HGF-MET signals via the MLL-ETS2 complex in hepatocellular carcinoma

Shugaku Takeda, Han Liu, Satoru Sasagawa, Yiyu Dong, Paul A. Trainor, Emily H. Cheng, James J. Hsieh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations

Abstract

HGF signals through its cognate receptor, MET, to orchestrate diverse biological processes, including cell proliferation, cell fate specification, organogenesis, and epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Mixed-lineage leukemia (MLL), an epigenetic regulator, plays critical roles in cell fate, stem cell, and cell cycle decisions. Here, we describe a role for MLL in the HGF-MET signaling pathway. We found a shared phenotype among Mll-/-, Hgf -/-, and Met-/-mice with common cranial nerve XII (CNXII) outgrowth and myoblast migration defects. Phenotypic analysis demonstrated that MLL was required for HGF-induced invasion and metastatic growth of hepatocellular carcinoma cell lines. HGF-MET signaling resulted in the accumulation of ETS2, which interacted with MLL to transactivate MMP1 and MMP3. ChIP assays demonstrated that activation of the HGF-MET pathway resulted in increased occupancy of the MLL-ETS2 complex on MMP1 and MMP3 promoters, where MLL trimethylated histone H3 lysine 4 (H3K4), activating transcription. Our results present an epigenetic link between MLL and the HGF-MET signaling pathway, which may suggest new strategies for therapeutic intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3154-3165
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Volume123
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2013

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