The regulatory mechanisms underlying the overexpression of urokinase- type plasminogen activator (uPA) and its receptor (uPAR) in highly invasive breast carcinomas remain poorly understood. In this study, we have simultaneously determined the level of uPAR and the activity of the transcription factor Sp1 in 14 breast carcinomas and 5 benign lesions. We found that uPAR levels and Sp1-binding activity are coordinately elevated in malignant tumors (r, 0.94; P <0.001). On the contrary, undetectable or only barely detectable levels of uPAR and Sp1 activity were found in benign breast lesions. Finally, the engagement of uPAR by catalytically inactive uPA in the MDA-MB-231 breast carcinoma cell line results in a rapid up-regulation of Sp1-binding activity followed by an increase of uPAR protein. These results, taken together, suggest the existence of a uPA-dependent positive regulatory loop that may progressively enhance malignant breast cell invasiveness.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 15 2000|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research