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Suppression of human ovarian carcinoma metastasis by the metastasis‐suppressor gene, BRMS1
  1. S. Zhang,
  2. Q. D. Lin and
  3. W. Di
  1. Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Ren Ji Hospital, Shanghai Second Medical University, Shanghai, China
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Dr Qi-De Lin, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Ren Ji Hospital, Shanghai Second Medical University, Shanghai 200001, China. Email: linqide99{at}


Metastasis-suppressor genes, by definition, suppress metastasis without affecting tumorigenicity and, hence, present attractive targets as prognostic or therapeutic markers. BRMS1 (breast cancer metastasis suppressor) has recently been identified as a metastasis-suppressor gene for human breast cancer and melanoma. Expression of BRMS1 messenger RNA (mRNA) in multitissue including normal prostate, ovarian, testis, and colon has been detected by northern blot analysis. We hypothesize that the role of BRMS1 in tumor progression may not be limited to breast cancer and melanoma. We previously found that BRMS1 mRNA levels in primary ovarian epithelial carcinomas were significantly lower than that in normal ovarian and benign tumors (P < 0.05), and statistical analysis of BRMS1 mRNA levels revealed that BRMS1 mRNA levels were significantly higher in early tumor stages (I, II) compared with advanced tumor stages (III, IV) in which lymph node or distant metastases were present (P < 0.01). Our data showed that reduced BRMS1 mRNA seems to influence ovarian carcinoma metastatic ability. Therefore, we transfected BRMS1 plasmid into highly malignant ovarian carcinoma cell line, HO-8910PM, and examined cell biologic behaviors including proliferation, adhesion, invasion, and metastasis in vitro and in vivo. BRMS1 expression did not alter the proliferation of HO-8910PM cells in vitro and primary tumor formation in vivo. But, BRMS1 expression significantly suppressed the cell adhesion to extracellular matrix components and in vitro cell invasion in BRMS1-transfected HO-8910PM cells compared to parental HO-8910PM and vector-only transfectants (HO-8910PM-vect). Furthermore, motility of BRMS1 transfectants was inhibited. lung colony formation of intravenously injected BRMS1 transfectants in nude mice was significantly reduced. Also, BRMS1 transfectants form significantly less metastatic to organs of peritoneal cavity in orthotopically implanted ovarian tumor nude models. We further discovered that BRMS1 expression did downregulate expression of an actin-bundling protein associated with cell motility –fascin, which perhaps is the mechanism underlying BRMS1 suppression of metastasis. These data suggested that in addition to its already described role in breast cancer and melanoma, BRMS1 functions as a metastasis-suppressor gene in ovarian carcinoma by modifying several metastatic-associated phenotypes, offering a new target for therapeutic intervention.

  • BRMS1 gene
  • neoplasm metastasis
  • ovarian carcinoma
  • suppression

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