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Articles by WeiZhou Zhang
Total Records ( 2 ) for WeiZhou Zhang
  George Z. Cheng , WeiZhou Zhang , Mei Sun , Qi Wang , Domenico Coppola , Mena Mansour , LiMei Xu , Carliann Costanzo , Jin Q. Cheng and Lu-Hai Wang
  To explore the basis of metastasis, we compared the human breast cancer lines MCF-7 and MDA-MB453, which have low invasive ability, with their sublines MCF7-I4 and MDA-MB453-I4 with high invasive ability for gene expression and signaling pathways. We previously showed that the I4 lines had dramatically elevated levels of Twist compared with their parental lines. In this study, we observed significantly increased STAT3 Tyr705 phosphorylation, but not the STAT3 protein levels, in the I4 lines. Activation of STAT3 by interleukin-6 or expression of activated Src induced Twist expression at protein and mRNA levels. Inhibiting STAT3 by a small molecule inhibitor, JSI-124, STAT3 small hairpin RNAs, or dominant negative STAT3 resulted in significant reduction of Twist protein and mRNA expression. STAT3 directly bound to the second proximal STAT3-binding site on the human Twist promoter and activated its transcriptional activity. Inhibition of STAT3 reduced migration, invasion, and colony formation of the I4 cells. Ectopic expression of Twist significantly rescued those phenotypes. Ten normal and 46 tumor specimens of breast tissues were examined for activation of STAT3 and expression of Twist. There was a strong correlation between Tyr705 p-STAT3 and Twist level in the late stage tumor tissues. Our results indicate that activated STAT3 transcriptionally induces Twist, which plays an important role in promoting migration, invasion, and anchorage-independent growth. Together with our previous observation that Twist transcriptionally induces AKT2 to mediate Twist-promoted oncogenic functions, we conclude that STAT3, Twist, and AKT2 form a functional signaling axis to regulate pivotal oncogenic properties of cancer cells.
  Weizhou Zhang , George Zhi Cheng , Jianli Gong , Ulrich Hermanto , Cong Susan Zong , Joseph Chan , Jin Quan Cheng and Lu- Hai Wang
  RACK1 is a 7-WD motif-containing protein with numerous downstream effectors regulating various cellular functions. Using a yeast two-hybrid screen, we identified dynein light chain 1 as a novel interacting partner of RACK1. Additionally, we demonstrated that RACK1 formed a complex with DLC1 and Bim, specifically BimEL, in the presence of apoptotic agents. Upon paclitaxel treatment, RACK1, DLC1, and CIS mediated the degradation of BimEL through the ElonginB/C-Cullin2-CIS ubiquitin-protein isopeptide ligase complex. We further showed that RACK1 conferred paclitaxel resistance to breast cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. Finally, we observed an inverse correlation between CIS and BimEL levels in both ovarian and breast cancer cell lines and specimens. Our study suggests a role of RACK1 in protecting cancer cells from apoptosis by regulating the degradation of BimEL, which together with CIS could play an important role of drug resistance in chemotherapy.
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