Image_3_IRF6 Is Directly Regulated by ZEB1 and ELF3, and Predicts a Favorable Prognosis in Gastric Cancer.TIF

Interferon regulatory factor 6 (IRF6) acts as a tumor suppressor and controls cell differentiation in ectodermal and craniofacial tissues by regulating expression of target genes. However, its function in gastric cancer (GC) remains unknown to date. In this study, we found that the IRF6 expression was significantly downregulated in GC. And the decreased expression of IRF6 was clinically correlated with poor prognosis of GC. Moreover, loss-of-function and gain-of-function studies showed that IRF6 was negatively regulated by ZEB1 but positively regulated by ELF3. Additionally, transcription factor ZEB1 and ELF3 could directly bind on IRF6 promoter, which suggested that transcription factor IRF6 is transcriptionally regulated by ZEB1 and ELF3. Nevertheless, we found that IRF6 expression was negatively related to its promoter methylation in TCGA stomach cancer cohorts. The downregulation of IRF6 in GC might be due to the overexpression of ZEB1 and the DNA methylation of IRF6 promoter.