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Title: The cytoskeletal inhibitors latrunculin A and blebbistatin exert antitumorigenic properties in human hepatocellular carcinoma cells by interfering with intracellular HuR trafficking

The impact of the RNA-binding protein HuR for the post-transcriptional deregulation of tumor-relevant genes is well established. Despite of elevations in HuR expression levels, an increase in cytoplasmic HuR abundance in many cases correlates with a high grade of malignancy. Here, we demonstrated that administration of the actin-depolymerizing macrolide latrunculin A, or blebbistatin, an inhibitor of myosin II ATPase activity, caused a dose- and time-dependent reduction in the high cytoplasmic HuR content of HepG2 and Huh7 hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells. Subcellular fractionation revealed that in addition, both inhibitors strongly attenuated cytoskeletal and membrane-bound HuR abundance and conversely increased the HuR amount in nuclear cell fractions. Concomitant with changes in intracellular HuR localization, both cytoskeletal inhibitors markedly decreased the half-lives of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), cyclin A and cyclin D{sub 1} encoding mRNAs resulting in a significant reduction in their expression levels in HepG2 cells. Importantly, a similar reduction in the expression of these HuR targets was achieved by a RNA interference (RNAi)-mediated knockdown of either HuR or nonmuscle myoin IIA. Using polysomal fractionation, we further demonstrate that the decrease in cytoplasmic HuR by latrunculin A or blebbistatin is accompanied by a marked change in the allocation of HuR and its mRNA cargomore » from polysomes to ribonucleoprotein (RNP) particles. Functionally, the basal migration and prostaglandin E{sub 2} synthesis are similarly impaired in inhibitor-treated and stable HuR-knockdown HepG2 cells. Our data demonstrate that interfering with the actomyosin-dependent HuR trafficking may comprise a valid therapeutic option for antagonizing pathologic posttranscriptional gene expression by HuR and furthermore emphasize the potential benefit of HuR inhibitory strategies for treatment of HCC. - Highlights: • We tested the effects of latrunculin A and blebbistatin on different HuR activities. • Both cytoskeletal inhibitors disturbed the RNP-polysome HuR allocation in HepG2 cells. • Accordingly, both inhibitors reduced the stability and levels of HuR controlled mRNAs. • Functionally, important HuR-triggered cell functions were impaired by both compounds. • Targeting of HuR trafficking implies a useful approach for novel antitumor therapy.« less
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  1. Pharmazentrum Frankfurt/ZAFES, Klinikum der Goethe-Universität Frankfurt, Frankfurt/Main (Germany)
  2. Institut für Biochemie I (Pathobiochemie), Klinikum der Goethe-Universität Frankfurt, Frankfurt/Main (Germany)
  3. Medizinische Klinik 1, Schwerpunkt Gastroenterologie und Hepatologie, Klinikum der Goethe-Universität Frankfurt, Frankfurt/Main (Germany)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Experimental Cell Research; Journal Volume: 330; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Copyright (c) 2014 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States