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Head and neck squamous carcinoma (HNSCC) tumors carry dismal long-term prognosis and the role of tumor initiating cells (TICs) in this cancer is unclear. We investigated in HNSCC xenografts whether specific tumor subpopulations contributed to tumor growth. We used a CFSE-based label retentions assay, CD49f (α6-integrin) surface levels and aldehyde(More)
The stress-activated protein kinase (SAPK) p38 can induce apoptosis, and its inhibition facilitates mammary tumorigenesis. We found that during mammary acinar morphogenesis in MCF-10A cells grown in three-dimensional culture, detachment of luminal cells from the basement membrane stimulated mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) kinases 3 and 6 (MKK3/6)(More)
Adhesion to the extracellular matrix (ECM) is critical for epithelial tissue homeostasis and function. ECM detachment induces metabolic stress and programmed cell death via anoikis. ECM-detached mammary epithelial cells are able to rapidly activate autophagy allowing for survival and an opportunity for re-attachment. However, the mechanisms controlling(More)
Mammary epithelial cells (MECs) detached from the extracellular matrix (ECM) produce deleterious reactive oxygen species (ROS) and induce autophagy to survive. The coordination of such opposing responses likely dictates whether epithelial cells survive ECM detachment or undergo anoikis. Here, we demonstrate that the endoplasmic reticulum kinase PERK(More)
Systemic minimal residual disease after primary tumor treatment can remain asymptomatic for decades. This is thought to be due to the presence of dormant disseminated tumor cells (DTC) or micrometastases in different organs. DTCs lodged in brain, lungs, livers, and/or bone are a major clinical problem because they are the founders of metastasis, which(More)
Emerging evidence points to aberrant regulation of translation as a driver of cell transformation in cancer. Given the direct control of translation by tRNA modifications, tRNA modifying enzymes may function as regulators of cancer progression. Here, we show that a tRNA methyltransferase 9-like (hTRM9L/ KIAA1456) mRNA is down-regulated in breast, bladder,(More)
Xbp1, a key mediator of the unfolded protein response (UPR), is activated by IRE1α-mediated splicing, which results in a frameshift to encode a protein with transcriptional activity. However, the direct function of Xbp1 in epithelial cells during mammary gland development is unknown. Here we report that the loss of Xbp1 in the mammary epithelium through(More)
The postnatal mammary gland develops extensively through cycles of proliferation, branching, involution and remodeling. We review recent advances made in the field of stress signaling pathways and its roles in mammary gland organogenesis, how they contribute to normal organ specification and homeostasis and how its subversion by oncogenes leads to cancer.(More)
Systemic minimal residual disease after primary tumor treatment can remain asymptomatic for decades. This is thought to be due to the presence of dormant disseminated tumor cells (DTC) or micrometastases in different organs. DTCs lodged in brain, lungs, livers, and/or bone are a major clinical problem because they are the founders of metastasis, which(More)
Breast cancers can recur after removal of the primary tumor and treatment to eliminate remaining tumor cells. Recurrence may occur after long periods of time during which there are no clinical symptoms. Tumor cell dormancy may explain these prolonged periods of asymptomatic residual disease and treatment resistance. We generated a dormancy gene signature(More)