Cell growth & differentiation : the molecular biology journal of the American Association for Cancer Research

Insulin-like growth factor binding protein-related protein 1 inhibits proliferation of MCF-7 breast cancer cells via a senescence-like mechanism.

PMID 12065244


Elevated insulin-like growth factor binding protein-related protein 1 (IGFBP-rP1) mRNA in senescent human mammary epithelial cells suggested that the IGFBP-3 gene product may inhibit cell proliferation. To test this hypothesis, we used a retroviral vector to express IGFBP-rP1 cDNA in the IGFBP-rP1-deficient MCF-7 breast cancer cell line. Compared with control vector-transduced cells, cumulative cell numbers for IGFBP-rP1-transduced polyclonal or clonal cell cultures were reduced by 39 and 74%, respectively, after 1 week. Medium conditioned by IGFBP-rP1-producing cultures reduced cumulative cell numbers in parental MCF-7 cultures by 20% compared with medium from cultures of a control vector-transduced cell line. Nuclear fragmentation analysis and cell proliferation assays completed in the presence of the pan-caspase inhibitor benzyloxycarbonyl-Val-Ala-Asp(OMe)-fluoromethylketone excluded apoptosis as the responsible mechanism. The percentage of cells containing senescence-associated beta-galactosidase activity was doubled compared with control cell cultures. Flow cytometry analysis indicated that twice as many noncycling cells were present in the IGFBP-rP1-transduced MCF-7 cell cultures compared with controls. These findings indicate that IGFBP-rP1 is an inhibitor of MCF-7 breast cancer cell proliferation and may act via a cellular senescence-like mechanism.

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