Novel role of BRCA1 interacting C-terminal helicase 1 (BRIP1) in breast tumour cell invasion

Balsam Rizeq, Saïd Sif, Gheyath K. Nasrallah, Allal Ouhtit*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Breast cancer (BC) is the most common malignancy and the leading cause of death in women worldwide. Only 5%-10% of mutations in BRCA genes are associated with familial breast tumours in Eastern countries, suggesting the contribution of other genes. Using a microarray gene expression profiling study of BC, we have recently identified BRIP1 (fivefold up-regulation) as a potential gene associated with BC progression in the Omani population. Although BRIP1 regulates DNA repair and cell proliferation, the precise role of BRIP1 in BC cell invasion/metastasis has not been explored yet; this prompted us to test the hypothesis that BRIP1 promotes BC cell proliferation and invasion. Using a combination of cellular and molecular approaches, our results revealed differential overexpression of BRIP1 in different BC cell lines. Functional assays validated further the physiological relevance of BRIP1 in tumour malignancy, and siRNA-mediated BRIP1 knockdown significantly reduced BC cell motility by targeting key motility-associated genes. Moreover, down-regulation of BRIP1 expression significantly attenuated cell proliferation via cell cycle arrest. Our study is the first to show the novel function of BRIP1 in promoting BC cell invasion by regulating expression of various downstream target genes. Furthermore, these findings provide us with a unique opportunity to identify BRIP1-induced pro-invasive genes that could serve as biomarkers and/or targets to guide the design of appropriate BC targeted therapies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11477-11488
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2020


  • breast cancer
  • BRIP1
  • invasion
  • metastasis
  • proliferation
  • targeted therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Cell Biology


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