Tumor relapse is the leading cause of death in breast cancer, largely due to the fact that recurrent tumors are frequently resistant to chemotherapy. We previously reported that downregulation of the proapoptotic protein Par-4 promotes tumor recurrence in genetically engineered mouse models of breast cancer recurrence. In the present study, we examined the mechanism and functional significance of Par-4 downregulation in recurrent tumors. We found that epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) promotes epigenetic silencing of Par-4 in recurrent tumors. Par-4 silencing proceeded through binding of the EMT transcription factor Twist to the Par-4 promoter, where Twist induced a unique bivalent chromatin domain. This bivalent configuration conferred plasticity at the Par-4 promoter, and Par-4 silencing could be reversed with pharmacologic inhibitors of Ezh2 and HDAC1/2. Using an epigenome editing approach to reexpress Par-4 by specifically reversing the histone modifications found in recurrent tumors, we found that Par-4 reexpression sensitized recurrent tumors to chemotherapy in vitro and in vivo. Upon reexpression, Par-4 bound to the protein phosphatase PP1, caused widespread changes in phosphorylation of cytoskeletal proteins, and cooperated with microtubule-targeting drugs to induce mitotic defects. These results identify Twist-induced epigenetic silencing of Par-4 as a targetable axis that promotes chemoresistance in recurrent breast cancer.
Nathaniel W. Mabe, Douglas B. Fox, Ryan Lupo, Amy E. Decker, Stephanie N. Phelps, J. Will Thompson, James V. Alvarez
Usage data is cumulative from February 2019 through February 2020.
Usage information is collected from two different sources: this site (JCI) and Pubmed Central (PMC). JCI information (compiled daily) shows human readership based on methods we employ to screen out robotic usage. PMC information (aggregated monthly) is also similarly screened of robotic usage.
Various methods are used to distinguish robotic usage. For example, Google automatically scans articles to add to its search index and identifies itself as robotic; other services might not clearly identify themselves as robotic, or they are new or unknown as robotic. Because this activity can be misinterpreted as human readership, data may be re-processed periodically to reflect an improved understanding of robotic activity. Because of these factors, readers should consider usage information illustrative but subject to change.