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J Cell Biochem. 2006 Apr 15;97(6):1275-82.

Positive correlation between the expression of X-chromosome RBM genes (RBMX, RBM3, RBM10) and the proapoptotic Bax gene in human breast cancer.

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Fundación Tejerina-Centro de Patología de la Mama, Madrid, Spain.


In a recent report, it has been postulated that the ubiquitous RBM proteins might constitute a novel family of apoptosis modulators. We measured the expression of the X-chromosome RBM genes (RBMX, RBM3, and RBM10) in 122 breast cancers by means of differential RT-PCR. Using the same method, we also studied the expression of the apoptosis-related genes Bcl-2 and Bax. Markers of hormone dependence (estrogen and progesterone receptors), proliferation (Ki67 and DNA-ploidy), angiogenesis (VEGF and CD105), as well as oncogene (c-erb-B2), and tumor suppressor gene (p53) expression were also analyzed. The expression of all X-chromosome RBM genes was significantly associated with the expression of the proapoptotic Bax gene (RBMX, P=0.039; RBM3, P<0.001; RBM10 large variant, P<0.001; RBM10 small variant, P<0.001). Furthermore, the expression of both RBM10 variants was significantly associated with the expression of the VEGF gene (large variant, P=0.004; small variant, P=0.003). We also found an association of borderline significance (P=0.05) between the expression of RBM3, the large variant of RBM10 and wild-type p53. Expression of the small RBM10 variant, finally, was associated with high proliferation of the tumors (Ki67>or=20%; P=0.037). The expression of both RBM10 variants seems to be interdependent to a significant degree (r=0.26, P=0.006). From these results, it seems that the X-chromosome, through its RBM genes, plays a formerly unknown role in the regulation of programmed cell death (apoptosis) in breast cancer.

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