PTEN regulates colorectal epithelial apoptosis through Cdc42 signalling.

R. Deevi, A. Fatehullah, I. Jagan, M. Nagaraju, V. Bingham, Frederick Campbell

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16 Citations (Scopus)


Phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN) regulation of the Rho-like GTPase Cdc42 has a central role in epithelial polarised growth, but effects of this molecular network on apoptosis remain unclear.

To investigate the role of Cdc42 in PTEN-dependent cell death, we used flow cytometry, in vitro pull-down assays, poly(ADP ribose) polymerase (PARP) cleavage and other immunoblots in isogenic PTEN-expressing and -deficient colorectal cells (HCT116PTEN(+/+), HCT116PTEN(-/-), Caco2 and Caco2 ShPTEN cells) after transfection or treatment strategies.

The PTEN knockout or suppression by short hairpin RNA or small interfering RNA (siRNA) inhibited Cdc42 activity, PARP cleavage and/or apoptosis in flow cytometry assays. Transfection of cells with wild-type or constitutively active Cdc42 enhanced PARP cleavage, whereas siRNA silencing of Cdc42 inhibited PARP cleavage and/or apoptosis. Pharmacological upregulation of PTEN by sodium butyrate (NaBt) treatment enhanced Cdc42 activity, PARP cleavage and apoptosis, whereas Cdc42 siRNA suppressed NaBt-induced PARP cleavage. Cdc42-dependent signals can suppress glycogen synthase kinase-ß (GSK3ß) activity. Pharmacological inhibition of GSK3ß by lithium chloride treatment mimicked effects of Cdc42 in promotion of PARP cleavage and/or apoptosis.

Phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted on chromosome 10 may influence apoptosis in colorectal epithelium through Cdc42 signalling, thus providing a regulatory framework for both polarised growth and programmed cell death.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1313-1321
Number of pages9
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 25 Oct 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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