Gene Summary

Gene:IL1A; interleukin 1, alpha
Aliases: IL1, IL-1A, IL1F1, IL1-ALPHA
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is a member of the interleukin 1 cytokine family. This cytokine is a pleiotropic cytokine involved in various immune responses, inflammatory processes, and hematopoiesis. This cytokine is produced by monocytes and macrophages as a proprotein, which is proteolytically processed and released in response to cell injury, and thus induces apoptosis. This gene and eight other interleukin 1 family genes form a cytokine gene cluster on chromosome 2. It has been suggested that the polymorphism of these genes is associated with rheumatoid arthritis and Alzheimer's disease. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:interleukin-1 alpha
Source:NCBIAccessed: 25 June, 2015


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

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 25 June 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 25 June, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (8)

Latest Publications: IL1A (cancer-related)

Chen K, Yang D, Li X, et al.
Mutational landscape of gastric adenocarcinoma in Chinese: implications for prognosis and therapy.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015; 112(4):1107-12 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 27/07/2015 Related Publications
Gastric cancer (GC) is a highly heterogeneous disease. To identify potential clinically actionable therapeutic targets that may inform individualized treatment strategies, we performed whole-exome sequencing on 78 GCs of differing histologies and anatomic locations, as well as whole-genome sequencing on two GC cases, each with three primary tumors and two matching lymph node metastases. The data showed two distinct GC subtypes with either high-clonality (HiC) or low-clonality (LoC). The HiC subtype of intratumoral heterogeneity was associated with older age, TP53 (tumor protein P53) mutation, enriched C > G transition, and significantly shorter survival, whereas the LoC subtype was associated with younger age, ARID1A (AT rich interactive domain 1A) mutation, and significantly longer survival. Phylogenetic tree analysis of whole-genome sequencing data from multiple samples of two patients supported the clonal evolution of GC metastasis and revealed the accumulation of genetic defects that necessitate combination therapeutics. The most recurrently mutated genes, which were validated in a separate cohort of 216 cases by targeted sequencing, were members of the homologous recombination DNA repair, Wnt, and PI3K-ERBB pathways. Notably, the drugable NRG1 (neuregulin-1) and ERBB4 (V-Erb-B2 avian erythroblastic leukemia viral oncogene homolog 4) ligand-receptor pair were mutated in 10% of GC cases. Mutations of the BRCA2 (breast cancer 2, early onset) gene, found in 8% of our cohort and validated in The Cancer Genome Atlas GC cohort, were associated with significantly longer survivals. These data define distinct clinicogenetic forms of GC in the Chinese population that are characterized by specific mutation sets that can be investigated for efficacy of single and combination therapies.

Miaskowski C, Cataldo JK, Baggott CR, et al.
Cytokine gene variations associated with trait and state anxiety in oncology patients and their family caregivers.
Support Care Cancer. 2015; 23(4):953-65 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Anxiety is common among cancer patients and their family caregivers (FCs) and is associated with poorer outcomes. Recently, associations between inflammation and anxiety were identified. However, the relationship between variations in cytokine genes and anxiety warrants investigation. Therefore, phenotypic and genotypic characteristics associated with trait and state anxiety were evaluated in a sample of 167 oncology patients with breast, prostate, lung, or brain cancer and 85 of their FCs.
METHODS: Using multiple regression analyses, the associations between participants' demographic and clinical characteristics as well as variations in cytokine genes and trait and state anxiety were evaluated.
RESULTS: In the bivariate analyses, a number of phenotypic characteristics were associated with both trait and state anxiety (e.g., age, functional status). However, some associations were specific only to trait anxiety (e.g., number of comorbid conditions) or state anxiety (e.g., participation with a FC). Variations in three cytokine genes (i.e., interleukin (IL) 1 beta, IL1 receptor 2 (IL1R2), nuclear factor kappa beta 2 (NFKB2)) were associated with trait anxiety, and variations in two genes (i.e., IL1R2, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFA)) were associated with state anxiety.
CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that both trait and state anxiety need to be assessed in oncology patients and their FCs. Furthermore, variations in cytokine genes may contribute to higher levels of anxiety in oncology patients and their FCs.

Golozar A, Beaty TH, Gravitt PE, et al.
Oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma in high-risk Chinese populations: Possible role for vascular epithelial growth factor A.
Eur J Cancer. 2014; 50(16):2855-65 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/11/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Mechanisms involved in wound healing play some role in carcinogenesis in multiple organs, likely by creating a chronic inflammatory milieu. This study sought to assess the role of genetic markers in selected inflammation-related genes involved in wound healing (interleukin (IL)-1a, IL-1b, IL-1 Receptor type I (IL-1Ra), IL-1 Receptor type II (IL-1Rb), tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α, tumour necrosis factor receptor superfamily member (TNFRSF)1A, nuclear factor kappa beta (NF-kB)1, NF-kB2, inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), cyclooxygenase (COX)-2, hypoxia induced factor (HIF)-1α, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)A and P-53) in risk to oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC).
METHODS: We genotyped 125 tag single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)s in 410 cases and 377 age and sex matched disease-free individuals from Nutritional Intervention Trial (NIT) cohort, and 546 cases and 556 controls individually matched for age, sex and neighbourhood from Shanxi case-control study, both conducted in high-risk areas of north-central China (1985-2007). Cox proportional-hazard models and conditional logistic regression models were used for SNPs analyses for NIT and Shanxi, respectively. Fisher's inverse test statistics were used to obtain gene-level significance.
RESULTS: Multiple SNPs were significantly associated with OSCC in both studies, however, none retained their significance after a conservative Bonferroni adjustment. Empiric p-values for tag SNPs in VEGFA in NIT were highly concentrated in the lower tail of the distribution, suggesting this gene may be influencing risk. Permutation tests confirmed the significance of this pattern. At the gene level, VEGFA yielded an empiric significance (P=0.027) in NIT. We also observed some evidence for interaction between environmental factors and some VEGFA tag SNPs.
CONCLUSION: Our finding adds further evidence for a potential role for markers in the VEGFA gene in the development and progression of early precancerous lesions of oesophagus.

Di Mitri D, Toso A, Chen JJ, et al.
Tumour-infiltrating Gr-1+ myeloid cells antagonize senescence in cancer.
Nature. 2014; 515(7525):134-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Aberrant activation of oncogenes or loss of tumour suppressor genes opposes malignant transformation by triggering a stable arrest in cell growth, which is termed cellular senescence. This process is finely tuned by both cell-autonomous and non-cell-autonomous mechanisms that regulate the entry of tumour cells to senescence. Whether tumour-infiltrating immune cells can oppose senescence is unknown. Here we show that at the onset of senescence, PTEN null prostate tumours in mice are massively infiltrated by a population of CD11b(+)Gr-1(+) myeloid cells that protect a fraction of proliferating tumour cells from senescence, thus sustaining tumour growth. Mechanistically, we found that Gr-1(+) cells antagonize senescence in a paracrine manner by interfering with the senescence-associated secretory phenotype of the tumour through the secretion of interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1RA). Strikingly, Pten-loss-induced cellular senescence was enhanced in vivo when Il1ra knockout myeloid cells were adoptively transferred to PTEN null mice. Therapeutically, docetaxel-induced senescence and efficacy were higher in PTEN null tumours when the percentage of tumour-infiltrating CD11b(+)Gr-1(+) myeloid cells was reduced using an antagonist of CXC chemokine receptor 2 (CXCR2). Taken together, our findings identify a novel non-cell-autonomous network, established by innate immunity, that controls senescence evasion and chemoresistance. Targeting this network provides novel opportunities for cancer therapy.

Fuchigami T, Kibe T, Koyama H, et al.
Regulation of IL-6 and IL-8 production by reciprocal cell-to-cell interactions between tumor cells and stromal fibroblasts through IL-1α in ameloblastoma.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2014; 451(4):491-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Ameloblastoma is an odontogenic benign tumor that occurs in the jawbone, which invades bone and reoccurs locally. This tumor is treated by wide surgical excision and causes various problems, including changes in facial countenance and mastication disorders. Ameloblastomas have abundant tumor stroma, including fibroblasts and immune cells. Although cell-to-cell interactions are considered to be involved in the pathogenesis of many diseases, intercellular communications in ameloblastoma have not been fully investigated. In this study, we examined interactions between tumor cells and stromal fibroblasts via soluble factors in ameloblastoma. We used a human ameloblastoma cell line (AM-3 ameloblastoma cells), human fibroblasts (HFF-2 fibroblasts), and primary-cultured fibroblasts from human ameloblastoma tissues, and analyzed the effect of ameloblastoma-associated cell-to-cell communications on gene expression, cytokine secretion, cellular motility and proliferation. AM-3 ameloblastoma cells secreted higher levels of interleukin (IL)-1α than HFF-2 fibroblasts. Treatment with conditioned medium from AM-3 ameloblastoma cells upregulated gene expression and secretion of IL-6 and IL-8 of HFF-2 fibroblasts and primary-cultured fibroblast cells from ameloblastoma tissues. The AM3-stimulated production of IL-6 and IL-8 in fibroblasts was neutralized by pretreatment of AM-3 cells with anti-IL-1α antibody and IL-1 receptor antagonist. Reciprocally, cellular motility of AM-3 ameloblastoma cells was stimulated by HFF-2 fibroblasts in IL-6 and IL-8 dependent manner. In conclusion, ameloblastoma cells and stromal fibroblasts behave interactively via these cytokines to create a microenvironment that leads to the extension of ameloblastomas.

Le Bras GF, Taylor C, Koumangoye RB, et al.
TGFβ loss activates ADAMTS-1-mediated EGF-dependent invasion in a model of esophageal cell invasion.
Exp Cell Res. 2015; 330(1):29-42 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
The TGFβ signaling pathway is essential to epithelial homeostasis and is often inhibited during progression of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. Recently, an important role for TGFβ signaling has been described in the crosstalk between epithelial and stromal cells regulating squamous tumor cell invasion in mouse models of head-and-neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Loss of TGFβ signaling, in either compartment, leads to HNSCC however, the mechanisms involved are not well understood. Using organotypic reconstruct cultures (OTC) to model the interaction between epithelial and stromal cells that occur in dysplastic lesions, we show that loss of TGFβ signaling promotes an invasive phenotype in both fibroblast and epithelial compartments. Employing immortalized esophageal keratinocytes established to reproduce common mutations of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma, we show that treatment of OTC with inhibitors of TGFβ signaling (A83-01 or SB431542) enhances invasion of epithelial cells into a fibroblast-embedded Matrigel/collagen I matrix. Invasion induced by A83-01 is independent of proliferation but relies on protease activity and expression of ADAMTS-1 and can be altered by matrix density. This invasion was associated with increased expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, IL1 and EGFR ligands HB-EGF and TGFα. Altering EGF signaling prevented or induced epithelial cell invasion in this model. Loss of expression of the TGFβ target gene ROBO1 suggested that chemorepulsion may regulate keratinocyte invasion. Taken together, our data show increased invasion through inhibition of TGFβ signaling altered epithelial-fibroblasts interactions, repressing markers of activated fibroblasts, and altering integrin-fibronectin interactions. These results suggest that inhibition of TGFβ signaling modulates an array of pathways that combined promote multiple aspects of tumor invasion.

Qu YL, Yu H, Chen YZ, et al.
Relationships between genetic polymorphisms in inflammation-related factor gene and the pathogenesis of nasopharyngeal cancer.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(9):9411-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Our study aims to discuss the association between inflammation-related factors such as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with susceptibility and recurrence in nasopharyngeal carcinoma. We used Taqman real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to characterize the genetic variation of five SNPs in 194 nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients and 231 healthy subjects. All statistical analysis is performed with statistical product and service solutions v13.0; odds ratio (OR) value and 95 % confidence interval (CI) were calculated. There is no relationship between TGFβ1 -869 T/C, IL-6 -634C/G, TGFβ1 -509C/T, IL1 -511C/T and nasopharyngeal carcinoma susceptibility. Both single factor and multiple factors analysis showed that IL1a -889 T/T genotype is significantly associated with nasopharyngeal carcinoma in decreasing the risk of nasopharyngeal carcinoma. A highly significant association was found between IL1a -889 T/T genotype and protective genotype as defined by various pathological types. This is more obvious in the protective genotype of the non-keratin-type squamous carcinoma undifferentiated type. We also discovered that genotype G/G and C/G + G/G of IL6 -634 gene are associated with reduced recurrence of nasopharyngeal carcinoma. IL1a -889 gene polymorphism and susceptibility is related to nasopharyngeal carcinoma and can potentially decrease the risk of nasopharyngeal carcinoma in the Han Chinese population in north China. IL1-889 TT genotype is protective genotype for nasopharyngeal carcinoma. We have provided evidence that the GG genotype of the IL6 -634 gene is associated with recurrent risk of nasopharyngeal carcinoma. The G allele is the protective gene of nasopharyngeal carcinoma recurrence.

Pu Y, Zhang Z, Zhou B, et al.
Association of an insertion/deletion polymorphism in IL1A 3'-UTR with risk for cervical carcinoma in Chinese Han Women.
Hum Immunol. 2014; 75(8):740-4 [PubMed] Related Publications
Emerging evidence has demonstrated that polymorphisms of interleukin-1 (IL-1) may be involved in human tumorigenesis by regulating the production of this cytokine. Previous studies have investigated the association between two genetic variants (rs3783553 and rs17561) of IL1A and many diseases. The present study was conducted to evaluate whether these two variants are associated with cervical carcinoma (CC). These two polymorphisms were genotyped in 319 CC patients and 424 healthy controls by polymerase chain reaction polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PCR-PAGE) and polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). Significantly reduced CC risk was observed to be associated with the insertion allele of rs3783553 (P=0.014, OR=0.71, 95% CI=0.57-0.88). Stratification analysis based on different certain clinical features showed that patients with the heterozygous genotype were associated with a reduced predisposition advancing to clinical stage II-III or developing non-squamous cell carcinoma. Furthermore, patients with the insertion homozygous genotype were also associated with a reduced risk to have a poor tumor differentiation. No significant association was observed between rs17561 and CC. The present study provided evidence that the rs3783553 in IL1A 3'-UTR is inversely associated with CC risk, suggesting an important role IL-1α may play in cervical carcinogenesis.

Backman S, Kollara A, Haw R, et al.
Glucocorticoid-induced reversal of interleukin-1β-stimulated inflammatory gene expression in human oviductal cells.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(5):e97997 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
Studies indicate that high-grade serous ovarian carcinoma (HGSOC), the most common epithelial ovarian carcinoma histotype, originates from the fallopian tube epithelium (FTE). Risk factors for this cancer include reproductive parameters associated with lifetime ovulatory events. Ovulation is an acute inflammatory process during which the FTE is exposed to follicular fluid containing both pro- and anti-inflammatory molecules, such as interleukin-1 (IL1), tumor necrosis factor (TNF), and cortisol. Repeated exposure to inflammatory cytokines may contribute to transforming events in the FTE, with glucocorticoids exerting a protective effect. The global response of FTE cells to inflammatory cytokines or glucocorticoids has not been investigated. To examine the response of FTE cells and the ability of glucocorticoids to oppose this response, an immortalized human FTE cell line, OE-E6/E7, was treated with IL1β, dexamethasone (DEX), IL1β and DEX, or vehicle and genome-wide gene expression profiling was performed. IL1β altered the expression of 47 genes of which 17 were reversed by DEX. DEX treatment alone altered the expression of 590 genes, whereas combined DEX and IL1β treatment altered the expression of 784 genes. Network and pathway enrichment analysis indicated that many genes altered by DEX are involved in cytokine, chemokine, and cell cycle signaling, including NFκΒ target genes and interacting proteins. Quantitative real time RT-PCR studies validated the gene array data for IL8, IL23A, PI3 and TACC2 in OE-E6/E7 cells. Consistent with the array data, Western blot analysis showed increased levels of PTGS2 protein induced by IL1β that was blocked by DEX. A parallel experiment using primary cultured human FTE cells indicated similar effects on PTGS2, IL8, IL23A, PI3 and TACC2 transcripts. These findings support the hypothesis that pro-inflammatory signaling is induced in FTE cells by inflammatory mediators and raises the possibility that dysregulation of glucocorticoid signaling could contribute to increased risk for HGSOC.

Du Y, Han X, Pu R, et al.
Association of miRNA-122-binding site polymorphism at the interleukin-1 α gene and its interaction with hepatitis B virus mutations with hepatocellular carcinoma risk.
Front Med. 2014; 8(2):217-26 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study was designed to investigate the contribution of miRNA-122-binding site polymorphism at the IL-1A gene and its multiplicative interactions with hepatitis B virus (HBV) mutations in the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). A total of 1021 healthy controls, 302 HBV surface antigen (HBsAg) seroclearance subjects, and 2011 HBsAg-positive subjects (including 1021 HCC patients) were enrolled in this study. Quantitative PCR was used to genotype rs3783553. HBV mutations were determined by direct sequencing. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to test the associations of rs3783553, mutations, and their interactions with the risk of HCC. No significant association was found between rs3783553 and the risk of HCC among healthy controls, HBsAg seroclearance subjects, HBsAg-positive subjects without HCC, and all controls. Additionally, rs3783553 was not significantly associated with chronic HBV infection, liver cirrhosis, HBV e antigen seroconversion, abnormal alanine aminotransferase, and high viral load (> 10(4) copies/ml). However, the TTCA insertion allele of rs3783553 was significantly associated with an increased frequency of HBV C7A mutation compared with homozygous TTCA deletion carriers [(del/ins + ins/ins) vs. del/del, adjusted odds ratio (OR)= 1.48, 95% confidence interval (CI)= 1.09-2.02, P = 0.013]. Multiplicative interaction of rs3783553 with HBV preS deletion significantly reduced the risk of HCC in males, with an adjusted OR of 0.64 (95% CI = 0.42-0.98; P = 0.041) after age and HBV genotype were adjusted. Although rs3783553 did not significantly affect genetic susceptibility to HBV-related HCC, its variant allele may predispose the host to selecting HBV C7A mutation during evolution and significantly reduce the risk of HCC caused by HBV preS deletion. This study provides an insight into the complex host-virus interaction in HBV-induced hepatocarcinogenesis and is helpful in determining HBsAg-positive subjects who are likely to develop HCC.

Oliveira A, Dinis-Oliveira RJ, Nogueira A, et al.
Interleukin-1β genotype and circulating levels in cancer patients: metastatic status and pain perception.
Clin Biochem. 2014; 47(13-14):1209-13 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Proinflammatory cytokines released during inflammation can cause hyperexcitability in pain transmission neurons, leading to hyperalgesia and allodynia. Polymorphisms in interleukin 1 (IL-1) family of genes (IL1A, IL1B) and in IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra, coded by IL1RN) may therefore induce alterations in cytokine levels/effects and pain related response. Our purpose was to investigate the influence of polymorphisms in IL1A/B/RN on cytokine serum levels and its correlation with pain intensity, performance status, adverse effects, metastases and breakthrough pain in Caucasian cancer patients.
DESIGN AND METHODS: Serum IL-1α/β levels of 74 cancer patients were measured by competitive enzyme immunosorbent assay. All patients were also genotyped for the polymorphisms in IL1A (rs17561), IL1B (rs1143634) and IL1RN (rs419598) with Real-Time PCR. Results were then correlated to the appearance of bone or CNS metastases and several pain-related parameters.
RESULTS: IL-1β rs1143634 homozygous for T allele were associated with lower levels of IL1-β (p=0.032, Mann-Whitney test) and presented a trend for lower levels of pain (p=0.06, Fisher's Exact Test). Also, IL1-β levels were related with cancer onset status, since a four-fold increase probability of metastatic disease was observed in high IL-1β individuals (OR=4.074, p=0.010, Pearson χ(2) test). Among the female patients presenting metastatic disease and carriers of the TT genotype we observed a trend to lower levels of IL1-β (p=0.053, Pearson χ(2) test).
CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate that genetic variation at IL1-β gene may influence serum levels of IL1-β, with proportional consequences in cancer-related pain.

Slattery ML, Herrick JS, Torres-Mejia G, et al.
Genetic variants in interleukin genes are associated with breast cancer risk and survival in a genetically admixed population: the Breast Cancer Health Disparities Study.
Carcinogenesis. 2014; 35(8):1750-9 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
Interleukins (ILs) are key regulators of immune response. Genetic variation in IL genes may influence breast cancer risk and mortality given their role in cell growth, angiogenesis and regulation of inflammatory process. We examined 16 IL genes with breast cancer risk and mortality in an admixed population of Hispanic/Native American (NA) (2111 cases and 2597 controls) and non-Hispanic white (NHW) (1481 cases and 1585 controls) women. Adaptive Rank Truncated Product (ARTP) analysis was conducted to determine gene significance and lasso (least absolute shrinkage and selection operator) was used to identify potential gene by gene and gene by lifestyle interactions. The pathway was statistically significant for breast cancer risk overall (P ARTP = 0.0006), for women with low NA ancestry (P(ARTP) = 0.01), for premenopausal women (P(ARTP) = 0.02), for estrogen receptor (ER)+/progesterone receptor (PR)+ tumors (P(ARTP) = 0.03) and ER-/PR- tumors (P(ARTP) = 0.02). Eight of the 16 genes evaluated were associated with breast cancer risk (IL1A, IL1B, IL1RN, IL2, IL2RA, IL4, IL6 and IL10); four genes were associated with breast cancer risk among women with low NA ancestry (IL1B, IL6, IL6R and IL10), two were associated with breast cancer risk among women with high NA ancestry (IL2 and IL2RA) and four genes were associated with premenopausal breast cancer risk (IL1A, IL1B, IL2 and IL3). IL4, IL6R, IL8 and IL17A were associated with breast cancer-specific mortality. We confirmed associations with several functional polymorphisms previously associated with breast cancer risk and provide support that their combined effect influences the carcinogenic process.

Durães C, Muñoz X, Bonet C, et al.
Genetic variants in the IL1A gene region contribute to intestinal-type gastric carcinoma susceptibility in European populations.
Int J Cancer. 2014; 135(6):1343-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
The most studied genetic susceptibility factors involved in gastric carcinoma (GC) risk are polymorphisms in the inflammation-linked genes interleukin 1 (IL1) B and IL1RN. Despite the evidence pointing to the IL1 region, definite functional variants reproducible across populations of different genetic background have not been discovered so far. A high density linkage disequilibrium (LD) map of the IL1 gene cluster was established using HapMap to identify haplotype tagSNPs. Eighty-seven SNPs were genotyped in a Portuguese case-control study (358 cases, 1,485 controls) for the discovery analysis. A replication study, including a subset of those tagSNPs (43), was performed in an independent analysis (EPIC-EurGast) containing individuals from 10 European countries (365 cases, 1284 controls). Single SNP and haplotype block associations were determined for GC overall and anatomopathological subtypes. The most robust association was observed for SNP rs17042407, 16Kb upstream of the IL1A gene. Although several other SNP associations were observed, only the inverse association of rs17042407 allele C with GC of the intestinal type was observed in both studies, retaining significance after multiple testing correction (p = 0.0042) in the combined analysis. The haplotype analysis of the IL1A LD block in the combined dataset revealed the association between a common haplotype carrying the rs17042407 variant and GC, particularly of the intestinal type (p = 3.1 × 10(-5) ) and non cardia localisation (p = 4.6 × 10(-3) ). These results confirm the association of IL1 gene variants with GC and reveal a novel SNP and haplotypes in the IL1A region associated with intestinal type GC in European populations.

Panic N, Mastrostefano E, Leoncini E, et al.
Susceptibility to Helicobacter pylori infection: results of an epidemiological investigation among gastric cancer patients.
Mol Biol Rep. 2014; 41(6):3637-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of this study was to identify the clinical, demographic, lifestyle factors and selected genetic polymorphisms that affect the susceptibility towards Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection in gastric cancer patients. Histological confirmed gastric adenocarcinoma cases that underwent curative gastrectomy between 2002 and 2012 were included. Gastric biopsy samples were obtained to determine the H. pylori status, and further cagA status and vacA m and s genotypes by polymerase chain reaction. Patients were interviewed with structured questionnaires, and blood samples were collected for EPHX1, GSTM1, GSTT1, IL1B, IL1-RN, MTHFR and p53 genotyping. Proportions were compared in univariate analysis, while the relation between putative risk factors and H. pylori status and genotype were measured using logistic regression analysis. One hundred forty-nine gastric cancer patients were included, of which 78.5% were H. pylori positive. Among positive patients 50% were cagA+, 72.5% vacA m1 and 80.7% vacA s1. The presence of cagA was less frequent among vacA m1 (p = 0.031) and vacA s1 (p = 0.052) subtypes. The presence of father history for any cancer was a significant risk factor for H. pylori infection [adjusted odds ratio (OR) = 8.18, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.04-64.55]. EPHX1 exon 3 T > C (OR = 0.35, CI 95% 0.13-0.94), IL1B-511 T > C (OR = 0.38, CI 95% 0.15-0.97) and IL1-RN VNTR (OR = 0.19, CI 95% 0.06-0.58) polymorphisms were protective towards H. pylori infection in the univariate analysis. Wine consumption was associated with higher risk of carrying the H. pylori vacA m1 virulent subtype (p = 0.034). Lastly, cardiovascular diseases were less common among cagA positive subjects (p = 0.023). Father history of any cancer is a risk factor for H. pylori infection. Polymorphisms in IL1B-511, IL1-RN and EPHX1 exon 3 genes might be protective towards H. pylori infection.

Lasek W, Zagożdżon R, Jakobisiak M
Interleukin 12: still a promising candidate for tumor immunotherapy?
Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2014; 63(5):419-35 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
Interleukin 12 (IL-12) seemed to represent the ideal candidate for tumor immunotherapy, due to its ability to activate both innate (NK cells) and adaptive (cytotoxic T lymphocytes) immunities. However, despite encouraging results in animal models, very modest antitumor effects of IL-12 in early clinical trials, often accompanied by unacceptable levels of adverse events, markedly dampened hopes of the successful use of this cytokine in cancer patients. Recently, several clinical studies have been initiated in which IL-12 is applied as an adjuvant in cancer vaccines, in gene therapy including locoregional injections of IL-12 plasmid and in the form of tumor-targeting immunocytokines (IL-12 fused to monoclonal antibodies). The near future will show whether this renewed interest in the use of IL-12 in oncology will result in meaningful therapeutic effects in a select group of cancer patients.

Tang Y, Fang Q, Shi D, et al.
mTOR inhibition of cardamonin on antiproliferation of A549 cells is involved in a FKBP12 independent fashion.
Life Sci. 2014; 99(1-2):44-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: Cardamonin has previously demonstrated that it had an antiproliferative effect on vascular smooth muscle cells by inhibiting the activity of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR). The antiproliferative effect and the possible mechanism of combining with mTOR of cardamonin were investigated on A549 cells.
MAIN METHODS: Cell proliferation, cell cycle and apoptosis were measured by methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium (MTT) and flow cytometry, respectively. mTOR and 12 kDa FK506 binding protein (FKBP12) were transfected into A549 cells by Lipofectamine. Western blots were used to examine the mTOR expressions and its activities, and the expressions of 70 kDa ribosomal S6 kinase (p70S6K), FKBP12 and Interleukin-2 (IL-2), respectively.
KEY FINDINGS: Treated with cardamonin, the proliferation of A549 cells was inhibited. Meanwhile, cell cycle was blocked and DNA synthesis was decreased whereas cell apoptosis was promoted, and the activation of mTOR and p70S6K was decreased by cardamonin. Transfected with mTOR or FKBP12, proliferation of A549 cells was increased. Rapamycin had a similar degree of effect on antiproliferation of both transfected cells. However, the antiproliferative effect of cardamonin on mTOR transfected cells was stronger than that on FKBP12 transfected cells. Both rapamycin and cardamonin decreased the phosphorylation of mTOR and p70S6K in two kinds of transfected cells. Cardamonin had no effect on the expression of FKBP12 and IL-2, whereas the expressions were decreased by rapamycin.
SIGNIFICANCE: Cardamonin inhibited proliferation and induced apoptosis of A549 cells via mTOR. It might directly interact with mTOR independently of binding with FKBP12.

Gao L, Zhu X, Li Z, et al.
Association between a functional insertion/deletion polymorphism in IL1A gene and risk of papillary thyroid carcinoma.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(4):3861-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of this study was to evaluate whether an insertion/deletion polymorphism (rs3783553) locating in the miR-122 target gene IL1A 3' untranslated region was related to the risk of papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC). Genomic DNA was extracted from peripheral venous blood of 273 patients with PTC and 509 controls. The IL1A rs3783553 polymorphism was genotyped by using a polymerase chain reaction assay. No significant difference of the distribution of the IL1A rs3783553 polymorphism was observed between PTC patients and controls. However, patients carrying the IL1A rs3783553 ins/ins genotype and ins allele had significantly decreased risks for developing T3 and T4 when compared with patients carrying the IL1A rs3783553 del/del genotype and del allele (ins/ins vs. del/del: OR = 0.22, 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.09-0.54; ins vs. del: OR = 0.58, 95% CI, 0.41-0.83, respectively). These results suggest that the rs3783553 polymorphism may be used as a genetic marker to predict the size/extension of PTC.

Aravindan N, Aravindan S, Pandian V, et al.
Acquired tumor cell radiation resistance at the treatment site is mediated through radiation-orchestrated intercellular communication.
Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2014; 88(3):677-85 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
PURPOSE: Radiation resistance induced in cancer cells that survive after radiation therapy (RT) could be associated with increased radiation protection, limiting the therapeutic benefit of radiation. Herein we investigated the sequential mechanistic molecular orchestration involved in radiation-induced radiation protection in tumor cells.
RESULTS: Radiation, both in the low-dose irradiation (LDIR) range (10, 50, or 100 cGy) or at a higher, challenge dose IR (CDIR), 4 Gy, induced dose-dependent and sustained NFκB-DNA binding activity. However, a robust and consistent increase was seen in CDIR-induced NFκB activity, decreased DNA fragmentation, apoptosis, and cytotoxicity and attenuation of CDIR-inhibited clonal expansion when the cells were primed with LDIR prior to challenge dose. Furthermore, NFκB manipulation studies with small interfering RNA (siRNA) silencing or p50/p65 overexpression unveiled the influence of LDIR-activated NFκB in regulating CDIR-induced DNA fragmentation and apoptosis. LDIR significantly increased the transactivation/translation of the radiation-responsive factors tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1α (IL-1α), cMYC, and SOD2. Coculture experiments exhibit LDIR-influenced radiation protection and increases in cellular expression, secretion, and activation of radiation-responsive molecules in bystander cells. Individual gene-silencing approach with siRNAs coupled with coculture studies showed the influence of LDIR-modulated TNF-α, IL-1α, cMYC, and SOD2 in induced radiation protection in bystander cells. NFκB inhibition/overexpression studies coupled with coculture experiments demonstrated that TNF-α, IL-1α, cMYC, and SOD2 are selectively regulated by LDIR-induced NFκB.
CONCLUSIONS: Together, these data strongly suggest that scattered LDIR-induced NFκB-dependent TNF-α, IL-1α, cMYC, and SOD2 mediate radiation protection to the subsequent challenge dose in tumor cells.

Cuadros T, Trilla E, Sarró E, et al.
HAVCR/KIM-1 activates the IL-6/STAT-3 pathway in clear cell renal cell carcinoma and determines tumor progression and patient outcome.
Cancer Res. 2014; 74(5):1416-28 [PubMed] Related Publications
Renal cell carcinoma (RCC), the third most prevalent urological cancer, claims more than 100,000 lives/year worldwide. The clear cell variant (ccRCC) is the most common and aggressive subtype of this disease. While commonly asymptomatic, more than 30% of ccRCC are diagnosed when already metastatic, resulting in a 95% mortality rate. Notably, nearly one-third of organ-confined cancers treated by nephrectomy develop metastasis during follow-up care. At present, diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers to screen, diagnose, and monitor renal cancers are clearly needed. The gene encoding the cell surface molecule HAVCR1/KIM-1 is a suggested susceptibility gene for ccRCC and ectodomain shedding of this molecule may be a predictive biomarker of tumor progression. Microarray analysis of 769-P ccRCC-derived cells where HAVCR/KIM-1 levels have been upregulated or silenced revealed relevant HAVCR/KIM-1-related targets, some of which were further analyzed in a cohort of 98 ccRCC patients with 100 month follow-up. We found that HAVCR/KIM-1 activates the IL-6/STAT-3/HIF-1A axis in ccRCC-derived cell lines, which depends on HAVCR/KIM-1 shedding. Moreover, we found that pSTAT-3 S727 levels represented an independent prognostic factor for ccRCC patients. Our results suggest that HAVCR/KIM-1 upregulation in tumors might represent a novel mechanism to activate tumor growth and angiogenesis and that pSTAT-3 S727 is an independent prognostic factor for ccRCC.

Charbonneau B, Block MS, Bamlet WR, et al.
Risk of ovarian cancer and the NF-κB pathway: genetic association with IL1A and TNFSF10.
Cancer Res. 2014; 74(3):852-61 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
A missense single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the immune modulatory gene IL1A has been associated with ovarian cancer risk (rs17561). Although the exact mechanism through which this SNP alters risk of ovarian cancer is not clearly understood, rs17561 has also been associated with risk of endometriosis, an epidemiologic risk factor for ovarian cancer. Interleukin-1α (IL1A) is both regulated by and able to activate NF-κB, a transcription factor family that induces transcription of many proinflammatory genes and may be an important mediator in carcinogenesis. We therefore tagged SNPs in more than 200 genes in the NF-κB pathway for a total of 2,282 SNPs (including rs17561) for genotype analysis of 15,604 cases of ovarian cancer in patients of European descent, including 6,179 of high-grade serous (HGS), 2,100 endometrioid, 1,591 mucinous, 1,034 clear cell, and 1,016 low-grade serous, including 23,235 control cases spanning 40 studies in the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium. In this large population, we confirmed the association between rs17561 and clear cell ovarian cancer [OR, 0.84; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.76-0.93; P = 0.00075], which remained intact even after excluding participants in the prior study (OR, 0.85; 95% CI, 0.75-0.95; P = 0.006). Considering a multiple-testing-corrected significance threshold of P < 2.5 × 10(-5), only one other variant, the TNFSF10 SNP rs6785617, was associated significantly with a risk of ovarian cancer (low malignant potential tumors OR, 0.85; 95% CI, 0.79-0.91; P = 0.00002). Our results extend the evidence that borderline tumors may have a distinct genetic etiology. Further investigation of how these SNPs might modify ovarian cancer associations with other inflammation-related risk factors is warranted.

Hummel DM, Fetahu IS, Gröschel C, et al.
Role of proinflammatory cytokines on expression of vitamin D metabolism and target genes in colon cancer cells.
J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2014; 144 Pt A:91-5 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
Interleukin 6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα) are proinflammatory cytokines that play a critical role in inflammatory bowel disease, as well as in colorectal tumorigenesis. We hypothesize that these cytokines modulate the expression and thus activity of the vitamin D system in colonic epithelial cells. We treated the colon cancer cell line COGA-1A for 6, 12, and 24h with 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25-D3), IL-6, TNFα, and with combinations of these compounds. Using quantitative RT-PCR, we analyzed mRNA expression of genes activating and catabolizing 1,25-D3 (1α-hydroxylase (CYP27B1), 24-hydroxylase (CYP24A1)), expression of several vitamin D target genes, as well as expression of cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) and 15-hydroxyprostaglandin dehydrogenase. As expected, treatment with 1,25-D3 resulted in an upregulation of CYP24A1, whereas expression of CYP27B1 was not affected. Treatment with TNFα and IL-6 led to decreased expression of the vitamin D activating enzyme CYP27B1. The strong inflammatory property of TNFα was mirrored by its activation of COX-2 and inhibition of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) catabolism. Interestingly, expression of the calcium ion channel TRPV6 was markedly decreased by TNFα. We conclude from these results that the presence of proinflammatory cytokines might impair activation of 1,25-D3, limiting its anti-inflammatory action. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled '16th Vitamin D Workshop'.

Alfaro E, Dhruva A, Langford DJ, et al.
Associations between cytokine gene variations and self-reported sleep disturbance in women following breast cancer surgery.
Eur J Oncol Nurs. 2014; 18(1):85-93 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
PURPOSE OF THE RESEARCH: To attempt to replicate the associations found in our previous study of patients and family caregivers between interleukin 6 (IL6) and nuclear factor kappa beta 2 (NFKB2) and sleep disturbance and to identify additional genetic associations in a larger sample of patients with breast cancer.
METHODS AND SAMPLE: Patients with breast cancer (n = 398) were recruited prior to surgery and followed for six months. Patients completed a self-report measure of sleep disturbance and provided a blood sample for genomic analyses. Growth mixture modeling was used to identify distinct latent classes of patients with higher and lower levels of sleep disturbance.
KEY RESULTS: Patients who were younger and who had higher comorbidity and lower functional status were more likely to be in the high sustained sleep disturbance class. Variations in three cytokine genes (i.e., IL1 receptor 2 (IL1R2), IL13, NFKB2) predicted latent class membership.
CONCLUSIONS: Polymorphisms in cytokine genes may partially explain inter-individual variability in sleep disturbance. Determination of high risk phenotypes and associated molecular markers may allow for earlier identification of patients at higher risk for developing sleep disturbance and lead to the development of more targeted clinical interventions.

Hnatyszyn A, Wielgus K, Kaczmarek-Rys M, et al.
Interleukin-1 gene polymorphisms in chronic gastritis patients infected with Helicobacter pylori as risk factors of gastric cancer development.
Arch Immunol Ther Exp (Warsz). 2013; 61(6):503-12 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
Epidemiological investigations indicated association of the Helicobacter pylori infections with the occurrence of inflammatory conditions of the gastric mucosa and development of chronic gastritis and intestinal type of gastric cancer. IL1A and IL1B genes have been proposed as key factors in determining risk of gastritis and malignant transformation. The aim of this paper was to evaluate association of interleukin-1 gene polymorphisms with chronic gastritis, atrophy, intestinal metaplasia, dysplasia and intestinal type of gastric cancer in H. pylori-infected patients. Patients subjected to analysis represent group of 144 consecutive cases that suffered from dyspepsia with coexisting infection of H. pylori and chronic gastritis, chronic atrophic gastritis, intestinal metaplasia, dysplasia or gastric cancer. Molecular studies involved analysis of -889C>T polymorphism of IL1A gene and +3954C>T polymorphism of IL1B gene. Statistical analysis of association of polymorphism -889C>T of gene IL1A with changes in gastric mucosa showed lack of significance, whereas +3954C>T polymorphism of IL1B gene showed significant association. Frequency of allele T of +3954C>T polymorphism of IL1B gene was higher in group of patients with chronic gastritis, atrophy, intestinal metaplasia, dysplasia or intestinal type of gastric cancer (32.1 %) as compared with population group (23 %), χ(2) = 4.61 and p = 0.03. This corresponds to odds ratio: 1.58, 95 % CI: 1.04-2.4. Our results indicate that +3954C>T polymorphism of IL1B gene increase susceptibility to inflammatory response of gastric mucosa H. pylori-infected patients and plays a significant role in the development of chronic gastritis, atrophy, intestinal metaplasia, dysplasia and the initiation of carcinogenesis.

Tjomsland V, Bojmar L, Sandström P, et al.
IL-1α expression in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma affects the tumor cell migration and is regulated by the p38MAPK signaling pathway.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(8):e70874 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
The interplay between the tumor cells and the surrounding stroma creates inflammation, which promotes tumor growth and spread. The inflammation is a hallmark for pancreatic adenocarcinoma (PDAC) and is to high extent driven by IL-1α. IL-1α is expressed and secreted by the tumor cells and exerting its effect on the stroma, i.e. cancer associated fibroblasts (CAF), which in turn produce massive amount of inflammatory and immune regulatory factors. IL-1 induces activation of transcription factors such as nuclear factor-κβ (NF-κβ), but also activator protein 1 (AP-1) via the small G-protein Ras. Dysregulation of Ras pathways are common in cancer as this oncogene is the most frequently mutated in many cancers. In contrast, the signaling events leading up to the expression of IL-1α by tumor cells are not well elucidated. Our aim was to examine the signaling cascade involved in the induction of IL-1α expression in PDAC. We found p38MAPK, activated by the K-Ras signaling pathway, to be involved in the expression of IL-1α by PDAC as blocking this pathway decreased both the gene and protein expression of IL-1α. Blockage of the P38MAPK signaling in PDAC also dampened the ability of the tumor cell to induce inflammation in CAFs. In addition, the IL-1α autocrine signaling regulated the migratory capacity of PDAC cells. Taken together, the blockage of signaling pathways leading to IL-1α expression and/or neutralization of IL-1α in the PDAC microenvironment should be taken into consideration as possible treatment or complement to existing treatment of this cancer.

Che CL, Zhang YM, Zhang HH, et al.
DNA microarray reveals different pathways responding to paclitaxel and docetaxel in non-small cell lung cancer cell line.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2013; 6(8):1538-48 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
The wide use of paclitaxel and docetaxel in NSCLC clinical treatment makes it necessary to find biomarkers for identifying patients who can benefit from paclitaxel or docetaxel. In present study, NCI-H460, a NSCLC cell line with different sensitivity to paclitaxel and docetaxel, was applied to DNA microarray expression profiling analysis at different time points of lower dose treatment with paclitaxel or docetaxel. And the complex signaling pathways regulating the drug response were identified, and several novel sensitivity-realted markers were biocomputated.The dynamic changes of responding genes showed that paclitaxel effect is acute but that of docetaxel is durable at least for 48 hours in NCI-H460 cells. Functional annotation of the genes with altered expression showed that genes/pathways responding to these two drugs were dramatically different. Gene expression changes induced by paclitaxel treatment were mainly enriched in actin cytoskeleton (ACTC1, MYL2 and MYH2), tyrosine-protein kinases (ERRB4, KIT and TIE1) and focal adhesion pathway (MYL2, IGF1 and FLT1), while the expression alterations responding to docetaxel were highly co-related to cell surface receptor linked signal transduction (SHH, DRD5 and ADM2), cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction (IL1A and IL6) and cell cycle regulation (CCNB1, CCNE2 and PCNA). Moreover, we also confirmed some different expression patterns with real time PCR. Our study will provide the potential biomarkers for paclitaxel and docetaxel-selection therapy in clinical application.

Zeng XF, Li J, Li SB
A functional polymorphism in IL-1A gene is associated with a reduced risk of gastric cancer.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(1):265-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Accumulating evidence has identified that polymorphism residing in the microRNA (miRNA) binding site of target genes can affect the strength of miRNA binding and influence individual susceptibility to cancer. Recently, an insertion/deletion polymorphism (rs3783553 ttca/-) at miRNA-122 binding site in the interleukin-1A 3' untranslated region has been demonstrated to be functional. We aimed to investigate the association between the rs3783553 polymorphism and the risk of gastric cancer (GC). We genotyped the rs3783553 polymorphism in 207 GC patients and 381 healthy controls by using a polymerase chain reaction method. We found that the ins/ins (ttca/ttca) genotype of the rs3783553 polymorphism was associated with a significantly decreased risk of GC (P = 0.02, odds ratio = 0.48, 95% confidence interval 0.26-0.90). This finding suggests that the rs3783553 polymorphism may be a protective factor for the development of GC.

Devaney JM, Wang S, Funda S, et al.
Identification of novel DNA-methylated genes that correlate with human prostate cancer and high-grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia.
Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2013; 16(4):292-300 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Prostate cancer (PCa) harbors a myriad of genomic and epigenetic defects. Cytosine methylation of CpG-rich promoter DNA is an important mechanism of epigenetic gene inactivation in PCa. There is considerable amount of data to suggest that DNA methylation-based biomarkers may be useful for the early detection and diagnosis of PCa. In addition, candidate gene-based studies have shown an association between specific gene methylation and alterations and clinicopathologic indicators of poor prognosis in PCa.
METHODS: To more comprehensively identify DNA methylation alterations in PCa initiation and progression, we examined the methylation status of 485 577 CpG sites from regions with a broad spectrum of CpG densities, interrogating both gene-associated and non-associated regions using the recently developed Illumina 450K methylation platform.
RESULTS: In all, we selected 33 promoter-associated novel CpG sites that were differentially methylated in high-grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia and PCa in comparison with benign prostate tissue samples (false discovery rate-adjusted P-value <0.05; β-value 0.2; fold change >1.5). Of the 33 genes, hierarchical clustering analysis demonstrated BNC1, FZD1, RPL39L, SYN2, LMX1B, CXXC5, ZNF783 and CYB5R2 as top candidate novel genes that are frequently methylated and whose methylation was associated with inactivation of gene expression in PCa cell lines. Pathway analysis of the genes with altered methylation patterns identified the involvement of a cancer-related network of genes whose activity may be regulated by TP53, MYC, TNF, IL1 and 6, IFN-γ and FOS in prostate pathogenesis.
CONCLUSION: Our genome-wide methylation profile shows epigenetic dysregulation of important regulatory signals in prostate carcinogenesis.

Murakami Y, Watari K, Shibata T, et al.
N-myc downstream-regulated gene 1 promotes tumor inflammatory angiogenesis through JNK activation and autocrine loop of interleukin-1α by human gastric cancer cells.
J Biol Chem. 2013; 288(35):25025-37 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/08/2015 Related Publications
The expression of N-myc downstream-regulated gene 1 (NDRG1) was significantly correlated with tumor angiogenesis and malignant progression together with poor prognosis in gastric cancer. However, the underlying mechanism for the role of NDRG1 in the malignant progression of gastric cancer remains unknown. Here we examined whether and how NDRG1 could modulate tumor angiogenesis by human gastric cancer cells. We established NU/Cap12 and NU/Cap32 cells overexpressing NDRG1 in NUGC-3 cells, which show lower tumor angiogenesis in vivo. Compared with parental NU/Mock3, NU/Cap12, and NU/Cap32 cells: 1) induced higher tumor angiogenesis than NU/Mock3 cells accompanied by infiltration of tumor-associated macrophages in mouse dorsal air sac assay and Matrigel plug assay; 2) showed much higher expression of CXC chemokines, MMP-1, and the potent angiogenic factor VEGF-A; 3) increased the expression of the representative inflammatory cytokine, IL-1α; 4) augmented JNK phosphorylation and nuclear expression of activator protein 1 (AP-1). Further analysis demonstrated that knockdown of AP-1 (Jun and/or Fos) resulted in down-regulation of the expression of VEGF-A, CXC chemokines, and MMP-1, and also suppressed expression of IL-1α in NDRG1-overexpressing cell lines. Treatment with IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra) resulted in down-regulation of JNK and c-Jun phosphorylation, and the expression of VEGF-A, CXC chemokines, and MMP-1 in NU/Cap12 and NU/Cap32 cells. Finally, administration of IL-1ra suppressed both tumor angiogenesis and infiltration of macrophages by NU/Cap12 in vivo. Together, activation of JNK/AP-1 thus seems to promote tumor angiogenesis in relationship to NDRG1-induced inflammatory stimuli by gastric cancer cells.

Zheng L, Yin J, Wang L, et al.
Interleukin 1B rs16944 G>A polymorphism was associated with a decreased risk of esophageal cancer in a Chinese population.
Clin Biochem. 2013; 46(15):1469-73 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Esophageal cancer is the sixth leading cause of cancer-associated deaths worldwide and represents a particularly aggressive type of cancer. Genetic polymorphisms may partly explain individual differences in esophageal cancer susceptibility.
DESIGNS AND METHODS: We conducted a hospital-based case-control study to evaluate the genetic effects of functional single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the interleukin 1 (IL1A and IL1B), IL1f7, IL3 and IL7Ra genes on the development of esophageal cancer. A total of 380 esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cases and 380 controls were recruited for this study. The genotypes were determined using a custom-by-design 48-Plex SNPscan™ Kit.
RESULTS: When the IL1B rs16944 GG homozygote genotype was used as the reference group, the GA genotype was associated with a significantly decreased risk of ESCC (GA vs. GG: adjusted OR=0.69, 95% CI=0.49-0.99, p=0.041). However, there were no significant associations between the other five SNPs and ESCC risk. Stratified analyses indicated no significantly different risks of ESCC associated with the IL1B rs16944 G>A polymorphism according to sex, age, smoking status or alcohol consumption. IL3 rs2073506 G>A polymorphism was associated with an increased risk for ESCC higher tumor, nodal, and metastatic (TNM) stages.
CONCLUSIONS: These findings indicated that the functional IL1B rs16944 G>A polymorphism might contribute to ESCC susceptibility. IL3 rs2073506 G>A polymorphism was associated with an increased risk for ESCC higher TNM stages. However, the results were based on a limited sample size and larger well-designed studies are warranted to confirm these initial findings.

Qu Y, Dang S, Hou P
Gene methylation in gastric cancer.
Clin Chim Acta. 2013; 424:53-65 [PubMed] Related Publications
Gastric cancer is one of the most common malignancies and remains the second leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Over 70% of new cases and deaths occur in developing countries. In the early years of the molecular biology revolution, cancer research mainly focuses on genetic alterations, including gastric cancer. Epigenetic mechanisms are essential for normal development and maintenance of tissue-specific gene expression patterns in mammals. Disruption of epigenetic processes can lead to altered gene function and malignant cellular transformation. Recent advancements in the rapidly evolving field of cancer epigenetics have shown extensive reprogramming of every component of the epigenetic machinery in cancer, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, nucleosome positioning, noncoding RNAs, and microRNAs. Aberrant DNA methylation in the promoter regions of gene, which leads to inactivation of tumor suppressor and other cancer-related genes in cancer cells, is the most well-defined epigenetic hallmark in gastric cancer. The advantages of gene methylation as a target for detection and diagnosis of cancer in biopsy specimens and non-invasive body fluids such as serum and gastric washes have led to many studies of application in gastric cancer. This review focuses on the most common and important phenomenon of epigenetics, DNA methylation, in gastric cancer and illustrates the impact epigenetics has had on this field.

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