AEBP1 ALTERS MATRIX SIGNALLING AND IS RESPONSIVE TO INFLAMMATION IN THE MAMMARY GLAND
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Breast cancer is characterized in part by chronic inflammation and tissue remodelling in the mammary gland. Adipocyte enhancer binding protein 1 (AEBP1), a pro-inflammatory protein, is up-regulated in breast cancer and enhances cytokine secretion in the mammary tumour microenvironment. AEBP1 over-expression in cultured macrophages resulted in increased enzymatic activity of MMP-9, a matrix metalloproteinase implicated in processing cytokines and stimulating tumour cell growth and mobility. MMP-9 activates the cytokine tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF?), and is required for the transformation of epithelial cells by the cytokine interleukin 6 (IL6). Treatment of epithelial cells with TNF? and IL6, both of which promote tumourigenesis, induced AEBP1 expression. Chromatin immunoprecipitation results suggested AEBP1 induction is directly mediated by pro-inflammatory transcription factors NF-?B and STAT3, downstream effectors of TNF? and IL6, respectively. AEBP1 induction may enhance inflammation, thereby contributing to cell proliferation and survival.