A role for the clock period circadian regulator 2 gene in regulating the clock gene network in human oral squamous cell carcinoma cells
- Yiran Ao
- Qin Zhao
- Kai Yang
- Gang Zheng
- Xiaoqing Lv
- Xiaoli Su
Published online on: January 19, 2018
Copyright: © Ao et al.
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution License.
Clock genes are the core of the circadian rhythms in the human body and are important in regulating normal physiological functions. To date, research has indicated that the clock gene, period circadian clock 2 (PER2), is downregulated in numerous types of cancer, and that it is associated with cancer occurrence and progression via the regulation of various downstream cell cycle genes. However, it remains unclear whether the decreased expression of PER2 influences the expression of other clock genes in cancer cells. In the present study, short hairpin RNA interference was used to knockdown PER2 effectively in human oral squamous cell carcinoma SCC15 cells. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction was used to assess the mRNA expression levels of various clock genes and revealed that, following the knockdown of PER2 in SCC15 cells, the mRNA expression levels of PER3, brain and muscle ARNT‑like 1, deleted in esophageal cancer (DEC)1, DEC2, cryptochrome circadian clock (CRY)2, timeless circadian clock, retinoic acid receptor‑related orphan receptor‑alpha and neuronal PAS domain protein 2 were significantly downregulated, while the mRNA expression levels of PER1 and nuclear receptor subfamily 1 group D member 1 were significantly upregulated. In addition, flow cytometric analysis demonstrated that proliferation was enhanced and apoptosis was reduced following PER2 knockdown in SCC15 cells (P<0.05). To the best of our knowledge, the present study is the first to report that PER2 is important for the regulation of other clock genes of the clock gene network in cancer cells. This is of great significance in elucidating the molecular function and tumor suppression mechanism of PER2.