AATF is overexpressed in human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma and regulates STAT3/survivin signaling

OncoTargets and TherapyFu L, Jin Q, Dong Q, et al. | November 09, 2021


Findings demonstrate overexpressed apoptosis antagonizing transcription factor (AATF) in human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC), and AATF may be a potential treatment target in HNSCC.

  • The expression pattern as well as biological roles of AATF in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma tissues and cell lines were studied by using 119 cases of HNSCC samples.

  • By immunohistochemical staining, elevated AATF was found in HNSCC, and there was a correlation between high AATF level and higher stage.

  • HNSCC exhibited upregulated AATF expression, and high AATF expression correlated with poor patient survival.

  • Upregulation of the cell growth and colony formation ability due to ectopic AATF expression was observed in cell lines, while AATF siRNA reduced the cell proliferation rate as well as colony numbers.

  • Cisplatin resistance was promoted and apoptosis was decreased by AATF likely via regulation of STAT3/survivin signaling.

  • Reduction of STAT3 signaling was brought about by AATF knockdown, as indicated in RNA-sequencing and Gene Set Enrichment Analysis.

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