Anatomy & cell biology

Downregulation of NFAT2 promotes melanogenesis in B16 melanoma cells.

PMID 21267404


Nuclear factor of activated T-cells (NFAT) proteins are, calcium-regulated transcription factors, key regulator of stimulation-dependent gene activation. In our microarray analysis for the genes expressed in human black and white hairs, NFAT2 was significantly upregulated in the white hair, compared to the black hair. The aim of this study was to investigate functional role of NFAT2 in melanogenesis. Western blot analysis was performed to investigate the expression of NFAT2 protein in B16 melanoma cells. Our data showed that NFAT2 expression was increased in the hypopigmented B16 cells, while tyrosinase and MITF expression was decreased. To investigate the potential role of NFAT2, the recombinant adenovirus expressing microRNA specific for NFAT2 was transduced into the cultured B16 melanoma cells. Consistently, inhibition of NFAT2 enhanced tyrosinase activity and melanin content. Moreover, cyclosporine A, which is known as a calcineurin inhibitor blocking NFAT activation, enhanced tyrosinase activity and melanin content. These data suggest that NFAT2 may play an important role in regulation of melanogenesis in melanocyte.