The High Mobility Group A1 (HMGA1) gene is highly overexpressed in human uterine serous carcinomas and carcinosarcomas and drives Matrix Metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) in a subset of tumors

Joelle Hillion, Sujayita Roy, Mohammad Heydarian, Leslie Cope, Lingling Xian, Michael Koo, Li Z. Luo, Kathleen Kellyn, Brigitte M. Ronnett, Tait Huso, Deborah Armstrong, Karen Reddy, David L. Huso, L. M.S. Resar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives Although uterine cancer is the fourth most common cause for cancer death in women worldwide, the molecular underpinnings of tumor progression remain poorly understood. The High Mobility Group A1 (HMGA1) gene is overexpressed in aggressive cancers and high levels portend adverse outcomes in diverse tumors. We previously reported that Hmga1a transgenic mice develop uterine tumors with complete penetrance. Because HMGA1 drives tumor progression by inducing Matrix Metalloproteinase (MMP) and other genes involved in invasion, we explored the HMGA1-MMP-2 pathway in uterine cancer. Methods To investigate MMP-2 in uterine tumors driven by HMGA1, we used a genetic approach with mouse models. Next, we assessed HMGA1 and MMP-2 expression in primary human uterine tumors, including low-grade carcinomas (endometrial endometrioid) and more aggressive tumors (endometrial serous carcinomas, uterine carcinosarcomas/malignant mesodermal mixed tumors). Results Here, we report for the first time that uterine tumor growth is impaired in Hmga1a transgenic mice crossed on to an Mmp-2 deficient background. In human tumors, we discovered that HMGA1 is highest in aggressive carcinosarcomas and serous carcinomas, with lower levels in the more indolent endometrioid carcinomas. Moreover, HMGA1 and MMP-2 were positively correlated, but only in a subset of carcinosarcomas. HMGA1 also occupies the MMP-2 promoter in human carcinosarcoma cells. Conclusions Together, our studies define a novel HMGA1-MMP-2 pathway involved in a subset of human carcinosarcomas and tumor progression in murine models. Our work also suggests that targeting HMGA1 could be effective adjuvant therapy for more aggressive uterine cancers and provides compelling data for further preclinical studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)580-587
Number of pages8
JournalGynecologic oncology
Volume141
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2016

Keywords

  • Chromatin remodeling proteins
  • HMGA1
  • High Mobility Group A1
  • MMP-2
  • Tumor progression
  • Uterine cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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