PPARγ signaling exacerbates mammary gland tumor development

Enrique Saez, John Rosenfeld, Antonia Livolsi, Peter Olson, Eleuterio Lombardo, Michael Nelson, Ester Banayo, Robert D. Cardiff, Juan Carlos Izpisua-Belmonte, Ronald M. Evans*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

170 Scopus citations


Breast cancer cell lines that express the nuclear peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) can be prompted to undergo growth arrest and differentiation when treated with synthetic PPARγ ligands. To evaluate the therapeutic potential of increased PPARγ signaling in vivo, we generated transgenic mice that express a constitutively active form of PPARγ in mammary gland. These mice are indistinguishable from their wild-type littermates. However, when bred to a transgenic strain prone to mammary gland cancer, bigenic animals develop tumors with greatly accelerated kinetics. Surprisingly, in spite of their more malignant nature, bigenic tumors are more secretory and differentiated. The molecular basis of this tumor-promoting effect may be an increase in Wnt signaling, as ligand activation of PPARγ potentiates Wnt function in an in vivo model of this pathway. These results suggest that once an initiating event has taken place, increased PPARγ signaling serves as a tumor promoter in the mammary gland.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)528-540
Number of pages13
JournalGenes and Development
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Mammary tumors
  • Nuclear receptor
  • PPARγ
  • Wnt signaling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'PPARγ signaling exacerbates mammary gland tumor development'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this