Beta-catenin (CTNNB1) is a dual function molecule that acts as a key component of the cadherin complex and WNT signaling pathway. It has a crucial role in embryogenesis, tumorigenesis, angiogenesis and progression of metastasis. Recently, it has been suggested that the CTNNB1 complex is a major regulator of development of the mouse oviduct and uterus. However, little is known about the CTNNB1 gene in chickens. Therefore, in this study, we focused on the CTNNB1 gene in the chicken reproductive tract and hormonal control of its expression in the chicken oviduct. CTNNB1 was localized specifically to the luminal and glandular epithelium of the four segments of chicken oviduct and DES (diethylstilbestrol, a synthetic non-steroidal estrogen) increased its expression primarily in LE of the magnum. In addition, CTNNB1 mRNA and protein were expressed abundantly in glandular epithelium of endometrioid-type ovarian carcinoma, but not in normal ovaries. Moreover, CTNNB1 expression was post-transcriptionally regulated via its 3'-UTR by binding with target miRNAs including miR-217, miR-1467, miR-1623 and miR-1697. Collectively, these results indicate that CTNNB1 is a novel gene regulated by estrogen in epithelial cells of the chicken oviduct and that it is also abundantly expressed in epithelial cells of endometrioid-type ovarian carcinoma suggesting that it could be used as a marker for diagnosis of ovarian cancer in laying hens and women.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology