EVALUATION OF THE IN VIVO ROLE OF A COLD-INDUCIBLE RNA BINDING PROTEIN: IMPLICATIONS FOR BREAST DEVELOPMENT AND DISEASE
Daniel Lujan1, Rebecca S. Hartley2.
1University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque, NM. 2University of New Mexico Cancer Center, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, NM.
RNA binding proteins (RBPs) post-transcriptionally regulate gene expression at the mRNA level. Many RBPs associate with the regulatory sequences in the 5’ and 3’ untranslated regions (UTRs) of mRNA in order to regulate the expression of cancer-associated genes. Furthermore, dysfunction of several RBPs is associated with cancer; they regulate target genes that promote cell growth, survival and proliferation. Our current knowledge of RBPs and their role in regulating cancer-associated genes is largely based on in vitro studies. Our current study seeks to determine the in vivo role of a cold-inducible RBP (CIRP) that is overexpressed in breast cancer. In cultured cells, CIRP has displayed the ability to increase the expression of proteins that promote cell proliferation and survival. CIRP has also been demonstrated to inhibit apoptosis, all of which are hallmarks of cancer. We would like to assess the effects of CIRP overexpression on breast tumorigenesis in vivo. Contrary to previous in vitro studies, our current data suggest that CIRP may be inhibiting proliferation and suppressing early tumorigenesis in a breast cancer mouse model. These data may provide us with a more precise understanding of the in vivo function of CIRP.