Gene Summary

Gene:DUSP4; dual specificity phosphatase 4
Aliases: TYP, HVH2, MKP2, MKP-2
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is a member of the dual specificity protein phosphatase subfamily. These phosphatases inactivate their target kinases by dephosphorylating both the phosphoserine/threonine and phosphotyrosine residues. They negatively regulate members of the mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase superfamily (MAPK/ERK, SAPK/JNK, p38), which are associated with cellular proliferation and differentiation. Different members of the family of dual specificity phosphatases show distinct substrate specificities for various MAP kinases, different tissue distribution and subcellular localization, and different modes of inducibility of their expression by extracellular stimuli. This gene product inactivates ERK1, ERK2 and JNK, is expressed in a variety of tissues, and is localized in the nucleus. Two alternatively spliced transcript variants, encoding distinct isoforms, have been observed for this gene. In addition, multiple polyadenylation sites have been reported. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:dual specificity protein phosphatase 4
Source:NCBIAccessed: 31 August, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (22)
Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 31 August 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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

  • Cell Movement
  • Drug Resistance
  • Transcription
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Down-Regulation
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Transcriptome
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Phosphatases
  • Transcriptional Activation
  • Tumor Suppressor Gene
  • Mutation
  • ras Proteins
  • Promoter Regions
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Dual-Specificity Phosphatases
  • Lung Cancer
  • Phosphorylation
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Tumor Stem Cell Assay
  • MAP Kinase Signaling System
  • Signal Transduction
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Spain
  • Chromosome 8
  • Transfection
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Apoptosis
  • Up-Regulation
  • Gene Expression
  • Southwestern United States
  • Stomach Cancer
  • Breast Cancer
  • Smoking
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • RNA Interference
  • Triple Negative Breast Cancer
  • DNA Methylation
  • Xenograft Models
  • Messenger RNA
  • Young Adult
Tag cloud generated 31 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (5)

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: DUSP4 (cancer-related)

Chen P, Gu YY, Ma FC, et al.
Expression levels and co‑targets of miRNA‑126‑3p and miRNA‑126‑5p in lung adenocarcinoma tissues: Αn exploration with RT‑qPCR, microarray and bioinformatic analyses.
Oncol Rep. 2019; 41(2):939-953 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) is the most common histological subtype of lung cancer. Previous studies have found that many microRNAs (miRNAs), including miRNA‑126‑3p, may play a critical role in the development of LUAD. However, no study of LUAD has researched the synergistic effects and co‑targets of both miRNA‑126‑3p and miRNA‑126‑5p. The present study used real‑time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT‑qPCR) to explore the expression values of miRNA‑126‑3p and miRNA‑126‑5p in 101 LUAD and 101 normal lung tissues. Ten relevant microarray datasets were screened to further validate the expression levels of miRNA‑126‑3p and ‑5p in LUAD. Twelve prediction tools were employed to obtain potential targets of miRNA‑126‑3p and miRNA‑126‑5p. The results showed that both miRNA‑126‑3p and ‑5p were expressed significantly lower in LUAD. A significant positive correlation was also present between miRNA‑126‑3p and ‑5p expression in LUAD. In addition, lower expression of miRNA‑126‑3p and ‑5p was indicative of vascular invasion, lymph node metastasis (LNM), and a later tumor/node/metastasis (TNM) stage of LUAD. The authors obtained 167 targets of miRNA‑126‑3p and 212 targets of miRNA‑126‑5p; 44 targets were co‑targets of both. Eight co‑target genes (IGF2BP1, TRPM8, DUSP4, SOX11, PLOD2, LIN28A, LIN28B and SLC7A11) were initially identified as key genes in LUAD. The results of the present study indicated that the co‑regulation of miRNA‑126‑3p and miRNA‑126‑5p plays a key role in the development of LUAD, which also suggests a fail‑proof mode between miRNA‑3p and miRNA‑126‑5p.

Matthews JH, Liang X, Paul VJ, Luesch H
A Complementary Chemical and Genomic Screening Approach for Druggable Targets in the Nrf2 Pathway and Small Molecule Inhibitors to Overcome Cancer Cell Drug Resistance.
ACS Chem Biol. 2018; 13(5):1189-1199 [PubMed] Related Publications
Resistance to chemotherapy is a major obstacle in the treatment of a wide array of different types of cancer. Chemotherapeutic drug resistance is achieved by cancer cells by a variety of different mechanisms, which can be either compound specific or general. An emerging mechanism for nonspecific chemotherapeutic drug resistance relies on hyperactivity of the transcription factor Nrf2. Normally Nrf2 levels are tightly regulated by the ubiquitin-proteasome system; however, mutations in genes responsible for this regulation are common in many cancer types, resulting in increased expression of Nrf2, activation of its downstream target genes, and resistance to a variety of chemotherapeutic agents. For this reason, there has been considerable interest in the discovery of small molecule inhibitors of Nrf2 capable of attenuating this resistance mechanism. To this end, we have screened two commercially available libraries of known biologically active small molecules to identify potential Nrf2 inhibitors. To increase the breadth of this screen we have also screened an RNAi library that targets the majority of the druggable genome to also identify Nrf2-inhibitor targets that are not currently targeted by small molecules. To complement the commercial chemical and genomic library screening, we screened a small collection of proprietary natural products isolated from marine cyanobacteria, which included actin targeting and uncharacterized but biologically active compounds. Through these efforts, we have identified three classes of compounds: cardiac glycosides, Stat3 inhibitors, and actin disrupting agents as Nrf2 inhibitors that are able to attenuate Nrf2 activity and synergize with chemotherapeutic agents in the non-small-cell lung cancer cell line A549. In addition, we found that grassypeptolide A exerts Nrf2 modulatory activity via a thus far uncharacterized mechanism. Moreover, we have identified a set of putative Nrf2 targets comprising the transcription factors TWIST1 and ELF4, the protein kinase NEK8, the TAK1 kinase regulator TAB1, and the dual specific phosphatase DUSP4. This study broadens the range of mechanisms through which inhibition of Nrf2 activity can be achieved, which will facilitate the characterization of novel Nrf2 inhibitors and allow the design of target specific screening procedures with which to identify more.

Arvidsson G, Henriksson J, Sander B, Wright AP
Mixed-species RNAseq analysis of human lymphoma cells adhering to mouse stromal cells identifies a core gene set that is also differentially expressed in the lymph node microenvironment of mantle cell lymphoma and chronic lymphocytic leukemia patients.
Haematologica. 2018; 103(4):666-678 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
A subset of hematologic cancer patients is refractory to treatment or suffers relapse, due in part to minimal residual disease, whereby some cancer cells survive treatment. Cell-adhesion-mediated drug resistance is an important mechanism, whereby cancer cells receive survival signals

Ichimanda M, Hijiya N, Tsukamoto Y, et al.
Downregulation of dual-specificity phosphatase 4 enhances cell proliferation and invasiveness in colorectal carcinomas.
Cancer Sci. 2018; 109(1):250-258 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
It is widely accepted that aberrant activation of the Wnt signaling pathway is responsible for the development of precursor lesions of colorectal cancer (CRC). However, the molecular mechanisms involved in the process of progression from these precursor lesions to invasive lesions of CRC are not fully understood. Recently, we reported that constitutive activation of MAPK accompanied by downregulation of dual-specificity phosphatase 4 (DUSP4), a MAPK phosphatase, contributes to the progression of precursor lesions in the pancreas. In this study, we found that downregulation of DUSP4 was related to constitutive activation of ERKs in CRC cells. Restoration of DUSP4 resulted in inactivation of ERKs, leading to suppression of both proliferation and invasiveness, as shown by treatment with an MEK inhibitor. Furthermore, immunohistochemistry revealed that DUSP4 expression was upregulated in the superficial region of CRC tissue, whereas it was significantly downregulated in the deep region. In contrast, ERKs in the deep region were markedly hyperactivated compared to those in the superficial region. These results suggest that activation of the MAPK signaling pathway caused by downregulation of DUSP4 is responsible for progression of CRCs and would be a promising therapeutic target.

Zhang K, Xu P, Sowers JL, et al.
Proteome Analysis of Hypoxic Glioblastoma Cells Reveals Sequential Metabolic Adaptation of One-Carbon Metabolic Pathways.
Mol Cell Proteomics. 2017; 16(11):1906-1921 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Rapidly proliferating tumors are exposed to a hypoxic microenvironment because of their density, high metabolic consumption, and interruptions in blood flow because of immature angiogenesis. Cellular responses to hypoxia promote highly malignant and metastatic behavior, as well as a chemotherapy-resistant state. To better understand the complex relationships between hypoxic adaptations and cancer progression, we studied the dynamic proteome responses of glioblastoma cells exposed to hypoxia via an innovative approach: quantification of newly synthesized proteins using heavy stable-isotope arginine labeling combined with accurate assessment of cell replication by quantification of the light/heavy arginine ratio of peptides in histone H4. We found that hypoxia affects cancer cells in multiple intertwined ways: inflammation, typically with over-expressed glucose transporter (GLUT1), DUSP4/MKP2, and RelA proteins; a metabolic adaptation with overexpression of all glycolytic pathway enzymes for pyruvate/lactate synthesis; and the EMT (epithelial-mesenchymal transition) and cancer stem cell (CSC) renewal with characteristic morphological changes and mesenchymal/CSC protein expression profiles. For the first time, we identified the vitamin B

Wise R, Zolkiewska A
Metalloprotease-dependent activation of EGFR modulates CD44
Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2017; 166(2):421-433 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
METHODS: Representative TNBC cell lines SUM159PT (claudin-low) and SUM149PT (basal) were used to evaluate cell surface expression of CD44 and CD24 by flow cytometry in response to EGFR and MEK inhibition or activation. EGFR and ERK phosphorylation levels were analyzed by Western blotting. The relationship between EGFR phosphorylation and MEK activation score in basal and claudin-low tumors from the TCGA database was examined.
RESULTS: Inhibition of ERK activation with selumetinib, a MEK1/2 inhibitor, blocked EGF-induced expansion of CD44
CONCLUSION: Our results demonstrate that ERK activation is a key event in EGFR-dependent regulation of CD44

Lin H, Qiu S, Xie L, et al.
Nimbolide suppresses non-small cell lung cancer cell invasion and migration via manipulation of DUSP4 expression and ERK1/2 signaling.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2017; 92:340-346 [PubMed] Related Publications
Nimbolide plays an important role in treating human diseases. In these years, the anticancer property of nimbolide has been paid more and more attention. However, the role of nimbolide in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) remains unclear. In this study, we found that nimbolide treatment suppressed the invasion and migration of NSCLC cells, in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, nimbolide treatment dose-dependently inhibited ERK1/2 activation, decreased Snail and MMP-3 expression, and increased E-cadherin expression. Further, we found that nimbolide treatment upregulated DUSP4 expression. DUSP4 knockdown attenuated nimbolide-mediated inhibition of cell invasion, migration and ERK1/2 activation. We also found that DUSP4 knockdown suppressed the effect of nimbolide on MMP-3, Snail and E-cadherin expression. Taken together, our study demonstrates that nimbolide treatment can upregulate the expression of DUSP4, thus inhibiting ERK1/2 activation. Inhibition of ERK1/2 pathway by nimbolide decreases MMP-3 and Snail expression, and increases E-cadherin expression, which finally inhibits NSCLC cell invasion and migration. Therefore, nimbolide may act as a novel drug to inhibit NSCLC invasion and metastasis through manipulation of ERK1/2 signaling and DUSP4 expression.

Ma Y, Li MD
Establishment of a Strong Link Between Smoking and Cancer Pathogenesis through DNA Methylation Analysis.
Sci Rep. 2017; 7(1):1811 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Smoking is a well-documented risk factor in various cancers, especially lung cancer. In the current study, we tested the hypothesis that abnormal DNAm loci associated with smoking are enriched in genes and pathways that convey a risk of cancer by determining whether smoking-related methylated genes led to enrichment in cancer-related pathways. We analyzed two sets of smoking-related methylated genes from 28 studies originating from blood and buccal samples. By analyzing 320 methylated genes from 26 studies on blood samples (N = 17,675), we found 57 enriched pathways associated with different types of cancer (FDR < 0.05). Of these, 11 were also significantly overrepresented in the 661 methylated genes from two studies of buccal samples (N = 1,002). We further found the aryl hydrocarbon receptor signaling pathway plays an important role in the initiation of smoking-attributable cancer. Finally, we constructed a subnetwork of genes important for smoking-attributable cancer from the 48 non-redundant genes in the 11 oncogenic pathways. Of these, genes such as DUSP4 and AKT3 are well documented as being involved in smoking-related lung cancer. In summary, our findings provide robust and systematic evidence in support of smoking's impact on the epigenome, which may be an important contributor to cancer.

Zhang R, Wang G, Zhang PF, et al.
Sanguinarine inhibits growth and invasion of gastric cancer cells via regulation of the DUSP4/ERK pathway.
J Cell Mol Med. 2017; 21(6):1117-1127 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Sanguinarine, a bioactive benzophenanthridine alkaloid extracted from plants of the Papaveraceae family, has shown antitumour effects in multiple cancer cells. But the therapeutic effects and regulatory mechanisms of sanguinatine in gastric cancer (GC) remain elusive. This study was aimed to investigate the correlation of dual-specificity phosphatase 4 (DUSP4) expression with clinicopathologic features and overall survival in patients with GC and explore the effects of sanguinarine on tumour growth and invasion in GC cells (SGC-7901 and HGC-27) and underlying molecular mechanisms. Immunohistochemical analysis showed that decreased DUSP4 expression was associated with the sex, tumour size, depth of invasion and distant metastasis in patients with GC. Functional experiments including CCK-8, Transwell and flow cytometry analysis indicated that sanguinarine or DUSP4 overexpression inhibited GC cell viability and invasive potential, and induced cell apoptosis and cycle arrest in S phase, but DUSP4 knockdown attenuated the antitumour activity of sanguinarine. Further observation demonstrated that sanguinarine up-regulated the expression of DUSP4 and Bcl-2-associated X protein (Bax), but down-regulated phosphorylated extracellular signal-regulated kinase (p-ERK), proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2) and B-cell lymphoma 2 (Bcl-2) expression. Taken together, our findings indicate that sanguinarine inhibits growth and invasion of GC cells through regulation of the DUSP4/ERK pathway, suggesting that sanguinarine may have potential for use in GC treatment.

Jung HH, Lee SH, Kim JY, et al.
Statins affect ETS1-overexpressing triple-negative breast cancer cells by restoring DUSP4 deficiency.
Sci Rep. 2016; 6:33035 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
We investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying statin-induced growth suppression of triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) that overexpress the transcription factor ets proto-oncogene 1(ets-1) and downregulate dual specific protein phosphatase 4(dusp4) expression. We examined the gene expression of BC cell lines using the nCounter expression assay, MTT viability assay, cell proliferation assay and Western blot to evaluate the effects of simvastatin. Finally, we performed cell viability testing in TNBC cell line-transfected DUSP4. We demonstrated that ETS1 mRNA and protein were overexpressed in TNBC cells compared with other BC cell lines (P = <0.001) and DUSP4 mRNA was downregulated (P = <0.001). MTT viability assay showed that simvastatin had significant antitumor activity (P = 0.002 in 0.1 μM). In addition, simvastatin could restore dusp4 deficiency and suppress ets-1 expression in TNBC. Lastly, we found that si-DUSP4 RNA transfection overcame the antitumor activity of statins. MAPK pathway inhibitor, U0126 and PI3KCA inhibitor LY294002 also decreased levels of ets-1, phosphor-ERK and phosphor-AKT on Western blot assay. Accordingly, our study indicates that simvastatin potentially affects the activity of transcriptional factors such as ets-1 and dusp4 through the MAPK pathway. In conclusion, statins might be potential candidates for TNBC therapy reducing ets-1 expression via overexpression of dusp4.

Mazumdar A, Poage GM, Shepherd J, et al.
Analysis of phosphatases in ER-negative breast cancers identifies DUSP4 as a critical regulator of growth and invasion.
Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2016; 158(3):441-54 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Estrogen receptor (ER)-negative cancers have a poor prognosis, and few targeted therapies are available for their treatment. Our previous analyses have identified potential kinase targets critical for the growth of ER-negative, progesterone receptor (PR)-negative and HER2-negative, or "triple-negative" breast cancer (TNBC). Because phosphatases regulate the function of kinase signaling pathways, in this study, we investigated whether phosphatases are also differentially expressed in ER-negative compared to those in ER-positive breast cancers. We compared RNA expression in 98 human breast cancers (56 ER-positive and 42 ER-negative) to identify phosphatases differentially expressed in ER-negative compared to those in ER-positive breast cancers. We then examined the effects of one selected phosphatase, dual specificity phosphatase 4 (DUSP4), on proliferation, cell growth, migration and invasion, and on signaling pathways using protein microarray analyses of 172 proteins, including phosphoproteins. We identified 48 phosphatase genes are significantly differentially expressed in ER-negative compared to those in ER-positive breast tumors. We discovered that 31 phosphatases were more highly expressed, while 11 were underexpressed specifically in ER-negative breast cancers. The DUSP4 gene is underexpressed in ER-negative breast cancer and is deleted in approximately 50 % of breast cancers. Induced DUSP4 expression suppresses both in vitro and in vivo growths of breast cancer cells. Our studies show that induced DUSP4 expression blocks the cell cycle at the G1/S checkpoint; inhibits ERK1/2, p38, JNK1, RB, and NFkB p65 phosphorylation; and inhibits invasiveness of TNBC cells. These results suggest that that DUSP4 is a critical regulator of the growth and invasion of triple-negative breast cancer cells.

Lasham A, Mehta SY, Fitzgerald SJ, et al.
A novel EGR-1 dependent mechanism for YB-1 modulation of paclitaxel response in a triple negative breast cancer cell line.
Int J Cancer. 2016; 139(5):1157-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chemotherapy with taxanes such as paclitaxel (PTX) is a key component of triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) treatment. PTX is used in combination with other drugs in both the adjuvant setting and in advanced breast cancer. Because a proportion of patients respond poorly to PTX or relapse after its use, a greater understanding of the mechanisms conferring resistance to PTX is required. One protein shown to be involved in drug resistance is Y-box binding protein 1 (YB-1). High levels of YB-1 have previously been associated with resistance to PTX in TNBCs. In this study, we aimed to determine mechanisms by which YB-1 confers PTX resistance. We generated isogenic TNBC cell lines that differed by YB-1 levels and treated these with PTX. Using microarray analysis, we identified EGR1 as a potential target of YB-1. We found that low EGR1 mRNA levels are associated with poor breast cancer patient prognosis, and that EGR1 and YBX1 mRNA expression was inversely correlated in a TNBC line and in a proportion of TNBC tumours. Reducing the levels of EGR1 caused TNBC cells to become more resistant to PTX. Given that PTX targets cycling cells, we propose a model whereby high YB-1 levels in some TNBC cells can lead to reduced levels of EGR1, which in turn promotes slow cell cycling and resistance to PTX. Therefore YB-1 and EGR1 levels are biologically linked and may provide a biomarker for TNBC response to PTX.

Boulding T, Wu F, McCuaig R, et al.
Differential Roles for DUSP Family Members in Epithelial-to-Mesenchymal Transition and Cancer Stem Cell Regulation in Breast Cancer.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(2):e0148065 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Dual-specificity phosphatases (DUSPs) dephosphorylate threonine/serine and tyrosine residues on their substrates. Here we show that DUSP1, DUSP4, and DUSP6 are involved in epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and breast cancer stem cell (CSC) regulation. DUSP1, DUSP4, and DUSP6 are induced during EMT in a PKC pathway signal-mediated EMT model. We show for the first time that the key chromatin-associated kinase PKC-θ directly regulates a subset of DUSP family members. DUSP1, DUSP4, and DUSP6 globally but differentially co-exist with enhancer and permissive active histone post-translational modifications, suggesting that they play distinct roles in gene regulation in EMT/CSCs. We show that nuclear DUSP4 associates with the key acetyltransferase p300 in the context of the chromatin template and dynamically regulates the interplay between two key phosphorylation marks: the 1834 (active) and 89 (inhibitory) residues central to p300's acetyltransferase activity. Furthermore, knockdown with small-interfering RNAs (siRNAs) shows that DUSP4 is required for maintaining H3K27ac, a mark mediated by p300. DUSP1, DUSP4, and DUSP6 knockdown with siRNAs shows that they participate in the formation of CD44hi/CD24lo/EpCAM+ breast CSCs: DUSP1 knockdown reduces CSC formation, while DUSP4 and DUSP6 knockdown enhance CSC formation. Moreover, DUSP6 is overexpressed in patient-derived HER2+ breast carcinomas compared to benign mammary tissue. Taken together, these findings illustrate novel pleiotropic roles for DUSP family members in EMT and CSC regulation in breast cancer.

Malouf GG, Tahara T, Paradis V, et al.
Methylome sequencing for fibrolamellar hepatocellular carcinoma depicts distinctive features.
Epigenetics. 2015; 10(9):872-81 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
With the goal of studying epigenetic alterations in fibrolamellar hepatocellular carcinoma (FLC) and establish an associated DNA methylation signature, we analyzed LINE-1 methylation in a cohort of FLC and performed next-generation sequencing of DNA methylation in a training set of pure-FLCs and non-cirrhotic hepatocellular carcinomas (nc-HCC). DNA methylation was correlated with gene expression. Furthermore, we established and validated an epigenetic signature differentiating pure-FLC from other HCCs. LINE-1 methylation correlated with shorter recurrence-free survival and overall survival in resected pure-FLC patients. Unsupervised clustering using CG sites located in islands distinguished pure-FLC from nc-HCC. Major DNA methylation changes occurred outside promoters, mainly in gene bodies and intergenic regions located in the vicinity of liver developmental genes (i.e., SMARCA4 and RXRA). Partially methylated domains were more prone to DNA methylation changes. Furthermore, we identified several putative tumor suppressor genes (e.g., DLEU7) and oncogenes (e.g., DUSP4). While ∼ 70% of identified gene promoters gaining methylation were marked by bivalent histone marks (H3K4me3/H3K27me3) in embryonic stem cells, ∼ 70% of those losing methylation were marked by H3K4me3. Finally, we established a pure FLC DNA methylation signature and validated it in an independent dataset. Our analysis reveals a distinct epigenetic signature of pure FLC as compared to nc-HCC, with DNA methylation changes occurring in the vicinity of liver developmental genes. These data suggest new options for targeting FLC based on cancer epigenome aberrations.

Qiao HP, Zhang CY, Yu ZL, et al.
Genetic variants identified by GWAS was associated with colorectal cancer in the Han Chinese population.
J Cancer Res Ther. 2015 Apr-Jun; 11(2):468-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM OF STUDY: Colorectal cancer (CRC), now the third most common cancer across the world, is known to aggregate in families. Recently, genome-wide association studies have identified two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) associated with CRC in Caucasians.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: To validate whether the same variations conferred risk to CRC in the Han Chinese population, we genotyped 760 individuals (380 controls and 380 cases samples) recruited from the Han Chinese origin.
RESULTS: We found rs11987193 in 8p12 (P = 0.0472 after correction, OR = 0.751) was significantly associated with CRC but rs12080929 in 1p33 (P = 0.0650 after correction, OR = 0.750) was not.
CONCLUSION: Our findings supported that rs11987193 is a susceptibility locus for CRC, and gene DUSP4 was possible to play a role in the pathology of CRC.

Gleize V, Alentorn A, Connen de Kérillis L, et al.
CIC inactivating mutations identify aggressive subset of 1p19q codeleted gliomas.
Ann Neurol. 2015; 78(3):355-74 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: CIC gene is frequently mutated in oligodendroglial tumors with 1p19q codeletion. However, clinical and biological impact remain poorly understood.
METHODS: We sequenced the CIC gene on 127 oligodendroglial tumors (109 with the 1p19q codeletion) and analyzed patients' outcome. We compared magnetic resonance imaging, transcriptomic profile, and CIC protein expression of CIC wild-type (WT) and mutant gliomas. We compared the level of expression of CIC target genes on Hs683-IDH1(R132H) cells transfected with lentivirus encoding mutant and WT CIC.
RESULTS: We found 63 mutations affecting 60 of 127 patients, virtually all 1p19q codeleted and IDH mutated (59 of 60). In the 1p19q codeleted gliomas, CIC mutations were associated with a poorer outcome by uni- (p = 0.001) and multivariate analysis (p < 0.016). CIC mutation prognostic impact was validated on the TCGA cohort. CIC mutant grade II codeleted gliomas spontaneously grew faster than WTs. Transcriptomic analysis revealed an enrichment of proliferative pathways and oligodendrocyte precursor cell gene expression profile in CIC mutant gliomas, with upregulation of normally CIC repressed genes ETV1, ETV4, ETV5, and CCND1. Various missense mutations resulted in CIC protein expression loss. Moreover, a truncating CIC mutation resulted in a defect of nuclear targeting of CIC protein to the nucleus in a human glioma cell line expressing IDH1(R132H) and overexpression of CCND1 and other new target genes of CIC, such as DUSP4 and SPRED1.
INTERPRETATION: CIC mutations result in protein inactivation with upregulation of CIC target genes, activation of proliferative pathways, inhibition of differentiation, and poorer outcome in patients with a 1p19q codeleted glioma.

Schmid CA, Robinson MD, Scheifinger NA, et al.
DUSP4 deficiency caused by promoter hypermethylation drives JNK signaling and tumor cell survival in diffuse large B cell lymphoma.
J Exp Med. 2015; 212(5):775-92 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The epigenetic dysregulation of tumor suppressor genes is an important driver of human carcinogenesis. We have combined genome-wide DNA methylation analyses and gene expression profiling after pharmacological DNA demethylation with functional screening to identify novel tumor suppressors in diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL). We find that a CpG island in the promoter of the dual-specificity phosphatase DUSP4 is aberrantly methylated in nodal and extranodal DLBCL, irrespective of ABC or GCB subtype, resulting in loss of DUSP4 expression in 75% of >200 examined cases. The DUSP4 genomic locus is further deleted in up to 13% of aggressive B cell lymphomas, and the lack of DUSP4 is a negative prognostic factor in three independent cohorts of DLBCL patients. Ectopic expression of wild-type DUSP4, but not of a phosphatase-deficient mutant, dephosphorylates c-JUN N-terminal kinase (JNK) and induces apoptosis in DLBCL cells. Pharmacological or dominant-negative JNK inhibition restricts DLBCL survival in vitro and in vivo and synergizes strongly with the Bruton's tyrosine kinase inhibitor ibrutinib. Our results indicate that DLBCL cells depend on JNK signaling for survival. This finding provides a mechanistic basis for the clinical development of JNK inhibitors in DLBCL, ideally in synthetic lethal combinations with inhibitors of chronic active B cell receptor signaling.

Slattery ML, Lundgreen A, John EM, et al.
MAPK genes interact with diet and lifestyle factors to alter risk of breast cancer: the Breast Cancer Health Disparities Study.
Nutr Cancer. 2015; 67(2):292-304 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK) are integration points for multiple biochemical signals. We evaluated 13 MAPK genes with breast cancer risk and determined if diet and lifestyle factors mediated risk. Data from 3 population-based case-control studies conducted in Southwestern United States, California, and Mexico included 4183 controls and 3592 cases. Percent Indigenous American (IA) ancestry was determined from 104 ancestry informative markers. The adaptive rank truncated product (ARTP) was used to determine the significance of each gene and the pathway with breast cancer risk, by menopausal status, genetic ancestry level, and estrogen receptor (ER)/progesterone receptor (PR) strata. MAP3K9 was associated with breast cancer overall (P(ARTP) = 0.02) with strongest association among women with the highest IA ancestry (P(ARTP) = 0.04). Several SNPs in MAP3K9 were associated with ER+/PR+ tumors and interacted with dietary oxidative balance score (DOBS), dietary folate, body mass index (BMI), alcohol consumption, cigarette smoking, and a history of diabetes. DUSP4 and MAPK8 interacted with calories to alter breast cancer risk; MAPK1 interacted with DOBS, dietary fiber, folate, and BMI; MAP3K2 interacted with dietary fat; and MAPK14 interacted with dietary folate and BMI. The patterns of association across diet and lifestyle factors with similar biological properties for the same SNPs within genes provide support for associations.

Cushman SM, Jiang C, Hatch AJ, et al.
Gene expression markers of efficacy and resistance to cetuximab treatment in metastatic colorectal cancer: results from CALGB 80203 (Alliance).
Clin Cancer Res. 2015; 21(5):1078-86 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tumor samples from CALGB 80203 were analyzed for expression of EGFR axis-related genes to identify prognostic or predictive biomarkers for cetuximab treatment.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: Patients (238 total) with first-line metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) were randomized to FOLFOX or FOLFIRI chemotherapy ± cetuximab. qRT-PCR analyses were conducted on tissues from 103 patients at baseline to measure gene expression levels of HER-related genes, including amphiregulin (AREG), betacellulin (BTC), NT5E (CD73), DUSP4, EGF, EGFR, epigen (EPGN), epiregulin (EREG), HBEGF, ERBB2 (HER2), ERBB3 (HER3), ERBB4 (HER4), PHLDA1, and TGFA. The interactions between expression levels and treatment with respect to progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were modeled using multiplicative Cox proportional hazards models.
RESULTS: High tumor mRNA levels of HER2 [hazard ratio (HR), 0.64; P = 0.002] and EREG (HR, 0.89; P = 0.016) were prognostic markers associated with longer PFS across all patients. HER3 and CD73 expression levels were identified as potential predictive markers of benefit from cetuximab. In KRAS wild-type (WT) tumors, low HER3 expression was associated with longer OS from cetuximab treatment, whereas high HER3 expression was associated with shorter OS from cetuximab treatment (chemo + cetuximab: HR, 1.15; chemo-only: HR, 0.48; Pinteraction = 0.029). High CD73 expression was associated with longer PFS from cetuximab treatment in patients with KRAS-WT (chemo + cetuximab: HR, 0.91; chemo-only: HR, 1.57; Pinteraction = 0.026) and KRAS-mutant (Mut) tumors (chemo + cetuximab: HR, 0.80; chemo-only: HR, 1.29; P = 0.025).
CONCLUSIONS: Gene expression of HER3 and CD73 was identified as a potential predictive marker for cetuximab. These data implicate HER axis signaling and immune modulation as potential mechanisms of cetuximab action and sensitivity.

Guan G, Zhang D, Zheng Y, et al.
microRNA-423-3p promotes tumor progression via modulation of AdipoR2 in laryngeal carcinoma.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2014; 7(9):5683-91 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Despite of the variety of combined modality treatments for laryngeal carcinoma have been introduced, the distance recurrence rate and 5-year overall survival rate over the past decades are still the major issues, underlining the importance to better understand the biological bases that contribute to disease progression. Here, we reported that miR-423-3p overexpressed in primary laryngeal carcinoma cell line where it plays a critical role in tumor progression. Suppression of miR-423-3p expression resulted in decreasing cell proliferation, clonogenicity, cell migration and invasion. By using in silico prediction algorithms for target identification, AdipoR2 (adiponectin receptor 2) and DUSP4 (MAP kinase phosphatase 2) were identified to be potential targets of miR-423-3p. Overexpression of miR-423-3p was associated with epigenetic silencing of AdipoR2 in human laryngeal carcinoma samples, which have been previously implicated in suppression of tumor proliferation and angiogenesis. Luciferase reporter assays and western blot further confirmed the direct interaction of miR-423-3p with AdipoR2. Our findings have demonstrated that miR-423-3p plays an important oncogenic role in laryngeal carcinoma progression, and further suggest that suppression of miR-423-3p expression might be useful for its clinical management.

Plotnik JP, Budka JA, Ferris MW, Hollenhorst PC
ETS1 is a genome-wide effector of RAS/ERK signaling in epithelial cells.
Nucleic Acids Res. 2014; 42(19):11928-40 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The RAS/ERK pathway is commonly activated in carcinomas and promotes oncogenesis by altering transcriptional programs. However, the array of cis-regulatory elements and trans-acting factors that mediate these transcriptional changes is still unclear. Our genome-wide analysis determined that a sequence consisting of neighboring ETS and AP-1 transcription factor binding sites is enriched near cell migration genes activated by RAS/ERK signaling in epithelial cells. In vivo screening of candidate ETS proteins revealed that ETS1 is specifically required for migration of RAS/ERK activated cells. Furthermore, both migration and transcriptional activation through ETS/AP-1 required ERK phosphorylation of ETS1. Genome-wide mapping of multiple ETS proteins demonstrated that ETS1 binds specifically to enhancer ETS/AP-1 sequences. ETS1 occupancy, and its role in cell migration, was conserved in epithelial cells derived from multiple tissues, consistent with a chromatin organization common to epithelial cell lines. Genome-wide expression analysis showed that ETS1 was required for activation of RAS-regulated cell migration genes, but also identified a surprising role for ETS1 in the repression of genes such as DUSP4, DUSP6 and SPRY4 that provide negative feedback to the RAS/ERK pathway. Consistently, ETS1 was required for robust RAS/ERK pathway activation. Therefore, ETS1 has dual roles in mediating epithelial-specific RAS/ERK transcriptional functions.

Baglia ML, Cai Q, Zheng Y, et al.
Dual specificity phosphatase 4 gene expression in association with triple-negative breast cancer outcome.
Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2014; 148(1):211-20 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is an aggressive cancer with limited treatment options. Dual specificity phosphatase 4 (DUSP4) has recently been suggested as a potential marker of chemotherapy resistance for TNBC. DUSP4 gene expression levels were measured in breast cancer tissue from 469 TNBC patients aged 20-75 years who participated in the Shanghai Breast Cancer Survival Study, and their association with recurrence/breast cancer mortality and total mortality was evaluated. Information on breast cancer diagnosis, treatment, and disease progression was collected via medical chart review and multiple in-person follow-up surveys. A Cox regression model was applied in the data analyses. Over a median follow-up of 5.3 years (range: 0.7-8.9 years), 100 deaths and 92 recurrences/breast cancer deaths were documented. Expression levels of transcript variant 1 (NM_001394) and transcript variant 2 (NM_057158) of the DUSP4 gene were studied and were highly correlated (r = 0.76). Low DUSP4 expression levels, particularly of variant 1, were associated with both increased recurrence/breast cancer mortality and increased overall mortality. Hazard ratios with adjustment for age at diagnosis and TNM stage associated with below versus above the median expression level were 1.97 (95 % confidence interval (CI): 1.27-3.05) for recurrence/breast cancer mortality and 2.09 (95 % CI: 1.38-3.17) for overall mortality. Additional adjustment for expression levels of MKI67 and TP53, common treatment types, breast cancer subtype, and grade did not materially alter the observed associations. Low DUSP4 expression levels predict recurrence and mortality in TNBC patients independently from known clinical and molecular predictors.

Bethge N, Honne H, Andresen K, et al.
A gene panel, including LRP12, is frequently hypermethylated in major types of B-cell lymphoma.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(9):e104249 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Epigenetic modifications and DNA methylation in particular, have been recognized as important mechanisms to alter gene expression in malignant cells. Here, we identified candidate genes which were upregulated after an epigenetic treatment of B-cell lymphoma cell lines (Burkitt's lymphoma, BL; Follicular lymphoma, FL; Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, DLBCL activated B-cell like, ABC; and germinal center like, GCB) and simultaneously expressed at low levels in samples from lymphoma patients. Qualitative methylation analysis of 24 candidate genes in cell lines revealed five methylated genes (BMP7, BMPER, CDH1, DUSP4 and LRP12), which were further subjected to quantitative methylation analysis in clinical samples from 59 lymphoma patients (BL, FL, DLBCL ABC and GCB; and primary mediastinal B-cell lymphoma, PMBL). The genes LRP12 and CDH1 showed the highest methylation frequencies (94% and 92%, respectively). BMPER (58%), DUSP4 (32%) and BMP7 (22%), were also frequently methylated in patient samples. Importantly, all gene promoters were unmethylated in various control samples (CD19+ peripheral blood B cells, peripheral blood mononuclear cells and tonsils) as well as in follicular hyperplasia samples, underscoring a high specificity. The combination of LRP12 and CDH1 methylation could successfully discriminate between the vast majority of the lymphoma and control samples, emphasized by receiver operating characteristic analysis with a c-statistic of 0.999. These two genes represent promising epigenetic markers which may be suitable for monitoring of B-cell lymphoma.

Manzano RG, Martinez-Navarro EM, Forteza J, Brugarolas A
Microarray phosphatome profiling of breast cancer patients unveils a complex phosphatase regulatory role of the MAPK and PI3K pathways in estrogen receptor-negative breast cancers.
Int J Oncol. 2014; 45(6):2250-66 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Phosphatases are proteins with the ability to dephosphorylate different substrates and are involved in critical cellular processes such as proliferation, tumor suppression, motility and survival. Little is known about their role in the different breast cancer (BC) phenotypes. We carried out microarray phosphatome profiling in 41 estrogen receptor-negative (ER-) BC patients, as determined by immunohistochemistry (IHC), containing both ERBB2+ and ERBB2- in order to characterize the differences between these two groups. We characterized and confirmed the distinct phosphatome of the two main ER- BC subgroups (in two independent microarrays series) and that of ER+ BC (in three large independent series). Our findings point to the importance of the MAPK and PI3K pathways in ER- BCs as some of the most differentially expressed phosphatases (like DUSP4 and DUSP6) sharing ERK as substrate, or regulating the PI3K pathway (INPP4B, PTEN). It was possible to identify a selective group of phosphatases upregulated only in the ER- ERBB2+ subgroup and not in ER+ (like DUSP6, DUSP10 and PPAPDC1A among others), suggesting a role of these phosphatases in specific BC subtypes, unlike other differentially expressed phosphatases (DUSP4 and ENPP1) that seemed to have a role in multiple BC subtypes. Significant correlation was found at the protein level by IHC between the expression of DUSP6 and phospho-ERK (p=0.04) but not of phospho-ERK with DUSP4. To show the potential prognostic relevance of phosphatases as a functional group of genes, we derived and validated in two large independent BC microarray series a multiphosphatase signature enriched in differentially expressed phosphatases, to predict distant metastasis-free survival (DMFS). ER- ERBB2+, ER- ERBB2- and ER+ BC patients have a distinct pattern of phosphatase RNA expression with a potential prognostic relevance. Further studies of the most relevant phosphatases found in this study are warranted.

Li KC, Hua KT, Lin YS, et al.
Inhibition of G9a induces DUSP4-dependent autophagic cell death in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.
Mol Cancer. 2014; 13:172 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is a common cancer worldwide. Emerging evidence indicates that alteration of epigenetics might be a key event in HNSCC progression. Abnormal expression of histone methyltransferase G9a, which contributes to transcriptional repression of tumor suppressors, has been implicated in promoting cancerous malignancies. However, its role in HNSCC has not been previously characterized. In this study, we elucidate the function of G9a and its downstream mechanism in HNSCC.
METHODS: We investigated the clinical relevance of G9a in HNSCC using immunohistochemistry (IHC) staining. In vitro cell proliferation and tumorigenesis ability of G9a-manipulated HNSCC cells were examined with MTT assays, clonogenic assays, and soft agar assays. We examined different routes of cell death in HNSCC cells induced by G9a-depletion or enzymatic inhibition by immunoblot, flow cytometry, fluorescent and transmission electron microscopy analysis. Specific targets of G9a were identified by affymetrix microarray and quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). Lastly, functions of G9a in vivo were confirmed with a xenograft tumor model.
RESULTS: G9a expression is positively correlated to proliferation marker Ki-67 and to poor prognosis in HNSCC patients. Genetic or pharmacological inhibition of G9a reduced cell proliferation without inducing necrosis or apoptosis. Instead, autophagic cell death was the major consequence, and our investigation of mechanisms suggested it is mediated via the dual specificity phosphatase-4 (DUSP4) dependent ERK inactivation pathway. An orthotopic tumor model further confirmed the growth inhibiting effect and induction of autophagy that followed suppression of G9a.
CONCLUSIONS: In this study, we provide evidence that G9a confers the survival advantage of HNSCC. Genetic or pharmacological inhibition of G9a induces autophagic cell death; this finding provides a basis for new therapeutic targets for treating HNSCC.

Lai AZ, Cory S, Zhao H, et al.
Dynamic reprogramming of signaling upon met inhibition reveals a mechanism of drug resistance in gastric cancer.
Sci Signal. 2014; 7(322):ra38 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Met receptor tyrosine kinase is activated or genetically amplified in some gastric cancers, but resistance to small-molecule inhibitors of Met often emerges in patients. We found that Met abundance correlated with a proliferation marker in patient gastric tumor sections, and gastric cancer cell lines that have MET amplifications depended on Met for proliferation and anchorage-independent growth in culture. Inhibition of Met induced temporal changes in gene expression in the cell lines, initiated by a rapid decrease in the expression of genes encoding transcription factors, followed by those encoding proteins involved in epithelial-mesenchymal transition, and finally those encoding cell cycle-related proteins. In the gastric cancer cell lines, microarray and chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis revealed considerable overlap between genes regulated in response to Met stimulation and those regulated by signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3). The activity of STAT3, extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), and the kinase Akt was decreased by Met inhibition, but only inhibitors of STAT3 were as effective as the Met inhibitor in decreasing tumor cell proliferation in culture and in xenografts, suggesting that STAT3 mediates the pro-proliferative program induced by Met. However, the phosphorylation of ERK increased after prolonged Met inhibition in culture, correlating with decreased abundance of the phosphatases DUSP4 and DUSP6, which inhibit ERK. Combined inhibition of Met and the mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK)-ERK pathway induced greater cell death in cultured gastric cancer cells than did either inhibitor alone. These findings indicate combination therapies that may counteract resistance to Met inhibitors.

Fancy SP, Harrington EP, Baranzini SE, et al.
Parallel states of pathological Wnt signaling in neonatal brain injury and colon cancer.
Nat Neurosci. 2014; 17(4):506-12 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
In colon cancer, mutation of the Wnt repressor APC (encoding adenomatous polyposis coli) leads to a state of aberrant and unrestricted high-activity signaling. However, the relevance of high Wnt tone in non-genetic human disease is unknown. Here we demonstrate that distinct functional states of Wnt activity determine oligodendrocyte precursor cell (OPC) differentiation and myelination. Mouse OPCs with genetic Wnt dysregulation (high tone) express multiple genes in common with colon cancer, including Lef1, Sp5, Ets2, Rnf43 and Dusp4. Surprisingly, we found that OPCs in lesions of hypoxic human neonatal white matter injury upregulated markers of high Wnt activity and lacked expression of APC. We also found that lack of Wnt repressor tone promoted permanent white matter injury after mild hypoxic insult. These findings suggest a state of pathological high-activity Wnt signaling in human disease tissues that lack predisposing genetic mutation.

Lee EK, Chung KW, Yang SK, et al.
DNA methylation of MAPK signal-inhibiting genes in papillary thyroid carcinoma.
Anticancer Res. 2013; 33(11):4833-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The purpose of this study was to identify the DNA methylation status of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signal-inhibiting genes dual-specificity phosphatase 4 (DUSP4) and 6 (DUSP6); and serpin peptidase inhibitor A member 5 (SERPINA5) in thyroid cancer.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Using 76 papillary thyroid cancer(PTC) tissues and three thyroid cancer cell lines (TPC1, WRO82-1 and XTC), the expression of three genes and DNA methylation were determined by reverse transcription-PCR and methylation-specific PCR.
RESULTS: In all cell lines, the expression of DUSP4 and DUSP6 increased; the corresponding gene promoters were unmethylated. However, SERPINA5 gene expression decreased and SERPINA5 DNA was methylated in the TPC1 cell line. With the de-methylating agent 5'-aza-2'-deoxycytidine, SERPINA5 gene expression was restored. In 82.9% of PTC tissues (63/76), the SERPINA5 DNA promoter was methylated, which was associated with a higher v-raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B1(BRAF) mutation rate in PTC tissues based on multivariate regression (odds ratio=3.573; 95% confidence interval=1.122-11.379; p=0.031).
CONCLUSION: The expression of the MAPK signal-inhibiting gene SERPINA5 decreased in the TPC1 cell line, SERPINA5 expression was regulated by DNA methylation, which was associated with a higher BRAF mutation rate in PTC.

Saigusa S, Inoue Y, Tanaka K, et al.
Decreased expression of DUSP4 is associated with liver and lung metastases in colorectal cancer.
Med Oncol. 2013; 30(3):620 [PubMed] Related Publications
Dual-specificity protein phosphatase 4 (DUSP4), a negative regulator of extracellular-regulated kinase activity, is a potential mediator of resistance to chemotherapy and a tumor suppressor. The aim of this study is to clarify the association between DUSP4 gene expression and clinical outcome in patients with colorectal cancer. Patients who underwent surgery for colorectal cancer were enrolled in this study (n = 212). We investigated DUSP4 gene expression by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction in colorectal cancer tissue and paired normal mucosa. Immunohistochemical analyses of DUSP4 and ERK1/2 were also conducted. Additionally, we examined the relationship between gene expression and KRAS mutation in 74 of the 212 patients. DUSP4 expression in tumor tissues was significantly higher than that in matched normal mucosa (P < 0.0001). Decreased DUSP4 expression was significantly associated with advanced T classification, lymphatic invasion, vascular invasion, advanced stage, and liver and lung metastases. Logistic regression analysis revealed that decreased DUSP4 expression was an independent risk factor for synchronous distant metastases (P = 0.006). Increased DUSP4 expression was significantly associated with better prognosis (P = 0.0162). Immunohistochemical examination showed DUSP4 expression in the nucleus and cytoplasm of cancer cells, and no correlation was observed between DUSP4 and ERK1/2 expression. There was no significant correlation between DUSP4 expression and KRAS mutation. In conclusion, DUSP4 expression in colorectal cancer was negatively correlated with factors reflecting tumor progression, including distant metastases. Our data suggest that DUSP4 may act as a tumor suppressor in colorectal cancer.

Slattery ML, Lundgreen A, Wolff RK
MAP kinase genes and colon and rectal cancer.
Carcinogenesis. 2012; 33(12):2398-408 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathways regulate many cellular functions including cell proliferation, differentiation, migration and apoptosis. We evaluate genetic variation in the c-Jun-N-terminal kinases, p38, and extracellular regulated kinases 1/2 MAPK-signaling pathways and colon and rectal cancer risk using data from population-based case-control studies (colon: n = 1555 cases, 1956 controls; rectal: n = 754 cases, 959 controls). We assess 19 genes (DUSP1, DUSP2, DUSP4, DUSP6, DUSP7, MAP2K1, MAP3K1, MAP3K2, MAP3K3, MAP3K7, MAP3K9, MAP3K10, MAP3K11, MAPK1, MAPK3, MAPK8, MAPK12, MAPK14 and RAF1). MAP2K1 rs8039880 [odds ratio (OR) = 0.57, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.38, 0.83; GG versus AA genotype] and MAP3K9 rs11625206 (OR = 1.41, 95% CI = 1.14, 1.76; recessive model) were associated with colon cancer (P (adj) value < 0.05). DUSP1 rs322351 (OR = 1.43, 95% CI = 1.09, 1.88; TT versus CC) and MAPK8 rs10857561 (OR = 1.48, 95% CI 1.08, 2.03; AA versus GG/GA) were associated with rectal cancer (P (adj) < 0.05). Aspirin/non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, cigarette smoking and body mass index interacted with several genes to alter cancer risk. Genetic variants had unique associations with KRAS, TP53 and CIMP+ tumors. DUSP2 rs1724120 [hazard rate ratio (HRR) = 0.72, 95%CI = 0.54, 0.96; AA versus GG/GA), MAP3K10 rs112956 (HRR = 1.40, 95% CI = 1.10, 1.76; CT/TT versus CC) and MAP3K11 (HRR = 1.76, 95% CI 1.18, 2.62 TT versus GG/GT) influenced survival after diagnosis with colon cancer; MAP2K1 rs8039880 (HRR = 2.53, 95% CI 1.34, 4.79 GG versus AG/GG) and Raf1 rs11923427 (HRR = 0.59 95% CI = 0.40, 0.86; AA versus TT/TA) were associated with rectal cancer survival. These data suggest that genetic variation in the MAPK-signaling pathway influences colorectal cancer risk and survival after diagnosis. Associations may be modified by lifestyle factors that influence inflammation and oxidative stress.

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