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J Biol Chem. 1998 Jul 10;273(28):17573-8.

Disruption of vitamin D receptor-retinoid X receptor heterodimer formation following ras transformation of human keratinocytes.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec H3A 1A1, Canada.


A partial resistance to the growth inhibitory influence of 1, 25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 is apparent when immortalized keratinocytes are transformed by the ras oncogene. The vitamin D receptor (VDR) was isolated, analyzed, and found to be identical in normal, immortalized, and ras-transformed keratinocytes. Subsequently, nuclear extracts from immortalized and ras-transformed keratinocytes were analyzed in gel mobility shift assays utilizing labeled vitamin D response elements or thyroid hormone response elements. A specific protein.DNA complex that was shown to contain VDR using an anti-VDR antibody was identified in both types of extracts; however, the addition of an anti-retinoid X receptor (RXR) antibody identified RXR in the complex of both normal and immortalized keratinocyte cell extracts, but not in ras-transformed keratinocytes. Furthermore, transfection of ras-transformed keratinocytes with wild-type human RXRalpha rescued VDR.RXR and thyroid hormone receptor.RXR complexes as demonstrated by a supershift in the presence of the anti-RXR antibody. Both cell lines were found to express RXRalpha message in equal amounts. Western blot analysis revealed that RXRalpha protein from ras-transformed keratinocytes was indistinguishable from that from immortalized keratinocytes and from control cells. These results suggest a causal relationship between resistance to the growth inhibitory influences of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 and disruption of the VDR.RXR complex in malignant keratinocytes.

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