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Front Oncol


Prostate cancer (PCa) is a major serious malignant tumor and is commonly diagnosed in older men. Identification of novel cancer-related genes in PCa is important for understanding its tumorigenesis mechanism and developing new therapies against PCa. Here, we used RNA sequencing to identify the specific genes, which are upregulated in PCa cell lines and tissues. The cell division cycle associated protein (CDCA) family, which plays a critical role in cell division and proliferation, is upregulated in the PCa cell lines of our RNA-Sequencing data. Moreover, we found that CDCA2 is overexpressed, and its protein level positively correlates with its histological grade, clinical stage, and Gleason Score. CDCA2 was further found to be upregulated and correlated with poor prognosis and patient survival in multiple cancer types in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) dataset. The functional study suggests that inhibition of CDCA2 will lead to apoptosis and lower proliferation in vitro. Silencing of CDCA2 also repressed tumor growth in vivo. Loss of CDCA2 affects several oncogenic pathways, including MAPK signaling. In addition, we further demonstrated that CDCA2 was induced in hypoxia and directly regulated by the HIF-1α/Smad3 complex. Thus, our data indicate that CDCA2 could act as an oncogene and is regulated by hypoxia and the HIF-1αpathway. CDCA2 may be a useful prognostic biomarker and potential therapeutic target for PCa.

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