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Proteome Sci. 2011 Jun 28;9:35. doi: 10.1186/1477-5956-9-35.

Analysis of EGFR signaling pathway in nasopharyngeal carcinoma cells by quantitative phosphoproteomics.

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Key Laboratory of Cancer Proteomics of Chinese Ministry of Health, Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha 410008, China.
Key Laboratory of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Department of Allergy, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University, Guangzhou 510260, China.
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, College of Medicine, Hunan Normal University, Changsha 410006, China.
Contributed equally



The epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is usually overexpressed in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) and is associated with pathogenesis of NPC. However, the downstream signaling proteins of EGFR in NPC have not yet been completely understood at the system level. The aim of this study was identify novel downstream proteins of EGFR signaling pathway in NPC cells.


We analyzed EGFR-regulated phosphoproteome in NPC CNE2 cells using 2D-DIGE and mass spectrometry analysis after phosphoprotein enrichment. As a result, 33 nonredundant phosphoproteins including five known EGFR-regulated proteins and twenty-eight novel EGFR-regulated proteins in CNE2 were identified, three differential phosphoproteins were selectively validated, and two differential phosphoproteins (GSTP1 and GRB2) were showed interacted with phospho-EGFR. Bioinformatics analysis showed that 32 of 33 identified proteins contain phosphorylation modification sites, and 17 identified proteins are signaling proteins. GSTP1, one of the EGFR-regulated proteins, associated with chemoresistance was analyzed. The results showed that GSTP1 could contribute to paclitaxel resistance in EGF-stimulated CNE2 cells. Furthermore, an EGFR signaling network based on the identified EGFR-regulated phosphoproteins were constructed using Pathway Studio 5.0 software, which includes canonical and novel EGFR-regulated proteins and implicates the possible biological roles for those proteins.


The data not only can extend our knowledge of canonical EGFR signaling, but also will be useful to understand the molecular mechanisms of EGFR in NPC pathogenesis and search therapeutic targets for NPC.

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