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Oncogene. 2009 Apr 9;28(14):1706-13. doi: 10.1038/onc.2009.18. Epub 2009 Feb 23.

EphB6 receptor significantly alters invasiveness and other phenotypic characteristics of human breast carcinoma cells.

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Department of Basic Medical Sciences, Western University of Health Sciences, Pomona, CA 91766, USA.


Breast cancer mortality in women is largely attributed to the metastasis of primary breast tumors. We have analysed the function of EphB6, a kinase-deficient receptor, in the invasive phenotype of breast cancer cell lines. We have demonstrated the loss of EphB6 protein in invasive breast carcinoma cell lines and absence of EphB6 transcript in a metastatic breast tumor specimen. The function of EphB6 in invasiveness was confirmed by the ability of EphB6 protein to decrease the in vitro invasiveness of MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-435 and BT549 cells transfected with an EphB6 expression construct. In MDA-MB-231 cells, the decreased invasiveness appeared to be mediated by decreased transcript levels of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)7 and MMP19, and increased transcript levels of tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinase 2. In addition to affecting invasiveness phenotype, EphB6 overexpression was also responsible for altering the growth rate and colony-forming efficiency of MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 cells in a cell-line-specific manner. We suggest that the significant decrease in the invasiveness of MDA-MB-231 and other cell lines transfected with EphB6 is likely occurring by the ability of EphB6 to transduce signals to the nucleus and altering relevant gene expression.

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