Chromosomal deletion is frequent at the region between BRCA2 and RB1 in the q14 band of chromosome 13 (13q14) in human cancers, including prostate cancer, suggesting the presence of a tumor suppressor gene. However, no reasonable candidate has been identified thus far. In this study, we did genetic and functional analyses to identify and evaluate the 13q14 tumor suppressor gene. Hemizygous and homozygous deletions in cell lines/xenografts of prostate cancer mapped the deletion locus to 919 kb, which harbors only one known gene, the FOXO1A transcription factor. Deletion at FOXO1A was detected in 31% to 34% in 6 cell lines, 27 xenografts, and 72 clinical specimens of prostate cancer, and was significantly more frequent than deletions at surrounding loci. In addition, FOXO1A was transcriptionally down-regulated in some prostate cancers. Functionally, ectopic expression of FOXO1A inhibited, and its knockdown promoted, cell proliferation or survival. Furthermore, FOXO1A inhibited androgen- and androgen receptor-mediated gene regulation and cell proliferation. Consistent with the understanding of FOXO1A biology, our findings suggest that FOXO1A is the 13q14 tumor suppressor gene, at least in prostate cancer. As a well-established negative effector in the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/AKT signaling pathway, FOXO1A inactivation in cancer would impair the therapeutic effect of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/AKT inhibitors in cancer treatment.
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