Send to

Choose Destination
J Invest Dermatol. 2009 Apr;129(4):954-63. doi: 10.1038/jid.2008.329. Epub 2008 Nov 6.

Plexin C1, a receptor for semaphorin 7a, inactivates cofilin and is a potential tumor suppressor for melanoma progression.

Author information

Department of Dermatology, School of Medicine, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York, USA.


Melanocytes are progenitor cells for melanoma, which arises through step-wise progression from dysplastic to invasive, to metastatic tumor. Our previous data showed that semaphorin 7A (Sema7A), a protein involved in axon guidance, stimulates melanocyte adhesion and dendricity through opposing actions of beta1-integrin and Plexin C1 receptors. We now show that Plexin C1 is diminished or absent in human melanoma cell lines; analysis of tissue microarrays of nevi, melanoma, and metastatic melanoma showed a decrease in Plexin C1 expression in metastatic melanoma, and an inverse correlation of Plexin C1 expression with depth of invasion. We examined the signaling intermediates of Sema7A and downstream targets of Plexin C1 in human melanocytes. Sema7A activated mitogen-activated protein kinase and inactivated cofilin, an actin-binding protein involved in cell migration. When Plexin C1 expression was silenced, Sema7A failed to phosphorylate cofilin, indicating that cofilin is downstream of Plexin C1. Further, Lim kinase II, a protein that phosphorylates cofilin, is upregulated by Sema7A in a Plexin C1-dependent manner. These data identify Plexin C1 as a potential tumor suppressor protein in melanoma progression, and suggest that loss of Plexin C1 expression may promote melanoma invasion and metastasis through loss of inhibitory signaling on cofilin activation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center