• The Role of Regulatory Genes in Mediating Growth Arrest by all-trans Retinoic Acid in Ovarian Carcinoma Cell Lines

      Soprano, Kenneth J.; Tsygankov, Alexander Y.; Henderson, Earl E.; Long, Walter K.; Soprano, Dianne R. (Temple University. Libraries, 2012)
      All-trans retinoic acid (atRA) mediated growth inhibition results in the arrest of the cell cycle during the G1 phase in CAOV3 cells but not SKOV3 ovarian carcinoma cells. The G1 checkpoint is regulated by a multitude of molecules such as the retinoblastoma family of proteins, cyclins, cyclin dependent kinases (CDKs) and cyclin dependent kinase inhibitors (CDKis). CAOV3 cells, which are atRA sensitive, have been shown to express p16INK4a (p16), a cyclin dependent kinase inhibitor regulating the G1 checkpoint. However, atRA resistant SKOV3 cells do not express p16. In these studies, we investigated the role of p16 in mediating atRA induced growth arrest. Our results show that overexpression of p16 in SKOV3 cells leads to growth inhibition following atRA treatment. However, the inhibition is short-term due to the loss of p16 expression. Nevertheless, these results show that p16 plays a role in atRA mediated growth inhibition in ovarian carcinoma cells and that modulation of p16 expression can determine the growth response to atRA. Additionally, we also examined the effect of atRA treatment on the expression of homeobox genes in the CAOV3 cells and SKOV3 cells model system. Homeobox genes comprise a family of transcription factors which function during embryonic development to control pattern formation, differentiation and proliferation. Besides their dominant role during embryogenesis, they are also expressed in adults. In human tumors, an association between the deregulation of the expression of homeobox genes and oncogenic transformation has been reported. It is known that some homeobox genes are atRA targets due to the presence of retinoic acid response element (RARE) either in their promoter region or in their 3' region. In these studies we examined the expression of 13 homeobox genes in CAOV3 cells and SKOV3 cells following ethanol or atRA treatment. The 13 homeobox genes were analyzed because previous studies done by our laboratory observed differences in expression of these homeobox genes when comparing atRA sensitive oral squamous carcinoma cells (SCC) to atRA resistant oral squamous cell carcinoma cells. Of the 13 homeobox genes analyzed in the ovarian carcinoma cell model system, we found HOXA1 and HOXB4 to be upregulated by atRA in CAOV3 cells but not in SKOV3 cells. We also found that the induction of HOXA1 and HOXB4 mRNA expression in CAOV3 cells occurred as a respond to atRA treatment and is not due to a generalized response because of overall growth reduction. Interestingly, HOXA1 has two alternatively spliced forms. The mRNA expression of the truncated form of HOXA1 is highly induced by atRA when compared to its full length form. HOXB1, which is HOXA1 target gene, was not upregulated following atRA treatment. These results suggest that: 1) expression of p16 plays a role in mediating atRA growth inhibition; 2) HOXA1 and HOXB4 also play a role in mediating growth suppression by atRA; and 3) the truncated form of HOXA1 is induced by atRA treatment and may play a role in mediating growth inhibition by atRA, perhaps by acting in a dominant negative fashion.