Gene Summary

Gene:HOXD10; homeobox D10
Aliases: HOX4, HOX4D, HOX4E, Hox-4.4
Summary:This gene is a member of the Abd-B homeobox family and encodes a protein with a homeobox DNA-binding domain. It is included in a cluster of homeobox D genes located on chromosome 2. The encoded nuclear protein functions as a sequence-specific transcription factor that is expressed in the developing limb buds and is involved in differentiation and limb development. Mutations in this gene have been associated with Wilm's tumor and congenital vertical talus (also known as "rocker-bottom foot" deformity or congenital convex pes valgus) and/or a foot deformity resembling that seen in Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:homeobox protein Hox-D10
Source:NCBIAccessed: 01 September, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

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

Literature Analysis

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

Specific Cancers (7)

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: HOXD10 (cancer-related)

Yuan YH, Wang HY, Lai Y, et al.
Epigenetic inactivation of HOXD10 is associated with human colon cancer via inhibiting the RHOC/AKT/MAPK signaling pathway.
Cell Commun Signal. 2019; 17(1):9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: To examine the influence of HOXD10 on the metabolism and growth of colon carcinoma cells by suppressing the RHOC/AKT/MAPK pathway.
METHODS: Thirty-seven paired colon cancer and its adjacent samples from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) were analyzed. Chip Analysis Methylation Pipeline (ChAMP) analysis was employed for differential methylated points (DMPs) and the differential methylation regions (DMRs) screening. The HOXD10 mRNA expression and DNA methylation levels were detected by RT-PCR. The Cell proliferation, migration, invasion and apoptosis were respectively measured by MTT assay, transwell assay, wound healing assay and flow cytometry assay in carcinoma cell lines after treated with 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine (5-Aza-dC) or transfected with HOXD10-expressing plasmid. The expression of HOXD10 and RHOC was revealed by immunohistochemistry in disparate differentiation colon carcinoma tissues, and the dephosphorylation of AKT and MAPK pathways were detected by RT-PCR and western blot.
RESULTS: The bioinformatics analysis demonstrated that HOXD10 was hypermethylated and low-expressed in colorectal cancer tissues. The detection of RT-PCR indicated the similar results in colorectal cancer cell lines and tissues. The induction of demethylation was recovered by treatment with 5-Aza-dC and the HOXD10 in colorectal cancer cell lines was re-expressed by transfection with a HOXD10 expression vector. The demethylation or overexpression of HOXD10 suppressed proliferation, migration, invasion and promoted apoptosis in colorectal cancer cells. HXOD10 suppressed the tumor growth and detected an opposite trend of protein RHOC. AKT and MAPK pathways were notably inactivated after the dephosphorylation due to the overexpression of HOXD10.
CONCLUSIONS: HOXD10 was suppressed in colon adenocarcinoma cells, which down-regulated RHOC/AKT/MAPK pathway to enhance colon cancer cells apoptosis and constrain the proliferation, migration and invasion.

Hsu CY, Hsieh TH, Er TK, et al.
MiR‑381 regulates cell motility, growth and colony formation through PIK3CA in endometriosis‑associated clear cell and endometrioid ovarian cancer.
Oncol Rep. 2018; 40(6):3734-3742 [PubMed] Related Publications
Ovarian cancer is the one of the most lethal gynecological cancer types. MicroRNAs (miRs) are noncoding RNAs that modulate the translation of their target mRNAs via binding to a complementary sequence in the target 3' untranslated region, and the dysregulation of certain miRs has been demonstrated to contribute to cancer progression. In this regard, the current study extended our previous work and used next‑generation sequencing data to search for upstream regulators of genetic alterations that are common in ovarian cancer, as well as the miRs that are involved in controlling the expression of these regulators. An miR prediction program was used to identify miR‑381 as an upstream regulator of phosphatidylinositol 3‑kinase catalytic subunit α (PIK3CA) in the context of ovarian cancer. Levels of miR‑381 were decreased in clear cell and endometrioid carcinoma ovarian cancer. Experimentally induced upregulation of miR‑381 led to a decrease in the level of PIK3CA in ovarian cancer cells. Furthermore, experimentally induced upregulation of miR‑381 inhibited the proliferation of ovarian cancer cells in vitro and their ability to form colonies and migrate. The observed decrease in miR‑381 in ovarian cancer could be reversed upon overexpression of the gene encoding the tumor suppressor homeobox D10. The current results highlight the role of miR‑381‑mediated regulation of PIK3CA in the development and progression of ovarian cancer and suggest that restoration of miR‑381 to normal levels in ovarian cancer cells may constitute a therapeutic strategy for patients.

Zheng L, Zhang Z, Zhang S, et al.
RNA Binding Protein RNPC1 Inhibits Breast Cancer Cell Metastasis via Activating STARD13-Correlated ceRNA Network.
Mol Pharm. 2018; 15(6):2123-2132 [PubMed] Related Publications
RNA binding proteins (RBPs) are pivotal post-transcriptional regulators. RNPC1, an RBP, acts as a tumor suppressor through binding and regulating the expression of target genes in cancer cells. This study disclosed that RNPC1 expression was positively correlated with breast cancer patients' relapse-free and overall survival and that RNPC1 suppressed breast cancer cell metastasis. Mechanistically, RNPC1 promotes competing endogenous RNA (ceRNA) network crosstalk among STARD13, CDH5, HOXD10, and HOXD1 (STARD13-correlated ceRNA network), which we previously confirmed in breast cancer cells through stabilizing the transcripts and thus facilitating the expression of these four genes in breast cancer cells. Furthermore, RNPC1 overexpression restrained the promotion of STARD13, CDH5, HOXD10, and HOXD1 knockdown on cell metastasis. Notably, RNPC1 expression was positively correlated with CDH5, HOXD1, and HOXD10 expression in breast cancer tissues and attenuated adriamycin resistance. Taken together, these results identified that RNPC1 could inhibit breast cancer cell metastasis via promoting a STARD13-correlated ceRNA network.

Furuta S, Ren G, Mao JH, Bissell MJ
Laminin signals initiate the reciprocal loop that informs breast-specific gene expression and homeostasis by activating NO, p53 and microRNAs.
Elife. 2018; 7 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
How mammalian tissues maintain their architecture and tissue-specificity is poorly understood. Previously, we documented both the indispensable role of the extracellular matrix (ECM) protein, laminin-111 (LN1), in the formation of normal breast acini, and the phenotypic reversion of cancer cells to acini-like structures in 3-dimensional (3D) gels with inhibitors of oncogenic pathways. Here, we asked how laminin (LN) proteins integrate the signaling pathways necessary for morphogenesis. We report a surprising reciprocal circuitry comprising positive players: laminin-5 (LN5), nitric oxide (NO), p53, HOXD10 and three microRNAs (miRNAs) - that are involved in the formation of mammary acini in 3D. Significantly, cancer cells on either 2-dimensional (2D) or 3D and non-malignant cells on 2D plastic do not produce NO and upregulate negative players: NFκB, EIF5A2, SCA1 and MMP-9 - that disrupt the network. Introducing exogenous NO, LN5 or individual miRNAs to cancer cells reintegrates these pathways and induces phenotypic reversion in 3D. These findings uncover the essential elements of breast epithelial architecture, where the balance between positive- and negative-players leads to homeostasis.

Khan FM, Sadeghi M, Gupta SK, Wolkenhauer O
A Network-Based Integrative Workflow to Unravel Mechanisms Underlying Disease Progression.
Methods Mol Biol. 2018; 1702:247-276 [PubMed] Related Publications
Unraveling mechanisms underlying diseases has motivated the development of systems biology approaches. The key challenges for the development of mathematical models and computational tool are (1) the size of molecular networks, (2) the nonlinear nature of spatio-temporal interactions, and (3) feedback loops in the structure of interaction networks. We here propose an integrative workflow that combines structural analyses of networks, high-throughput data, and mechanistic modeling. As an illustration of the workflow, we use prostate cancer as a case study with the aim of identifying key functional components associated with primary to metastasis transitions. Analysis carried out by the workflow revealed that HOXD10, BCL2, and PGR are the most important factors affected in primary prostate samples, whereas, in the metastatic state, STAT3, JUN, and JUNB are playing a central role. The identified key elements of each network are validated using patient survival analysis. The workflow presented here allows experimentalists to use heterogeneous data sources for the identification of diagnostic and prognostic signatures.

Cao YM, Gu J, Zhang YS, et al.
Aberrant hypermethylation of the HOXD10 gene in papillary thyroid cancer with BRAFV600E mutation.
Oncol Rep. 2018; 39(1):338-348 [PubMed] Related Publications
Epigenetic abnormalities as well as genetic abnormalities may play a vital role in the tumorigenesis of papillary thyroid cancer (PTC). The present study aimed to analyze the function and methylation status of the HOXD10 gene in PTC and aimed to identify relationships between HOXD10 methylation, HOXD10 expression, BRAF mutation and clinicopathological characteristics of PTC. A total of 152 PTC patients were enrolled in the present study. The methylation status of the HOXD10 promoter was analyzed by quantitative methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction (Q-MSP). BRAFV600E mutation status was analyzed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) followed by DNA sequencing. HOXD10 mRNA expression level was analyzed by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). 5-Aza-2-deoxycytidine (5-Aza) treatment was performed in 4 PTC cell lines to observe the change in HOXD10 expression. Transwell, cell cycle and apoptosis assays were then performed in an HOXD10-overexpressing PTC cell line. Furthermore, we analyzed the associations between HOXD10 methylation, HOXD10 expression, BRAF mutation and clinicopathological characteristics in PTC. Overexpression of HOXD10 suppressed the migration of PTC cells, and promoted cell apoptosis. Q-MSP showed that methylation levels of the HOXD10 promoter were significantly higher in PTC tissues than levels in the adjacent normal thyroid tissues (P=0.02). In addition, expression of HOXD10 was decreased in the PTC cell lines and PTC tissues compared with that noted in the adjacent normal thyroid tissues (P=0.008). However, BRAFV600E mutation was detected in 42.1% of PTC patients enrolled. In addition, the BRAF mutation status was associated with the methylation and expression level of HOXD10 in PTC. We then observed that 5-Aza treatment could revert the expression of HOXD10 in PTC cell lines. Moreover, the hypermethylation of HOXD10 was associated with invasion of the primary tumor and age >45. In conclusion, the HOXD10 gene may act as a tumor suppressor in PTC. The aberrant hypermethylation and decreased expression of the HOXD10 gene were shown in PTC patients, particularly in those with BRAFV600E mutation. The epigenetic suppression of the HOXD10 gene may play a role in the tumorigenesis of PTC, and it is a prospective biomarker for the diagnosis and prognosis of PTC.

Guo Y, Peng Y, Gao D, et al.
Silencing HOXD10 by promoter region hypermethylation activates ERK signaling in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Clin Epigenetics. 2017; 9:116 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Hepatocellular carcinoma is the fifth most common malignancy and the third leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Dysregulation of HomeoboxD10 (HOXD10) was found to suppress or promote cancer progression in different cancer types. The function and regulation of HOXD10 remain unclear in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
METHODS: Primary HCC samples (117), normal liver tissue samples (15), and 13 HCC cell lines (SNU182, SNU449, HBXF344, SMMC7721, Huh7, HepG2, LM3, PLC/PRF/5, BEL7402, SNU387, SNU475, QGY7703, and Huh1) were included in this study. Methylation-specific PCR, flow cytometry, western blot, transwell, siRNA, and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays were employed.
RESULTS: HOXD10 was methylated in 76.9% (90/117) of human primary HCC samples. HOXD10 methylation was significantly associated with vessel cancerous embolus, tumor cell differentiation, and the 3-year overall survival rate (all
CONCLUSION: HOXD10 is frequently methylated in human HCC, and the expression of HOXD10 is regulated by promoter region methylation. HOXD10 suppresses HCC cell growth both in vitro and in vivo. HOXD10 suppresses human HCC by inhibiting ERK signaling.

Wang S, Zhang C, Zhang Z, et al.
Transcriptome analysis in primary colorectal cancer tissues from patients with and without liver metastases using next-generation sequencing.
Cancer Med. 2017; 6(8):1976-1987 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most common cancer worldwide and liver metastases are the leading cause of death in patients with CRC. In this study, we performed next-generation sequencing profiling on primary colorectal tumor tissues obtained from three CRC patients with liver metastases and three CRC patients without liver metastases to identify differentially expressed genes (DEGs) that might be responsible for the metastases process. After filtering 2690 DEGs, comprising 996 upregulated and 1694 downregulated RNAs, 22 upregulated and 73 downregulated DEGs were identified. Gene ontology (GO) and pathway analyses were performed to determine the underlying mechanisms. Single-organism process (biological process), cell (cellular component), and binding (molecular function) were the most related terms in the GO analysis. We selected the top 13 upregulated and top 12 downregulated genes by fold change to verify their differential expression using quantitative real-time reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry (IHC). The validation showed that three most significantly upregulated DEGs were HOXD10, UGT2A3, and SLC13A2, whereas the five most significantly downregulated DEGs were SPP1, CXCL8, MMP3, OSM, and CXCL6, respectively. These aberrantly expressed genes may play pivotal roles in promoting or inhibiting metastases. Further studies are required to determine the functions of DEGs to promote the diagnosis of metastases and provide novel chemotherapy targets.

Bhatlekar S, Viswanathan V, Fields JZ, Boman BM
Overexpression of HOXA4 and HOXA9 genes promotes self-renewal and contributes to colon cancer stem cell overpopulation.
J Cell Physiol. 2018; 233(2):727-735 [PubMed] Related Publications
Because HOX genes encode master regulatory transcription factors that regulate stem cells (SCs) during development and aberrant expression of HOX genes occurs in various cancers, our goal was to determine if dysregulation of HOX genes is involved in the SC origin of colorectal cancer (CRC). We previously reported that HOXA4 and HOXD10 are expressed in the colonic SC niche and are overexpressed in CRC. HOX gene expression was studied in SCs from human colon tissue and CRC cells (CSCs) using qPCR and immunostaining. siRNA-mediated knockdown of HOX expression was used to evaluate the role of HOX genes in modulating cancer SC (CSC) phenotype at the level of proliferation, SC marker expression, and sphere formation. All-trans-retinoic-acid (ATRA), a differentiation-inducing agent was evaluated for its effects on HOX expression and CSC growth. We found that HOXA4 and HOXA9 are up-regulated in CRC SCs. siRNA knockdown of HOXA4 and HOXA9 reduced: (i) proliferation and sphere-formation and (ii) gene expression of known SC markers (ALDH1, CD166, LGR5). These results indicate that proliferation and self-renewal ability of CRC SCs are reduced in HOXA4 and HOXA9 knockdown cells. ATRA decreased HOXA4, HOXA9, and HOXD10 expression in parallel with reduction in ALDH1 expression, self-renewal, and proliferation. Overall, our findings indicate that overexpression of HOXA4 and HOXA9 contributes to self-renewal and overpopulation of SCs in CRC. Strategies designed to modulate HOX expression may provide ways to target malignant SCs and to develop more effective therapies for CRC.

Saha SS, Chowdhury RR, Mondal NR, et al.
Expression signatures of HOX cluster genes in cervical cancer pathogenesis: Impact of human papillomavirus type 16 oncoprotein E7.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(22):36591-36602 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The Homeobox (HOX) genes encode important transcription factors showing deregulated expression in several cancers. However, their role in cervical cancer pathogenesis, remains largely unexplored. Herein, we studied their association with Human Papillomavirus type 16 (HPV16) mediated cervical cancers. Our previously published gene expression microarray data revealed a significant alteration of 12 out of 39 HOX cluster members among cervical cancer cases, in comparison to the histopathologically normal controls. Of these, we validated seven (HOXA10, HOXA13, HOXB13, HOXC8, HOXC9, HOXC11 and HOXD10) by quantitative real-time PCR. We identified decreased HOXA10 expression as opposed to the increased expression of the rest. Such decrease was independent of the integration status of HPV16 genome, but correlated negatively with E7 expression in clinical samples, that was confirmed in vitro. HOXA10 and HOXB13 revealed association with Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition (EMT). While HOXA10 expression correlated positively with E-Cadherin and negatively with Vimentin expression, HOXB13 showed the reverse trend. Chromatin immunoprecipitation study in vitro revealed the ability of E7 to increase HOX gene expression by epigenetic regulation, affecting the H3K4me3 and H3K27me3 status of their promoters, resulting from a loss of PRC2-LSD1 complex activity. Thus, besides identifying the deregulated expression of HOX cluster members in HPV16 positive cervical cancer and their association with EMT, our study highlighted the mechanism of HPV16 E7-mediated epigenetic regulation of HOX genes in such cancers, potentially serving as bedrock for functional studies in the future.

Mo RJ, Lu JM, Wan YP, et al.
Decreased HoxD10 Expression Promotes a Proliferative and Aggressive Phenotype in Prostate Cancer.
Curr Mol Med. 2017; 17(1):70-78 [PubMed] Related Publications
HoxD10 gene plays a critical role in cell proliferation in the process of tumor development. However, the protein expression level and the function of HoxD10 in prostate cancer remain unknown. Using tissue microarray, we demonstrate that the protein expression of HoxD10 is commonly decreased in prostate cancer tissues (n = 92) compared to adjacent benign prostate tissues (n = 77). Functionally, knockdown of HoxD10 resulted in significant promotion of prostate cancer cell proliferation. Moreover, knockdown of HoxD10 strikingly stimulated prostate tumor growth in a mouse xenograft model. We also found a significant association between decreased immunohistochemical staining of HoxD10 expression and higher Gleason score (P = 0.031) and advanced clinical pathological stage (P = 0.011). An analysis of the Taylor database revealed that decreased HoxD10 expression predicted worse biochemical recurrence (BCR)-free survival of PCa patients (P = 0.005) and the multivariate analyses further supported that HoxD10 might be an independent predictor for BCR-free survival (P = 0.027). Collectively, our data suggest that the loss of HoxD10 function is common and may thus result in a progressive phenotype in PCa. HoxD10 may function as a biomarker that differentiates patients with BCR disease from the ones that are not after radical prostatectomy, implicating its potential as a therapeutic target.

Sadeghi M, Ranjbar B, Ganjalikhany MR, et al.
MicroRNA and Transcription Factor Gene Regulatory Network Analysis Reveals Key Regulatory Elements Associated with Prostate Cancer Progression.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(12):e0168760 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Technological and methodological advances in multi-omics data generation and integration approaches help elucidate genetic features of complex biological traits and diseases such as prostate cancer. Due to its heterogeneity, the identification of key functional components involved in the regulation and progression of prostate cancer is a methodological challenge. In this study, we identified key regulatory interactions responsible for primary to metastasis transitions in prostate cancer using network inference approaches by integrating patient derived transcriptomic and miRomics data into gene/miRNA/transcription factor regulatory networks. One such network was derived for each of the clinical states of prostate cancer based on differentially expressed and significantly correlated gene, miRNA and TF pairs from the patient data. We identified key elements of each network using a network analysis approach and validated our results using patient survival analysis. We observed that HOXD10, BCL2 and PGR are the most important factors affected in primary prostate samples, whereas, in the metastatic state, STAT3, JUN and JUNB are playing a central role. Benefiting integrative networks our analysis suggests that some of these molecules were targeted by several overexpressed miRNAs which may have a major effect on the dysregulation of these molecules. For example, in the metastatic tumors five miRNAs (miR-671-5p, miR-665, miR-663, miR-512-3p and miR-371-5p) are mainly responsible for the dysregulation of STAT3 and hence can provide an opportunity for early detection of metastasis and development of alternative therapeutic approaches. Our findings deliver new details on key functional components in prostate cancer progression and provide opportunities for the development of alternative therapeutic approaches.

Daugaard I, Dominguez D, Kjeldsen TE, et al.
Identification and validation of candidate epigenetic biomarkers in lung adenocarcinoma.
Sci Rep. 2016; 6:35807 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Lung cancer is the number one cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. DNA methylation is an epigenetic mechanism that regulates gene expression, and disease-specific methylation changes can be targeted as biomarkers. We have compared the genome-wide methylation pattern in tumor and tumor-adjacent normal lung tissue from four lung adenocarcinoma (LAC) patients using DNA methylation microarrays and identified 74 differentially methylated regions (DMRs). Eighteen DMRs were selected for validation in a cohort comprising primary tumors from 52 LAC patients and tumor-adjacent normal lung tissue from 32 patients by methylation-sensitive high resolution melting (MS-HRM) analysis. Significant increases in methylation were confirmed for 15 DMRs associated with the genes and genomic regions: OSR1, SIM1, GHSR, OTX2, LOC648987, HIST1H3E, HIST1H3G/HIST1H2BI, HIST1H2AJ/HIST1H2BM, HOXD10, HOXD3, HOXB3/HOXB4, HOXA3, HOXA5, Chr1(q21.1).A, and Chr6(p22.1). In particular the OSR1, SIM1 and HOXB3/HOXB4 regions demonstrated high potential as biomarkers in LAC. For OSR1, hypermethylation was detected in 47/48 LAC cases compared to 1/31 tumor-adjacent normal lung samples. Similarly, 45/49 and 36/48 LAC cases compared to 3/31 and 0/31 tumor-adjacent normal lung samples showed hypermethylation of the SIM1 and HOXB3/HOXB4 regions, respectively. In conclusion, this study has identified and validated 15 DMRs that can be targeted as biomarkers in LAC.

Joo MK, Park JJ, Chun HJ
Impact of homeobox genes in gastrointestinal cancer.
World J Gastroenterol. 2016; 22(37):8247-8256 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Homeobox genes, including

de Barros E Lima Bueno R, Ramão A, Pinheiro DG, et al.
HOX genes: potential candidates for the progression of laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(11):15087-15096 [PubMed] Related Publications
Laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC) is a very aggressive cancer, considered to be a subtype of the head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Despite significant advances in the understanding and treatment of cancer, prognosis of patients with LSCC has not improved recently. In the present study, we sought to understand better the genetic mechanisms underlying LSCC development. Thirty-two tumor samples were collected from patients undergoing surgical resection of LSCC. The samples were submitted to whole-genome cDNA microarray analysis aiming to identify genetic targets in LSCC. We also employed bioinformatic approaches to expand our findings using the TCGA database and further performed functional assays, using human HNSCC cell lines, to evaluate viability, cell proliferation, and cell migration after silencing of selected genes. Eight members of the homeobox gene family (HOX) were identified to be overexpressed in LSCC samples when compared to normal larynx tissue. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis validated the overexpression of HOX gene family members in LSCC. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) statistical method curve showed that the expression level of seven members of HOX gene family can distinguish tumor from nontumor tissue. Correlation analysis of clinical and gene expression data revealed that HOXC8 and HOXD11 genes were associated with the differentiation degree of tumors and regional lymph node metastases, respectively. Additionally, siRNA assays confirmed that HOXC8, HOXD10, and HOXD11 genes might be critical for cell colony proliferation and cell migration. According to our findings, several members of the HOX genes were overexpressed in LSCC samples and seem to be required in biological processes involved in tumor development. This suggests that HOX genes might play a critical role in the physiopathology of LSCC tumors.

Knight JM, Kim E, Ivanov I, et al.
Comprehensive site-specific whole genome profiling of stromal and epithelial colonic gene signatures in human sigmoid colon and rectal tissue.
Physiol Genomics. 2016; 48(9):651-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The strength of associations between various exposures (e.g., diet, tobacco, chemopreventive agents) and colorectal cancer risk may partially depend on the complex interaction between epithelium and stroma across anatomic subsites. Currently, baseline data describing genome-wide coding and long noncoding gene expression profiles in the healthy colon specific to tissue type and location are lacking. Therefore, colonic mucosal biopsies from 10 healthy participants who were enrolled in a clinical study to evaluate effects of lignan supplementation on gut resiliency were used to characterize the site-specific global gene expression signatures associated with stromal vs. epithelial cells in the sigmoid colon and rectum. Using RNA-seq, we demonstrate that tissue type and location patterns of gene expression and upstream regulatory pathways are distinct. For example, consistent with a key role of stroma in the crypt niche, mRNAs associated with immunoregulatory and inflammatory processes (i.e., CXCL14, ANTXR1), smooth muscle contraction (CALD1), proliferation and apoptosis (GLP2R, IGFBP3), and modulation of extracellular matrix (MMP2, COL3A1, MFAP4) were all highly expressed in the stroma. In comparison, HOX genes (HOXA3, HOXD9, HOXD10, HOXD11, and HOXD-AS2, a HOXD cluster antisense RNA 2), and WNT5B expression were also significantly higher in sigmoid colon compared with the rectum. These findings provide strong impetus for considering colorectal tissue subtypes and location in future observational studies and clinical trials designed to evaluate the effects of exposures on colonic health.

von Heyking K, Roth L, Ertl M, et al.
The posterior HOXD locus: Its contribution to phenotype and malignancy of Ewing sarcoma.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(27):41767-41780 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Microarray analysis revealed genes of the posterior HOXD locus normally involved in bone formation to be over-expressed in primary Ewing sarcoma (ES). The expression of posterior HOXD genes was not influenced via ES pathognomonic EWS/ETS translocations. However, knock down of the dickkopf WNT signaling pathway inhibitor 2 (DKK2) resulted in a significant suppression of HOXD10, HOXD11 and HOXD13 while over-expression of DKK2 and stimulation with factors of the WNT signaling pathway such as WNT3a, WNT5a or WNT11 increased their expression. RNA interference demonstrated that individual HOXD genes promoted chondrogenic differentiation potential, and enhanced expression of the bone-associated gene RUNX2. Furthermore, HOXD genes increased the level of the osteoblast- and osteoclast-specific genes, osteocalcin (BGLAP) and platelet-derived growth factor beta polypeptide (PDGFB), and may further regulate endochondral bone development via induction of parathyroid hormone-like hormone (PTHLH). Additionally, HOXD11 and HOXD13 promoted contact independent growth of ES, while in vitro invasiveness of ES lines was enhanced by all 3 HOXD genes investigated and seemed mediated via matrix metallopeptidase 1 (MMP1). Consequently, knock down of HOXD11 or HOXD13 significantly suppressed lung metastasis in a xeno-transplant model in immune deficient mice, providing overall evidence that posterior HOXD genes promote clonogenicity and metastatic potential of ES.

Klein S, Dieterich LC, Mathelier A, et al.
DeepCAGE transcriptomics identify HOXD10 as a transcription factor regulating lymphatic endothelial responses to VEGF-C.
J Cell Sci. 2016; 129(13):2573-85 [PubMed] Related Publications
Lymphangiogenesis plays a crucial role during development, in cancer metastasis and in inflammation. Activation of VEGFR-3 (also known as FLT4) by VEGF-C is one of the main drivers of lymphangiogenesis, but the transcriptional events downstream of VEGFR-3 activation are largely unknown. Recently, we identified a wave of immediate early transcription factors that are upregulated in human lymphatic endothelial cells (LECs) within the first 30 to 80 min after VEGFR-3 activation. Expression of these transcription factors must be regulated by additional pre-existing transcription factors that are rapidly activated by VEGFR-3 signaling. Using transcription factor activity analysis, we identified the homeobox transcription factor HOXD10 to be specifically activated at early time points after VEGFR-3 stimulation, and to regulate expression of immediate early transcription factors, including NR4A1. Gain- and loss-of-function studies revealed that HOXD10 is involved in LECs migration and formation of cord-like structures. Furthermore, HOXD10 regulates expression of VE-cadherin, claudin-5 and NOS3 (also known as e-NOS), and promotes lymphatic endothelial permeability. Taken together, these results reveal an important and unanticipated role of HOXD10 in the regulation of VEGFR-3 signaling in lymphatic endothelial cells, and in the control of lymphangiogenesis and permeability.

Li X, Zheng L, Zhang F, et al.
STARD13-correlated ceRNA network inhibits EMT and metastasis of breast cancer.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(17):23197-211 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Competing endogenous RNAs (ceRNAs) network has been correlated with the initiation and development of cancer. Here, we identify CDH5, HOXD1, and HOXD10 as putative STARD13 ceRNAs and they display concordant patterns with STARD13 in different metastatic potential breast cancer cell lines and tissues. Notably, 3'UTRs of these genes suppress breast cancer metastasis via inhibiting epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in vitro and in vivo, which are activated through the crosstalk between STARD13 and its ceRNAs in 3'UTR- and miRNA-dependent manners. In addition, Kaplan-Meier survival analysis reveals that mRNA level of STARD13 and its ceRNAs is remarkably associated with survival of breast cancer patients. These results suggest that 3'UTRs of CDH5, HOXD1, and HOXD10 inhibit breast cancer metastasis via serving as STARD13 ceRNAs.

Wang YY, Li L, Ye ZY, et al.
MicroRNA-10b promotes migration and invasion through Hoxd10 in human gastric cancer.
World J Surg Oncol. 2015; 13:259 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: This study aims to investigate the effect of miR-10b overexpression on cancer cell proliferation, migration, invasion, and Hoxd10 expression.
METHODS: The effect of miR-10b on proliferation, migration, and invasion of MKN-28, BGC-823, and SGC-7901 cells and the expression of Hoxd10 protein in SGC-7901 and BGC-823 cells were detected following transfection of miR-10b inhibitor or Negative Control B. Expression of Hoxd10 protein in 436 paraffin-embedded cancer tissues was also investigated.
RESULTS: miR-10b was significantly upregulated in AGS, MKN-28, BGC-823, HCG-27, SGC-7901, and MKN-45 cell lines, miR-10b inhibitor significantly inhibited proliferation and migration of MKN-45, BGC-823 and SGC-7901 cells 48 h after transfection, while Hoxd10 protein in these cells lines had increased 72 h after transfection. Hoxd10 was highly expressed in gastric cancer and correlated with size of tumor, Lauren classification, depth of invasion, lymph node and distant metastasis, Tumor-Node-Metastasis (TNM) stage, and prognosis.
CONCLUSIONS: miR-10b promotes migration and invasion through Hoxd10 in human gastric cancer cell lines and may play an important role in tumorigenesis, progression, and prognosis.

Yang H, Zhou J, Mi J, et al.
HOXD10 acts as a tumor-suppressive factor via inhibition of the RHOC/AKT/MAPK pathway in human cholangiocellular carcinoma.
Oncol Rep. 2015; 34(4):1681-91 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
HOXD10, a key regulator of cell-differentiated phenotype maintainence, has been demonstrated to be involved in the tumorigenesis of many human malignacies. However, the status of HOXD10 expression and its biological function in cholangiocellular carcinoma (CCC) remain to be clarified. In the present study, we investigated the clinical significance and biological functions of HOXD10 in CCC and found that the expression of HOXD10 and its downstream effector RHOC was significantly different in well-differentiated CCC tissues compared with poorly-differentiated lesions. We also observed a significant correlation between low HOXD10 and high RHOC expression levels and worse prognosis. The stable overexpression of HOXD10 by lentivirus vector significantly inhibited cell invasion partly by downregulating the expression of MMP2 and MMP9, and significantly increased early apoptosis in CCC cell lines and induced G1 phase cell cycle arrest, contributing to the inhibition of cell proliferation in vitro. Additionally, we demonstrated that the inactivation of the RHOC/AKT/MAPK pathway was involved in the tumor-suppressive functions of HOXD10 in CCC. These results suggested that HOXD10 may be a putative suppressor gene and can act as a prognostic marker and potentially a novel therapeutic target for CCC.

Ma Z, Chen Y, Min L, et al.
Augmented miR-10b expression associated with depressed expression of its target gene KLF4 involved in gastric carcinoma.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2015; 8(5):5071-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Previous studies have revealed several targets of miR-10b, such as syndecan-1, HOXD10, TBX5, and E-cadherin. In this study, we aimed to assess whether Krüppel-like factor 4 (KLF4) is a target gene of miR-10b in gastric cancer (GC). Targeting of KLF4 by miR-10b was confirmed by dual-luciferase reporter assays. The expression levels of miR-10b and KLF4 mRNA in 5 different gastric cancer cell lines and 65 pairs of gastric cancer tissues were detected by Real-time PCR. In addition, KLF4 protein in gastric cancer cell lines and 30 GC tissues was measured by western blotting and immunochemistry, respectively. KLF4 is a direct target gene of miR-10b in GC, and its expression is reduced by miR-10b at both mRNA and protein levels. In addition, the expression level of miR-10b was tendentiously upregulated in GC tissues while the expression levels of KLF4 mRNA and protein were decreased in gastric cancer tissues compared with normal adjacent tissue. There was a dramatically inverse correlation between the expression levels of miR-10b and KLF4 mRNA in GC (r=-0.339, P=0.006). These findings indicate that miR-10b was upregulated in GC and may have a key role in GC pathogenesis and development through the downregulation of its target gene KLF4.

Sharma S, Mandal P, Sadhukhan T, et al.
Bridging Links between Long Noncoding RNA HOTAIR and HPV Oncoprotein E7 in Cervical Cancer Pathogenesis.
Sci Rep. 2015; 5:11724 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Human Papillomavirus (HPV) type 16 oncoprotein E7 plays a major role in cervical carcinogenesis by interacting with and functionally inactivating various host regulatory molecules. Long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) HOTAIR is one such regulator that recruits chromatin remodelling complex PRC2, creating gene silencing H3K27 me3 marks. Hence, we hypothesized that HOTAIR could be a potential target of E7, in HPV16 related cervical cancers (CaCx). We identified significant linear trend of progressive HOTAIR down-regulation through HPV negative controls, HPV16 positive non-malignants and CaCx samples. Majority of CaCx cases portrayed HOTAIR down-regulation in comparison to HPV negative controls, with corresponding up-regulation of HOTAIR target, HOXD10, and enrichment of cancer related pathways. However, a small subset had significantly higher HOTAIR expression, concomitant with high E7 expression and enrichment of metastatic pathways. Expression of HOTAIR and PRC2-complex members (EZH2 and SUZ12), showed significant positive correlation with E7 expression in CaCx cases and E7 transfected C33A cell line, suggestive of interplay between E7 and HOTAIR. Functional inactivation of HOTAIR by direct interaction with E7 could also be predicted by in silico analysis and confirmed by RNA-Immunoprecipitation. Our study depicts one of the causal mechanisms of cervical carcinogenesis by HPV16 E7, through modulation of HOTAIR expression and function.

Heubach J, Monsior J, Deenen R, et al.
The long noncoding RNA HOTAIR has tissue and cell type-dependent effects on HOX gene expression and phenotype of urothelial cancer cells.
Mol Cancer. 2015; 14:108 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Urothelial carcinoma (UC) is the fifth most common cancer in the developed world. Delineation of differentiation subtypes in UC highlighted the importance of aberrant differentiation. Understanding underlying mechanisms may facilitate diagnosis and development of efficient therapy strategies. It is well accepted that epigenetic mechanisms are involved. Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs), a new class of epigenetic factors, are thought to mediate molecular differences between cell types to control cellular identity. The present study focuses on the lncRNA HOTAIR, originating from the HOXC locus. Its overexpression induces an aggressive phenotype in many cancers and aberrant expression of homeotic HOX transcription factors, especially HOXD10, that regulate differentiation and tissue homeostasis. The aim of the present study was to determine the functional role of HOTAIR in UC with regard to aggressive phenotype, regulation of aberrant differentiation and altered HOX gene expression.
METHODS: We determined RNA expression levels of HOTAIR and HOX genes in UC tissues and cell lines. Knockdown of HOTAIR and ectopic overexpression was performed to determine the effect on reported target genes in UC. Cell lines were stably transfected with HOTAIR to investigate changes in phenotype and HOX gene expression.
RESULTS: HOTAIR was overexpressed in approximately half of UC tissues and cell lines. Effects of HOTAIR overexpression differed between cell lines. Whereas VM-CUB1 cells acquired the expected phenotype with increased proliferation, clonogenicity, anchorage independent growth, migratory activity and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, 5637 cells grew more slowly displaying induction of senescence and related immune response genes. Other UC lines showed intermediate effects. Expression profiling revealed divergent effects on HOX genes, cell cycle regulators and differentiation according with the phenotypic differences between HOTAIR-overexpressing VM-CUB1 and 5637 cells.
CONCLUSIONS: Our data indicate that HOTAIR overexpression may affect differentiation state and aggressiveness of UC cells, but in a cell-type dependent manner. Our functional studies and the comparison of our expression data sets with those from other cancer cell types, which revealed minimal overlaps, indicate that effects of HOTAIR are strongly tissue-dependent and can even differ within one cancer type. Thus, HOTAIR functions and target genes cannot simply be transferred from one cancer type to the other.

Svoboda LK, Harris A, Bailey NJ, et al.
Overexpression of HOX genes is prevalent in Ewing sarcoma and is associated with altered epigenetic regulation of developmental transcription programs.
Epigenetics. 2014; 9(12):1613-25 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The polycomb proteins BMI-1 and EZH2 are highly overexpressed by Ewing sarcoma (ES), a tumor of stem cell origin that is driven by EWS-ETS fusion oncogenes, most commonly EWS-FLI1. In the current study we analyzed expression of transcription programs that are controlled by polycomb proteins during embryonic development to determine if they are abnormal in ES. Our results show that polycomb target gene expression in ES deviates from normal tissues and stem cells and that, as expected, most targets are relatively repressed. However, we also discovered a paradoxical up regulation of numerous polycomb targets and these were highly enriched for homeobox (HOX) genes. Comparison of HOX profiles between malignant and non-malignant tissues revealed a distinctive HOX profile in ES, which was characterized by overexpression of posterior HOXD genes. In addition, ectopic expression of EWS-FLI1 during stem cell differentiation led to aberrant up regulation of posterior HOXD genes. Mechanistically, this up regulation was associated with altered epigenetic regulation. Specifically, ES and EWS-FLI1+ stem cells displayed a relative loss of polycomb-dependent H3K27me3 and gain of trithorax-dependent H3K4me3 at the promoters of posterior HOXD genes and also at the HOXD11.12 polycomb response element. In addition, a striking correlation was evident between HOXD13 and other genes whose regulation is coordinately regulated during embryonic development by distal enhancer elements. Together, these studies demonstrate that epigenetic regulation of polycomb target genes, in particular HOXD genes, is altered in ES and that these changes are mediated downstream of EWS-FLI1.

Wang YF, Li Z, Zhao XH, et al.
MicroRNA-10b is upregulated and has an invasive role in colorectal cancer through enhanced Rhoc expression.
Oncol Rep. 2015; 33(3):1275-83 [PubMed] Related Publications
We found that the difference in miR‑10b expression between the tumor tissue and adjacent non‑tumor tissue was significant. Outer periphery and portal vein serum miR‑10b concentrations were significantly higher than those of the control. However, the outer periphery vein miR‑10b concentrations were not significant when compared with the portal vein serum concentration in colorectal cancer. The expression levels of miR‑10b were associated with higher‑grade colorectal cancer. MiR‑10b levels were markedly elevated in lymph node metastasis-positive tumor tissue compared with those in lymph node metastasis-free tumor tissue, and were correlated with a downregulation in Hoxd10 expression. Rhoc protein expression in tumor tissue was significantly amplified when compared to that of the control tissue group. An inverse correlation between Hoxd10 and Rhoc in immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis was observed (P<0.05). MiR-10b expression was also inversely correlated with Hoxd10 protein expression (P<0.05). Thus, miR‑10b is potentially involved in the invasion of colorectal cancer.

Singh R, Pochampally R, Watabe K, et al.
Exosome-mediated transfer of miR-10b promotes cell invasion in breast cancer.
Mol Cancer. 2014; 13:256 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Exosomes are 30-100 nm membrane vesicles of endocytic origin, mediating diverse biological functions including tumor cell invasion, cell-cell communication and antigen presentation through transfer of proteins, mRNAs and microRNAs. Recent evidence suggests that microRNAs can be released through ceramide-dependent secretory machinery regulated by neutral sphingomyelinase 2 (nSMase2) enzyme encoded by the smpd3 gene that triggers exosome secretion. However, whether exosome-mediated microRNA transfer plays any role in cell invasion remains poorly understood. Thus, the aim of this study was to identify the exosomal microRNAs involved in breast cancer invasion.
METHODS: The expression level of endogenous and exosomal miRNAs were examined by real time PCR and the expression level of target proteins were detected by western blot. Scanning electron and confocal microscopy were used to characterize exosomes and to study its uptake and transfer. Luciferase reporter plasmids and its mutant were used to confirm direct targeting. Furthermore, the functional significance of exosomal miR-10b was estimated by invasion assay.
RESULTS: In this study, we demonstrate that microRNA carrying exosomes can be transferred among different cell lines through direct uptake. miR-10b is highly expressed in metastatic breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cells as compared to non-metastatic breast cancer cells or non-malignant breast cells; it is actively secreted into medium via exosomes. In particular, nSMase2 or ceramide promotes the exosome-mediated miR-10b secretion whereas ceramide inhibitor suppresses this secretion. Moreover, upon uptake, miR-10b can suppress the protein level of its target genes such as HOXD10 and KLF4, indicating its functional significance. Finally, treatment with exosomes derived from MDA-MB-231 cells could induce the invasion ability of non-malignant HMLE cells.
CONCLUSION: Together, our results suggest that a set of specific microRNAs may play an important role in modulating tumor microenvironment through exosomes. Thus, a better understanding of this process may aid in the development of novel therapeutic agents.

Sharpe DJ, Orr KS, Moran M, et al.
POU2F1 activity regulates HOXD10 and HOXD11 promoting a proliferative and invasive phenotype in head and neck cancer.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(18):8803-15 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
HOX genes are master regulators of organ morphogenesis and cell differentiation during embryonic development, and continue to be expressed throughout post-natal life. To test the hypothesis that HOX genes are dysregulated in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) we defined their expression profile, and investigated the function, transcriptional regulation and clinical relevance of a subset of highly expressed HOXD genes. Two HOXD genes, D10 and D11, showed strikingly high levels in HNSCC cell lines, patient tumor samples and publicly available datasets. Knockdown of HOXD10 in HNSCC cells caused decreased proliferation and invasion, whereas knockdown of HOXD11 reduced only invasion. POU2F1 consensus sequences were identified in the 5' DNA of HOXD10 and D11. Knockdown of POU2F1 significantly reduced expression of HOXD10 and D11 and inhibited HNSCC proliferation. Luciferase reporter constructs of the HOXD10 and D11 promoters confirmed that POU2F1 consensus binding sites are required for optimal promoter activity. Utilizing patient tumor samples a significant association was found between immunohistochemical staining of HOXD10 and both the overall and the disease-specific survival, adding further support that HOXD10 is dysregulated in head and neck cancer. Additional studies are now warranted to fully evaluate HOXD10 as a prognostic tool in head and neck cancers.

Liao CG, Kong LM, Zhou P, et al.
miR-10b is overexpressed in hepatocellular carcinoma and promotes cell proliferation, migration and invasion through RhoC, uPAR and MMPs.
J Transl Med. 2014; 12:234 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Recently, miR-10b is identified as a miRNA highly expressed in many human cancers, promoting cell migration and invasion. However, the specific function of miR-10b in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is unclear at this point.
METHODS: The miR-10b expression levels in 60 paired different TNM Stage HCC tumor tissues compared with adjacent non-tumor (ANT) tissues, normal tissue control (8 benign tumor and 7 normal liver tissues), 3 normal liver and 7 HCC cell lines were measured by real-time quantitative RT-PCR and to evaluate their association with HCC clinicopathologic features. Invasion assay, MTT proliferation assay and wound-healing assay were performed to test the invasion and proliferation of HCC cell after transfection. The effect of miR-10b on HCC in vivo was validated by murine xenograft model.
RESULTS: We found that miR-10b expression was increased in human HCC tissues and cell lines compared with normal control, respectively. The expression of miR-10b was correlated with HCC metastatic ability. Overexpression of miR-10b in MHCC-97L cells increased cell motility and invasiveness, whereas inhibition of miR-10b in MHCC-97H cells reduced cell motility and invasiveness in vitro and in vivo. We also showed that HOXD10 was negatively regulated by miR-10b at the posttranscriptional level, via a specific target site within the 3'UTR by luciferase reporter assay. Furthermore, we found that miR-10b induced HCC cell invasion and migration by modulating the HOXD10 target gene RhoC, uPAR, MMP-2 and MMP-9 expression.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggested that miR-10b was overexpressed in HCC and promoted HCC cell migration and invasion through the HOXD10/ RhoC/ uPAR/ MMPs pathway which may provide a novel bio-target for HCC therapy.

Vardhini NV, Rao PJ, Murthy PB, Sudhakar G
HOXD10 expression in human breast cancer.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(11):10855-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
Breast cancer is the most frequent malignancy among females. In this study, we analyzed the expression pattern of a homeobox gene (HOXD10) in human invasive ductal breast cancer tissues and normal tissues. With the ACTB (β-actin) gene as a reference, HOXD10 was detected in 60 breast cancer tissues by using the quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) method with the Relative Expression Software Tool (REST). We found that the HOXD10 expression level was significantly different between cancerous and normal tissues. Downregulation of the HOXD10 gene expression was examined in high-grade samples. Low-grade tissue showed no difference from the control group. HOXD10 expression was reduced in grade II breast carcinoma tissues. This data reveal that misexpression of the HOXD10 gene supports the development and involvement in breast cancer and may serve as a potential biomarker for the diagnosis of human ductal invasive breast carcinoma.

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