Role of Whn in Mammary Gland Development and Tumorigenesis
Annual rept. 30 Sep 1999-29 Sep 2002
GENERAL HOSPITAL CORP BOSTON MA
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The Whn transcription factor plays an essential role in the development and maturation of mammary glands, as mammary glands in the nude mice, which lack Whn expression, fail to function normally. We have shown here that Whn is required for the normal development and function of mammary epithelial cells Nude mice mammary glands have dramatic defects in ductal branching and tissue growth, suggesting Whn is essential for the proliferation of the epithelial cells. The role of Whn in tumorigenesis was accessed by generating MMTV-whn transgenic mice and determining Whn expression levels in human breast cancer cell lines vs normal breast cell lines. No tumors were evident in mice overexpressing Whn in the mammary tissue. Consistent with these findings, breast cancer cell lines express less Whn protein than normal cells. Thus, loss of Whn expression may be involved in the malignant progression.
- Medicine and Medical Research