The LGI1 gene was suggested to function as tumor suppressor for its ability to reduce malignant features of glioblastoma cells. In support to this proposal were the findings that overexpression of LGI1 in neuroblastoma cells inhibited proliferation and induced apoptosis. In this study we performed stable LGI1 expression in HeLa cells to examine whether the noxious effect of LGI1 might be extended to cancer cells of diverse origin. HeLa cell clones stably expressing LGI1 exhibited a significant impairment of proliferation and a consistent increase of cell death when compared with control cells lacking expression of LGI1. Expression of LGI1 increased the activity of apoptosis effectors caspase-3/7; furthermore it downregulated the antiapoptotic BCL2 gene and upregulated the proapoptotic BAX gene expression, suggesting that the cause of HeLa cells death might be an increased susceptibility to apoptosis induced by LGI1. The results suggested that LGI1 is capable to restrain growth and survival of adenocarcinoma cells such as HeLa.
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