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Human ribonuclease inhibitor (RI) is a cytoplasmic acidic protein possibly involved in biological functions other than the inhibition of RNase A and angiogenin activities. We have previously shown that RI can inhibit growth and metastasis in some cancer cells. Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is regarded as the beginning of invasion and metastasis and has been implicated in the metastasis of bladder cancer. We therefore postulate that RI regulates EMT of bladder cancer cells. We find that the over-expression of RI induces the up-regulation of E-cadherin, accompanied with the decreased expression of proteins associated with EMT, such as N-cadherin, Snail, Slug, vimentin and Twist and of matrix metalloprotein-2 (MMP-2), MMP-9 and Cyclin-D1, both in vitro and in vivo. The up-regulation of RI inhibits cell proliferation, migration and invasion, alters cell morphology and adhesion and leads to the rearrangement of the cytoskeleton in vitro. We also demonstrate that the up-regulation of RI can decrease the expression of integrin-linked kinase (ILK), a central component of signaling cascades controlling an array of biological processes. The over-expression of RI reduces the phosphorylation of the ILK downstream signaling targets p-Akt and p-GSK3β in T24 cells. We further find that bladder cancer with a high-metastasis capability shows higher vimentin, Snail, Slug and Twist and lower E-cadherin and RI expression in human clinical specimens. Finally, we provide evidence that the up-regulation of RI inhibits tumorigenesis and metastasis of bladder cancer in vivo. Thus, RI might play a novel role in the development of bladder cancer through regulating EMT and the ILK signaling pathway.


Xue Yao, Dan Li, Dong-Mei Xiong, Lin Li, Rong Jiang, Jun-Xia Chen. A novel role of ribonuclease inhibitor in regulation of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and ILK signaling pathway in bladder cancer cells. Cell and tissue research. 2013 Sep;353(3):409-23

PMID: 23703635

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