MCM5 as a target of BET inhibitors in thyroid cancer cells

Catia Mio, Elisa Lavarone, Ketty Conzatti, Federica Baldan, Barbara Toffoletto, Cinzia Puppin, Sebastiano Filetti, Cosimo Durante, Diego Russo, Arturo Orlacchio, Antonio Di Cristofano, Carla Di Loreto, Giuseppe Damante

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC)is an extremely aggressive thyroid cancer subtype, refractory to the current medical treatment.Among various epigenetic anticancer drugs, bromodomain and extra-terminal inhibitors (BETis)are considered to be an appealing novel class of compounds.BETi target the bromodomain and extra-terminal of BET proteins that act as regulators of gene transcription, interacting with histone acetyl groups.The goal of this study is to delineate which pathway underlies the biological effects derived from BET inhibition, in order to find new potential therapeutic targets in ATC.We investigated the effects of BET inhibition on two human anaplastic thyroid cancer-derived cell lines (FRO and SW1736).The treatment with two BETis, JQ1 and I-BET762, decreased cell viability, reduced cell cycle S-phase, and determined cell death.In order to find BETi effectors, FRO and SW1736 were subjected to a global transcriptome analysis after JQ1 treatment.A significant portion of deregulated genes belongs to cell cycle regulators.Among them, MCM5 was decreased at both mRNA and protein levels in both tested cell lines.Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP)experiments indicate that MCM5 is directly bound by the BET protein BRD4.MCM5 silencing reduced cell proliferation, thus underlining its involvement in the block of proliferation induced by BETis.Furthermore, MCM5 immunohistochemical evaluation in human thyroid tumor tissues demonstrated its overexpression in several papillary thyroid carcinomas and in all ATCs.MCM5 was also overexpressed in a murine model of ATC, and JQ1 treatment reduced Mcm5 mRNA expression in two murine ATC cell lines.Thus, MCM5 could represent a new target in the therapeutic approach against ATC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-347
Number of pages13
JournalEndocrine-Related Cancer
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2016


  • BET
  • Epigenetics
  • MCM5
  • RNA-seq

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Oncology
  • Endocrinology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'MCM5 as a target of BET inhibitors in thyroid cancer cells'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this