National Natural Science Foundation of China
National Basic Research Program of China
Tianjin Natural Scientific Foundation
ARTICLE ABSTRACTAbnormal lipid metabolism is a hallmark of tumorigenesis. Accumulating evidence demonstrates that fatty acid synthase (FAS, FASN) is a metabolic oncogene that supports the growth and survival of tumor cells and is highly expressed in many cancers. Here, we report that the oncoprotein, hepatitis B X-interacting protein (HBXIP, LAMTOR5) contributes to abnormal lipid metabolism. We show that high expression of HBXIP in 236 breast cancer patients was significantly associated with decreased overall survival and progression-free survival. Interestingly, the expression of HBXIP was positively related to that of FAS in clinical breast cancer tissues, and HBXIP overexpression in breast cancer cells resulted in FAS upregulation. Mechanistically, HBXIP upregulated SREBP-1c (SREBF1), which activates the transcription of FAS, by directly interacting with and coactivating nuclear receptor (NR) liver X receptors (LXR). Physiologically, LXRs are activated via a coactivator containing NR motif in a ligand-dependent manner. However, in breast cancer cells, HBXIP containing the corepressor/nuclear receptor motif with special flanking sequence could coactivate LXRs independent of ligand. Moreover, overexpressed SREBP-1c was able to activate the transcription of HBXIP, forming a positive-feedback loop. Functionally, HBXIP enhanced lipogenesis, resulting in the growth of breast cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. Thus, we conclude that the oncoprotein HBXIP contributes to the abnormal lipid metabolism in breast cancer through LXRs/SREBP-1c/FAS signaling, providing new insights into the mechanisms by which cancer cells reprogram lipid metabolism in their favor. Cancer Res; 76(16); 4696–707. ©2016 AACR.