Journal of neuro-oncology

SALL4 suppresses PTEN expression to promote glioma cell proliferation via PI3K/AKT signaling pathway.

PMID 28887597


Spalt-like transcription factor 4 (SALL4), a oncogene, is known to participate in multiple carcinomas, and is up-regulated in glioma. However, its actual role and underlying mechanisms in the development of glioma remain unclear. The present study explored the molecular functions of SALL4 in promoting cell proliferation in glioma. The expression level of SALL4 in 69 human glioma samples and six non-tumor brain tissues was determined using real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Then, we transfected U87 and U251 cell lines with siRNA, and assessed cellular proliferation and cell cycle to understand the function of SALL4, and the relationship between SALL4, PTEN and PI3K/AKT pathway. PCR confirmed that the expression of SALL4 was higher in the glioma samples than non-tumor brain tissues. Cellular growth and proliferation were dramatically reduced following inhibition of SALL4 expression. Western blot showed increase in PTEN expression when SALL4 was silenced, which in turn depressed the activation of PI3K/AKT pathway, suggesting that PTEN was a downstream target of SALL4 in glioma development. Therefore, SALL4 could act as a proto-oncogene by regulating the PTEN/PI3K/AKT signaling pathway, thereby facilitating proliferation of glioma cells.