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Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences


Liver receptor homolog 1 (LRH1), directs the development and differentiation of embryonic pancreas, and is overexpressed in pancreatic cancer (PC). We hypothesized that LRH1 promotes PC growth. Cell proliferation and tumorigenicity in nude mice were compared between empty vector-transfected (control) and stable LRH1-overexpressed PC cell lines. The subsequent tumor burden, vasculature development, and histologic features were evaluated. LRH1 overexpression enhanced the expression of downstream target genes (cyclin D1/E1) and stimulated cell proliferation in PC cell lines. LRH1 upregulated cyclin E1 truncated T1/T2 isoforms expression which may occur through ERα–calpain1 signaling. Compared with the control, LRH1 overexpressing stable cells generated tumors with increased weight, proliferation index and enhanced angiogenesis. Cyclin D1/E1 and calpain1 were overexpressed in human PC tumors compared to adjacent normal pancreas. These observations demonstrate that LRH1 promotes PC growth and angiogenesis, suggesting that LRH1 is a driving factor in tumorigenesis and may serve as a potential therapeutic target.

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Creative Commons License
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