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  • Hhex inhibits cell migration via regulating RHOA/CDC42-CFL1 axis in human lung cancer cells.

Hhex inhibits cell migration via regulating RHOA/CDC42-CFL1 axis in human lung cancer cells.

Cell communication and signaling : CCS (2021-07-30)
Xiaopeng Li, Guilin Ma, Wenjie Guo, Ning Mu, Yingying Wang, Xiangguo Liu, Ling Su
ABSTRACT

Hhex(human hematopoietically expressed homeobox), also known as PRH, is originally considered as a transcription factor to regulate gene expression due to its homebox domain. Increasing studies show that Hhex plays a significant role in development, including anterior-posterior axis formation, vascular development and HSCs self-renewal etc. Hhex is linked to many diseases such as cancers, leukemia, and type-2 diabetes. Although Hhex is reported to inhibit cell migration and invasion of breast and prostate epithelial cells by upregulating Endoglin expression, the effect and molecular mechanism for lung cancer cell motility regulation remains elusive. Human non-small cell lung cancer cells and HEK293FT cells were used to investigate the molecular mechanism of Hhex regulating lung cancer cell migration by using Western blot, immunoprecipitation, wound-healing scratch assay, laser confocal. Our data indicated that Hhex could inhibit cell migration and cell protrusion formation in lung cancer cells. In addition, Hhex inhibited CFL1 phosphorylation to keep its F-actin-severing activity. RHOGDIA was involved in Hhex-induced CFL1 phosphorylation regulation. Hhex enhanced RHOGDIA interaction with RHOA/CDC42, thus maintaining RHOA/CDC42 at an inactive form. Collectively, these data indicate that Hhex inhibited the activation of RHOA/CDC42 by enhancing interaction of RHOGDIA with RHOA/CDC42, and then RHOA/ CDC42-p-CFL1 signaling pathway was blocked. Consequently, the formation of Filopodium and Lamellipodium on the cell surface was suppressed, and thus the ability of lung cancer cells to migrate was decreased accordingly. Our findings show Hhex plays an important role in regulating migration of lung cancer cells and may provide a potential target for lung cancer therapy. Video abstract.

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