EphA3 is up-regulated by epidermal growth factor and promotes formation of glioblastoma cell aggregates.

Affiliation

Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kyoto University, Yoshidakonoe-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8501, Japan; Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto University, Yoshidakonoe-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8501, Japan. Electronic address: [Email]

Abstract

EphA3, a member of the Eph family of receptor tyrosine kinases, has been reported to be overexpressed in some human cancers including glioblastoma. Here, we found that expression of EphA3 is up-regulated in response to epidermal growth factor (EGF) stimulation and promotes formation of cell aggregates in suspension culture of glioblastoma cells. Suppression of EphA3 expression by short hairpin RNA-mediated knockdown or CRISPR/Cas9-mediated gene deletion inhibited EGF-induced promotion of cell aggregate formation, whereas overexpression of EphA3 promoted formation of cell aggregates in suspension culture. EGF-induced EphA3 expression and promotion of cell aggregate formation required Akt activity. Furthermore, N-cadherin, whose expression was regulated by EGF and EphA3, contributed to the formation of cell aggregates in suspension culture. These results suggest that the regulation of EphA3 expression plays a critical role in glioblastoma cell growth in non-adherent conditions.