BUB1B promotes extrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma progression via JNK/c-Jun pathways

Cell Death Dis. 2021 Jan 11;12(1):63. doi: 10.1038/s41419-020-03234-x.


Currently, the controversy regarding the expression profile and function of BUB1B in different malignancies still exist. In this project, we aimed to explore the role and molecular mechanism of BUB1B in the progression of extrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ECC). The expression levels of BUB1B in human ECC were evaluated by immunohistochemistry, western blot, and real-time PCR. The role and mechanism of BUB1B in CCA cell proliferation and invasion were investigated in both in vitro and in vivo functional studies. To indicate the clinical significance, a tissue microarray was performed on 113 ECC patients, followed by univariate and multivariate analyses. The expression of BUB1B was increased in both human CCA tissues and CCA cells. Results from loss-of-function and gain-of-function experiments suggested that the inhibition of BUB1B decreased the proliferation and invasiveness of CCA cells in vitro and in vivo, while overexpression of BUB1B achieved the opposite effect. Furthermore, the activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase-c-Jun (JNK)-c-Jun pathway was regulated by BUB1B. BUB1B regulated the proliferation and invasiveness of CAA cells in a JNK-c-Jun-dependent manner. Clinically, ECC patients with BUB1B high expression had worse overall survival and recurrence-free survival than those with BUB1B low expression. Multivariate analysis identified that BUB1B was an independent predictor for postoperative recurrence and overall survival of ECC patients. In conclusion, BUB1B promoted ECC progression via JNK/c-Jun pathways. These findings suggested that BUB1B could be a potential therapeutic target and a biomarker for predicting prognosis for ECC patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bile Duct Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / metabolism*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cholangiocarcinoma / genetics*
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • MAP Kinase Signaling System
  • Prognosis
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*


  • BUB1B protein, human
  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases