The EGR1 transactivator is overexpressed in prostate cancer, and its expression pattern suggests that EGR1 could potentially regulate a number of steps involved in initiation and progression of prostate cancer, such as mitogenesis, invasiveness, angiogenesis, and metastasis. To identify potential EGR1 target genes in an unbiased manner, we have utilized adenovirus-mediated expression of EGR1 in a prostate cancer cell line to identify specific genes thai are induced by EGR1. Using oligonucleotide arrays, a number of EGR1-regulated genes were identified and their regulation was confirmed by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis. One of the largest gene classes identified in this screen includes several neuroendocrine-associated genes (neuron-specific enolase, neurogranin), suggesting that EGR1 overexpression may contribute to the neuroendocrine differentiation that often accompanies prostate cancer progression. This screen also identified several growth factors such as insulin-like growth factor-II, platelet-derived growth factor-A, and transforming growth factor-β, which have previously been implicated in enhancing tumor progression. The insulin-like growth factor-II gene lies within the 11p15.5 chromosomal locus, which contains a number of other imprinted genes, and EGR1 expression was found to induce at least two other genes in this locus (IPL, p57KIP2). Based on our results, coupling adenoviral overexpression with microarray and quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analyses could be a versatile strategy for identifying target genes of transactivators.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)38524-38531
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number49
StatePublished - Dec 8 2000


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