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Sci Rep. 2017 Jan 23;7:41179. doi: 10.1038/srep41179.

Decreased expression of pseudogene PTENP1 promotes malignant behaviours and is associated with the poor survival of patients with HNSCC.

Liu J1,2, Xing Y3, Xu L1,2, Chen W1,2, Cao W1,2, Zhang C1,2.

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Department of Oral Maxillofacial-Head and Neck Oncology, Ninth People's Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200011, P.R. China.
Shanghai Research Institute of Stomatology and Shanghai Key Laboratory of Stomatology, Shanghai 200011, China.
Department of Ophthalmology, Ninth People's Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200011, P.R. China.


PTENP1, a pseudogene of PTEN, was previously reported to be a tumour suppressor in some cancer types. However, there was no evidence for the biological function and expression of PTENP1 in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Here, we evaluated the function and clinical implications of PTENP1 in HNSCC. Using RT-PCR and quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR), we found that the level of PTENP1 was reduced in HNSCC specimens compared with adjacent tissues. A decrease in the PTENP1 copy number, but not in the PTEN copy number, was frequently observed in tumour cell lines (4 of 5 cell lines) by genomic real-time PCR. Decreased PTENP1 expression was significantly associated with a history of alcohol use (P = 0.034). Univariate and multivariate Cox regression analyses revealed that low expression of PTENP1 correlated with worse overall survival (OS, P = 0.005; HR:0.170; Cl:0.049 to 0.590) and disease-free survival (DFS, P = 0.009; HR:0.195; Cl:0.057 to 0.664) rates of HNSCC patients. Furthermore, ectopic PTENP1 expression inhibited the proliferation, colony formation and migration of HNSCC cells and the growth of xenograft HNSCC tumours. These results demonstrate that PTENP1 might play an important role in the initiation and progression of HNSCC.

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