Significance of HDAC6 regulation via estrogen signaling for cell motility and prognosis in estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer

Shigehira Saji, Masayo Kawakami, Shin Ichi Hayashi, Nobuyuki Yoshida, Makiko Hirose, Shin Ichiro Horiguchi, Akihiro Itoh, Nobuaki Funata, Stuart L. Schreiber, Minoru Yoshida, Masakazu Toi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Citations (Scopus)


Histone deacetylase (HDAC) 6 is a subtype of the HDAC family; it deacetylates α-tubulin and increases cell motility. Here, we investigate the impact of an alteration of HDAC6 expression in estrogen receptor α (ER)-positive breast cancer MCF-7 cells, as we identified that HDAC6 is a novel estrogen-regulated gene. MCF-7 treated with estradiol showed increased expression of HDAC6 mRNA and protein and a four-fold increase in cell motility in a migration assay. Cell motility was increased to the same degree by stably transfecting the HDAC6 expression vector into MCF-7 cells. In both cases, the cells changed in appearance from their original round shape to an axon-extended shape, like a neuronal cell. This HDAC6 accumulation caused the deacetylation of a-tubulin. Either the selective estrogen receptor modulator tamoxifen (TAM) or the pure antiestrogen ICI 182,780 prevented estradiol-induced HDAC6 accumulation and deacetylation of α-tubulin, leading to reduced cell motility. Tubacin, an inhibitory molecule that binds to the tubulin deacetylation domain of HDAC6, also prevented estradiol-stimulated cell migration. Finally, we evaluated HDAC6 protein expression in 139 consecutively archived human breast cancer tissues by immunohistochemical staining. The prognostic analyses for these patients revealed no significant differences based on HDAC6 expression. However, subset analysis of ER-positive patients who received adjuvant treatment with TAM (n = 67) showed a statistically significant difference in relapse-free survival and overall survival in favor of the HDAC6-positive group (P < 0.02 and P < 0.05, respectively). HDAC6 expression was an independent prognostic indicator by multivariate analysis (odds ratio = 2.82, P = 0.047). These results indicate the biological significance of HDAC6 regulation via estrogen signaling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4531-4539
Number of pages9
Issue number28
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Jun 30


  • Breast cancer
  • Estrogen receptor
  • HDAC6
  • Tamoxifen

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


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