Critical role of the MCAM-ETV4 axis triggered by extracellular S100A8/A9 in breast cancer aggressiveness

Youyi Chen, I. Wayan Sumardika, Nahoko Tomonobu, Rie Kinoshita, Yusuke Inoue, Hidekazu Iioka, Yosuke Mitsui, Ken Saito, I. Made Winarsa Ruma, Hiroki Sato, Akira Yamauchi, Hitoshi Murata, Ken ichi Yamamoto, Shuta Tomida, Kazuhiko Shien, Hiromasa Yamamoto, Junichi Sou, Junichiro Futami, Miyoko Kubo, Endy Widya PutrantoTakashi Murakami, Ming Liu, Toshihiko Hibino, Masahiro Nishibori, Eisaku Kondo, Shinichi Toyooka, Masakiyo Sakaguchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Metastatic breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer-associated death in women. The progression of this fatal disease is associated with inflammatory responses that promote cancer cell growth and dissemination, eventually leading to a reduction of overall survival. However, the mechanism(s)of the inflammation-boosted cancer progression remains unclear. In this study, we found for the first time that an extracellular cytokine, S100A8/A9, accelerates breast cancer growth and metastasis upon binding to a cell surface receptor, melanoma cell adhesion molecule (MCAM). Our molecular analyses revealed an important role of ETS translocation variant 4 (ETV4), which is significantly activated in the region downstream of MCAM upon S100A8/A9 stimulation, in breast cancer progression in vitro as well as in vivo. The MCAM-mediated activation of ETV4 induced a mobile phenotype called epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT)in cells, since we found that ETV4 transcriptionally upregulates ZEB1, a strong EMT inducer, at a very high level. In contrast, downregulation of either MCAM or ETV4 repressed EMT, resulting in greatly weakened tumor growth and lung metastasis. Overall, our results revealed that ETV4 is a novel transcription factor regulated by the S100A8/A9-MCAM axis, which leads to EMT through ZEB1 and thereby to metastasis in breast cancer cells. Thus, therapeutic strategies based on our findings might improve patient outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)627-640
Number of pages14
JournalNeoplasia (United States)
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research


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