Tumor Biology

, Volume 33, Issue 6, pp 2307–2315 | Cite as

Anti-apoptotic effect of claudin-1 on TNF-α-induced apoptosis in human breast cancer MCF-7 cells

  • Yang Liu
  • Liang Wang
  • Xu-Yong Lin
  • Jian Wang
  • Juan-Han Yu
  • Yuan Miao
  • En-Hua WangEmail author
Research Article


Accumulating evidence reveals that aberrant expression of claudins manifests in various tumors; however, their biological functions are poorly understood. Here, we report on the elevated expression of claudin-1 in human breast cancer MCF-7 cells under tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α treatment. Interestingly, the increased expression of claudin-1 contributes to an anti-apoptotic role in TNF-α-induced apoptosis. In line with this, upon TNF-α stimulus, downregulation of claudin-1 by siRNA knockdown results in a significant increase in cleavage of caspase-8 and poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase, a decrease of cyclinD1 expression, and DNA fragmentation. Consistently, TdT-mediated dUTP nick end labeling assay also shows that loss of claudin-1 increases the susceptibility of MCF-7 cells to TNF-α-induced apoptosis. However, there is no obvious effect on the expression of Bax and p53 after the treatment aforementioned. In addition, TNF-α increases the amount of claudin-1 and the cytoplasmic accumulation of β-catenin, while claudin-1 siRNA increases the amount of β-catenin in the cell membrane as well as the amount of E-cadherin in the cytoplasm. In conclusion, our data reveal a novel role of claudin-1 in regulating apoptosis in MCF-7 cells.


Claudin-1 Tumor necrosis factor-α MCF-7 Poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase 


Conflicts of interest



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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yang Liu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Liang Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xu-Yong Lin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jian Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Juan-Han Yu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yuan Miao
    • 1
    • 2
  • En-Hua Wang
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Pathology, the First Affiliated Hospital and College of Basic Medical SciencesChina Medical UniversityShenyangChina
  2. 2.Institute of Pathology and PathophysiologyChina Medical UniversityShenyangChina

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