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J Biol Chem. 2010 Sep 17;285(38):29279-85. doi: 10.1074/jbc.C110.114124. Epub 2010 Jul 9.

EGF-induced Grb7 recruits and promotes Ras activity essential for the tumorigenicity of Sk-Br3 breast cancer cells.

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Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan.


Co-amplification and co-overexpression of ErbB2 and Grb7 are frequently found in various cancers, including breast cancer. Biochemical and functional correlations of the two molecules have identified Grb7 to be a pivotal mediator downstream of ErbB2-mediated oncogenesis. However, it remains largely unknown how Grb7 is involve in the ErbB2-mediated tumorigenesis. In this study, we show that Grb7-mediated cell proliferation and growth are essential for the tumorigenesis that occurs in ErbB2-Grb7-overexpressing breast cancer cells. Intrinsically, EGF-induced de novo Grb7 tyrosine phosphorylation/activation recruits and activates Ras-GTPases and subsequently promotes the phosphorylation of ERK1/2, thereby stimulating tumor growth. Furthermore, we also found the anti-tumor effect could be synergized by co-treatment with Herceptin plus Grb7 knockdown in Sk-Br3 breast cancer cells. Our findings illustrate an underlying mechanism by which Grb7 promotes tumorigenesis through the formation of a novel EGFR-Grb7-Ras signaling complex, thereby highlighting the potential strategy of targeting Grb7 as an anti-breast cancer therapy.

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