Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC) is almost universally fatal. Elevated keratin-8 (KRT8) protein expression is an established diagnostic cancer biomarker in several epithelial cancers (but not ATC). Several keratins, including KRT8, have been suggested to have a role in cell biology beyond that of structural cytoskeletal proteins. Here, we provide evidence that KRT8 plays a direct role in the growth of ATCs. Genomic and transcriptomic analysis of >5000 patients demonstrates that KRT8 mutation and copy number amplification are frequently evident in epithelial-derived cancers. Carcinomas arising from diverse tissues exhibit KRT8 mRNA and protein overexpression when compared to normal tissue levels. Similarly, in a panel of patient-derived ATC cell lines and patient tumors, KRT8 expression shows a similar pattern. sh-RNA-mediated KRT8 knockdown in these cell lines increases apoptosis, whereas forced overexpression of KRT8 confers resistance to apoptosis under peroxide-induced cell stress conditions. We further show that KRT8 protein binds to annexin A2, a protein known to mediate apoptosis as well as the redox pathway.
- Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Computer Science Applications
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry