Abstract 18705: BRCA2 is a Novel Regulator of Endothelial Cell Function and Apoptosis
Background: Germ-line mutations in the tumor suppressor gene BRCA2 (breast cancer 2, early onset) predispose carriers not only to breast cancer, but also to other cancers. BRCA2 plays crucial role in the genome integrity maintenance and is central to DNA-damage repair. BRCA2-associated DNA-damage responses are not only specific to cancer syndromes but also represent a common pathophysiological basis for diverse cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). These observations led us to hypothesize that BRCA2 is an essential regulator of endothelial function and apoptosis following genotoxic stress.
Methods: To elucidate the role of BRCA2 in endothelial cells, we silenced BRCA2 in the human umbilical vein endothelial cells (ECs) and measured the indices of EC function; tube formation and proliferation, DNA-damage/repair and apoptosis by qPCR, immunoblotting and immunofluorescence following doxorubicin (Dox) treatment.
Results: We confirmed the basal expression and successful silencing of BRCA2 in ECs at transcript and protein levels by qPCR and immunoblotting, respectively. Genotoxic stress in the form of Dox exacerbated DNA-damage in BRCA2-silenced ECs as evident by increased expression and activation of DNA double-stranded breaks (DSBs) marker H2A.X and reduced RAD51-foci formation, an essential regulator of DSB repair. Increased DSBs were associated with significantly increased expression and activation of p53, and increased expression of p53-upregulated modulator of apoptosis PUMA. Elevated levels of DNA-damage and p53 were further associated with significantly increased Dox-induced apoptosis in BRCA2-silenced ECs as measured by immunoblotting for cleaved-caspase-3 and TUNEL-staining.Key indices of endothelial function, including tube formation and proliferation, were significantly reduced following Dox-treatment in BRCA2-deficient ECs, which was accompanied with significantly increased expression of cell cycle inhibitor, p21 at transcript and protein levels.
Conclusion: Our data for the first time, show an entirely novel role of BRCA2 as a regulator of endothelium, and provide important clues regarding a potential susceptibility of BRCA2 mutation carriers to anthracycline-induced CVDs, a cornerstone of chemotherapy for cancer.
Author Disclosures: P.N. Matkar: None. W.J. Cao: None. M. Al-Omran: None. S. Verma: None. H. Leong-Poi: None. K.K. Singh: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.