The forkhead transcription factor hepatocyte nuclear factor 3β (HNF3β) is essential in foregut development and the regulation of lung-specific genes. HNF3β expression leads to growth arrest and apoptosis in lung cancer cells and HNF3β is a candidate tumor suppressor in lung cancer. In a transcriptional profiling study using a conditional cell line system, we now identify 15-PGDH as one of the major genes induced by HNF3β expression. 15-PGDH is a critical metabolic enzyme of proliferative prostaglandins, an antagonist to cyclooxygenase-2 and a tumor suppressor in colon cancer. We confirmed the regulation of 15-PGDH expression by HNF3β in a number of systems and showed direct binding of HNF3β to 15-PGDH promoter elements. Western blotting of lung cancer cell lines and immunohistochemical examination of human lung cancer tissues found loss of 15-PGDH expression in ∼65% of lung cancers. Further studies using in vitro cell-based assays and in vivo xenograft tumorigenesis assays showed a lack of in vitro but significant in vivo tumor suppressor activity of 15-PGDH via an antiangiogenic mechanism analogous to its role in colon cancer. In summary, we identify 15-PGDH as a direct downstream effector of HNF3β and show that 15-PGDH acts as a tumor suppressor in lung cancer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research