Autocrine TGFβ supports growth and survival of human breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cells

Xiufen Lei, Abhik Bandyopadhyay, Thy Le, Lu Zhe Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

62 Scopus citations

Abstract

Using a cell model system established by ectopic expression of a soluble TGFβ type III receptor (sRIII) containing the whole extracellular domain of the type III receptor in human breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cells, we observed that the expression of sRIII antagonized TGFβ activity and inhibited both anchorage-dependent and anchorage-independent cell growth. Further studies revealed that sRIII expression induced apoptosis both in vitro and in vivo. Treatment with TGFβ neutralizing antibodies or a recombinant human sRIII also induced apoptosis in the MDA-MB-231 parental cells, suggesting that the increased apoptosis after sRIII expression was specifically due to antagonization of autocrine TGFβ signaling. Western blotting showed that sRIII clones had a higher PTEN expression level than the control cells did. Treatment with TGFβ1 decreased PTEN and inhibited apoptosis in sRIII cells to a level similar to that in the control cells. sRIII clones also showed a lower level of phosphorylated-Akt than the control cells, consistent with the inhibitory activity of PTEN on Akt activation. Treatment with LY294002, a specific inhibitor of Akt activator, phospbatidylinositol 3-kinase, also induced apoptosis in a dose dependent manner in the control cells. Our results suggest that autocrine TGFβ signaling is necessary for the growth and survival of MDA-MB-231 cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7514-7523
Number of pages10
JournalOncogene
Volume21
Issue number49
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 24 2002

Keywords

  • Apoptosis
  • Autocrine TGFβ
  • Carcinoma cell
  • Growth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research

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