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Oncogene. 2008 Aug 14;27(35):4841-53. doi: 10.1038/onc.2008.119. Epub 2008 Apr 21.

Matrix metalloproteinase-10 is a critical effector of protein kinase Ciota-Par6alpha-mediated lung cancer.

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Department of Cancer Biology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Jacksonville, FL 32224, USA.


Protein kinase Ciota (PKCiota) drives transformed growth of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells through the Rho family GTPase Rac1. We show here that PKCiota activates Rac1 in NSCLC cells by formation of a PKCiota-Par6alpha complex that drives anchorage-independent growth and invasion through activation of matrix metalloproteinase-10 (MMP-10) expression. RNAi-mediated knockdown of PKCiota, Par6alpha or Rac1 expression inhibits NSCLC transformation and MMP-10 expression in vitro. Expression of wild-type Par6alpha in Par6alpha-deficient cells restores transformation and MMP-10 expression, whereas expression of Par6alpha mutants that either cannot bind PKCiota (Par6alpha-K19A) or couple to Rac1 (Par6alpha-DeltaCRIB) do not. Knockdown of MMP-10 expression blocks anchorage-independent growth and invasion of NSCLC cells and addition of catalytically active MMP-10 to PKCiota- or Par6alpha-deficient cells restores anchorage-independent growth and invasion. Dominant-negative PKCiota inhibits tumorigenicity and MMP-10 expression in subcutaneous NSCLC tumors. MMP-10 and PKCiota are coordinately overexpressed in primary NSCLC tumors, and tumor MMP-10 expression predicts poor survival in NSCLC patients. Our data define a PKCiota-Par6alpha-Rac1 signaling axis that drives anchorage-independent growth and invasion of NSCLC cells through induction of MMP-10 expression.

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