Estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, interleukin-6 and interleukin-8 are variable in breast cancer and benign stem/progenitor cell populations

Robynn V. Schillace, Amy M. Skinner, Rodney F. Pommier, Steven O'Neill, Patrick J. Muller, Arpana M. Naik, Juliana E. Hansen, Su Ellen J. Pommier

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    11 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    Background: Estrogen receptor positive breast cancers have high recurrence rates despite tamoxifen therapy. Breast cancer stem/progenitor cells (BCSCs) initiate tumors, but expression of estrogen (ER) or progesterone receptors (PR) and response to tamoxifen is unknown. Interleukin-6 (IL-6) and interleukin-8 (IL-8) may influence tumor response to therapy but expression in BCSCs is also unknown.Methods: BCSCs were isolated from breast cancer and benign surgical specimens based on CD49f/CD24 markers. CD44 was measured. Gene and protein expression of ER alpha, ER beta, PR, IL-6 and IL-8 were measured by proximity ligation assay and qRT-PCR.Results: Gene expression was highly variable between patients. On average, BCSCs expressed 10-106 fold less ERα mRNA and 10-103 fold more ERβ than tumors or benign stem/progenitor cells (SC). BCSC lin-CD49f-CD24-cells were the exception and expressed higher ERα mRNA. PR mRNA in BCSCs averaged 10-104 fold less than in tumors or benign tissue, but was similar to benign SCs. ERα and PR protein detection in BCSCs was lower than ER positive and similar to ER negative tumors. IL-8 mRNA was 10-104 higher than tumor and 102 fold higher than benign tissue. IL-6 mRNA levels were equivalent to benign and only higher than tumor in lin-CD49f-CD24-cells. IL-6 and IL-8 proteins showed overlapping levels of expressions among various tissues and cell populations.Conclusions: BCSCs and SCs demonstrate patient-specific variability of gene/protein expression. BCSC gene/protein expression may vary from that of other tumor cells, suggesting a mechanism by which hormone refractory disease may occur.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number733
    JournalBMC cancer
    Volume14
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Sep 30 2014

    Keywords

    • Breast cancer
    • Estrogen receptor
    • Interleukin-6
    • Interleukin-8
    • Progesterone receptor
    • Protein
    • Proximity ligation assay
    • Stem cell

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Genetics
    • Oncology
    • Cancer Research

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