colon carcinoma by quantitative proteomics.
Electrophoresis. 2013; 34(11):1679-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
Tumor microenvironment plays very important roles in the carcinogenesis. A variety of stromal cells in the microenvironment have been modified to support the unique needs of the malignant state. This study was to discover stromal differentially expressed proteins (DEPs) that were involved in colon carcinoma carcinogenesis. Laser capture microdissection (LCM) was captured and isolated the stromal cells from colon adenocarcinoma (CAC) and non-neoplastic colon mucosa (NNCM) tissues, respectively. Seventy DEPs were identified between the pooled LCM-enriched CAC and NNCM stroma samples by iTRAQ-based quantitative proteomics. Gene Ontology (GO) relationship analysis revealed that DEPs were hierarchically grouped into 10 clusters, and were involved in multiple biological functions that were altered during carcinogenesis, including extracellular matrix organization, cytoskeleton, transport, metabolism, inflammatory response, protein polymerization, and cell motility. Pathway network analysis revealed 6 networks and 56 network eligible proteins with Ingenuity pathway analysis. Four significant networks functioned in digestive system development and its function, inflammatory disease, and developmental disorder. Eight DEPs (DCN, FN1, PKM2, HSP90B1, S100A9, MYH9, TUBB, and YWHAZ) were validated by Western blotting, and four DEPs (DCN, FN1, PKM2, and HSP90B1) were validated by immunohistochemical analysis. It is the first report of stromal DEPs between CAC and NNCM tissues. It will be helpful to recognize the roles of stromas in the colon carcinoma microenvironment, and improve the understanding of carcinogenesis in colon carcinoma. The present data suggest that DCN, FN1, PKM2, HSP90B1, S100A9, MYH9, TUBB, and YWHAZ might be the potential targets for colon cancer prevention and therapy.

Nishimura Y, Komatsu S, Ichikawa D, et al.
Overexpression of YWHAZ relates to tumor cell proliferation and malignant outcome of gastric carcinoma.
Br J Cancer. 2013; 108(6):1324-31 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Several studies have demonstrated that YWHAZ (14-3-3ζ), included in the 14-3-3 family of proteins, has been implicated in the initiation and progression of cancers. We tested whether YWHAZ acted as a cancer-promoting gene through its activation/overexpression in gastric cancer (GC).
METHODS: We analysed 7 GC cell lines and 141 primary tumours, which were curatively resected in our hospital between 2001 and 2003.
RESULTS: Overexpression of the YWHAZ protein was frequently detected in GC cell lines (six out of seven lines, 85.7%) and primary tumour samples of GC (72 out of 141 cases, 51%), and significantly correlated with larger tumour size, venous and lymphatic invasion, deeper tumour depth, and higher pathological stage and recurrence rate. Patients with YWHAZ-overexpressing tumours had worse overall survival rates than those with non-expressing tumours in both intensity and proportion expression-dependent manner. YWHAZ positivity was independently associated with a worse outcome in multivariate analysis (P=0.0491, hazard ratio 2.3 (1.003-5.304)). Knockdown of YWHAZ expression using several specific siRNAs inhibited the proliferation, migration, and invasion of YWHAZ-overexpressing GC cells. Higher expression of the YWHAZ protein was significantly associated with the lower expression of miR-375 in primary GC tissues (P=0.0047).
CONCLUSION: These findings suggest that YWHAZ has a pivotal role in tumour cell proliferation through its overexpression, and highlight its usefulness as a prognostic factor and potential therapeutic target in GC.

Souza AF, Brum IS, Neto BS, et al.
Reference gene for primary culture of prostate cancer cells.
Mol Biol Rep. 2013; 40(4):2955-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
Selection of reference genes to normalize mRNA levels between samples is critical for gene expression studies because their expression can vary depending on the tissues or cells used and the experimental conditions. We performed ten cell cultures from samples of prostate cancer. Cells were divided into three groups: control (with no transfection protocol), cells transfected with siRNA specific to knockdown the androgen receptor and cells transfected with inespecific siRNAs. After 24 h, mRNA was extracted and gene expression was analyzed by Real-time qPCR. Nine candidates to reference genes for gene expression studies in this model were analyzed (aminolevulinate, delta-, synthase 1 (ALAS1); beta-actin (ACTB); beta-2-microglobulin (B2M); glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH); hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase 1 (HPRT1); succinate dehydrogenase complex, subunit A, flavoprotein (Fp) (SDHA); TATA box binding protein (TBP); ubiquitin C (UBC); tyrosine 3-monooxygenase/tryptophan 5-monooxygenase activation protein, zeta polypeptide (YWHAZ)). Expression stability was calculated NormFinder algorithm to find the most stable genes. NormFinder calculated SDHA as the most stable gene and the gene with the lowest intergroup and intragroup variation, and indicated GAPDH and SDHA as the best combination of two genes for the purpose of normalization. Androgen receptor mRNA expression was evaluated after normalization by each candidate gene and showed statistical difference in the transfected group compared to control group only when normalized by combination of GAPDH and SDHA. Based on the algorithm analysis, the combination of SDHA and GAPDH should be used to normalize target genes mRNA levels in primary culture of prostate cancer cells submitted to transfection with siRNAs.

Masui O, White NM, DeSouza LV, et al.
Quantitative proteomic analysis in metastatic renal cell carcinoma reveals a unique set of proteins with potential prognostic significance.
Mol Cell Proteomics. 2013; 12(1):132-44 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Metastatic renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is one of the most treatment-resistant malignancies, and patients have a dismal prognosis, with a <10% five-year survival rate. The identification of markers that can predict the potential for metastases will have a great effect in improving patient outcomes. In this study, we used differential proteomics with isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) labeling and LC-MS/MS analysis to identify proteins that are differentially expressed in metastatic and primary RCC. We identified 1256 non-redundant proteins, and 456 of these were quantified. Further analysis identified 29 proteins that were differentially expressed (12 overexpressed and 17 underexpressed) in metastatic and primary RCC. Dysregulated protein expressions of profilin-1 (Pfn1), 14-3-3 zeta/delta (14-3-3ζ), and galectin-1 (Gal-1) were verified on two independent sets of tissues by means of Western blot and immunohistochemical analysis. Hierarchical clustering analysis showed that the protein expression profile specific for metastatic RCC can distinguish between aggressive and non-aggressive RCC. Pathway analysis showed that dysregulated proteins are involved in cellular processes related to tumor progression and metastasis. Furthermore, preliminary analysis using a small set of tumors showed that increased expression of Pfn1 is associated with poor outcome and is a potential prognostic marker in RCC. In addition, 14-3-3ζ and Gal-1 also showed higher expression in tumors with poor prognosis than in those with good prognosis. Dysregulated proteins in metastatic RCC represent potential prognostic markers for kidney cancer patients, and a greater understanding of their involved biological pathways can serve as the foundation of the development of novel targeted therapies for metastatic RCC.

Kaushal M, Mishra AK, Sharma J, et al.
Genomic alterations in breast cancer patients in betel quid and non betel quid chewers.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(8):e43789 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Betel Quid (BQ) chewing independently contributes to oral, hepatic and esophageal carcinomas. Strong association of breast cancer risk with BQ chewing in Northeast Indian population has been reported where this habit is prodigal. We investigated genomic alterations in breast cancer patients with and without BQ chewing exposure. Twenty six BQ chewers (BQC) and 17 non BQ chewer (NBQC) breast cancer patients from Northeast India were analyzed for genomic alterations and pathway networks using SNP array and IPA. BQC tumors showed significantly (P<0.01) higher total number of alterations, as compared with NBQC tumors, 48 ± 17% versus 32 ± 25 respectively. Incidence of gain in fragile sites in BQC tumors were significantly (P<0.001) higher as compared with NBQC tumors, 34 versus 23% respectively. Two chromosomal regions (7q33 and 21q22.13) were significantly (p<0.05) associated with BQC tumors while two regions (19p13.3-19p12 and 20q11.22) were significantly associated with NBQC tumors. GO terms oxidoreductase and aldo-keto reductase activity in BQC tumors in contrast to G-protein coupled receptor protein signaling pathway and cell surface receptor linked signal transduction in NBQC tumors were enriched in DAVID. One network "Drug Metabolism, Molecular Transport, Nucleic Acid Metabolism" including genes AKR1B1, AKR1B10, ETS2 etc in BQC and two networks "Molecular Transport, Nucleic Acid Metabolism, Small Molecule Biochemistry" and "Cellular Development, Embryonic Development, Organismal Development" including genes RPN2, EMR3, VAV1, NNAT and MUC16 etc were seen in NBQC. Common alterations (>30%) were seen in 27 regions. Three networks were significant in common regions with key roles of PTK2, RPN2, EMR3, VAV1, NNAT, MUC16, MYC and YWHAZ genes. These data show that breast cancer arising by environmental carcinogens exemplifies genetic alterations differing from those observed in the non exposed ones. A number of genetic changes are shared in both tumor groups considered as crucial in breast cancer progression.

Chen CH, Chuang SM, Yang MF, et al.
A novel function of YWHAZ/β-catenin axis in promoting epithelial-mesenchymal transition and lung cancer metastasis.
Mol Cancer Res. 2012; 10(10):1319-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
YWHAZ, also known as 14-3-3zeta, has been reportedly elevated in many human tumors, including non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) but little is known about its specific contribution to lung cancer malignancy. Through a combined array-based comparative genomic hybridization and expression microarray analysis, we identified YWHAZ as a potential metastasis enhancer in lung cancer. Ectopic expression of YWHAZ on low invasive cancer cells showed enhanced cell invasion, migration in vitro, and both the tumorigenic and metastatic potentials in vivo. Gene array analysis has indicated these changes associated with an elevation of pathways relevant to epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), with an increase of cell protrusions and branchings. Conversely, knockdown of YWHAZ levels with siRNA or short hairpin RNA (shRNA) in invasive cancer cells led to a reversal of EMT. We observed that high levels of YWHAZ protein are capable of activating β-catenin-mediated transcription by facilitating the accumulation of β-catenin in cytosol and nucleus. Coimmunoprecipitation assays showed a decrease of ubiquitinated β-catenin in presence of the interaction between YWHAZ and β-catenin. This interaction resulted in disassociating β-catenin from the binding of β-TrCP leading to increase β-catenin stability. Using enforced expression of dominant-negative and -positive β-catenin mutants, we confirmed that S552 phosphorylation of β-catenin increases the β-catenin/YWHAZ complex formation, which is important in promoting cell invasiveness and the suppression of ubiquitnated β-catenin. This is the first demonstration showing YWHAZ through its complex with β-catenin in mediating lung cancer malignancy and β-catenin protein stability.

Murata T, Takayama K, Urano T, et al.
14-3-3ζ, a novel androgen-responsive gene, is upregulated in prostate cancer and promotes prostate cancer cell proliferation and survival.
Clin Cancer Res. 2012; 18(20):5617-27 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Androgen receptor is an essential transcriptional factor that contributes to the development and progression of prostate cancer. In this study, we investigated the androgen regulation and functional analysis of 14-3-3ζ in prostate cancer.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Using chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) combined with DNA microarray (ChIP-chip) analysis in LNCaP cells, we identified a functional androgen receptor-binding site in the downstream region of the 14-3-3ζ gene. Androgen regulation was examined by quantitative reverse transcription PCR and Western blot analysis. Prostate cancer cells stably expressing 14-3-3ζ and siRNA knockdown were used for functional analyses. We further examined 14-3-3ζ expression in clinical samples of prostate cancer by immunohistochemistry and quantitative reverse transcription PCR.
RESULTS: Androgen-dependent upregulation of 14-3-3ζ was validated at the mRNA and protein levels. The 14-3-3ζ gene is favorable for cancer-cell survival, as its ectopic expression in LNCaP cells contributes to cell proliferation and the acquired resistance to etoposide-induced apoptosis. 14-3-3ζ expression was associated with androgen receptor transcriptional activity and prostate-specific antigen (PSA) mRNA expression. Immunoprecipitation indicated that 14-3-3ζ was associated with androgen receptor in the nucleus. Clinicopathologic studies further support the relevance of 14-3-3ζ in prostate cancers, as its higher expression is associated with malignancy and lymph node metastasis.
CONCLUSIONS: 14-3-3ζ is a novel androgen-responsive gene that activates proliferation, cell survival, and androgen receptor transcriptional activity. 14-3-3ζ may facilitate the progression of prostate cancer.

Pan Y, Zhong LJ, Zhou H, et al.
Roles of vimentin and 14-3-3 zeta/delta in the inhibitory effects of heparin on PC-3M cell proliferation and B16-F10-luc-G5 cells metastasis.
Acta Pharmacol Sin. 2012; 33(6):798-808 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
AIM: To investigate the inhibitory effects of heparin on PC-3M cells proliferation in vitro and B16-F10-luc-G5 cells metastasis in Balb/c nude mice and identify the protein expression patterns to elucidate the action mechanism of heparin.
METHODS: Human prostate cancer PC-3M cells were incubated with heparin 0.5 to 125 μg/mL for 24 h. The proliferation of PC-3M cells was assessed by MTS assay. BrdU incoporation and Ki67 expression were detected using a high content screening (HCS) assay. The cell cycle and apoptosis of PC-3M cells were tested by flow cytometry. B16-F10-luc-G5 cardinoma cells were injected into the lateral tail vein of 6-week old male Balb/c nude mice and heparin 30 mg/kg was administered iv 30 min before and 24 h after injection. The metasis of B16-F10-luc-G5 cells was detected by bioluminescence assay. Activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT) and hemorheological parameters were measured on d 14 after injection of B16-F10-luc-G5 carcinoma cells in Balb/c mice. The global protein changes in PC-3M cells and frozen lung tissues from mice burdened with B16-F10-luc-G5 cells were determined by 2-dimensional gel electrophoresis and image analysis. The protein expression of vimentin and 14-3-3 zeta/delta was measured by Western blot. The mRNA transcription of vimentin, transforming growth factor (TGF)-β, E-cadherin, and α(v)-integrin was measured by RT-PCR.
RESULTS: Heparin 25 and 125 μg/mL significantly inhibited the proliferation, arrested the cells in G(1) phase, and suppressed BrdU incorporation and Ki67 expression in PC-3M cells compared with the model group. But it had no significant effect on apoptosis of PC-3M cells. Heparin 30 mg/kg markedly inhibits the metastasis of B16-F10-luc-G5 cells on day 8. Additionally, heparin administration maintained relatively normal red blood hematocrit but had no influence on APTT in nude mice burdened with B16-F10-luc-G5 cells. Thirty of down-regulated protein spots were identified after heparin treatment, many of which are related to tumor development, extracellular signaling, energy metabolism, and cellular proliferation. Vimentin and 14-3-3 zeta/delta were identified in common in PC-3M cells and the lungs of mice bearing B16-F10-luc-G5 carcinoma cells. Heparin 25 and 125 μg/mL decreased the protein expression of vimentin and 14-3-3 zeta/delta and the mRNA expression of α(v)-integrin. Heparin 125 μg/mL decreased vimentin and E-cadherin mRNA transcription while increased TGF-β mRNA transcription in the PC-3M cells, but the differences were not significant. Transfection of vimentin-targeted siRNA for 48 h significantly decreased the BrdU incoporation and Ki67 expression in PC-3M cells.
CONCLUSION: Heparin inhibited PC-3M cell proliferation in vitro and B16-F10-luc-G5 cells metastasis in nude mice by inhibition of vimentin, 14-3-3 zeta/delta, and α(v)-integrin expression.

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