Human Beta Defensins and Cancer: Contradictions and Common Ground

Human Beta Defensins and Cancer: Contradictions and Common Ground Santosh K. Ghosh1*, Thomas S. McCormick1,2 and Aaron Weinberg1* 1Biological Sciences, School of Dental Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH, United States 2Dermatology, School of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH, United States Human beta-defensins (hBDs, −1, 2, 3) are a family of epithelial cell derived antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) that protect mucosal membranes from microbial challenges. In addition to their antimicrobial activities, they possess other functions; e.g., cell activation, proliferation, regulation of cytokine/chemokine production, migration, differentiation, angiogenesis, and wound healing processes. It has also become apparent that defensin levels change with the development of neoplasia. However, inconsistent observations published by various laboratories make it difficult to reach a consensus as to the direction of the dysregulation and role the hBDs may play in various cancers. This is particularly evident in studies focusing on oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). By segregating each hBD by cancer type, interrogating methodologies, and scrutinizing the subject cohorts used in the studies, we have endeavored to identify the “take home message” for each one of the three hBDs. We discovered that (1) consensus-driven findings indicate that hBD-1 and−2 are down- while hBD-3 is up-regulated in OSCC; (2) hBD dysregulatio...
Source: Frontiers in Oncology - Category: Cancer & Oncology Source Type: research

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