U.S. researchers say they’ve found a gene that plays a crucial role in the ability of breast cancer cells to respond to estrogen.
The finding that transcription factor AP2C (TFAP2C) controls multiple pathways of estrogen signaling may lead to improved therapies for hormone-responsive breast cancer and may help explain differences in the effectiveness of current treatments.
Estrogen binds to estrogen receptors and triggers a cascade of events including gene regulation.
Elimination of TFAP2C from the cell causes all of those cascades that associate with estrogen to go away.
The treated cancer cells were not able to respond to estrogen by any normal pathway.
Silencing TFAP2C inhibited tumor growth in mice. It also halted expression of another estrogen receptor called GPR30, found at the cancer cell membrane.
a geneTargeting this gene may be a better way to develop drugs to treat hormone-responsive breast cancers, because it targets multiple different pathways.