Theranostics 2022; 12(6):2613-2630. doi:10.7150/thno.70744 This issue Cite
1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Cell Microenvironment and Disease Research, Shenzhen Key Laboratory of Cell Microenvironment, Department of Biology, and Academy for Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Southern University of Science and Technology, China
2. Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA 15261, USA
#These authors contributed equally to this work.
Background: Insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF-1R) expression and signaling play important roles in promotion of skin cancer progression. Identification of signaling pathways that regulate IGF-1R is crucial for understanding the pathogenesis and therapeutic treatment of skin cancer.
Methods: Molecular, cellular and genetic approaches were used to investigate the function of PINCH-1 in regulation of IGF-1R expression and skin cell behavior. Furthermore, conditional PINCH-1 knockout mouse and carcinogen (7, 12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA)/12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA))-induced skin cancer model were employed to determine the function of PINCH-1 in regulation of IGF-1R expression and skin carcinogenesis in vivo.
Results: Knockdown of PINCH-1 from HaCaT keratinocytes or A431 squamous carcinoma cells diminished IGF-1R levels, suppressed cell proliferation and increased apoptosis. Re-expression of PINCH-1 in PINCH-1 knockdown cells restored IGF-1R expression, cell proliferation and survival. Furthermore, depletion of NEDD4 effectively reversed PINCH-1 deficiency-induced down-regulation of IGF-1R expression, cell proliferation and survival. Conditional knockout of PINCH-1 from keratin 5 (K5) positive keratinocytes in mice, like depletion of PINCH-1 from keratinocytes in culture, reduced the IGF-1R level. Using a mouse model of DMBA/TPA-induced skin cancer, we show that the levels of both PINCH-1 and IGF-1R were significantly increased in response to treatment with the carcinogens. Genetic ablation of PINCH-1 from the epidermis markedly reduced the IGF-1R expression and cell proliferation despite stimulation with DMBA/TPA, resulting in resistance to chemical carcinogen-induced skin cancer initiation and progression.
Conclusions: Our results reveal a PINCH-1-NEDD4-IGF-1R signaling axis that is critical for promotion of skin tumorigenesis and suggest a new strategy for therapeutic control of skin cancer progression.
Keywords: PINCH-1, IGF-1 receptor, NEDD4, GRB10, Skin cancer