3 years ago

FXR-Gankyrin axis is involved in development of pediatric liver cancer.

Timchenko N, Karns R, Sheridan R, Jiang Y, Timchenko L, Lewis K, Gupta A, D'Souza A, Valanejad L, Wright M, Bove K, Nelson DL, Tiao G, Geller J, Witte D
The development of hepatoblastoma (HBL) is associated with failure of hepatic stem cells (HSC) to differentiate into hepatocytes. Despite intensive investigations, mechanisms of the failure of HSC to differentiate are not known. We found that oncogene Gankyrin (Gank) is involved in the inhibition of differentiation of HSC via triggering degradation of tumor suppressor proteins (TSPs) Rb, p53, C/EBPα and HNF4α. Our data show that the activation of a repressor of Gank, farnesoid X receptor, FXR, after initiation of liver cancer by Diethylnitrosamine (DEN) prevents the development of liver cancer by inhibiting Gank and rescuing tumor suppressor proteins. We next analyzed FXR-Gank-Tumor suppressor pathways in a large cohort of HBL patients which include 6 controls and 53 HBL samples. Systemic analysis of these samples and RNA-Seq approach revealed that the FXR-Gank axis is activated; markers of hepatic stem cells are dramatically elevated and hepatocyte markers are reduced in HBL samples. In the course of these studies, we found that RNA binding protein CUGBP1 is a new tumor suppressor protein which is reduced in all HBL samples. Therefore, we generated CUGBP1 KO mice and examined HBL signatures in the liver of these mice. Micro-array studies revealed that the HBL-specific molecular signature is developed in livers of CUGBP1 KO mice at very early ages. Thus, we conclude that FXR-Gank-TSPs-Stem cells pathway is a key determinant of liver cancer in animal models and in pediatric liver cancer. Our data provide a strong basis for development of FXR-Gank-based therapy for treatment of patients with hepatoblastoma.

Publisher URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28535186

DOI: PubMed:28535186

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