Cancer Institute A national cancer institute
designated cancer center

Branimir I. Sikic, M. D.

Publication Details

  • Expression and Silencing of the Microtubule-Associated Protein Tau in Breast Cancer Cells MOLECULAR CANCER THERAPEUTICS Spicakova, T., O'Brien, M. M., Duran, G. E., Sweet-Cordero, A., Sikic, B. I. 2010; 9 (11): 2970-2981


    The microtubule-associated protein Tau has been reported to be a predictive factor for clinical response to taxanes in metastatic breast cancer. We generated a panel of eight taxane-resistant variants from four human breast cancer cell lines (MCF-7, T-47D, MDA-MB-231, and BT-549). Four variants had higher levels of Tau compared with their T-47D and MDA-MB-231 parental cells. Using isoform-specific primers, we found that Tau 0N, 1N, 2N, 3R, and 4R isoforms are overexpressed in the resistant variants, as is Tau exon 6 but not exons 4A or 8. To determine whether Tau overexpression produces resistance to taxanes, we derived three independent T-47D clones stably overexpressing Tau 3R and 4R isoforms. Tau overexpression did not result in taxane resistance compared with parental cells transfected with vector alone. We then knocked down Tau expression in three cell lines that expressed Tau constitutively (MCF-7 and ZR-75-1 breast cancer cells, and OVCAR-3 ovarian cancer cells). Lentivirus-mediated silencing of Tau expression in MCF-7 and OVCAR-3 cells did not result in increased taxane sensitivity compared with luciferase short hairpin RNA-infected cells and uninfected parental cells. Transient silencing using Tau-specific small interfering RNAs also did not alter taxane sensitivity relative to nontargeting controls in both MCF-7 and ZR-75-1 cells. These results show that neither overexpression nor depletion of Tau modulates cellular sensitivity to taxanes. Although Tau overexpression has been reported to be a predictive marker of taxane resistance, it is not likely to be a direct mechanism of taxane resistance in breast cancer.

    View details for DOI 10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-10-0780

    View details for Web of Science ID 000283998200012

    View details for PubMedID 21062914

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