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FRMPD1 activates the Hippo pathway via interaction with WWC3 to suppress the proliferation and invasiveness of lung cancer cells

Authors Rong X, Han Q, Lin X, Kremerskothen J, Wang E

Received 14 November 2018

Accepted for publication 17 March 2019

Published 18 April 2019 Volume 2019:11 Pages 3395—3410


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Harikrishna Nakshatri

Xuezhu Rong,1 Qiang Han,1 Xuyong Lin,1 Joachim Kremerskothen,2 Enhua Wang1

1Department of Pathology, College of Basic Medical Sciences and First Affiliated Hospital, China Medical University, Shenyang, People’s Republic of China; 2Internal Medicine D, Department of Nephrology, Hypertension and Rheumatology, University Hospital Muenster, Muenster, Germany

Purpose: The expression of FERM-domain-containing protein-1 (FRMPD1)/FERM and PDZ domain-containing protein-2 (FRMD2) in malignant tumors, including lung cancer, and its underlying molecular mechanism have not been reported yet.
Materials and methods: Immunohistochemistry was performed to analyze the expression of FRMPD1 in lung cancer tissues, and statistical analysis was applied to analyze the relationship between FRMPD1 expression and clinicopathological factors. The biological effects of FRMPD1 on lung cancer cell proliferation and invasion were determined by functional experiments both in vivo and in vitro. Immunoblotting, RT-qPCR, dual-luciferase assay, and immunofluorescence were performed to demonstrate whether FRMPD1 stimulates Hippo signaling. Co-immunoprecipitation assays were used to clarify the underlying role of FRMPD1 in Hippo pathway activation via interaction with WW and C2 domain containing protein-3 (WWC3).
Results: We found that FRMPD1 expression in lung cancer specimens was lower than that in normal bronchial epithelium and normal submucosal glands. FRMPD1 expression had a negative correlation with age, Tumor-Node-Metastasis (TNM) stage, lymph node metastasis, as well as poor prognosis. Moreover, ectopic expression of FRMPD1 significantly inhibited the proliferation and invasion of lung cancer cells, and inhibition of FRMPD1 expression led to opposite effects. Mechanistically, we found that FRMPD1 interacted with the C-terminal PDZ binding motif of WWC3 via its PSD95/DLG/ZO1 (PDZ) domain and promoted the phosphorylation of large tumor suppressor-1 (LATS1), thus inhibiting the nuclear translocation of yes-associated protein (YAP).
Conclusion: FRMPD1 could activate the Hippo pathway and ultimately inhibit the malignant behavior of lung cancer cells through its interaction with WWC3. This work will provide an important experimental basis for the discovery of novel biomarkers of lung cancer and the development of targeted drugs.

Keywords: FRMPD1, Hippo pathway, LATS1, NSCLC, WWC3

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