Aberrant c-MET activation impairs perinuclear actin cap organization with YAP1 cytosolic relocation

Sgarzi, Michela (2023) Aberrant c-MET activation impairs perinuclear actin cap organization with YAP1 cytosolic relocation, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Oncologia, ematologia e patologia, 35 Ciclo.
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Growing evidence indicates that cell and nuclear deformability plays a crucial role in the determination of cancer cells tumorigenic and metastatic potential. The perinuclear actin cap, by wrapping the nucleus with a functional network of actomyosin cables, can modulate nuclear architecture and consequently cell/nuclear elasticity. The hepatocyte growth factor receptor (MET) stands out among other membrane receptors as crucial player of the actin filaments organization, but no data are available on a specific role for MET in the actin cap assembly and the overall nuclear architecture organization. In a cell system characterized by MET hyperactivation, we observed a strong rearrangement of the cellular actin caps, with a complete dismantling of apical stress fibers and a strikingly enhanced nuclear height. CRISPR/Cas9 silencing of MET completely reverted the aberrant phenotype, resulting in flattened cells with perfectly aligned perinuclear actomyosin bundles, as well as decreased MAPK and PI3K/AKT signaling, cell proliferation rate and aggressiveness. Interestingly, MET ablated cells acquired a remarkably directed and polarized migratory phenotype, contrarily to cells with MET sustained activation showing meandering random walk. A pathway enrichment analysis comparing MET-activated and MET-KO cells RNAseq data, unveiled the contribution of multiple pathways associated with cytoskeleton remodeling, regulation of cell shape and response to mechanical stimuli. In line, the co-transcriptional activator YAP1, playing a major role in cell mechanosensing and focal adhesions/actin stabilization, appeared the culprit of the genetic reassembling of KO cells. Indeed, MET silencing was shown to induce YAP1 nuclear shuttling and increased co-transcriptional activity. Finally, we were able to induce in a normal epithelial model a phenotype closer to MET activated cancer cells only by introducing a constitutive fusion protein of MET. Taken together, our results demonstrate a new mechanism of MET-mediated actin remodeling responsible for a tumor-initiating capacity and meandering random migration, which requires YAP1 inactivation.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Sgarzi, Michela
Dottorato di ricerca
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
MET, perinuclear actin cap, YAP1, actin cytoskeleton, cell migration
Data di discussione
16 Giugno 2023

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