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J Cell Physiol. 2009 Jan;218(1):146-56. doi: 10.1002/jcp.21578.

Discoidin domain receptor 1 activation suppresses alpha2beta1 integrin-dependent cell spreading through inhibition of Cdc42 activity.

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Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, National Cheng-Kung University Medical College, Tainan, Taiwan, Republic of China.


Upregulation and overexpression of discoidin domain receptor 1 (DDR1) have been implied in the regulation of kidney development and progression of cancers. Our previous studies with Mardin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells showed that overexpression of DDR1 inhibited cell spreading, whereas dominant negative DDR1 promoted cell spreading on collagen-coated dish. Cell spreading is an important characteristic for cell differentiation and survival. However, little is known about the molecular mechanisms underlying the role of DDR1 in cell spreading. We have found here a novel signaling pathway of DDR1 consisting of Cdc42 that regulates the assembly and disassembly of cytoskeleton and cell spreading in MDCK cells. Cell spreading involves the organization of cytoskeleton that is mainly regulated by Rho-family GTPases. We assessed the activity of Rho-family GTPases and transfected MDCK cells with constitutively active or dominant negative GTPases, and quantified the extent of cell spreading. These results showed that DDR1 decreased the filamentous actin ratio and Rac1/Cdc42 activities, but had no effects on RhoA activity. Neither constitutively active nor dominant negative Rac1 altered DDR1-inhibited cell spreading. Constitutively active Cdc42 could rescue the DDR1-inhibited cell spreading, whereas dominant negative Cdc42 inhibited cell spreading, indicating that DDR1-inhibited cell spreading is Cdc42 dependent. With the use of alpha(2)beta(1) integrin blocking antibody, we showed that collagen-induced Cdc42 activation was mediated by alpha(2)beta(1) integrin. Moreover, ectopic FAK expression enhanced the Cdc42 activity. Reducing FAK activity by dominant negative FAK (FRNK) markedly abolished the Cdc42 activity. These findings show that DDR1a/b activation inhibits cell spreading through suppressing alpha(2)beta(1) integrin-mediated Cdc42 activation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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