Purpose: The protein tyrosine phosphatase PRL-3 plays an important role in cancer cell migration, invasion and metastasis. In breast cancer, PRL-3 is overexpressed in 70–75% of tumors and even more frequently in lymph node metastases. Moreover, PRL-3 overexpression in breast cancer is associated with an adverse disease outcome. Aim of this study was to determine the role of PRL-3 in breast cancer cell proliferation, migration and invasion in vitro. Methods: PRL-3 mRNA expression was evaluated in 6 breast cancer cell lines by quantitative real-time PCR. To investigate the effect of PRL-3 expression in breast cancer cells in vitro we both up- and downregulated PRL-3 expression in breast cancer cells and performed in vitro wound repair cell motility assays and invasion assays. The influence of PRL-3 knockdown in MCF-7 cells on the expression of several gene products involved in cell invasion and cytoskeletal function was evaluated with real-time PCR. Results: PRL-3 mRNA expression was demonstrated in all breast cancer cell lines evaluated. Knockdown of PRL-3 in MCF-7 cells resulted in decreased proliferation, wound healing and invasion. PRL-3 knockdown in MCF-7 cells resulted in a significant reduction of heparanase, MMP-9, actin gamma-2 and Myosin 9 expression, and significant elevation of E-cadherin. Conclusions: We conclude that PRL-3 is an important regulatory factor for breast cancer cell proliferation and invasion. Loss of PRL-3 function induces an antimetastatic gene expression profile in breast cancer cells. Due to its role in tumor growth and metastasis, PRL-3 emerges as a new therapeutic target in breast cancer therapy.
Research Areas and Centers
- Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)