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Cell Death Dis. 2018 Feb 14;9(2):237. doi: 10.1038/s41419-018-0261-2.

SPRY2 is a novel MET interactor that regulates metastatic potential and differentiation in rhabdomyosarcoma.

Author information

1
Laboratory of Developmental Genetics, Regional Centre for Biotechnology, NCR Biotech Science Cluster, 3rd Milestone, Faridabad-Gurgaon Expressway, Faridabad, Haryana, 121001, India.
2
Laboratory of Developmental Genetics, Regional Centre for Biotechnology, NCR Biotech Science Cluster, 3rd Milestone, Faridabad-Gurgaon Expressway, Faridabad, Haryana, 121001, India. sjmathew@rcb.res.in.

Abstract

Rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) is a predominantly pediatric soft-tissue cancer where the tumor cells exhibit characteristics of the developing skeletal muscle, and the two most common sub-types are embryonal and alveolar RMS. Elevated activation of the receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) MET is frequent in RMS and is thought to cause increased tumor metastasis and lack of differentiation. However, the reasons underlying dysregulated MET expression and activation in RMS are not well understood. Therefore, we explored the role of Sprouty 2 (SPRY2), a modulator of RTK signaling, in regulating MET. We identify SPRY2 as a novel MET interactor that colocalizes with and binds MET in both embryonal and alveolar RMS. We find that depletion of SPRY2 leads to MET degradation, resulting in reduced migratory and clonogenic potential, and induction of differentiation in both embryonal and alveolar RMS, outcomes that are identical to depletion of MET. Activation of the ERK/MAPK pathway, known to be crucial for regulating cell migration and whose inhibition is required for myogenic differentiation, was downregulated upon depletion of MET or SPRY2. This provides a direct connection to the decreased migration and induction of differentiation upon depletion of MET or SPRY2. Thus, these data indicate that SPRY2 interacts with MET and stabilizes it in order to maintain signaling downstream of MET, which keeps the ERK/MAPK pathway active, resulting in metastatic potential and inhibition of differentiation in RMS. Our results identify a novel mechanism by which MET signaling is stabilized in RMS, and is a potential target for therapeutic intervention in RMS.

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