SOX4 overexpression regulates the p53-mediated apoptosis in hepatocellular carcinoma: clinical implication and functional analysis in vitro.
ABSTRACT The underlying molecular mechanisms of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) remain poorly understood due to its complex development process. The human T cell-specific transcription factor sex-determining region Y-related high-mobility group (HMG) box 4 (SOX4) has been linked to development and tumorigenesis. In this study, we characterized the roles of SOX4 in regulation of the p53 transcription activity and evaluated the expression patterns and prognostic value of the transcription factor SOX4 in HCC.
The expression levels of human SOX4 were examined in HCC samples obtained from 58 patients having curative partial hepatectomy. The interaction and effects of SOX4 on the p53 pathway were assessed in HCC cell lines. Luciferase reporter assay to examine p53-mediated transcription of target genes was performed. The association of SOX4 expression level with tumor recurrence and overall survival was evaluated.
We showed that the HMG box domain of SOX4 interacted with p53, resulting in the inhibition of p53-mediated transcription by the Bax promoter. More importantly, SOX4 overexpression led to a significant repression of p53-induced Bax expression and subsequent repression of p53-mediated apoptosis induced by gamma-irradiation. In clinicopathological analysis, nuclear overexpression of SOX4 was observed in 37 out of 58 (63.8%) HCC samples, and this correlated with diminished risk of recurrence (P = 0.014) and improved overall survival time (P = 0.045) in HCC patients. Conclusion: These results suggest that SOX4 contributes to hepatocarcinogenesis by inhibiting p53-mediated apoptosis and that its overexpression might be a useful prognostic marker for survival after surgical resection.
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ABSTRACT: Gene expression profiling has uncovered the transcription factor Sox4 with upregulated activity during TGF-β-induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in normal and cancerous breast epithelial cells. Sox4 is indispensable for EMT and cell survival in vitro and for primary tumor growth and metastasis in vivo. Among several EMT-relevant genes, Sox4 directly regulates the expression of Ezh2, encoding the Polycomb group histone methyltransferase that trimethylates histone 3 lysine 27 (H3K27me3) for gene repression. Ablation of Ezh2 expression prevents EMT, whereas forced expression of Ezh2 restores EMT in Sox4-deficient cells. Ezh2-mediated H3K27me3 marks associate with key EMT genes, representing an epigenetic EMT signature that predicts patient survival. Our results identify Sox4 as a master regulator of EMT by governing the expression of the epigenetic modifier Ezh2.Cancer cell 06/2013; 23(6):768-83. DOI:10.1016/j.ccr.2013.04.020 · 23.89 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The Sox4 transcription factor is involved in various cellular processes, such as embryonic development and differentiation. Deregulated expression of Sox4 in several human cancers has been reported to date, but its role in melanoma is unknown. We explored the role of Sox4 in melanoma pathogenesis in vivo and in vitro. Using tissue microarray, we evaluated Sox4 expression in 180 melanocytic lesions and investigated its role in melanoma cell migration and invasion. Sox4 expression was remarkably reduced in metastatic melanoma compared with dysplastic nevi (P < 0.05) and primary melanoma (P < 0.01). This reduction was correlated with a poorer disease-specific survival of melanoma patients (P = 0.039). Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed that reduced Sox4 expression is an independent prognostic factor (P = 0.049). Knockdown of Sox4 enhanced melanoma cell invasion, migration, and stress fiber formation. The increased migration and invasion on Sox4 knockdown depends on the presence of nuclear factor (NF)-κB p50 and is abrogated when p50 is knocked down. We further observed inhibition of NF-κB p50 transcription by Sox4, in addition to a reverse pattern of expression of Sox4 and NF-κB p50 in different stages of melanocytic lesions. Our results suggest that Sox4 regulates melanoma cell migration and invasion in an NF-κB p50-dependent manner and may serve as a prognostic marker and potential therapeutic target for human melanoma.American Journal Of Pathology 10/2010; 177(6):2741-52. DOI:10.2353/ajpath.2010.100377 · 4.60 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: High levels of SOX4 gene expression have been reported in a variety of human cancers. The protein may function in the apoptosis pathway, leading to cell death as well as to tumorigenesis. The aim of this study was to investigate the levels of SOX4 expression in bladder cancer. Urinary bladder tumor samples were obtained from 57 bladder cancer and 13 normal bladder biopsies. The levels of SOX4 expression in bladder cancer were determined by immunohistochemistry and real-time PCR. SOX4 gene expression was increased 2.2 times in bladder tumors as compared with normal tissue. The presence of protein was confirmed by immunostaining. There were significant differences between immunostaining of bladder tumors and normal bladder tissue (P=0.001). The present data suggest that SOX4 gene may have a role in bladder cancer tumorigenesis.Pathology - Research and Practice 06/2011; 207(7):423-7. DOI:10.1016/j.prp.2011.05.005 · 1.56 Impact Factor