Laboratory of Experimental Carcinogenesis, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.
The human DLC-1 (deleted in liver cancer 1) gene was cloned from a primary human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and mapped to the chromosome 8p21-22 region frequently deleted in common human cancers and suspected to harbor tumor suppressor genes. DLC-1 was found to be deleted or downregulated in a significant number of HCCs. We expanded our investigations to other cancers with recurrent deletions of 8p22, and in this study examined alterations of DLC-1 in primary human breast tumors, human breast, colon, and prostate tumor cell lines. Genomic deletion of DLC-1 was observed in 40% of primary breast tumors, whereas reduced or undetectable levels of DLC-1 mRNA were seen in 70% of breast, 70% of colon, and 50% of prostate tumor cell lines To see whether DLC-1 expression affects cell growth and tumorigenicity, two breast carcinoma cell lines lacking the expression of endogenous gene were transfected with the DLC-1 cDNA. In both cell lines, DLC-1 transfection caused significant growth inhibition and reduction of colony formation. Furthermore, introduction of the DLC-1 cDNA abolished the in vivo tumorigenicity in nude mice, suggesting that the DLC-1 gene plays a role in breast cancer by acting as a bona fide tumor suppressor gene.