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NDRG4 promoter hypermethylation is a mechanistic biomarker associated with metastatic progression in breast cancer patients

20:00 EDT 4 Apr 2019 | NEJM

NDRG4 promoter hypermethylation is a mechanistic biomarker associated with metastatic progression in breast cancer patients

NDRG4 promoter hypermethylation is a mechanistic biomarker associated with metastatic progression in breast cancer patients, Published online: 05 April 2019; doi:10.1038/s41523-019-0106-x

Epigenetic silencing of a putative tumor suppressor protein confers a metastatic advantage to breast cancer cells and could serve as a mechanistic biomarker of likely disease spread. Researchers in São Paulo, Brazil, led by Érico Costa from the Molecular Oncology Center of the Hospital Sírio-Libanês, showed that NDRG4 (short for N-Myc downstream-regulated gene 4) is actively expressed in normal breast tissue. But in breast tumors and in tumor cell lines, methyl tags cover the promoter region of the NDRG4-encoding gene, resulting in reduced protein expression, increased tumor size, elevated cell mobility and other molecular features indicative of a more aggressive disease state. The researchers experimentally silenced NDRG4 expression in two non-metastatic breast cancer cell lines and observed changes in the adhesive and migratory properties of cells that promote tumor invasiveness and spread.

Original Article: NDRG4 promoter hypermethylation is a mechanistic biomarker associated with metastatic progression in breast cancer patients

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