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Nature. 2008 Mar 13;452(7184):187-93. doi: 10.1038/nature06781.

SATB1 reprogrammes gene expression to promote breast tumour growth and metastasis.

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  • 1Life Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.

Abstract

Mechanisms underlying global changes in gene expression during tumour progression are poorly understood. SATB1 is a genome organizer that tethers multiple genomic loci and recruits chromatin-remodelling enzymes to regulate chromatin structure and gene expression. Here we show that SATB1 is expressed by aggressive breast cancer cells and its expression level has high prognostic significance (P < 0.0001), independent of lymph-node status. RNA-interference-mediated knockdown of SATB1 in highly aggressive (MDA-MB-231) cancer cells altered the expression of >1,000 genes, reversing tumorigenesis by restoring breast-like acinar polarity and inhibiting tumour growth and metastasis in vivo. Conversely, ectopic SATB1 expression in non-aggressive (SKBR3) cells led to gene expression patterns consistent with aggressive-tumour phenotypes, acquiring metastatic activity in vivo. SATB1 delineates specific epigenetic modifications at target gene loci, directly upregulating metastasis-associated genes while downregulating tumour-suppressor genes. SATB1 reprogrammes chromatin organization and the transcription profiles of breast tumours to promote growth and metastasis; this is a new mechanism of tumour progression.

PMID:
18337816
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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