Gene Summary

Gene:ANXA5; annexin A5
Aliases: PP4, ANX5, ENX2, RPRGL3, HEL-S-7
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene belongs to the annexin family of calcium-dependent phospholipid binding proteins some of which have been implicated in membrane-related events along exocytotic and endocytotic pathways. Annexin 5 is a phospholipase A2 and protein kinase C inhibitory protein with calcium channel activity and a potential role in cellular signal transduction, inflammation, growth and differentiation. Annexin 5 has also been described as placental anticoagulant protein I, vascular anticoagulant-alpha, endonexin II, lipocortin V, placental protein 4 and anchorin CII. The gene spans 29 kb containing 13 exons, and encodes a single transcript of approximately 1.6 kb and a protein product with a molecular weight of about 35 kDa. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:annexin A5
Source:NCBIAccessed: 28 February, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 28 February 2015 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 28 February, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (3)

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

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

Latest Publications: ANXA5 (cancer-related)

Hui KF, Leung YY, Yeung PL, et al.
Combination of SAHA and bortezomib up-regulates CDKN2A and CDKN1A and induces apoptosis of Epstein-Barr virus-positive Wp-restricted Burkitt lymphoma and lymphoblastoid cell lines.
Br J Haematol. 2014; 167(5):639-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) latent proteins exert anti-apoptotic effects on EBV-transformed lymphoid cells by down-regulating BCL2L11 (BIM), CDKN2A (p16(INK4A) ) and CDKN1A (p21(WAF1) ). However, the potential therapeutic effects of targeting these anti-apoptotic mechanisms remain unexplored. Here, we tested both in vitro and in vivo effects of the combination of histone deacetylase (HDAC) and proteasome inhibitors on the apoptosis of six endemic Burkitt lymphoma (BL) lines of different latency patterns (types I and III and Wp-restricted) and three lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs). We found that the combination of HDAC and proteasome inhibitors (e.g. SAHA/bortezomib) synergistically induced the killing of Wp-restricted and latency III BL and LCLs but not latency I BL cells. The synergistic killing was due to apoptosis, as evidenced by the high percentage of annexin V positivity and strong cleavage of PARP1 (PARP) and CASP3 (caspase-3). Concomitantly, SAHA/bortezomib up-regulated the expression of CDKN2A and CDKN1A but did not affect the level of BCL2L11 or BHRF1 (viral homologue of BCL2). The apoptotic effects were dependent on reactive oxygen species generation. Furthermore, SAHA/bortezomib suppressed the growth of Wp-restricted BL xenografts in nude mice. This study provides the rationale to test the novel application of SAHA/bortezomib on the treatment of EBV-associated Wp-restricted BL and post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder.

Li CH, Wu DF, Ding H, et al.
Berberine hydrochloride impact on physiological processes and modulation of twist levels in nasopharyngeal carcinoma CNE-1 cells.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2014; 15(4):1851-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The main purpose of this work was to investigate the effect of berberine hydrochloride (BH) on the proliferation, apoptosis, migration, and invasion of CNE-1 nasopharyngeal carcinoma cells. Our results shed light on the functional components of traditional Chinese herbs for potential use in modern medicine.
METHODS: The CNE-1 cell line was treated with different concentrations of BH and effects on cell viability and proliferation were evaluated using the Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK-8) assay. Anti-migratory and anti-invasive actions of BH were investigated using wound healing assays and the Millicell Hanging cell culture insert system, respectively. Expression of the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT)-related gene twist (Twist) was analyzed by real-time PCR and Western blotting. Apoptosis was estimated with an annexin-V fluorescein (FITC) apoptosis detection kit, as well as with reference to levels of activated caspase-3 of CNE-1 cells before and after treatment with BH utilizing fluorescence spectroscopy.
RESULTS: BH was capable of reducing proliferation and viability of CNE-1 cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner, also demonstrating anti-migratory and anti-invasive capacities which correlated with reduction in expression of Twist. Finally, BH was able to induce significant amounts of apoptosis in CNE-1 cells, as demonstrated by an increase in the activity of caspase-3 and in annexin-V staining following treatment.
CONCLUSION: BH extracted from rhizoma coptidis demonstrated an ability to block proliferation, induce apoptosis, and impair the migration and invasion of the CNE-1 cell line Considering these properties, our results suggest that BH could be an important compound for consideration in the treatment of nasopharyngeal carcinoma.

Brognara E, Fabbri E, Bazzoli E, et al.
Uptake by human glioma cell lines and biological effects of a peptide-nucleic acids targeting miR-221.
J Neurooncol. 2014; 118(1):19-28 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNAs are a family of small noncoding RNAs regulating gene expression by sequence-selective mRNA targeting, leading to a translational repression or mRNA degradation. The oncomiR miR-221 is highly expressed in human gliomas, as confirmed in this study in samples of low and high grade gliomas, as well in the cell lines U251, U373 and T98G. In order to alter the biological functions of miR-221, a peptide nucleic acid targeting miR-221 (R8-PNA-a221) was produced, bearing a oligoarginine peptide (R8) to facilitate uptake by glioma cells. The effects of R8-PNA-a221 were analyzed in U251, U373 and T98G glioma cells and found to strongly inhibit miR-221. In addition, the effects of R8-PNA-a221 on p27(Kip1) (a target of miR-221) were analyzed in U251 and T98G cells by RT-qPCR and by Western blotting. No change of p27(Kip1) mRNA content occurs in U251 cells in the presence of PNA-a221 (lacking the R8 peptide), whereas significant increase of p27(Kip1) mRNA was observed with the R8-PNA-a221. These data were confirmed by Western blot assay. A clear increment of p27(Kip1) protein expression in the samples treated with R8-PNA-a221 was detected. In addition, R8-PNA-a221 was found able to increase TIMP3 expression (another target of miR-221) in T98G cells. These results suggest that PNAs against oncomiRNA miR-221 might be proposed for experimental treatment of human gliomas.

Avisetti DR, Babu KS, Kalivendi SV
Activation of p38/JNK pathway is responsible for embelin induced apoptosis in lung cancer cells: transitional role of reactive oxygen species.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(1):e87050 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The natural product embelin has been demonstrated to possess a wide range of therapeutic properties, however, the mechanisms by which it exerts anticancer effects are not yet clear. By monitoring the molecular changes associated during early apoptotic phase, we have identified the crucial role of oxidative stress induced MAP kinase signalling as a predominant mechanism for its anticancer effects. Treatment of A549 lung cancer cells with embelin resulted in the enhancement of phospho-p38 and phospho-JNK levels as early as 4h. Pretreatment of cells with specific inhibitors of p38 (PD169316) and JNK (SP600125) abrogated embelin-induced caspase-3 activation. Studies employing embelin in the presence or absence of specific MAP kinase inhibitors indicated that the observed changes in phosphorylation levels of p38, JNK and ERK 1/2 are solely due to embelin and not because of cross-talk between MAP kinases. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) play a crucial role in embelin induced alterations in MAP kinase phosphorylation and apoptosis as pretreatment of cells with FeTMPyP mitigated this effect. The observed changes are not due to the inhibitory effect of embelin on XIAP as cells treated with SMAC-N7-Ant peptide, a specific inhibitor of XIAP's BIR3 domain did not mimic embelin induced apoptotic effects. The findings of the present study clearly indicate the crucial role of p38 and JNK pathways in embelin induced apoptosis and provide us with new clues for improving its therapeutic efficacy.

Nguyen VT, Lee JS, Qian ZJ, et al.
Gliotoxin isolated from marine fungus Aspergillus sp. induces apoptosis of human cervical cancer and chondrosarcoma cells.
Mar Drugs. 2014; 12(1):69-87 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Gliotoxin, a secondary metabolite produced by marine fungus Aspergillus sp., possesses various biological activities including anticancer activity. However, the mechanism underlying gliotoxin-induced cytotoxicity on human cervical cancer (Hela) and human chondrosarcoma (SW1353) cells remains unclear. In this study, we focused on the effect of gliotoxin induction on apoptosis, the activating expressions of caspase family enzymes in the cells. Apoptotic cell levels were measured through DAPI and Annexin V/Propidium Iodide (PI) double staining analysis. The apoptotic protein expression of Bcl-2 and caspase family was detected by Western blot in Hela and SW1353 cells. Our results showed that gliotoxin treatment inhibited cell proliferation and induced significant morphological changes. Gliotoxin induced apoptosis was further confirmed by DNA fragmentation, chromatin condensation and disrupted mitochondrial membrane potential. Gliotoxin-induced activation of caspase-3, caspase-8 and caspase-9, down-regulation of Bcl-2, up-regulation of Bax and cytochromec (cyt c) release showed evidence for the gliotoxin activity on apoptosis. These findings suggest that gliotoxin isolated from marine fungus Aspergillus sp. induced apoptosis in Hela and SW1353 cells via the mitochondrial pathway followed by downstream events leading to apoptotic mode of cell death.

Wang H, Chen Y, Lin P, et al.
The CUL7/F-box and WD repeat domain containing 8 (CUL7/Fbxw8) ubiquitin ligase promotes degradation of hematopoietic progenitor kinase 1.
J Biol Chem. 2014; 289(7):4009-17 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
HPK1, a member of mammalian Ste20-like serine/threonine kinases, is lost in >95% pancreatic cancer through proteasome-mediated degradation. However, the mechanism of HPK1 loss has not been defined. The aims of this study are to identify the ubiquitin ligase and to examine the mechanisms that targets HPK1 degradation. We found that the CUL7/Fbxw8 ubiquitin ligase targeted HPK1 for degradation via the 26 S proteasome. The ubiquitination of HPK1 required its kinase activity and autophosphorylation. Wild-type protein phosphatase 4 (PP4), but not the phosphatase-dead PP4 mutant, PP4-RL, inhibits the interaction of Fbxw8 with HPK1 and Fbxw8-mediated ubiquitination of HPK1. In addition, we showed that Thr-355 of HPK1 is a key PP4 dephosphorylation site, through which CUL7/Fbxw8 ubiquitin ligase and PP4 regulates HPK1 stability. Knockdown of Fbxw8 restores endogenous HPK1 protein expression and inhibits cell proliferation of pancreatic cancer cells. Our study demonstrated that targeted degradation of HPK1 by the CUL7/Fbxw8 ubiquitin ligase constitutes a negative-feedback loop to restrain the activity of HPK1 and that CUL7/Fbxw8 ubiquitin ligase promotes pancreatic cancer cell proliferation. CUL7/Fbxw8 ubiquitin ligase-mediated HPK1 degradation revealed a direct link and novel role of CUL7/Fbxw8 ubiquitin ligase in the MAPK pathway, which plays a critical role in cell proliferation and differentiation.

Sarkar S, Döring A, Zemp FJ, et al.
Therapeutic activation of macrophages and microglia to suppress brain tumor-initiating cells.
Nat Neurosci. 2014; 17(1):46-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
Brain tumor initiating cells (BTICs) contribute to the genesis and recurrence of gliomas. We examined whether the microglia and macrophages that are abundant in gliomas alter BTIC growth. We found that microglia derived from non-glioma human subjects markedly mitigated the sphere-forming capacity of glioma patient-derived BTICs in culture by inducing the expression of genes that control cell cycle arrest and differentiation. This sphere-reducing effect was mimicked by macrophages, but not by neurons or astrocytes. Using a drug screen, we validated amphotericin B (AmpB) as an activator of monocytoid cells and found that AmpB enhanced the microglial reduction of BTIC spheres. In mice harboring intracranial mouse or patient-derived BTICs, daily systemic treatment with non-toxic doses of AmpB substantially prolonged life. Notably, microglia and monocytes cultured from glioma patients were inefficient at reducing the sphere-forming capacity of autologous BTICs, but this was rectified by AmpB. These results provide new insights into the treatment of gliomas.

Jiang W, Schnabel C, Spyra M, et al.
Efficacy and selectivity of nilotinib on NF1-associated tumors in vitro.
J Neurooncol. 2014; 116(2):231-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Neurofibromatosis type 1 is a tumor suppressor gene disorder which predisposes patients to cutaneous neurofibromas, plexiform neurofibromas (PNFs) and malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNSTs) among other neoplasias and manifestation. In this study, we examined the efficiency of nilotinib on PNF-derived Schwann cells and on cells of established MPNST lines in vitro. Nilotinib treatment for 10 days led to decreased proliferation, viability and vitality of the cells with 50 % inhibitory concentration (IC50) for proliferation varying from 3.1 to 9.0 μM. We further addressed selectivity of the drug for tumor cells by simultaneously examining its efficacy on tumor cells (Schwann cells) and non-tumor cells (fibroblasts) from the same tumor. For four out of the six PNFs studied, IC50 was lower in Schwann cells than in fibroblasts for all parameters measured (proliferation, vitality and viability), indicating good drug selectivity. In addition, nilotinib induced apoptosis and suppressed collagenase activity. Our results suggest that nilotinib may provide a treatment option for some PNFs and MPNSTs and our in vitro model of comparative treatment on tumor and non-tumor cells may provide a prototype of preclinical drug screening system toward personalized treatment.

Lee JS, Park JR, Kwon OS, et al.
Off-target response of a Wip1 chemical inhibitor in skin keratinocytes.
J Dermatol Sci. 2014; 73(2):125-34 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The wild type p53 inducible phosphatase (Wip1) plays an important role in modulating not only stress responses by various environmental stresses, but when overexpressed it also impairs the intrinsic tumor surveillance networks that are frequently found in a number of cancers including skin cancers. As a result, using a pharmacological inhibitor of Wip1 has been suggested to be a novel chemotherapeutic approach to recover the innate tumor surveillance in a variety of cancers.
OBJECTIVE: We studied the effect of a pharmacological inhibitor of Wip1 in skin keratinocytes, under a ultra-violet (UV) stress condition.
METHODS: A human keratinocyte cell line or human epidermal keratinocytes were exposed to UV, with or without the sole commercially available chemical inhibitor of Wip1, CCT007093; subsequently, we determined the diverse stress responses, including apoptosis and the activation of stress signaling.
RESULTS: We demonstrate that the Wip1 inhibitor unexpectedly attenuated the UV-mediated apoptotic response in skin keratinocytes, as a consequence of attenuated JNK activation and reduced H2AX phosphorylation in both, skin keratinocytes and a Wip1-null cell model. On the other hand, the loss of Wip1 expression, either by knockout or knockdown in mice or human keratinocytes respectively, promoted apoptosis and potentiated H2AX phosphorylation following UV treatment. Of note, CCT007093 treatment appeared to promote apoptosis in breast cancer cells and skin transformed keratinocytes that ectopically expressed Wip1, demonstrating that the effect of CCT007093 differs based on the level of Wip1 expression.
CONCLUSION: Thus, our studies suggest that the development of a more potent and specific Wip1 inhibitor is necessary to achieve the desired chemotherapeutic potential and to avoid off-target effects.

Holien T, Olsen OE, Misund K, et al.
Lymphoma and myeloma cells are highly sensitive to growth arrest and apoptosis induced by artesunate.
Eur J Haematol. 2013; 91(4):339-46 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: The use of new drugs has improved the treatment of multiple myeloma and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). Nevertheless, over time many patients relapse and develop resistance to treatment, and efforts are needed to overcome drug resistance. The widely used malaria drug artesunate has been reported to have antitumor activity, and we aimed to test the effects of artesunate on a panel of myeloma and lymphoma cells.
METHODS: Myeloma and DLBCL cell lines were treated with artesunate in vitro. The effects of artesunate treatment were evaluated using ATP content measurements for proliferation and annexin V/propidium iodide labeling for apoptosis. Western blotting was used to look for artesunate-induced protein changes. In addition, we measured artesunate effects on patient myeloma cells in the presence of bone marrow stromal cells.
RESULTS: Artesunate treatment efficiently inhibited cell growth and induced apoptosis in cell lines. Apoptosis was induced concomitantly with downregulation of MYC and anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins, as well as with cleavage of caspase-3. The IC50 values of artesunate in cell lines varied between 0.3 and 16.6 μm. Furthermore, some primary myeloma cells were also sensitive to artesunate at doses around 10 μm. Concentrations of this order are pharmacologically relevant as they can be obtained in plasma after intravenous administration of artesunate for malaria treatment.
CONCLUSION: Our findings indicate that artesunate is a potential drug for treatment of multiple myeloma and DLBCL at doses of the same order as currently in use for treatment of malaria without serious adverse effects.

Lv Y, Zeng L, Zhang G, et al.
Systematic dielectrophoretic analysis of the Ara-C-induced NB4 cell apoptosis combined with gene expression profiling.
Int J Nanomedicine. 2013; 8:2333-50 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Dielectrophoresis (DEP) can be used to noninvasively measure the dielectric state of the cell, and this data can be used to monitor cell health or apoptosis. In this study, we followed events associated with cytosine arabinoside (Ara-C)-induced apoptosis in NB4 cells using DEP analysis. Our data showed that the membrane capacitance of NB4 cells decreases from 9.42 to 7.63 mF/m(2) in the first 2 hours following treatment with Ara-C, and that this decreased capacitance persists for >12 hours. Additionally, cytoplasmic conductivity decreases from 0.217 to 0.190 S/m within 2 hours of Ara-C treatment; this level is maintained for a short period of time before decreasing. We also investigated these events molecularly at the level of gene expression using microarray analysis and showed that the expression of genes related to membrane capacitance and cytoplasmic conductivity change dramatically as early as 2 hours post-Ara-C treatment, and further demonstrated a temporal relationship between the dielectric properties and key events in apoptosis. This study, integrating physical electrical properties of the cell membrane and cytoplasm with those of conductivity-related gene networks, provides new insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying the initiation of apoptosis, establishing a systematic foundation for DEP application in follow-up drug screening and development of medicines for treating leukemia.

Kremer KN, Peterson KL, Schneider PA, et al.
CXCR4 chemokine receptor signaling induces apoptosis in acute myeloid leukemia cells via regulation of the Bcl-2 family members Bcl-XL, Noxa, and Bak.
J Biol Chem. 2013; 288(32):22899-914 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The CXCR4 chemokine receptor promotes survival of many different cell types. Here, we describe a previously unsuspected role for CXCR4 as a potent inducer of apoptosis in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cell lines and a subset of clinical AML samples. We show that SDF-1, the sole ligand for CXCR4, induces the expected migration and ERK activation in the KG1a AML cell line transiently overexpressing CXCR4, but ERK activation did not lead to survival. Instead, SDF-1 treatment led via a CXCR4-dependent mechanism to apoptosis, as evidenced by increased annexin V staining, condensation of chromatin, and cleavage of both procaspase-3 and PARP. This SDF-1-induced death pathway was partially inhibited by hypoxia, which is often found in the bone marrow of AML patients. SDF-1-induced apoptosis was inhibited by dominant negative procaspase-9 but not by inhibition of caspase-8 activation, implicating the intrinsic apoptotic pathway. Further analysis showed that this pathway was activated by multiple mechanisms, including up-regulation of Bak at the level of mRNA and protein, stabilization of the Bak activator Noxa, and down-regulation of antiapoptotic Bcl-XL. Furthermore, adjusting expression levels of Bak, Bcl-XL, or Noxa individually altered the level of apoptosis in AML cells, suggesting that the combined modulation of these family members by SDF-1 coordinates their interplay to produce apoptosis. Thus, rather than mediating survival, SDF-1 may be a means to induce apoptosis of CXCR4-expressing AML cells directly in the SDF-1-rich bone marrow microenvironment if the survival cues of the bone marrow are disrupted.

Fang ZQ, Zang WD, Chen R, et al.
Gene expression profile and enrichment pathways in different stages of bladder cancer.
Genet Mol Res. 2013; 12(2):1479-89 [PubMed] Related Publications
Bladder cancer is a highly heterogeneous neoplasm. We examined the gene expression profile in 3 bladder cancer stages (Ta, T1, T2) using expression microarray analysis of 40 bladder tumors. Differentially expressed genes were found by the t-test, with <0.005 as the significance threshold. KEGG pathway-enrichment analysis was used to study the signaling pathways of the genes. We found 36 genes that could be used as molecular markers for predicting the transition from Ta-T1 to T1-T2. Among these, 11 overlapped between Ta-T1 and T1-T2 stages. Six genes were down-regulated at the Ta-T1 stage, but were up-regulated at the T1-T2 stage (ANXA5, ATP6V1B2, CTGF, GEM, IL13RA1, and LCP1); 5 genes were up-regulated at the Ta-T1 stage, but down-regulated at the T1-T2 stage (ACPP, GNL1, RIPK1, RAPGEF3, and ZER1). Another 25 genes changed relative expression levels at the T1-T2 stage. These genes (including COL1A1, COL1A2, FN1, ITGA5, LGALS1, SPP1, VIM, POSTN, and COL18A1) may be involved in bladder cancer progression by affecting extracellular matrix-receptor interaction and focal adhesion. The cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction, neuroactive ligand-receptor interaction, and calcium-signaling pathway were associated with bladder cancer progression at both the Ta-T1 and T1-T2 stages.

Jacobs VL, De Leo JA
Increased glutamate uptake in astrocytes via propentofylline results in increased tumor cell apoptosis using the CNS-1 glioma model.
J Neurooncol. 2013; 114(1):33-42 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Glioblastoma multiform is one of the most common and aggressive primary brain tumors in adults. High glutamate levels are thought to contribute to glioma growth. While research has focused on understanding glutamate signaling in glioma cells, little is known about the role of glutamate between glioma and astrocyte interactions. To study the relationship between astrocytes and tumor cells, the CNS-1 rodent glioma cell line was used. We hypothesized increased glutamate uptake by astrocytes would negatively affect CNS-1 cell growth. Primary rodent astrocytes and CNS-1 cells were co-cultured for 7 days in a Boyden chamber in the presence of 5 mM glutamate. Cells were treated with propentofylline, an atypical synthetic methylxanthine known to increase glutamate transporter expression in astrocytes. Our results indicate astrocytes can increase glutamate uptake through the GLT-1 transporter, leading to less glutamate available for CNS-1 cells, ultimately resulting in increased CNS-1 cell apoptosis. These data suggest that astrocytes in the tumor microenvironment can be targeted by the drug, propentofylline, affecting tumor cell growth.

Kopatz J, Beutner C, Welle K, et al.
Siglec-h on activated microglia for recognition and engulfment of glioma cells.
Glia. 2013; 61(7):1122-33 [PubMed] Related Publications
Sialic-acid-binding immunoglobulin-like lectin-h (Siglec-h) is a recently identified mouse-specific CD33-related Siglec that signals via DAP12/TYROBP. Expression of Siglec-h has been observed on plasmacytoid dendritic cells and microglia, but the ligand and the function of Siglec-h remained elusive. Here, we demonstrate gene transcription and protein expression of Siglec-h by mouse microglia after interferon-γ treatment or polarization into a M1-subtype. Microglial Siglec-h acted as phagocytosis receptor since targeting of microsphere beads to Siglec-h triggered their uptake into the microglia. The extracellular domain of Siglec-h protein bound to mouse glioma lines, but not to astrocytes or other normal mouse cells. Microglial cells stimulated to express Siglec-h engulfed intact glioma cells without prior induction of apoptosis and slightly reduced glioma cell number in culture. Phagocytosis of glioma cells by activated microglia was dependent on Siglec-h and its adapter molecule DAP12. Thus, data show that M1-polarized microglial cells can engulf glioma cells via a DAP12-mediated Siglec-h dependent mechanism.

Chakrabarti M, Banik NL, Ray SK
miR-138 overexpression is more powerful than hTERT knockdown to potentiate apigenin for apoptosis in neuroblastoma in vitro and in vivo.
Exp Cell Res. 2013; 319(10):1575-85 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Decrease in expression of the tumor suppressor microRNA-138 (miR-138) correlates well with an increase in telomerase activity in many human cancers. The ability of almost all human cancer cells to grow indefinitely is dependent on presence of telomerase activity. The catalytic component of human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) regulates telomerase activity in most of the human cancers including malignant neuroblastoma. We observed an indirect increase in the expression of miR-138 after the transfection with hTERT short hairpin RNA (shRNA) plasmid in human malignant neuroblastoma SK-N-DZ and SK-N-BE2 cell lines. Transfection with hTERT shRNA plasmid followed by treatment with the flavonoid apigenin (APG) further increased expression of miR-138. Direct transfection with miR-138 mimic was more powerful than transfection with hTERT shRNA plasmid in potentiating efficacy of APG for decreasing cell viability and colony formation capability of both cell lines. Upregulation of miR-138 was also more effective than down regulation of hTERT in enhancing efficacy of APG for induction of apoptosis in malignant neuroblastoma cells in vitro and in vivo. We delineated that apoptosis occurred with induction of molecular components of the extrinsic and intrinsic pathways in SK-N-DZ and SK-N-BE2 cells both in vitro and in vivo. In conclusion, these results demonstrate that direct miR-138 overexpression is more powerful than hTERT down regulation in enhancing pro-apoptotic effect of APG for controlling growth of human malignant neuroblastoma in cell culture and animal models.

Ebrahimi Nigjeh S, Yusoff FM, Mohamed Alitheen NB, et al.
Cytotoxic effect of ethanol extract of microalga, Chaetoceros calcitrans, and its mechanisms in inducing apoptosis in human breast cancer cell line.
Biomed Res Int. 2013; 2013:783690 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Marine microalgae have been prominently featured in cancer research. Here, we examined cytotoxic effect and apoptosis mechanism of crude ethanol extracts of an indigenous microalga, Chaetoceros calcitrans (UPMAAHU10) on human breast cell lines. MCF-7 was more sensitive than MCF-10A with IC50 value of 3.00 ± 0.65, whilst the IC50 value of Tamoxifen against MCF-7 was 12.00 ± 0.52  μg/mL after 24 hour incubation. Based on Annexin V/Propidium iodide and cell cycle flow cytometry analysis, it was found that inhibition of cell growth by EEC on MCF-7 cells was through the induction of apoptosis without cell cycle arrest. The apoptotic cells at subG0/G1 phase in treated MCF-7 cells at 48 and 72 hours showed 34 and 16 folds increased compared to extract treated MCF-10A cells which showed only 6 and 7 folds increased at the same time points, respectively. Based on GeXP study, EEC induced apoptosis on MCF-7 cells via modulation of CDK2, MDM2, p21Cip1, Cyclin A2, Bax and Bcl-2. The EEC treated MCF-7 cells also showed an increase in Bax/Bcl-2 ratio that in turn activated the caspase-dependent pathways by activating caspase 7. Thus, marine microalga, Chaetoceros calcitrans may be considered a good candidate to be developed as a new anti-breast cancer drug.

Rogenhofer N, Engels L, Bogdanova N, et al.
Independent association of the M2/ANXA5 haplotype with recurrent pregnancy loss (RPL) in PCOS patients.
Metabolism. 2013; 62(8):1057-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to analyze the contribution of the M2 haplotype of ANXA5 gene, previously identified as a risk factor for RPL and thrombophilia related pregnancy complications, to repeated miscarriage observed in PCOS patients.
PATIENTS/METHODS: 100 PCOS patients, 500 fertile women and 533 random population controls were genotyped for M2/ANXA5.
RESULTS: M2 haplotype carriers faced a 3.4 fold elevated RPL risk (odds ratio 5.3, 95% confidence interval 3-9.2) compared to female fertile controls and 2.1 (odds ratio 2.6, 95% confidence interval 1.6-4.3) compared to population controls. The relative population risks in subgroups of PCOS patients with primary and secondary RPL were 2.3 (odds ratio 2.5, 95% confidence interval 1.2-5) and 3.3 (odds ratio 3.6, 95% confidence interval 1.5-8.4) respectively. As compared to the fertile women group, the relative risks equaled 4 (odds ratio 5, 95% confidence interval 2.3-10.8) and 6 (odds ratio 7.2, 95% confidence interval 3-17.7). Estimated relative risks for M2 carriers among PCOS RPL patients matched the values previously obtained for repeated miscarriage populations. The essential phenotypes, clinically defining PCOS, associated neither with RPL in their diagnostically relevant combinations, nor with M2 carriage as RPL risk factor in the PCOS RPL subgroups.
CONCLUSIONS: M2/ANXA5 seems an independent RPL risk factor in PCOS patients that progressively correlates with the number of first trimester pregnancies. From our pilot study in PCOS women it appears relevant to offer M2/ANXA5 diagnostic analysis to such patients with RPL complications, to possibly guide proper therapeutic decisions.

Niu G, Zhu L, Ho DN, et al.
Longitudinal bioluminescence imaging of the dynamics of Doxorubicin induced apoptosis.
Theranostics. 2013; 3(3):190-200 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Most chemotherapy agents cause tumor cell death primarily by the induction of apoptosis. The ability to noninvasively image apoptosis in vivo could dramatically benefit pre-clinical and clinical evaluation of chemotherapeutics targeting the apoptotic pathway. This study aims to visualize the dynamics of apoptotic process with temporal bioluminescence imaging (BLI) using an apoptosis specific bioluminescence reporter gene.
METHODS: Both UM-SCC-22B human head and neck squamous carcinoma cells and 4T1 murine breast cancer cells were genetically modified with a caspase-3 specific cyclic firefly luciferase reporter gene (pcFluc-DEVD). Apoptosis induced by different concentrations of doxorubicin in the transfected cells was evaluated by both annexin V staining and BLI. Longitudinal BLI was performed in xenografted tumor models at different time points after doxorubicin or Doxil treatment, to evaluate apoptosis. After imaging, DNA fragmentation in apoptotic cells was assessed in frozen tumor sections using TUNEL staining.
RESULTS: Dose- and time-dependent apoptosis induced by doxorubicin in pcFluc-DEVD transfected UM-SCC-22B and 4T1 cells was visualized and quantified by BLI. Caspase-3 activation was confirmed by both caspase activity assay and Glo(TM) luciferase assay. One dose of doxorubicin treatment induced a dramatic increase in BLI intensity as early as 24 h after treatment in 22B-pcFluc-DEVD xenografted tumors. Sustained signal increase was observed for the first 3 days and the fluorescent signal from ex vivo TUNEL staining was consistent with BLI imaging results. Long-term imaging revealed that BLI signal consistently increased and reached a maximum at around day 12 after the treatment with one dose of Doxil.
CONCLUSIONS: BLI of apoptosis with pcFluc-DEVD as a reporter gene facilitates the determination of kinetics of the apoptotic process in a real-time manner, which provides a unique tool for drug development and therapy response monitoring.

Song J, Cao L, Li Y
RNA interference‑mediated inhibition of survivin and VEGF in pancreatic cancer cells in vitro.
Mol Med Rep. 2013; 7(5):1651-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of simultaneous short hairpin RNA (shRNA)‑targeted survivin and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) inhibition on the proliferation, apoptosis and angiogenesis of human pancreatic cancer cells (Panc‑1). Targeted small interfering RNA (siRNA) expression vectors of survivin and VEGF were constructed and transfected into Panc‑1 cells. The downregulation of survivin and VEGF expression was evaluated by real‑time PCR and western blot analysis. The effects of targeted shRNA on the proliferation and apoptosis of Panc‑1 cells were analyzed by MTT assay and flow cytometry (FCM). The culture medium from Panc‑1 cells transfected with siRNA was collected and human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) were seeded in this media. The proliferation and apoptosis of the HUVECs were also investigated by MTT assay and FCM. A transfected cell line (Panc‑1/survivin‑shRNA and Panc‑1/VEGF‑shRNA) was established in which the expression of survivin and VEGF was downregulated. The cell viabilities of Panc‑1 cells and HUVECs in the combined inhibition groups were markedly decreased compared with the controls. The cell apoptosis rates of Panc‑1 cells and HUVECs in the combined inhibition groups were observed to be significantly increased compared with the controls. The simultaneous RNA interference‑mediated downregulation of survivin and VEGF expression inhibited proliferation and induced the apoptosis of Panc‑1 cells and HUVECs, indicating that combined therapy with survivin and VEGF inhibition may serve as a potential strategy for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

Korwar AM, Bhonsle HS, Ghole VS, et al.
Proteomic profiling and interactome analysis of ER-positive/HER2/neu negative invasive ductal carcinoma of the breast: towards proteomics biomarkers.
OMICS. 2013; 17(1):27-40 [PubMed] Related Publications
Breast cancer, especially ER positive/HER2/neu negative IDC, is the predominant subtype of invasive ductal carcinoma. Although proteomic approaches have been used towards biomarker discovery in clinical breast cancer, ER positive/HER2/neu negative IDC is the least studied subtype. To discover biomarkers, as well as to understand the molecular events associated with disease progression of estrogen receptor positive/HER2/neu negative subtype of invasive ductal carcinoma, differential protein expression profiling was performed by using LC-MS(E) (MS at elevated energy). A total of 118 proteins were identified, of which 26 were differentially expressed. These identified proteins were functionally classified and their interactions and coexpression were analyzed by using bioinformatic tools PANTHER (Protein Analysis THrough Evolutionary Relationships) and STRING (Search Tool for the Retrieval of Interacting Genes). These proteins were found to be upregulated and were involved in cytoskeletal organization, calcium binding, and stress response. Interactions of annexin A5, actin, S100 A10, glyceraldehyde 3 phosphate dehydrogenase, superoxide dismutase 1, apolipoprotein, fibrinogen, and heat shock proteins were prominent. Differential expression of these proteins was validated by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and Western blot analysis. The cluster of these proteins may serve as a signature profile for estrogen receptor positive/ HER2/neu negative subtype.

Tian Y, Nam S, Liu L, et al.
Spirooxindole derivative SOID-8 induces apoptosis associated with inhibition of JAK2/STAT3 signaling in melanoma cells.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(11):e49306 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Melanoma is generally refractory to current chemotherapy, thus new treatment strategies are needed. In this study, we synthesized a series of spirooxindole derivatives (SOID-1 to SOID-12) and evaluated their antitumor effects on melanoma. Among the 12 spirooxindole derivatives, SOID-8 showed the strongest antitumor activity by viability screening. SOID-8 inhibited viability of A2058, A375, SK-MEL-5 and SK-MEL-28 human melanoma cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner. SOID-8 also induced apoptosis of these tumor cells, which was confirmed by positive Annexin V staining and an increase of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase cleavage. The antiapoptotic protein Mcl-1, a member of the Bcl-2 family, was downregulated and correlated with SOID-8 induced apoptosis. In addition, SOID-8 reduced tyrosine phosphorylation of Signal Tansducer and Activator of Transcription 3 (STAT3) in both dose- and time-dependent manners. This inhibition was associated with decreased levels of phosphorylation of Janus-activated kinase-2 (JAK2), an upstream kinase that mediates STAT3 phosphorylation at Tyr705. Accordingly, SOID-8 inhibited IL-6-induced activation of STAT3 and JAK2 in melanoma cells. Finally, SOID-8 suppressed melanoma tumor growth in a mouse xenograft model, accompanied with a decrease of phosphorylation of JAK2 and STAT3. Our results indicate that the antitumor activity of SOID-8 is at least partially due to inhibition of JAK2/STAT3 signaling in melanoma cells. These findings suggest that the spirooxindole derivative SOID-8 is a promising lead compound for further development of new preventive and therapeutic agents for melanoma.

Wong A, Hardy KL, Kitajewski AM, et al.
Propranolol accelerates adipogenesis in hemangioma stem cells and causes apoptosis of hemangioma endothelial cells.
Plast Reconstr Surg. 2012; 130(5):1012-21 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Infantile hemangiomas can cause significant morbidity during proliferation, yet there is no U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved treatment. They are believed to form from hemangioma stem cells, which differentiate toward a hemangioma endothelial cell phenotype. Recently, propranolol has demonstrated effectiveness in treating complicated infantile hemangiomas. The authors hypothesize that propranolol facilitates their involution by altering cellular behavior in both hemangioma endothelial and stem cells.
METHODS: Hemangioma endothelial and stem cells were isolated from resected infantile hemangioma specimens. Cells were treated with 100 μM propranolol for 48 hours, and apoptosis was determined by the presence of annexin V antibody. Proliferation of stem and endothelial cells was assessed after treatment with 50 or 100 μM propranolol or vehicle, for 72 and 96 hours, respectively. Adipogenesis was induced in stem cells with and without propranolol. Pro-adipogenic genes PPARδ, PPARγ, C/EBPα, C/EBPβ, C/EBPδ, RXRα, and RXRγ were analyzed by quantitative polymerase chain reaction.
RESULTS: Annexin V levels were increased in propranolol-treated endothelial cells but not in stem cells. Proliferation of stem and endothelial cells was inhibited by propranolol in a dose-dependent manner. Propranolol-treated stem cells demonstrated accelerated adipogenesis when compared with untreated controls. Transcript levels of C/EBPβ (p < 0.05), RXRγ (p < 0.05), and PPARγ (p < 0.02) were significantly increased when treated with 50 or 100 μM propranolol; and C/EBPδ (p < 0.05), RXRα (p < 0.05), and PPARδ (p < 0.01) transcripts were increased when treated with 100 μM propranolol. C/EBPα transcript levels remained unchanged at either dose.
CONCLUSIONS: Propranolol increased apoptosis of hemangioma endothelial cells, but not stem cells, and accelerated adipogenesis of hemangioma stem cells. Thus, propranolol likely accelerates involution to fibrofatty residuum.

Miao HL, Pan ZJ, Lei CJ, et al.
Knockdown of GPC3 inhibits the proliferation of Huh7 hepatocellular carcinoma cells through down-regulation of YAP.
J Cell Biochem. 2013; 114(3):625-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
Glypican-3 (GPC3), a membrane-associated heparan sulfate proteoglycan, is frequently upregulated in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Yes-associated protein (YAP) is also found over-expressed in HCC and has been identified as a key effector molecule in Hippo pathway, which could control the organ size in animals through the regulation of cell proliferation and apoptosis and plays an important role in the development of malignant tumors. Studies have reported that GPC3 and YAP might collaborate to regulate the development of HCC. To elucidate the role of GPC3 in the development of HCC and its relationship with YAP, siRNA technique was employed to knock down GPC3 in Huh7 HCC cells. Moreover, recombinant human YAP-1 was used to examine the effects of GPC3 on Huh7 cells. The results of flow cytometric analysis and Annexin-V-FLUOS apoptosis assay showed that knockdown of GPC3-induced apoptosis in Huh7 cells, resulting in inhibition of cell proliferation as examined by EdU incorporation assay, migration, and invasion. GPC3 knockdown also suppressed the expression of YAP in mRNA and protein levels, as examined by fluorescence quantitative PCR and Western blot analysis. Moreover, addition of recombinant human YAP-1 effectively rescued the cells from apoptosis triggered by GPC3 knockdown. Taken together, our findings suggest that GPC3 regulates HCC cell proliferation with the involvement of Hippo pathway.

Bernardo PS, Reis FR, Maia RC
Imatinib increases apoptosis index through modulation of survivin subcellular localization in the blast phase of CML cells.
Leuk Res. 2012; 36(12):1510-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Using MTT, Annexin V/flow cytometry, immunocytochemistry, subcellular fractionation, and Western blotting assays we analyzed the effect of imatinib in two blast phase of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) cell lines: K562 P-glycoprotein (Pgp)-negative, and Lucena, Pgp-positive. In K562 cell line, the high apoptosis index induced by imatinib was associated with the survivin predominantly in the nucleus. In the Lucena cell line, the low apoptosis index induced by imatinib was associated with a cytoplasmatic survivin localization. Pgp and survivin might be subject to the same molecular regulation, and therefore represent a therapeutic target in the blast phase of CML.

Yang T, Fang S, Zhang HX, et al.
N-3 PUFAs have antiproliferative and apoptotic effects on human colorectal cancer stem-like cells in vitro.
J Nutr Biochem. 2013; 24(5):744-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
The n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids have been shown to inhibit the induction and progression of many kinds of tumor and to increase the therapeutic effects of numerous chemotherapeutics, but their anticancer effect on cancer stem cells from colorectal cancer has not been described previously. In the present study, we cultivated spheres from the SW620 cell line in serum-free medium and evaluated the features of the spheres by immunofluorescence, cell cycle distribution, resistance to chemotherapeutics and soft agar clone formation, and the spheres were shown to be cancer stem-like cells through tumorigenicity in athymic nude mice. Reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis of pluripotency genes, such as Sox-2, Oct-4 and Bmi-1, showed that the spheres were generated by dedifferentiation of SW620 cells. The study explored the use of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) in spheres, which were treated with two n-3 PUFAs [docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)/eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA)]. Treatment of the spheres with DHA and EPA alone or in combination for 72 h led to apoptosis and the progressive loss of viability and DNA fragmentation and an increase in annexin V expression. DHA and EPA can enhance the chemotherapeutic sensitivity effect of 5-Fu and mitomycin C, especially DHA combined with EPA. Taken together, these results provide evidence that n-3 PUFAs exert a direct anticancer action that may contribute to their antiproliferative and proapoptotic effect on the cancer stem-like cells.

Khaw AK, Yong JW, Kalthur G, Hande MP
Genistein induces growth arrest and suppresses telomerase activity in brain tumor cells.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2012; 51(10):961-74 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genistein, a soy isoflavone, has been reported to exhibit multiple effects, such as inducing cell cycle arrest, triggering apoptosis, inhibiting the activation of NF(K) B and inactivating several signaling cascades in human cancer cells. In vivo studies demonstrating antiangiogenesis and antimetastatic effects of genistein have also been reported. Here, we demonstrate that genistein inhibits the growth of glioblastoma multiforme and medulloblastoma cells with different TP53 mutations and radio-responses by arresting the cells at G2/M phase of the cell cycle. The cell cycle arrest was found to be independent of DNA damage and such an arrest was sustainable for at least 10 days even after drug removal. Annexin V staining revealed absence of apoptotic or necrotic cell populations after genistein treatment. This supports the observation that genistein induces insignificant DNA damage and indicates that the cell cycle arrest triggered does not lead to cell death. Gene and protein expression studies reveal similar changes in the same pathways following treatment in the cell types tested. Genistein was also able to inhibit telomerase activity resulting in telomere shortening. Thus, we demonstrate, for the first time, that genistein induces growth arrest in association with telomerase inhibition in brain tumor cells via the suppression of TR- and TERT mRNA. By elucidating the mechanisms of anticancer effects after genistein treatment in brain tumor cells, there will be a premise for the incorporation of genistein dietary sources to complement radiotherapy in brain tumor patients.

Conti L, Crisafulli L, Caldera V, et al.
REST controls self-renewal and tumorigenic competence of human glioblastoma cells.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(6):e38486 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The Repressor Element 1 Silencing Transcription factor (REST/NRSF) is a master repressor of neuronal programs in non-neuronal lineages shown to function as a central regulator of developmental programs and stem cell physiology. Aberrant REST function has been associated with a number of pathological conditions. In cancer biology, REST has been shown to play a tumor suppressor activity in epithelial cancers but an oncogenic role in brain childhood malignancies such as neuroblastoma and medulloblastoma. Here we examined REST expression in human glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) specimens and its role in GBM cells carrying self-renewal and tumorigenic competence. We found REST to be expressed in GBM specimens, its presence being particularly enriched in tumor cells in the perivascular compartment. Significantly, REST is highly expressed in self-renewing tumorigenic-competent GBM cells and its knock down strongly reduces their self-renewal in vitro and tumor-initiating capacity in vivo and affects levels of miR-124 and its downstream targets. These results indicate that REST contributes to GBM maintenance by affecting its self-renewing and tumorigenic cellular component and that, hence, a better understanding of these circuitries in these cells might lead to new exploitable therapeutic targets.

Kim YC, Kim BG, Lee JH
Thymosin β10 expression driven by the human TERT promoter induces ovarian cancer-specific apoptosis through ROS production.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(5):e35399 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Thymosin β(10) (Tβ(10)) regulates actin dynamics as a cytoplasm G-actin sequestering protein. Previously, we have shown that Tβ(10) diminishes tumor growth, angiogenesis, and proliferation by disrupting actin and by inhibiting Ras. However, little is known about its mechanism of action and biological function. In the present study, we establish a new gene therapy model using a genetically modified adenovirus, referred to as Ad.TERT.Tβ(10), that can overexpress the Tβ(10) gene in cancer cells. This was accomplished by replacing the native Tβ(10) gene promoter with the human TERT promoter in Ad.TERT.Tβ(10). We investigated the cancer suppression activity of Tβ(10) and found that Ad.TERT.Tβ(10) strikingly induced cancer-specific expression of Tβ(10) as well as apoptosis in a co-culture model of human primary ovarian cancer cells and normal fibroblasts. Additionally, Ad.TERT.Tβ(10) decreased mitochondrial membrane potential and increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. These effects were amplified by co-treatment with anticancer drugs, such as paclitaxel and cisplatin. These findings indicate that the rise in ROS production due to actin disruption by Tβ(10) overexpression increases apoptosis of human ovarian cancer cells. Indeed, the cancer-specific overexpression of Tβ(10) by Ad.TERT.Tβ(10) could be a valuable anti-cancer therapeutic for the treatment of ovarian cancer without toxicity to normal cells.

Waerzeggers Y, Monfared P, Viel T, et al.
Specific biomarkers of receptors, pathways of inhibition and targeted therapies: pre-clinical developments.
Br J Radiol. 2011; 84 Spec No 2:S168-78 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
A deeper understanding of the role of specific genes, proteins, pathways and networks in health and disease, coupled with the development of technologies to assay these molecules and pathways in patients, promises to revolutionise the practice of clinical medicine. Especially the discovery and development of novel drugs targeted to disease-specific alterations could benefit significantly from non-invasive imaging techniques assessing the dynamics of specific disease-related parameters. Here we review the application of imaging biomarkers in the management of patients with brain tumours, especially malignant glioma. In our other review we focused on imaging biomarkers of general biochemical and physiological processes related with tumour growth such as energy, protein, DNA and membrane metabolism, vascular function, hypoxia and cell death. In this part of the review, we will discuss the use of imaging biomarkers of specific disease-related molecular genetic alterations such as apoptosis, angiogenesis, cell membrane receptors and signalling pathways and their application in targeted therapies.

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