Journal Article

Extracellular ATP activates multiple signalling pathways and potentiates growth factor-induced c-<i>fos</i> gene expression in MCF-7 breast cancer cells

S.C. Wagstaff, W.B. Bowler, J.A. Gallagher and R.A. Hipskind

in Carcinogenesis

Volume 21, issue 12, pages 2175-2181
Published in print December 2000 | ISSN: 0143-3334
Published online December 2000 | e-ISSN: 1460-2180 | DOI:
Extracellular ATP activates multiple signalling pathways and potentiates growth factor-induced c-fos gene expression in MCF-7 breast cancer cells

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In the human breast cancer cell line MCF-7, the nucleotides ATPγS and UTP, acting extracellularly through the purinergic receptor P2Y2, lead to elevated intracellular calcium levels and increased proliferation. ATPγS and UTP treatment of MCF-7 cells activated transcription of the immediate early gene c-fos, an important component in the response to proliferative stimulation. c-fos induction was enhanced by co-treatment with ATPγS and a variety of proliferative agents including growth factors, tumour promoters and stress. Stimulation with ATPγS or epidermal growth factor (EGF) led to extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation and phosphorylation of the transcription factors CREB and Elk-1. Co-stimulation synergistically activated fos expression and notably led to increased levels of ERK, CREB and EGF receptor phosphorylation, as well as hyperphosphorylation of ternary complex factor. Nevertheless, the ERK pathway does not fully account for this synergy, since fos induction was differentially sensitive to the MEK inhibitor U0126, indicating that these two agonists signal differently to this immediate early gene. Thus, extracellular nucleotides co-operate with growth factors to activate genes linked to the proliferative response in MCF-7 cells through activation of specific purinergic receptors, which thereby represent important potential targets for arresting the neoplastic progression of breast cancer cells.

Keywords: CREB, camp response element binding protein; EGF, epidermal growth factor; ERK, extracellular signal-regulated kinase; PTHrP, parathyroid hormone-related peptide; TCF, ternary complex factor; TGFβ1, transforming growth factor β1.

Journal Article.  5465 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics

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