Effects of adiponectin on breast cancer cell growth and signaling

Michael E Grossmann, K. J. Nkhata, N. K. Mizuno, A. Ray, Margot P Cleary

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

165 Scopus citations


Obesity is a risk factor for postmenopausal breast cancer. Adiponectin/Acrp30 is lower in obese individuals and may be negatively regulating breast cancer growth. Here we determined that five breast cancer cell lines, MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-361, MCF-7, T47D, and SK-BR-3, expressed one or both of the Acrp30 receptors. In addition, we found that the addition of Acrp30 to MCF-7, T47D, and SK-BR-3 cell lines inhibited growth. Oestrogen receptor (ER) positive MCF-7 and T47D cells were inhibited at lower Acrp30 concentrations than ER-negative SK-BR-3 cells. Growth inhibition may be related to apoptosis since PARP cleavage was increased by Acrp30 in the ER-positive cell lines. To investigate the role of ER in the response of breast cancer cells to Acrp30, we established the MDA-ERα7 cell line by insertion of ER-α into ER-α-negative MDA-MB-231 cells. This line readily formed tumours in athymic mice and was responsive to oestradiol in vivo. In vitro, MDA-ERα7 cells were growth inhibited by globular Acrp30 while the parental cells were not. This inhibition appeared to be due to blockage of JNK2 signalling. These results provide information on how obesity may influence breast cancer cell proliferation and establish a new model to examine interactions between ER and Acrp30.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)370-379
Number of pages10
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 29 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank The Breast Cancer Research Foundation and the Hormel Foundation for their financial support.


  • Adiponectin
  • Apoptosis
  • Breast cancer
  • Oestrogen receptor
  • Proliferation
  • Signalling


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