The Open Cancer Journal




(Discontinued)

ISSN: ― Volume ,

Role of the BCA2 Ubiquitin E3 Ligase in Hormone Responsive Breast Cancer


The Open Cancer Journal, 2010, 3: 116-123

Angelika M. Burger, Fathima Kona, Yutaka Amemiya, Yuguang Gao, Stephanie Bacopulos, Arun K. Seth

Sunnybrook Research Institute and University of Toronto Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, Toronto, ON, Canada.

Electronic publication date 23/9/2010
[DOI: 10.2174/1874079001003010116]




Abstract:

The BCA2 protein contains a RING H2 finger and a Zn finger near the N-terminus and has E3 ligase activity. RING finger proteins play critical roles in mediating the transfer of ubiquitin and ubiquitin like modifiers to heterologous substrates as well as to the RING finger proteins themselves. Protein modification by ubiquitin and small ubiquitin-related modifier (SUMO) plays a pivotal role in protein homeostasis and is critical to regulating basic cellular processes such as proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis, intracellular signaling, and gene-transcriptional regulation. The addition of ubiquitin or SUMO can modulate the ability of proteins to interact with their partners, alter their patterns of sub-cellular localization and control their stability. It is clear that SUMO influences many different biological processes however recent data suggest that it is specifically important in the regulation of transcription. BCA2 is an E3 ligase that interacts with the SUMO conjugating enzyme Ubc9. It could therefore function as an E3 in the sumoylation of various transcription factors. We have found that the BCA2 is co-expressed with the estrogen receptor in 74% of ER-positive invasive ductal carcinomas from a 635 member breast cancer cohort (p = 0.004). At the cellular level, BCA2 co-localizes with ER and it appears that at the transcriptional level BCA2 mRNA expression is regulated by estrogen. Bioinformatic analysis of the BCA2 promoter region revealed ER and PR binding sites as well as that of other more general transcription factors. The data presented here provides an overview of the potential involvement of the BCA2 in hormone responsive breast cancer and opens up avenues that should be exploited to better understand the regulation of ER expression, growth of breast cancer cells, and the importance of BCA2.


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