Sensitivity to Growth Suppression by 1alpha,25-dihydroxyvitamin D(3) Among MCF-7 Clones Correlates With Vitamin D Receptor Protein Induction

J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2002 Jun;81(2):123-33. doi: 10.1016/s0960-0760(02)00057-2.


The antiproliferative effect of 1alpha,25-dihydroxyvitamin D(3) (1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3)) has been studied for a decade in diverse model systems, but the signalling pathways linking 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) to cell cycle arrest remains unclear. In our attempt to establish a model system which would allow further identification of important players in the process of the 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) imposed cell cycle arrest, we have isolated derivatives of the human breast cancer cell line MCF-7 and chosen two nearly 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) resistant and two hypersensitive sub-clones. Investigation of cell cycle proteins regulated by 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) in these clones indicates that activation of one component/pathway is responsible for the linkage between 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) and growth arrest. Protein levels of the Vitamin D receptor (VDR) were elevated in sensitive cells upon 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) treatment, whereas resistant clones were unable to induce VDR upon 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) treatment. Our data show that VDR protein levels and the ability of a cell to induce VDR upon 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) treatment correlate with the antiproliferative effects of 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3), and suggest that the level of VDR in cancer cells might serve as a prognostic marker for treatment of cancer with 1alpha,25(OH)(2)D(3) analogues.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Calcitriol / pharmacology*
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / metabolism
  • Cell Division / drug effects*
  • Clone Cells*
  • DNA Primers
  • Humans
  • Ligands
  • Receptors, Calcitriol / biosynthesis*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • DNA Primers
  • Ligands
  • Receptors, Calcitriol
  • Calcitriol