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Parathyroid hormone-related protein (PTHrP)-dependent modulation of gene expression signatures in cancer cells


PTHrP is encoded by PTHLH gene which can generate by alternative promoter usage and splicing mechanisms at least three mature peptides of 139, 141 and 173 amino acids with distinct carboxy terminus. PTHrP may undergo proteolytic processing into smaller bioactive forms, comprising an amino terminus peptide, which is the mediator of the “classical” PTH-like effect, as well as midregion and carboxy terminus peptides that act as multifaceted critical regulator of proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis via the reprogramming of gene expression in normal and neoplastic cells. Moreover, a nuclear/nucleolar localization signal sequence is present in the [87–107] domain allowing PTHrP nuclear import and “intracrine” effect additional to the autocrine/paracrine one. Within the large number of data available in the literature on PTHrP bioactivities, the goal of this chapter is to pick up selected studies that report the detection of molecular signatures of cancer cell exposure to PTHrP, either as full-length protein or discrete peptides, demonstrated by individual gene or whole genome expression profiling, briefly recapitulating the biological implications associated with the specific gene activation or silencing.