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Sci Rep. 2013;3:1402. doi: 10.1038/srep01402.

ErbB2 dephosphorylation and anti-proliferative effects of neuregulin-1 in ErbB2-overexpressing cells; re-evaluation of their low-affinity interaction.

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Department of Molecular Neurobiology, Brain Research Institute, Niigata University, Niigata, 951-8585, Japan.


Neuregulin-1 binds to ErbB3 and ErbB4 and regulates cancer proliferation and differentiation. Neuregulin-1 had been suggested to also react with ErbB2, but this argument becomes controversial. Here, we re-evaluated the cellular responses and ErbB2 interaction of neuregulin-1 in ErbB2 overexpressing cell lines. In a competitive ligand-binding assay, we detected significant replacement of [(35)S]-labeled neuregulin-1 with nano molar ranges of cold neuregulin-1 in L929 cells expressing ErbB2 alone and SKOV3 cells carrying sulf-1 cDNA but not in these parental cells. The concentration of neuregulin-1 significantly decreased thymidine incorporation and phosphorylation of ErbB2 (Tyr877, Tyr1396, and Tyr1121) in ErbB2-overexpressing cancer cells as well as in L929 cells expressing ErbB2. A crosslinking assay ascertained the presence of neuregulin-1 immunoreactivity in the ErbB2 immune complexes of L929 expressing ErbB2 alone. These results suggest that the higher concentrations of neuregulin-1 exert an anti-oncogenic activity to attenuate ErbB2 auto-phosphorylation potentially through its low-affinity interaction with ErbB2.

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