Gene Summary

Gene:RAP1A; RAP1A, member of RAS oncogene family
Aliases: RAP1, C21KG, G-22K, KREV1, KREV-1, SMGP21
Summary:This gene encodes a member of the Ras family of small GTPases. The encoded protein undergoes a change in conformational state and activity, depending on whether it is bound to GTP or GDP. This protein is activated by several types of guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs), and inactivated by two groups of GTPase-activating proteins (GAPs). The activation status of the encoded protein is therefore affected by the balance of intracellular levels of GEFs and GAPs. The encoded protein regulates signaling pathways that affect cell proliferation and adhesion, and may play a role in tumor malignancy. Pseudogenes of this gene have been defined on chromosomes 14 and 17. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants. [provided by RefSeq, May 2014]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:ras-related protein Rap-1A
Source:NCBIAccessed: 01 September, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (19)
Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
Show (6)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 01 September 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • GTPase-Activating Proteins
  • rac GTP-Binding Proteins
  • Prostate Cancer
  • rap GTP-Binding Proteins
  • Adenocarcinoma
  • ras Proteins
  • Twist-Related Protein 1
  • Apoptosis
  • RHOA
  • Cell Proliferation
  • rap1 GTP-Binding Proteins
  • MicroRNAs
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Two-Hybrid System Techniques
  • Protein Binding
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • RAP1A
  • siRNA
  • Down-Regulation
  • Chromosome 1
  • Messenger RNA
  • Signal Transduction
  • Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors
  • Lung Cancer
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins
  • Western Blotting
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • KRIT1 Protein
  • Mutation
  • Staging
  • ras GTPase-Activating Proteins
  • GTP-Binding Proteins
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • RNA Interference
  • Breast Cancer
  • Sequence Homology
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Cell Movement
Tag cloud generated 01 September, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (3)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: RAP1A (cancer-related)

Deng Z, Wang H, Guo G, et al.
Next-Generation Sequencing Analysis of mRNA Profile in Cisplatin-Resistant Gastric Cancer Cell Line SGC7901.
Med Sci Monit. 2019; 25:2386-2396 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND Cisplatin-resistant gastric cancer (GC) occurs in patients with GC treated with cisplatin-based chemotherapy, which results in disease progression and early recurrence during the treatment. MATERIAL AND METHODS To understand the initiation and developmental mechanism underlying cisplatin-resistant GC, we developed cisplatin-resistant SGC7901 cells (SGC7901/DDP) from the parental cells (SGC7901/S) by continuous exposure to increasing concentrations of cisplatin and subjected these 2 cell lines to RNA sequencing analysis. The data were verified by quantitative polymerase chain reaction and their functional role was evaluated by cell counting kit 8 assay and cell apoptosis and cell cycle flow cytometric analysis. Bioinformatics analysis was performed to classify the differentially-expressed genes (DEGs) involved in the development of cisplatin resistance. RESULTS In comparison with SGC7901/S cells, SGC7901/DDP cells showed a total of 3165 DEGs (2014 upregulated and 1151 downregulated, fold change ≥2, and adjusted P value <0.001). qRT-PCR confirmed the reliability of the RNA sequencing results. Depletion of the top 5 upregulated mRNAs reversed the resistant index, increased apoptotic SGC7901/DDP cells, and arrested the cells at G2/M phase. Gene ontology analysis revealed that the DEGs mainly regulate metabolic process, immune system, locomotion, cell adhesion, cell growth, cell death, cytoskeleton organization, cell binding, signal transducing activity, and antioxidant activity. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes analysis showed that the DEGs were mainly involved in the PI3K-Akt signaling pathway, Rap1 signaling pathway, proteoglycans in cancer, regulation of actin cytoskeleton, and pathways in cancer. CONCLUSIONS The present study is the first to interrogate mRNAs profiles in human GC cells with cisplatin resistance using RNA sequencing, which may assist in discovering potential therapeutic targets for cisplatin-resistant GC patients.

Cao XM
Role of miR-337-3p and its target Rap1A in modulating proliferation, invasion, migration and apoptosis of cervical cancer cells.
Cancer Biomark. 2019; 24(3):257-267 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the role of miR-337-3p targeting Rap1A in modulating proliferation, invasion, migration and apoptosis of cervical cancer cells.
METHODS: The expression levels of miR-337-3p and Rap1A in cervical cancer tissues and normal tissues were evaluated through quantitative Real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) and Western blotting; and correlations of miR-337-3p with clinicopathological characteristics and prognosis of patients were also analyzed. Besides, human cervical cancer cell line HeLa cells were randomly divided into five groups (Mock, NC, miR-337-3p mimic, Rap1A, and miR-337-3p mimic + Rap1A groups). CCK-8 assay was utilized to measure cell proliferation, flow cytometry to evaluate cell apoptosis, and wound-healing and Transwell assays to detect cell migration and invasion.
RESULTS: Cervical cancer tissues presented a significant decrease in miR-337-3p and a remarkable increase in Rap1A protein. Besides, the expression levels of miR-337-3p and Rap1A were closely related to the major clinicopathological characteristics of cervical cancer; and patients with high-miR-337-3p-expression had the higher 5-year survival rate (all p< 0.05). When compared to Mock group, cells in miR-337-3p mimic group were suppressed in proliferation, migration, and invasion, but significantly promoted in apoptosis; meanwhile, cells in the Rap1A group showed changes in a completely opposite trend (all p< 0.05). Moreover, Rap1A can reverse the effect of miR-337-3p mimic on cell proliferation, invasion, migration and apoptosis (all p< 0.05).
CONCLUSION: MiR-337-3p was discovered to be decreased in cervical cancer, and miR-337-3p up-regulation may inhibit the proliferation, migration and invasion and promote the apoptosis of cervical cancer cells via down-regulating Rap1A.

Liu HY, Zhao H, Li WX
Integrated Analysis of Transcriptome and Prognosis Data Identifies FGF22 as a Prognostic Marker of Lung Adenocarcinoma.
Technol Cancer Res Treat. 2019; 18:1533033819827317 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Lung adenocarcinoma is one of the most common cancers worldwide. However, the molecular mechanisms of lung adenocarcinoma development are still unclear. This study aimed to investigate the expression profiles of anti-lung cancer target genes in different cancer stages and to explore their functions in tumor development. Lung adenocarcinoma transcriptome and clinical data were downloaded from Genomic Data Commons Data Portal, and the anti-lung cancer target genes were retrieved from the Thomson Reuters Integrity database. The results showed that 16 anti-lung target genes were deregulated in all stages. Among these target genes, fibroblast growth factor 22 showed the most important role in transcription regulatory networks. Further analysis revealed that APC, BRIP1, and PTTG1 may regulate fibroblast growth factor 22 and subsequently influence MAPK signaling pathway, Rap1 signaling pathways, and other tumorigenic processes in all stages. Moreover, high fibroblast growth factor 22 expression leads to poor overall survival (hazard ratio = 1.55, P = .019). These findings provide valuable information for the pathological research and treatment of lung adenocarcinoma. Future studies are needed to verify these results.

Yan W, Li SX, Wei M, Gao H
Identification of MMP9 as a novel key gene in mantle cell lymphoma based on bioinformatic analysis and design of cyclic peptides as MMP9 inhibitors based on molecular docking.
Oncol Rep. 2018; 40(5):2515-2524 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) is an aggressive disease. MCL is associated with poor patient prognosis and limited survival. To identify key genes and explore targeting cyclic peptide inhibitors for the treatment of MCL, we downloaded two gene expression profiles (GSE32018 and GSE9327) from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database. We screened 84 differentially expressed genes (DEGs). Pathway analysis showed that DEMs were mainly enriched in the 'Pathway in cancer', 'PI3K‑Akt signaling pathway', 'Cytokine‑cytokine receptor interaction', 'Rap1 signaling pathway', 'NF‑κB signaling pathway' and 'Leukocyte trans‑endothelial migration'. We subsequently constructed a protein‑protein interaction (PPI) network of DEGs. In addition, matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP9) with a high degree in the PPI network was identified as a hub gene in MCL. Meanwhile in the Molecular Complex Detection (MCODE) analysis, MMP9 was located in the important cluster. Thus, MMP9 can be used as a therapeutic target for MCL and we designed cyclic peptides as MMP9 inhibitors. MMP9 protein structure was gathered from the Protein Data Bank (PDB), with a PDB ID: 1L6J. MMP9 and cyclic peptides were docked using Molecular Operating Environment (MOE) software after structural optimization. It was revealed that cyclic peptide 2 bound deeply in the binding pocket of MMP9 and had interaction with the active‑site Zn2+ ion in the catalytic domain. Cyclic peptides 1, 2, 4‑6 also displayed potential interaction with active residues of MMP9; thus, these cyclic peptides can serve as potential drug candidates to block MMP9 activity and future studies are warranted to confirm their efficacy.

Wang WJ, Li HT, Yu JP, et al.
Identification of key genes and associated pathways in KIT/PDGFRA wild‑type gastrointestinal stromal tumors through bioinformatics analysis.
Mol Med Rep. 2018; 18(5):4499-4515 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) are the most common type of mesenchymal tumor in the gastrointestinal tract. The present study aimed to identify the potential candidate biomarkers that may be involved in the pathogenesis and progression of v‑kit Hardy‑Zuckerman 4 feline sarcoma viral oncogene homolog (KIT)/platelet‑derived growth factor receptor α (PDGFRA) wild‑type GISTs. A joint bioinformatics analysis was performed to identify the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in wild‑type GIST samples compared with KIT/PDGFRA mutant GIST samples. Gene Ontology function and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway enrichment analysis of DEGs was conducted using Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery and KEGG Orthology‑Based Annotation System (KOBAS) online tools, respectively. Protein‑protein interaction (PPI) networks of the DEGs were constructed using Search Tool for the Retrieval of Interacting Genes online tool and Cytoscape, and divided into sub‑networks using the Molecular Complex Detection (MCODE) plug‑in. Furthermore, enrichment analysis of DEGs in the modules was analyzed with KOBAS. In total, 546 DEGs were identified, including 238 upregulated genes primarily enriched in 'cell adhesion', 'biological adhesion', 'cell‑cell signaling', 'PI3K‑Akt signaling pathway' and 'ECM‑receptor interaction', while the 308 downregulated genes were predominantly involved in 'inflammatory response', 'sterol metabolic process' and 'fatty acid metabolic process', 'small GTPase mediated signal transduction', 'cAMP signaling pathway' and 'proteoglycans in cancer'. A total of 25 hub genes were obtained and four modules were mined from the PPI network, and sub‑networks also revealed these genes were primarily involved in significant pathways, including 'PI3K‑Akt signaling pathway', 'proteoglycans in cancer', 'pathways in cancer', 'Rap1 signaling pathway', 'ECM‑receptor interaction', 'phospholipase D signaling pathway', 'ras signaling pathway' and 'cGMP‑PKG signaling pathway'. These results suggested that several key hub DEGs may serve as potential candidate biomarkers for wild‑type GISTs, including phosphatidylinositol‑4,5‑bisphosphate 3‑kinase, catalytic subunit γ, insulin like growth factor 1 receptor, hepatocyte growth factor, thrombospondin 1, Erb‑B2 receptor tyrosine kinase 2 and matrix metallopeptidase 2. However, further experiments are required to confirm these results.

Zhu L, Yan F, Wang Z, et al.
Genome-wide DNA methylation profiling of primary colorectal laterally spreading tumors identifies disease-specific epimutations on common pathways.
Int J Cancer. 2018; 143(10):2488-2498 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/11/2019 Related Publications
Colorectal laterally spreading tumors (LSTs) grow to extremely large size while rarely invade deeply. Also, there is a low tendency to become cancerous. We used the Illumina Human Methylation 450K array to query the main epigenetic difference of LSTs. We built a discovery cohort with 10 matched cases, and a validation cohort with 9 additional matched cases. Our results suggest that LST displays significant decrease in DNA methylation, highlighted by the discovery of 1,018 hypomethylated intergenic regions (IGRs). Comparing to classic differentially methylated probes and regions that overlap transcription starting site and CpG island, IGR-regions were associated more closely with genes involved in functional biological processes and correlated with specific histone modifications. Hypomethylated IGR regions were often annotated as tissue-specific regulatory elements for noncolon tissues and were typically epigenetically silenced in normal colon mucosa. By integration of public data, we defined the commonality and specific epigenetic signatures for adenomas, LSTs and colon adenocarcinomas. Only 435 hypermethylated differentially methylated probes (DMPs) and differentially methylated regions (DMRs) and 517 hypomethylated DMPs and DMRs were shared by the three diseases. However, our pathway-level analysis discovered that genes in four pathways were common target of epimutations in LSTs, adenomas and CRCs. More interestingly, different diseases seem to employ distinct epigenetic insult to disturb specific pathways. Between LST and adenoma, we found eight pathways including Ras signaling and Rap1 signaling pathway were commonly targeted but the epimutation patterns were opposite. Comparison between precancerous conditions and invasive states revealed the key pathways governing the progression to malignancy, including PI3K-Akt pathways.

Shah S, Brock EJ, Jackson RM, et al.
Downregulation of Rap1Gap: A Switch from DCIS to Invasive Breast Carcinoma via ERK/MAPK Activation.
Neoplasia. 2018; 20(9):951-963 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/11/2019 Related Publications
Diagnosis of breast ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) presents a challenge since we cannot yet distinguish those cases that would remain indolent and not require aggressive treatment from cases that may progress to invasive ductal cancer (IDC). The purpose of this study is to determine the role of Rap1Gap, a GTPase activating protein, in the progression from DCIS to IDC. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) analysis of samples from breast cancer patients shows an increase in Rap1Gap expression in DCIS compared to normal breast tissue and IDCs. In order to study the mechanisms of malignant progression, we employed an in vitro three-dimensional (3D) model that more accurately recapitulates both structural and functional cues of breast tissue. Immunoblotting results show that Rap1Gap levels in MCF10.Ca1D cells (a model of invasive carcinoma) are reduced compared to those in MCF10.DCIS (a model of DCIS). Retroviral silencing of Rap1Gap in MCF10.DCIS cells activated extracellular regulated kinase (ERK) mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), induced extensive cytoskeletal reorganization and acquisition of mesenchymal phenotype, and enhanced invasion. Enforced reexpression of Rap1Gap in MCF10.DCIS-Rap1GapshRNA cells reduced Rap1 activity and reversed the mesenchymal phenotype. Similarly, introduction of dominant negative Rap1A mutant (Rap1A-N17) in DCIS-Rap1Gap shRNA cells caused a reversion to nonmalignant phenotype. Conversely, expression of constitutively active Rap1A mutant (Rap1A-V12) in noninvasive MCF10.DCIS cells led to phenotypic changes that were reminiscent of Rap1Gap knockdown. Thus, reduction of Rap1Gap in DCIS is a potential switch for progression to an invasive phenotype. The Graphical Abstract summarizes these findings.

Zhang T, Jiang K, Zhu X, et al.
miR-433 inhibits breast cancer cell growth via the MAPK signaling pathway by targeting Rap1a.
Int J Biol Sci. 2018; 14(6):622-632 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/11/2019 Related Publications
Breast cancer is one of the most lethal cancers in the world. The fight against breast cancer has also become a major task for medical workers. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are often aberrantly expressed in diverse cancers and are involved in progression and metastasis. Many studies have found that miRNAs can act as oncogenes or as tumor suppressor genes. Here, we show that miR-433 is significantly decreased in breast cancer cells. In addition, we demonstrate the effects of miR-433 on breast cancer cell apoptosis, migration and proliferation in an attempt to elucidate the mechanism of action of miR-433. Moreover, Rap1a was predicted to be a potential target of miR-433 using bioinformatic approaches, and we found that the expression of Rap1a is inversely correlated with the level of miR-433. Further studies through overexpression and knockdown of Rap1a confirmed that Rap1a, as a direct target gene of miR-433, contributes to the functions of miR-433. In addition, we found that Rap1a activates the MAPK signaling pathway, which can contribute to cell migration and proliferation and can inhibit apoptosis. Overall, these findings highlight miR-433 as a tumor suppressor gene in the regulation of the progression and metastatic potential of breast cancer and may benefit the future development of therapies targeting miR-433 in breast cancer.

Mo SJ, Hou X, Hao XY, et al.
EYA4 inhibits hepatocellular carcinoma growth and invasion by suppressing NF-κB-dependent RAP1 transactivation.
Cancer Commun (Lond). 2018; 38(1):9 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/11/2019 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Our previous studies demonstrated that eyes absent homolog 4 (EYA4), a member of the eye development-related EYA family in Drosophila, is frequently methylated and silenced in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) specimens and associated with shorter survival. The current work aimed to explore the mechanisms through which EYA4 functions as a tumor suppressor in HCC.
METHODS: Stable EYA4-expressing plasmid (pEYA4) transfectants of the human HCC cell lines Huh-7 and PLC/PRF/5 (PLC) were established. Xenografts tumors were established via subcutaneous injection of the stable transfectants into BALB/c nude mice. Tissue samples were obtained from 75 pathologically diagnosed HCC patients. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, Western blotting and immunohistochemistry were performed to determine the expression of EYA4 in cell lines, xenografts and clinical specimens. The cell proliferation, colony formation, invasiveness and tumor formation of stable transfectants were studied. A gene expression microarray was utilized to screen genes regulated by EYA4 expression. The effect of EYA4 on nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB)/RAS-related protein 1 (RAP1) signaling was demonstrated through the co-transfection of pEYA4 and Flag-tagged RAS-related protein 1A gene-expressing plasmid (Flag-RAP1A), functional studies, chromatin immunoprecipitation, immunofluorescence staining and cellular ubiquitination assay.
RESULTS: The restoration of EYA4 expression in HCC cell lines suppressed cell proliferation, inhibited clonogenic outgrowth, reduced cell invasion and restrained xenograft tumor growth, and Flag-RAP1A reversed the suppressive effects of pEYA4 in vitro. Activation of NF-κB with tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) increased the binding of p65 to the RAP1A gene promoter and up-regulated RAP1 protein expression. The inhibition of NF-κB with BAY 11-7085 and p65 siRNA successfully blocked TNF-α-induced RAP1 up-regulation. EYA4 antagonized the TNF-α-induced phosphorylation and ubiquitination of inhibitor of NF-κBα (IκBα) as well as the nuclear translocation and transactivation of p65, resulting in repressed NF-κB activity and RAP1 expression. Blocking the serine/threonine phosphatase activity of EYA4 with calyculin A notably abrogated its suppressive effect on NF-κB activity. In addition, EYA4 expression was inversely correlated with IκBα/RAP1 activity in clinical HCC specimens.
CONCLUSION: Our findings provide a functional and mechanistic basis for identifying EYA4 as a bona fide tumor suppressor that disrupts aberrant activation of the NF-κB/RAP1 signaling pathway and thus orchestrates a physiological impediment to HCC growth and invasion.

Shah S, Brock EJ, Ji K, Mattingly RR
Ras and Rap1: A tale of two GTPases.
Semin Cancer Biol. 2019; 54:29-39 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Ras oncoproteins play pivotal roles in both the development and maintenance of many tumor types. Unfortunately, these proteins are difficult to directly target using traditional pharmacological strategies, in part due to their lack of obvious binding pockets or allosteric sites. This obstacle has driven a considerable amount of research into pursuing alternative ways to effectively inhibit Ras, examples of which include inducing mislocalization to prevent Ras maturation and inactivating downstream proteins in Ras-driven signaling pathways. Ras proteins are archetypes of a superfamily of small GTPases that play specific roles in the regulation of many cellular processes, including vesicle trafficking, nuclear transport, cytoskeletal rearrangement, and cell cycle progression. Several other superfamily members have also been linked to the control of normal and cancer cell growth and survival. For example, Rap1 has high sequence similarity to Ras, has overlapping binding partners, and has been demonstrated to both oppose and mimic Ras-driven cancer phenotypes. Rap1 plays an important role in cell adhesion and integrin function in a variety of cell types. Mechanistically, Ras and Rap1 cooperate to initiate and sustain ERK signaling, which is activated in many malignancies and is the target of successful therapeutics. Here we review the role activated Rap1 in ERK signaling and other downstream pathways to promote invasion and cell migration and metastasis in various cancer types.

Xiao P, Dolinska M, Sandhow L, et al.
Blood Adv. 2018; 2(5):534-548 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Mutations of signal-induced proliferation-associated gene 1 (

Lv C, Wang H, Tong Y, et al.
The function of BTG3 in colorectal cancer cells and its possible signaling pathway.
J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2018; 144(2):295-308 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
PURPOSE: B-cell translocation gene 3 (BTG3) has been identified as a candidate driver gene for various cancers, but its specific role in colorectal cancer (CRC) is poorly understood. We aimed to investigate the relationship between expression of BTG3 and clinicopathological features and prognosis, as well as to explore the effects and the role of a possible BTG3 molecular mechanism on aggressive colorectal cancer behavior.
METHODS: BTG3 expression was assessed by immunohistochemistry (IHC) on specimens from 140 patients with CRC. The association of BTG3 expression with clinicopathological features was examined. To confirm the biological role of BTG3 in CRC, two CRC cell lines expressing BTG3 were used and BTG3 expression was knocked down by shRNA. CCK-8, cell cycle, apoptosis, migration, and invasion assays were performed. The influence of BTG3 knockdown was further investigated by genomic microarray to uncover the potential molecular mechanisms underlying BTG3-mediated CRC development and progression.
RESULTS: BTG3 was downregulated in colorectal cancer tissues and positively correlated with pathological classification (p = 0.037), depth of invasion (p = 0.016), distant metastasis (p = 0.024), TNM stage (p = 0.007), and overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS). BTG3 knockdown promoted cell proliferation, migration, invasion, relieved G2 arrest, and inhibited apoptosis in HCT116 and LoVo cells. A genomic microarray analysis showed that numerous tumor-associated signaling pathways and oncogenes were altered by BTG3 knockdown. At the mRNA level, nine genes referred to the extracellular-regulated kinase/mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway were differentially expressed. Western blotting revealed that BTG3 knockdown upregulated PAK2, RPS6KA5, YWHAB, and signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT)3 protein levels, but downregulated RAP1A, DUSP6, and STAT1 protein expression, which was consistent with the genomic microarray data.
CONCLUSIONS: BTG3 expression might contribute to CRC carcinogenesis. BTG3 knockdown might strengthen the aggressive colorectal cancer behavior.

Huang J, Liu Z, Sun Y, et al.
Use of methylation profiling to identify significant differentially methylated genes in bone marrow mesenchymal stromal cells from acute myeloid leukemia.
Int J Mol Med. 2018; 41(2):679-686 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
The present study aimed to characterize the epigenetic architecture by studying the DNA methylation signature in bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BM‑MSCs) from patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Microarray dataset GSE79695 was downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus database. Differentially methylated sites and differentially methylated CpG islands were identified in BM‑MSC samples from patients with AML compared with controls. MicroRNAs (miRs) encoding genes covering differentially methylated sites were found and the regulation network was constructed. Pathway enrichment analysis of hypermethylated genes and hypomethylated genes was performed, followed by protein‑protein interaction (PPI) network construction. Moreover, the identified differentially methylated genes were compared with the leukemia‑related marker/therapeutic genes from the literature. Overall, 228 hypermethylated CpG site probes covering 183 gene symbols and 523 hypomethylated CpG sites probes covering 362 gene symbols were identified in the BM‑MSCs from AML patients. Furthermore, 4 genes with CpG island hypermethylation were identified, including peptidase M20 domain containing 1 (PM20D1). The hsa‑miR‑596‑encoding gene MIR596 was found to be hypermethylated and the regulation network based on hsa‑miR‑596 and its targets (such as cytochrome P450 family 1 subfamily B member 1) was constructed. Hypermethylated and hypomethylated genes were enriched in different Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathways, including 'hsa05221: Acute myeloid leukemia' and 'hsa05220: Chronic myeloid leukemia', which the hypomethylated gene mitogen‑activated protein kinase 3 (MAPK3) was involved in. In addition, MAPK3, lysine demethylase 2B and RAP1A, member of RAS oncogene family were hubs in the PPI network of methylated genes. In conclusion, PM20D1 with hypermethylation of CpG islands may be associated with the energy expenditure of patients with AML. Furthermore, the aberrantly hypermethylated miR‑159‑encoding gene MIR159 may be a potential biomarker of AML.

Ichikawa H, Itsumi M, Kajioka S, et al.
Overexpression of exchange protein directly activated by cAMP-1 (EPAC1) attenuates bladder cancer cell migration.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2018; 495(1):64-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
Exchange protein directly activated by cAMP (EPAC) is a mediator of a cAMP signaling pathway that is independent of protein kinase A. EPAC has two isoforms (EPAC1 and EPAC2) and is a cAMP-dependent guanine nucleotide exchange factor for the small GTPases, Rap1 and Rap2. Recent studies suggest that EPAC1 has both positive and negative influences on cancer and is involved in cell proliferation, apoptosis, migration and metastasis. We report that EPAC1 and EPAC2 expression levels were significantly lower in bladder cancer tissue than in normal bladder tissue. In addition, bladder cancer cell lines showed reduced EPAC1 mRNA expression. Furthermore, EPAC1 overexpression in bladder cancer cell lines induced morphologic changes and markedly suppressed cell migration without affecting cell viability. The overexpressed EPAC1 preferentially localized at cell-cell interfaces. In conclusion, reduced EPAC1 expression in bladder tumors and poor migration of EPAC1-overexpressing cells implicate EPAC1 as an inhibitor of bladder cancer cell migration.

Liu W, Zhang J, Zou C, et al.
Microarray Expression Profile and Functional Analysis of Circular RNAs in Osteosarcoma.
Cell Physiol Biochem. 2017; 43(3):969-985 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Osteosarcoma (OS) is the most common primary malignant bone tumor in children and adolescents. However, the molecular mechanisms regulating osteosarcoma tumorigenesis and progression are still poorly understood. Circular RNAs (circRNAs) have been identified as microRNA sponges and are involved in many important biological processes. This study aims to investigate the global changes in the expression pattern of circRNAs in osteosarcoma and provide a comprehensive understanding of differentially expressed circRNAs.
METHODS: Microarray based circRNA expression was determined in osteosarcoma cell lines and compared with hFOB1.19, which was used as the normal control. We confirmed the microarray data by real time-qPCR in both osteosarcoma cell lines and tissues. The circRNA/microRNA/mRNA interaction network was predicted using bioinformatics. Gene Ontology analysis and 4 annotation tools for pathway analysis (KEGG, Biocarta, PANTHER and Reactome) were used to predict the functions of differentially expressed circRNAs.
RESULTS: We revealed a number of differentially expressed circRNAs and 12 of them were confirmed, which suggests a potential role of circRNAs in OS. Among these differentially expressed circRNAs, hsa_circRNA_103801 was up-regulated in both osteosarcoma cell lines and tissues, while hsa_circRNA_104980 was down-regulated. The most likely potential target miRNAs for hsa_circRNA_103801 include hsa-miR-370-3p, hsa-miR-338-3p and hsa-miR-877-3p, while the most potential target miRNAs of hsa_circRNA_104980 consist of hsa-miR-1298-3p and hsa-miR-660-3p. Functional analysis found that hsa_circRNA_103801 was involved in pathways in cancer, such as the HIF-1, VEGF and angiogenesis pathway, the Rap1 signaling pathway and the PI3K-Akt signaling pathway, while hsa_circRNA_104980 was related to some pathways such as the tight junction pathway.
CONCLUSIONS: This study has identified the comprehensive expression profile of circRNAs in osteosarcoma for the first time. And the ceRNA network prediction and bioinformatics functional analysis could provide a comprehensive understanding of hsa_circRNA_103801 and hsa_circRNA_104980, which may be involved in the initiation and progression of osteosarcoma. The present study indicates that circRNAs may play important roles in osteosarcoma and thus serve as biomarkers of osteosarcoma diagnosis and treatment.

Shi Z, Zhou H, Pan B, et al.
Exploring the key genes and pathways of osteosarcoma with pulmonary metastasis using a gene expression microarray.
Mol Med Rep. 2017; 16(5):7423-7431 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Osteosarcoma is a common and highly malignant tumour in children and teenagers that is characterized by drug resistance and high metastatic potential. Patients often develop pulmonary metastasis and have a low survival rate. However, the mechanistic basis for pulmonary metastasis remains unclear. To identify key gene and pathways associated with pulmonary metastasis of osteosarcoma, the authors downloaded the gene expression dataset GSE85537 and obtained the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) by analyzing high‑throughput gene expression in primary tumours and lung metastases. Subsequently, the authors performed gene ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathway (KEGG) enrichment analyses and a protein‑protein interaction (PPI) network was constructed and analyzed by Cytoscape software. In total, 2,493 genes were identified as DEGs. Of these, 485 genes (19.45%) were upregulated, and the remaining 2,008 genes (80.55%) were downregulated. The authors identified the predominant GO categories and KEGG pathways that were significantly over‑represented in the metastatic OS samples compared with the non‑metastatic OS samples. A PPI network was constructed, and the results indicated that ALB, EGFR, INS, IL6, CDH1, FYN, ERBB2, IL8, CXCL12 and RAC2 were the top 10 core genes. The enrichment analyses of the genes involved in the top three significant modules demonstrated that the DEGs were principally related to neuroactive ligand‑receptor interaction, the Rap1 signaling pathway, and protein digestion and absorption. Together, these data elucidated the molecular mechanisms of OS patients with pulmonary metastasis and provide potential therapeutic targets. However, further experimental studies are needed to confirm these results.

Li Y, Liu X, Tang H, et al.
RNA Sequencing Uncovers Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Pathological Complete Response to Chemotherapy in Patients with Operable Breast Cancer.
Med Sci Monit. 2017; 23:4321-4327 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
BACKGROUND This study aimed to identify key genes contributing to pathological complete response (pCR) to chemotherapy by mRNA sequencing (RNA-seq). MATERIAL AND METHODS RNA was extracted from the frozen biopsy tissue of patients with pathological complete response and patients with non-pathological complete response. Sequencing was performed on the HiSeq2000 platform. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified between the pCR group and non-pCR (NpCR) group. Pathway enrichment analysis of DEGs was performed. A protein-protein interaction network was constructed, then module analysis was performed to identify a subnetwork. Finally, transcription factors were predicted. RESULTS A total of 673 DEGs were identified, including 419 upregulated ones and 254 downregulated ones. The PPI network constructed consisted of 276 proteins forming 471 PPI pairs, and a subnetwork containing 18 protein nodes was obtained. Pathway enrichment analysis revealed that PLCB4 and ADCY6 were enriched in pathways renin secretion, gastric acid secretion, gap junction, inflammatory mediator regulation of TRP channels, retrograde endocannabinoid signaling, melanogenesis, cGMP-PKG signaling pathway, calcium signaling pathway, chemokine signaling pathway, cAMP signaling pathway, and rap1 signaling pathway. CNR1 was enriched in the neuroactive ligand-receptor interaction pathway, retrograde endocannabinoid signaling pathway, and rap1 signaling pathway. The transcription factor-gene network consists of 15 transcription factors and 16 targeted genes, of which 5 were downregulated and 10 were upregulated. CONCLUSIONS We found key genes that may contribute to pCR to chemotherapy, such as PLCB4, ADCY6, and CNR1, as well as some transcription factors.

Sun J, Yan J, Yuan X, et al.
A computationally constructed ceRNA interaction network based on a comparison of the SHEE and SHEEC cell lines.
Cell Mol Biol Lett. 2016; 21:21 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) play critical and complicated roles in the regulation of various biological processes, including chromatin modification, transcription and post-transcriptional processing. Interestingly, some lncRNAs serve as miRNA "sponges" that inhibit interaction with miRNA targets in post-transcriptional regulation. We constructed a putative competing endogenous RNA (ceRNA) network by integrating lncRNA, miRNA and mRNA expression based on high-throughput RNA sequencing and microarray data to enable a comparison of the SHEE and SHEEC cell lines. Using Targetscan and miRanda bioinformatics algorithms and miRTarbase microRNA-target interactions database, we established that 51 miRNAs sharing 13,623 MREs with 2260 genes and 82 lncRNAs were involved in this ceRNA network. Through a biological function analysis, the ceRNA network appeared to be primarily involved in cell proliferation, apoptosis, the cell cycle, invasion and metastasis. Functional pathway analyses demonstrated that the ceRNA network potentially modulated multiple signaling pathways, such as the MAPK, Ras, HIF-1, Rap1, and PI3K/Akt signaling pathways. These results might provide new clues to better understand the regulation of the ceRNA network in cancer.

Xiao L, Lan X, Shi X, et al.
Cytoplasmic RAP1 mediates cisplatin resistance of non-small cell lung cancer.
Cell Death Dis. 2017; 8(5):e2803 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Cytotoxic chemotherapy agents (e.g., cisplatin) are the first-line drugs to treat non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) but NSCLC develops resistance to the agent, limiting therapeutic efficacy. Despite many approaches to identifying the underlying mechanism for cisplatin resistance, there remains a lack of effective targets in the population that resist cisplatin treatment. In this study, we sought to investigate the role of cytoplasmic RAP1, a previously identified positive regulator of NF-κB signaling, in the development of cisplatin resistance in NSCLC cells. We found that the expression of cytoplasmic RAP1 was significantly higher in high-grade NSCLC tissues than in low-grade NSCLC; compared with a normal pulmonary epithelial cell line, the A549 NSCLC cells exhibited more cytoplasmic RAP1 expression as well as increased NF-κB activity; cisplatin treatment resulted in a further increase of cytoplasmic RAP1 in A549 cells; overexpression of RAP1 desensitized the A549 cells to cisplatin, and conversely, RAP1 depletion in the NSCLC cells reduced their proliferation and increased their sensitivity to cisplatin, indicating that RAP1 is required for cell growth and has a key mediating role in the development of cisplatin resistance in NSCLC cells. The RAP1-mediated cisplatin resistance was associated with the activation of NF-κB signaling and the upregulation of the antiapoptosis factor BCL-2. Intriguingly, in the small portion of RAP1-depleted cells that survived cisplatin treatment, no induction of NF-κB activity and BCL-2 expression was observed. Furthermore, in established cisplatin-resistant A549 cells, RAP1 depletion caused BCL2 depletion, caspase activation and dramatic lethality to the cells. Hence, our results demonstrate that the cytoplasmic RAP1-NF-κB-BCL2 axis represents a key pathway to cisplatin resistance in NSCLC cells, identifying RAP1 as a marker and a potential therapeutic target for cisplatin resistance of NSCLC.

Xu Y, Chen X, Lin L, et al.
MicroRNA-149 is associated with clinical outcome in human neuroblastoma and modulates cancer cell proliferation through Rap1 independent of MYCN amplification.
Biochimie. 2017; 139:1-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: We evaluated the clinical relevance of microRNA-149 (miR-149) in neuroblastoma (NB) and its functional roles in regulating NB proliferation in vitro.
METHODS: QRT-PCR was used to evaluate miR-149 expression in NB cell lines and primary NB tumors. Association between endogenous miR-149 expression in primary NB tumors and their host patients' clinicopathological factors and overall survival (OS) were statistically evaluated. In SH-SY5Y, an MYCN-non-amplified, and LAN5, an MYCN-amplified NB cell lines, miR-149 was either upregulated or downregulated by lentiviral transduction, to evaluate its effect on NB proliferation in vitro. Possible downstream target of miR-149, Ras-related protein 1 (Rap1), was evaluated by qRT-PCR and western blot in lentiviral-transduced NB cells. Moreover, Rap1 was either upregulated or downregulated in lentiviral-transduced NB cells to further evaluate its effect on miR-149-mediated NB proliferation in vitro.
RESULTS: MiR-149 is markedly downregulated in both in vitro NB cell lines and in vivo NB primary tumors. Low miR-149 expression is predominantly associated with Stage 3 or 4 primary NB tumors, and poor OS among NB patients. In SH-SY5Y and LAN5 cells, lentivirus-induced miR-149 upregulation inhibited, whereas miR-149 downregulation promoted NB proliferation in vitro, despite MYCN-amplification status. Rap1 expression, at both mRNA and protein levels, was inversely associated with miR-149 in NB. In addition, Rap1 upregulation or downregulation reversely regulated miR-149-mediated NB proliferation in vitro.
CONCLUSION: MiR-149 is downregulated in NB and closely associated with NB patients' clinical outcome. MiR-149 also functionally modulates NB cell proliferation in vitro, possibly through inverse-regulation on Rap1.

Zhang K, Wang YW, Wang YY, et al.
Identification of microRNA biomarkers in the blood of breast cancer patients based on microRNA profiling.
Gene. 2017; 619:10-20 [PubMed] Related Publications
Accumulating evidence indicates that human circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) could serve as diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers in various cancers. We aimed to explore novel miRNA biomarkers in the blood of breast cancer patients based on miRNA profiling. A miRCURY™ LNA Array was used to identify differentially altered miRNAs in the whole blood of breast cancer patients (n=6) and healthy controls (n=6). Levels of candidate miRNAs were quantified by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) in whole blood specimens of 15 breast cancer patients and 13 age-matched healthy control individuals. The miRWalk database was used to predict miRNA targets and the DAVID tool was used to identify significant enrichment pathways. A total of 171 differentially expressed miRNAs were identified by microarray, including 169 upregulated and 2 downregulated miRNAs in breast cancer. Five upregulated miRNAs (miR-30b-5p, miR-96-5p, miR-182-5p, miR-374b-5p, and miR-942-5p) were confirmed by qRT-PCR. The areas under the receiver operating characteristic curve of miR-30b-5p, miR-96-5p, miR-182-5p, miR-374b-5p, and miR-942-5p were 0.9333, 0.7692, 0.7590, 0.8256, and 0.8128, respectively. Importantly, upregulation of these five miRNAs was observed even in patients with very early-stage breast cancer. A total of 855 genes were predicted to be targeted by the five miRNAs, and the one cut domain family member 2 gene (ONECUT2) was a shared target of the five miRNAs. Analysis of publicly available data revealed that these dysregulated miRNAs and the target genes were associated with the survival of breast cancer patients. Furthermore, the five miRNAs were significantly enriched in numerous cancer-related pathways, including "MicroRNAs in cancer", "Pathways in cancer", "FoxO signaling pathway", "Ras signaling pathway", "Rap1 signaling pathway", "MAPK signaling pathway", and "PI3K-Akt signaling pathway". Our data support the potential of the five identified miRNAs as novel biomarkers for the detection of breast cancer, and indicate that they may be involved in breast cancer development and progression.

Guan G, Li R, Tang W, et al.
Expression of RNA-binding motif 10 is associated with advanced tumor stage and malignant behaviors of lung adenocarcinoma cancer cells.
Tumour Biol. 2017; 39(3):1010428317691740 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study assessed RNA-binding motif 10 expression in lung adenocarcinoma tissues and examined the role and mechanism of RNA-binding motif 10 in the regulation of lung adenocarcinoma malignancy. Lung adenocarcinoma and corresponding adjacent non-tumor lung tissues from 41 patients were subjected to reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and Western blot assessment to detect RNA-binding motif 10 expression. Recombinant lentivirus carrying RNA-binding motif 10 complementary DNA was used to infect lung adenocarcinoma cell lines, A549 and H1299 cells. Complementary DNA microarray was used to profile RNA-binding motif 10-regulated genes. Levels of RNA-binding motif 10 messenger RNA and protein were significantly lower in lung adenocarcinoma tissues than those in paired non-tumor tissues (p < 0.001). Reduced RNA-binding motif 10 expression was found to be associated with an advanced tumor stage. RNA-binding motif 10 overexpression inhibited viability and colony formation capacity of lung adenocarcinoma cell lines and induced cell-cycle arrest at G0/G1 phase in A549 cells and at S phase in H1299 cells. Complementary DNA microarray analysis identified 304 upregulated and 386 downregulated genes induced by RNA-binding motif 10 overexpression, which may be involved in cancer, focal adhesion, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-regulated gene pathway, cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction, mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling, complement and coagulation cascades, platelet amyloid precursor protein pathway, extracellular matrix-receptor interaction, and small cell lung cancer-related genes. Expression of FGF2, EGFR, WNT5A, NF-κB, and RAP1A was downregulated, whereas expression of AKT2, BIRC3, and JUN was upregulated. RNA-binding motif 10 messenger RNA and protein were reduced in lung adenocarcinoma tissues, and RNA-binding motif 10 overexpression inhibited lung adenocarcinoma cancer cell malignant behavior in vitro. Molecularly, RNA-binding motif 10 regulates many gene pathways involving in the tumor development or progression.

Vizkeleti L, Kiss T, Koroknai V, et al.
Altered integrin expression patterns shown by microarray in human cutaneous melanoma.
Melanoma Res. 2017; 27(3):180-188 [PubMed] Related Publications
A large variety of molecular pathways in melanoma progression suggests that no individual molecular alteration is crucial in itself. Our aim was to define the molecular alterations underlying metastasis formation. Gene expression profiling was performed using microarray and qRT-PCR to define alterations between matched primary and metastatic melanoma cell lines. These data were integrated with publicly available unmatched tissue data. The invasiveness of cell lines was determined by Matrigel invasion assays and invasive clones from primary melanoma-derived cell lines were also selected. Two metastatic cell line models were created: the regional lymph node WM983A-WM983A-WM983B and the distant lung WM793B-WM793B-1205Lu metastatic models. The majority of metastasis genes were downregulated and enriched in adhesion and ITGA6-B4 pathways. Upregulation of immune pathways was characteristic of distant metastases, whereas increased Rap1 signaling was specific for regional (sub)cutaneous metastases. qRT-PCR analysis of selected integrins (A2, A3, A4, A9, B5, B8, A6, B1, and B3) highlighted the possible importance of ITGA3/4 and B8 in the metastatic process, distinguishing regional and distant metastases. We identified functionally relevant gene clusters that influenced metastasis formation. Our data provide further evidence that integrin expression patterns may be important in distant metastasis formation.

Park JY, Juhnn YS
cAMP signaling increases histone deacetylase 8 expression via the Epac2-Rap1A-Akt pathway in H1299 lung cancer cells.
Exp Mol Med. 2017; 49(2):e297 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
This study was performed to investigate the signaling pathway that mediates cyclic AMP (cAMP)-induced inhibition of histone deacetylase 8 (HDAC8) degradation, and the effect and underlying mechanisms of the resulting increase in HDAC8 expression on cisplatin-induced apoptosis in lung cancer cells. cAMP signaling increased HDAC8 expression via a protein kinase A (PKA)-independent pathway in H1299 non-small cell lung cancer cells. However, treatment with a selective activator of an exchange protein that was activated by cAMP (Epac) increased HDAC8 expression, and Epac2 inhibition abolished the isoproterenol (ISO)-induced increase in HDAC8 expression. ISO and the Epac activator activated Rap1, and Rap1A activation increased HDAC8 expression; moreover, inhibition of Rap1A with a dominant negative Rap1A or by shRNA-mediated knockdown abolished the ISO-induced increase in HDAC8 expression. Activation of cAMP signaling and Rap1A decreased the activating phosphorylation of Akt. Akt inhibition with a pharmacological inhibitor or expression of a dominant negative Akt inhibited the MKK4/JNK pathway and increased HDAC8 expression. The Akt inhibitor-induced increase in HDAC8 expression was abolished by pretreatment with proteasomal or lysosomal inhibitors. The ISO treatment increased cisplatin-induced apoptosis, which was abolished by HDAC8 knockdown. Exogenous HDAC8 expression increased cisplatin-induced apoptosis and decreased TIPRL expression, and the knockdown of TIPRL increased the apoptosis of cisplatin-treated cells. The ISO treatment decreased cisplatin-induced transcription of the TIPRL gene in a HDAC8-dependent manner. In conclusion, the Epac-Rap1-Akt pathway mediates cAMP signaling-induced inhibition of JNK-dependent HDAC8 degradation, and the resulting HDAC8 increase augments cisplatin-induced apoptosis by repressing TIPRL expression in H1299 lung cancer cells.

Tamate M, Tanaka R, Osogami H, et al.
Rap1GAP inhibits tumor progression in endometrial cancer.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2017; 485(2):476-483 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Endometrioid adenocarcinoma (EAC) is a common endometrial cancer with recent dramatic increases in incidence. Previous findings indicate that Rap1GAP acts as a tumor suppressor inhibiting Ras superfamily protein Rap1 in multiple aggressive carcinomas; however, Rap1GAP expression in EAC has not been investigated. In this study, the tumor suppressing activity of Rap1GAP in EAC was explored.
METHODS: EAC cell lines were used to examine Rap1GAP levels by real-time RT-PCR and western blotting and the effects of Rap1GAP on cancer cell invasion and migration. Rap1GAP expression was analyzed by immunohistochemical staining for Rap1GAP, E-cadherin in surgically resected tumors of 114 EAC patients scored according to EAC differentiation grade. Prognostic variables such as age, stage, grade, tumor size, and immunostaining for Rap1GAP, E-cadherin were evaluated using Cox regression multivariate analysis.
RESULTS: Low Rap1GAP expression was detected in poorly differentiated EAC cells. Rap1GAP deficiency significantly accelerated while Rap1 deficiency decreased cancer cell migration and invasion. Patients with higher Rap1GAP, E-cadherin, and especially combined Rap1GAP/E-cadherin levels had better overall survival than EAC patients with no or weak expression. In addition, Rap1GAP expression was an independent prognostic factor in EAC.
CONCLUSIONS: Inhibition of Rap1GAP expression increases EAC cell migration and invasion through upregulation of Rap1. Low expression of Rap1GAP correlates with poor EAC differentiation. Our findings suggest that Rap1GAP is an important tumor suppressor with high prognostic value in EAC.

Yang Y, Zhang J, Yan Y, et al.
Low expression of Rap1GAP is associated with epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and poor prognosis in gastric cancer.
Oncotarget. 2017; 8(5):8057-8068 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Rap1GAP is a crucial tumor suppressor, but its role in gastric cancer (GC) is little investigated. In this study, we found that the expression of Rap1GAP was decreased in GC. Low expression of Rap1GAP was positively correlated with advanced pTNM stage, Borrmann types, tumor diameter and poor prognosis in patients with GC. Low expression of Rap1GAP correlated with loss of E-cadherin expression, and anomalous positivity of MMP2 expression. Multivariate analysis showed that low expression of Rap1GAP was an independent prognostic factor. Ectopic expression of Rap1GAP impaired cell migration and invasion, promoted the expression of E-cadherin and decreased the expression of MMP2. These results suggest that Rap1GAP functions as a novel suppressor of EMT and tumor metastasis in GC, and loss of Rap1GAP predicts poor prognosis in GC.

Khan MI, Czarnecka AM, Lewicki S, et al.
Comparative Gene Expression Profiling of Primary and Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma Stem Cell-Like Cancer Cells.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(11):e0165718 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Recent advancement in cancer research has shown that tumors are highly heterogeneous, and multiple phenotypically different cell populations are found in a single tumor. Cancer development and tumor growth are driven by specific types of cells-stem cell-like cancer cells (SCLCCs)-which are also responsible for metastatic spread and drug resistance. This research was designed to verify the presence of SCLCCs in renal cell cancer cell lines. Subsequently, we aimed to characterize phenotype and cell biology of CD105+ cells, defined previously as renal cell carcinoma tumor-initiating cells. The main goal of the project was to describe the gene-expression profile of stem cell-like cancer cells of primary tumor and metastatic origin.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Real-time PCR analysis of stemness genes (Oct-4, Nanog and Ncam) and soft agar colony formation assay were conducted to check the stemness properties of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) cell lines. FACS analysis of CD105+ and CD133+ cells was performed on RCC cells. Isolated CD105+ cells were verified for expression of mesenchymal markers-CD24, CD146, CD90, CD73, CD44, CD11b, CD19, CD34, CD45, HLA-DR and alkaline phosphatase. Hanging drop assay was used to investigate CD105+ cell-cell cohesion. Analysis of free-floating 3D spheres formed by isolated CD105+ was verified, as spheres have been hypothesized to contain undifferentiated multipotent progenitor cells. Finally, CD105+ cells were sorted from primary (Caki-2) and metastatic (ACHN) renal cell cancer cell lines. Gene-expression profiling of sorted CD105+ cells was performed with Agilent's human GE 4x44K v2 microarrays. Differentially expressed genes were further categorized into canonical pathways. Network analysis and downstream analysis were performed with Ingenuity Pathway Analysis.
RESULTS: Metastatic RCC cell lines (ACHN and Caki-1) demonstrated higher colony-forming ability in comparison to primary RCC cell lines. Metastatic RCC cell lines harbor numerous CD105+ cell subpopulations and have higher expression of stemness genes (Oct-4 and Nanog). CD105+ cells adopt 3D grape-like floating structures under handing drop conditions. Sorted CD105+ cells are positive for human mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) markers CD90, CD73, CD44, CD146, and alkaline phosphatase activity, but not for CD24 and hematopoietic lineage markers CD34, CD11b, CD19, CD45, and HLA-DR. 1411 genes are commonly differentially expressed in CD105+ cells (both from primary [Caki-2] and metastatic RCC [ACHN] cells) in comparison to a healthy kidney epithelial cell line (ASE-5063). TGF-β, Wnt/β-catenine, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), Rap1 signaling, PI3K-Akt signaling, and Hippo signaling pathway are deregulated in CD105+ cells. TGFB1, ERBB2, and TNF are the most significant transcriptional regulators activated in these cells.
CONCLUSIONS: All together, RCC-CD105+ cells present stemlike properties. These stem cell-like cancer cells may represent a novel target for therapy. A unique gene-expression profile of CD105+ cells could be used as initial data for subsequent functional studies and drug design.

Miklos W, Heffeter P, Pirker C, et al.
Loss of phosphodiesterase 4D mediates acquired triapine resistance via Epac-Rap1-Integrin signaling.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(51):84556-84574 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Triapine, an anticancer thiosemicarbazone, is currently under clinical investigation. Whereas promising results were obtained in hematological diseases, trials in solid tumors widely failed. To understand mechanisms causing triapine insensitivity, we have analysed genomic alterations in a triapine-resistant SW480 subline (SW480/tria). Only one distinct genomic loss was observed specifically in SW480/tria cells affecting the phosphodiesterase 4D (PDE4D) gene locus. Accordingly, pharmacological inhibition of PDE4D resulted in significant triapine resistance in SW480 cells. Hence, we concluded that enhanced cyclic AMP levels might confer protection against triapine. Indeed, hyperactivation of both major downstream pathways, namely the protein kinase A (PKA)-cAMP response element-binding protein (Creb) and the exchange protein activated by cAMP (Epac)-Ras-related protein 1 (Rap1) signaling axes, was observed in SW480/tria cells. Unexpectedly, inhibition of PKA did not re-sensitize SW480/tria cells against triapine. In contrast, Epac activation resulted in distinct triapine resistance in SW480 cells. Conversely, knock-down of Epac expression and pharmacological inhibition of Rap1 re-sensitized SW480/tria cells against triapine. Rap1 is a well-known regulator of integrins. Accordingly, SW480/tria cells displayed enhanced plasma membrane expression of several integrin subunits, enhanced adhesion especially to RGD-containing matrix components, and bolstered activation/expression of the integrin downstream effectors Src and RhoA/Rac. Accordingly, integrin and Src inhibition resulted in potent triapine re-sensitization especially of SW480/tria cells. In summary, we describe for the first time integrin activation based on cAMP-Epac-Rap1 signaling as acquired drug resistance mechanism. combinations of triapine with inhibitors of several steps in this resistance cascade might be feasible strategies to overcome triapine insensitivity of solid tumors.

Zhao J, Zeng X, Song P, et al.
AKT1 as the PageRank hub gene is associated with melanoma and its functional annotation is highly related to the estrogen signaling pathway that may regulate the growth of melanoma.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 36(4):2087-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
In order to detect the disease-associated genes and their gene interaction function and association with melanoma mechanisms, we identified a total of 1,310 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) from the Gene Expression Omnibus database GSE3189 with FDR <0.01 and |logFC| >2 using the R package. After constructing the gene interaction network by STRING with the selected DEGs, we applied a statistical approach to identify the topological hub genes with PageRank score. Forty-four genes were identified in this network and AKT1 was selected as the most important hub gene. The AKT1 gene encodes a serine‑threonine protein kinase (AKT). High expression of AKT is involved in the resistance of cell apoptosis as well as adaptive resistance to treatment in melanoma. Our results indicated that AKT1 with a higher expression in melanoma showed enriched binding sites in the negative regulation of response to external stimulus, which enables cells to adapt to changes in external stimulation for survival. Another finding was that AKT regulated the lipid metabolic process and may be involved in melanoma progression and promotion of tumor growth through gene enrichment function analysis. Two highlighted pathways were detected in our study: i) the estrogen signaling pathway modulates the immune tolerance and resistance to cell apoptosis, which contributes to the growth of melanoma and ii) the RAP1 signaling pathway which regulates focal adhesion (FA) negative feedback to cell migration and invasion in melanoma. Our studies highlighted the top differentially expressed gene AKT1 and its correlation with the estrogen signaling and RAP1 signaling pathways to alter the proliferation and apoptosis of melanoma cells. Analysis of the enrichment functions of genes associated with melanoma will help us find the exact mechanism of melanoma and advance the full potential of newly targeted cancer therapy.

Lim JA, Juhnn YS
Isoproterenol increases histone deacetylase 6 expression and cell migration by inhibiting ERK signaling via PKA and Epac pathways in human lung cancer cells.
Exp Mol Med. 2016; 48(1):e204 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2020 Related Publications
Stress conditions are correlated with tumor growth, progression and metastasis. We hypothesized that stress signals might affect tumor progression via epigenetic control of gene expression and investigated the effects of stress signals on the expression levels of histone deacetylases (HDACs) and the underlying mechanisms of these effects in lung cancer cells. Treatment with isoproterenol (ISO), an analog of the stress signal epinephrine, increased the expression of HDAC6 protein and mRNA in H1299 lung cancer cells. ISO caused the deacetylation of α-tubulin and stimulated cell migration in an HDAC6-dependent manner. HDAC6 expression was increased by treatment with selective activators of cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) or exchange protein activated by cAMP (Epac). ISO activated Rap1 via Epac, and constitutively active Rap1A increased the HDAC6 level; however, the knockdown of Rap1A decreased the 8-(4-cholorophenylthio)-2'-O-methyl-cAMP-induced increase in HDAC6 expression. Both PKA and Rap1A decreased c-Raf activation to inhibit extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signaling. Inhibition of ERK caused an increase in HDAC6 expression, and constitutively active MEK1 decreased the ISO-induced HDAC6 expression. We concluded that ISO increases HDAC6 expression via a PKA/Epac/ERK-dependent pathway that stimulates the migration of lung cancer cells. This study suggests that stress signals can stimulate the migration of cancer cells by inducing HDAC6 expression in lung cancer cells.

Disclaimer: This site is for educational purposes only; it can not be used in diagnosis or treatment.

Cite this page: Cotterill SJ. RAP1A, Cancer Genetics Web: http://www.cancer-genetics.org/RAP1A.htm Accessed:

Creative Commons License
This page in Cancer Genetics Web by Simon Cotterill is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Note: content of abstracts copyright of respective publishers - seek permission where appropriate.

 [Home]    Page last revised: 01 September, 2019     Cancer Genetics Web, Established 1999