Epigenetic Regulation of Breast Cancer Type-1 Gene by the Activated Aromatic Hydrocarbon Receptor and the Preventative Effects of Resveratrol
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractEpigenetic mechanisms may contribute to reduced expression of the tumor suppressor gene BRCA-1 in sporadic breast cancers. Through environmental exposure and diet, humans are exposed to xenobiotics and food compounds that bind the aromatic hydrocarbon receptor (AhR). AhR-ligands include the dioxin-like and tumor promoter 2,3,7,8 tetrachlorobenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD). The activated AhR regulates transcription through binding to xenobiotic response elements (XRE=GCGTG) and interactions with transcription cofactors. Previously, we reported on the presence of several XRE in the proximal BRCA-1 promoter, and that the expression of endogenous AhR was required for silencing of BRCA-1 expression by TCDD. Here, we document that in estrogen receptor-alpha-positive and BRCA-1 wild-type MCF-7 breast cancer cells, the treatment with TCDD attenuated 17-beta estradiol (E2)-dependent stimulation of BRCA-1 protein and induced hypermethylation of a CpG island spanning the BRCA-1 transcriptional start site of exon-1a. Additionally, we found that TCDD enhanced the association of the AhR, DNA methyl transferases (DNMT)1, DNMT3a, and DNMT3b; methyl binding protein (MBD)2; and tri-methylated H3K9 (H3K9me3) with the BRCA-1 promoter. Conversely, the phytoalexin resveratrol, selected as a prototype dietary AhR antagonist, antagonized at physiologically relevant doses the TCDD-induced repression of BRCA-1 protein, BRCA-1 promoter methylation, and the recruitment of the AhR, MBD2, H3K9me3, and DNMTs (1, 3a, and 3b). Taken together, these observations provide evidence for a mechanistic role for AhR-agonists in establishment of BRCA-1 promoter hypermethylation and the basis for the development of prevention strategies based on AhR antagonists.
Degree ProgramGraduate College