Fatty-acid receptor CD36 functions as a hydrogen sulfide-targeted receptor with its Cys333-Cys272 disulfide bond serving as a specific molecular switch to accelerate gastric cancer metastasis.


Department of Gastroenterology, Tongji Hospital, Affiliated to Tongji University, Shanghai 200065, China. Electronic address: [Email]


BACKGROUND : Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S), a third member of gasotransmitter family along with nitric oxide (NO) and carbon monoxide (CO), exerts a wide range of cellular and molecular actions in our body. There is a large body of evidence suggesting that H2S plays an important role in cancer metastasis; however, the molecular mechanisms of H2S-mediated acceleration of cancer metastasis remain unknown.
METHODS : We examined the promote effects of H2S on phenotype of gastric cancer (GC) cells (including those of express wild type CD36 and mutant CD36) in vitro and in vivo. GC patients' samples were used for clinical translational significance evaluation.
RESULTS : H2S triggered lipid metabolism reprogramming by significantly up-regulating the expression of the fatty-acid receptor CD36 (CD36) and directly activating CD36 in GC cells. Mechanistically, a disulfide bond located between cysteine (Cys)333 and Cys272 within the CD36 protein structure that was labile to H2S-mediated modification. The long chain-fatty acid (LC-FA) binding pocket was capped by a turn in the CD36 protein, located between helical and sheet structures that were stabilized by the Cys333-Cys272. This limited the secondary binding between LC-FAs and lysine (Lys)334. Breaking the Cys333-Cys272 disulfide bond restored the second LC-FA binding conformation of CD36. Targeting CD36 in vivo blocked H2S-promoted metastasis and improved animal survival.
CONCLUSIONS : These findings identify that the Cys333-Cys272 disulfide bond disrupted the integrity of the second LC-FA binding conformation of CD36. Therefore, CD36 can directly activate LC-FA access to the cytoplasm by acting as a direct target molecule for H2S.


CD36,Disulfide bond,H(2)S,Long chain-fatty acid,Metastasis,Nrf2,