Gene Summary

Gene:YAP1; Yes associated protein 1
Aliases: YAP, YKI, COB1, YAP2, YAP65
Summary:This gene encodes a downstream nuclear effector of the Hippo signaling pathway which is involved in development, growth, repair, and homeostasis. This gene is known to play a role in the development and progression of multiple cancers as a transcriptional regulator of this signaling pathway and may function as a potential target for cancer treatment. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants encoding different isoforms. [provided by RefSeq, Aug 2013]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:transcriptional coactivator YAP1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 31 August, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (34)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 31 August 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.

  • Carcinogenesis
  • Phosphorylation
  • Young Adult
  • Zyxin
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • MicroRNAs
  • Down-Regulation
  • Zonula Occludens-1 Protein
  • RNA Interference
  • World Health Organization
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Drug Resistance
  • Chromosome 11
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Apoptosis
  • Cell Movement
  • Cell Proliferation
  • ras Proteins
  • c-Mer Tyrosine Kinase
  • TNF Receptor-Associated Factor 2
  • Liver Cancer
  • Zinc Finger E-box Binding Homeobox 2
  • Brain Tumours
  • p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Transcription Factor RelA
  • Signal Transducing Adaptor Proteins
  • Survivin
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • alpha Catenin
  • TGFB1
  • Hepatocellular Carcinoma
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Breast Cancer
  • Vimentin
  • Lung Cancer
  • Transcription Factors
  • Wnt Proteins
  • Transcriptome
  • Gene Knockdown Techniques
  • Neoplastic Cell Transformation
Tag cloud generated 31 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (4)

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: YAP1 (cancer-related)

Li Y, Xu Q, Yang W, et al.
Oleanolic acid reduces aerobic glycolysis-associated proliferation by inhibiting yes-associated protein in gastric cancer cells.
Gene. 2019; 712:143956 [PubMed] Related Publications
Gastric cancer represents a common malignancy of digestive tract with high incidence and mortality. Increasing evidence suggests that the growth of gastric tumor cells relies largely on aerobic glycolysis. Currently, many potential anti-cancer candidates are derived from natural products. Here, we evaluated the effects of oleanolic acid (OA), a triterpenoid component widely found in the plants of Oleaceae family, on aerobic glycolysis and proliferation in human MKN-45 and SGC-7901 gastric cancer cells. Our results demonstrated that OA reduced the viability and proliferation of gastric cancer cells and inhibited the expression of cyclin A and cyclin-dependent kinase 2. OA blocked glycolysis in these cells evidenced by decreases in the uptake and consumption of glucose, intracellular lactate levels and extracellular acidification rate. Glycolysis inhibitor 2-deoxy-d-glucose, similar to OA, suppressed gastric cancer cell proliferation. OA also decreased the expression and intracellular activities of glycolysis rate-limiting enzymes hexokinase 2 (HK2) and phosphofructokinase 1 (PFK1). Moreover, OA downregulated the expression of hypoxia inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) and decreased its nuclear abundance. Upregulation of HIF-1α by deferoxamine rescued OA-inhibited HK2 and PFK1. Furthermore, OA reduced the nuclear abundance of yes-associated protein (YAP) in gastric tumor cells. YAP inhibitor verteporfin, similar to OA, downregulated the expression of HIF-1α and glycolytic enzymes in gastric cancer cells; whereas overexpression of YAP abrogated all these effects of OA. Collectively, inhibition of YAP was responsible for OA blockade of HIF-1α-mediated aerobic glycolysis and proliferation in human gastric tumor cells. OA could be developed as a promising candidate for gastric cancer treatment.

Picco G, Chen ED, Alonso LG, et al.
Functional linkage of gene fusions to cancer cell fitness assessed by pharmacological and CRISPR-Cas9 screening.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):2198 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Many gene fusions are reported in tumours and for most their role remains unknown. As fusions are used for diagnostic and prognostic purposes, and are targets for treatment, it is crucial to assess their function in cancer. To systematically investigate the role of fusions in tumour cell fitness, we utilized RNA-sequencing data from 1011 human cancer cell lines to functionally link 8354 fusion events with genomic data, sensitivity to >350 anti-cancer drugs and CRISPR-Cas9 loss-of-fitness effects. Established clinically-relevant fusions were identified. Overall, detection of functional fusions was rare, including those involving cancer driver genes, suggesting that many fusions are dispensable for tumour fitness. Therapeutically actionable fusions involving RAF1, BRD4 and ROS1 were verified in new histologies. In addition, recurrent YAP1-MAML2 fusions were identified as activators of Hippo-pathway signaling in multiple cancer types. Our approach discriminates functional fusions, identifying new drivers of carcinogenesis and fusions that could have clinical implications.

Gao R, Yun Y, Cai Z, Sang N
Sci Total Environ. 2019; 678:611-617 [PubMed] Related Publications
Extensive epidemiological studies have revealed that nearly 25% of the premature mortality from lung cancer is attributed to regional haze caused by a high level of fine particulate matter (PM

Ito T, Nakamura A, Tanaka I, et al.
CADM1 associates with Hippo pathway core kinases; membranous co-expression of CADM1 and LATS2 in lung tumors predicts good prognosis.
Cancer Sci. 2019; 110(7):2284-2295 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cell adhesion molecule-1 (CADM1) is a member of the immunoglobulin superfamily that functions as a tumor suppressor of lung tumors. We herein demonstrated that CADM1 interacts with Hippo pathway core kinases and enhances the phosphorylation of YAP1, and also that the membranous co-expression of CADM1 and LATS2 predicts a favorable prognosis in lung adenocarcinoma. CADM1 significantly repressed the saturation density elevated by YAP1 overexpression in NIH3T3 cells. CADM1 significantly promoted YAP1 phosphorylation on Ser 127 and downregulated YAP1 target gene expression at confluency in lung adenocarcinoma cell lines. Moreover, CADM1 was co-precipitated with multiple Hippo pathway components, including the core kinases MST1/2 and LATS1/2, suggesting the involvement of CADM1 in the regulation of the Hippo pathway through cell-cell contact. An immunohistochemical analysis of primary lung adenocarcinomas (n = 145) revealed that the histologically low-grade subtype frequently showed the membranous co-expression of CADM1 (20/22, 91% of low-grade; 61/91, 67% of intermediate grade; and 13/32, 41% of high-grade subtypes; P < 0.0001) and LATS2 (22/22, 100% of low-grade; 44/91, 48% of intermediate-grade; and 1/32, 3% of high-grade subtypes; P < 0.0001). A subset analysis of disease-free survival revealed that the membranous co-expression of CADM1 and LATS2 was a favorable prognosis factor (5-year disease-free survival rate: 83.8%), even with nuclear YAP1-positive expression (5-year disease-free survival rate: 83.7%), whereas nuclear YAP1-positive cases with the negative expression of CADM1 and LATS2 had a poorer prognosis (5-year disease-free survival rate: 33.3%). These results indicate that the relationship between CADM1 and Hippo pathway core kinases at the cell membrane is important for suppressing the oncogenic role of YAP1.

Xu Y, He Y, Xu W, et al.
Promotive effects of capillary morphogenetic protein 2 on glioma cell invasion and the molecular mechanism.
Folia Neuropathol. 2019; 57(1):6-15 [PubMed] Related Publications
We aimed to explore the role of capillary morphogenetic protein 2 (CMG2) in glioma cell invasion and the possible molecular mechanism. Glioma cells U87 and U251 stably overexpressing CMG2 were constructed by lentiviral transfection. The changes of cell invasion and migration were tested by Matrigel-transwell assay and scratch assay, respectively. A mouse model with orthotopically transplanted tumour was established to evaluate the effects of CMG2 overexpression on the in vivo invasion of glioma cells and survival time. The differences of filopodia and lamellar pseudopodia among glioma cells with different CMG2 expressions were observed by immunofluorescence assay. The expressions of YAP and p-YAP in glioma cells overexpressing CMG2 or not were compared by Western blot. Compared with the control group, overexpression of CMG2 enhanced the invasion and migration capacities of glioma cells (p < 0.05). The tumour tissues of mice transplanted with glioma cells overexpressing CMG2 were obviously invaded, and their survival time was significantly shortened (p < 0.05). Immunofluorescence staining showed that glioma cells overexpressing CMG2 formed more lamellipodia and filopodia than those of the control group. As glioma cells overexpressing CMG2 formed more pseudopodia, the expression of YAP, a key effector protein of the Hippo pathway, was up-regulated. CMG2 promoted the invasion of glioma cells, and may induce pseudopodium formation by up-regulating YAP expression.

Lee JY, Chang JK, Dominguez AA, et al.
YAP-independent mechanotransduction drives breast cancer progression.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):1848 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Increased tissue stiffness is a driver of breast cancer progression. The transcriptional regulator YAP is considered a universal mechanotransducer, based largely on 2D culture studies. However, the role of YAP during in vivo breast cancer remains unclear. Here, we find that mechanotransduction occurs independently of YAP in breast cancer patient samples and mechanically tunable 3D cultures. Mechanistically, the lack of YAP activity in 3D culture and in vivo is associated with the absence of stress fibers and an order of magnitude decrease in nuclear cross-sectional area relative to 2D culture. This work highlights the context-dependent role of YAP in mechanotransduction, and establishes that YAP does not mediate mechanotransduction in breast cancer.

Zhu L, Ma G, Liu J, et al.
Prognostic significance of nuclear Yes-associated protein 1 in patients with nonsmall cell lung cancer: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
Medicine (Baltimore). 2019; 98(16):e15069 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Nuclear Yes-associated protein 1 (YAP1) has often been regarded as an adverse prognostic indicator in various tumors. Recent studies have associated YAP1 with unfavorable prognosis in nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, due to small sample sizes, the prognostic value of nuclear YAP1 in NSCLC patients is not well understood. In the present study, we evaluated the prognostic role of nuclear YAP1 in NSCLC patients via a systematic review and meta-analysis.
METHODS: We searched the PubMed, EMBASE, Cochrane, Web of Science, China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), and Wanfang Databases for papers investigating the prognostic significance of nuclear YAP1 expression in NSCLC patients. Hazard ratios (HRs) and the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated with reference to overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) of NSCLC patients to provide synthesized estimates of the effects of nuclear YAP1 expression.
RESULTS: Among 414 cases, higher nuclear YAP1 expression presented as a predictive factor of poorer OS (HR = 1.52; 95% CI: 1.11-2.08; P = .01; I = 0.0%) and decreased PFS (HR = 2.11; 95% CI: 1.52-2.93; P < .001; I = 44.2%) in NSCLC patients. Subgroup analysis revealed shortened OS (HR = 1.63; 95% CI: 1.14-2.34; P = .007; I = 0.0%) and worse PFS (HR = 2.25; 95% CI: 1.53-3.30; P < .001; I = 0.0%) in patients from Asia with higher nuclear YAP1 expression. Prognosis was also worse in patients with III-IV stage cancer (PFSHR = 2.09; 95% CI: 1.45-3.01; P < .001; I = 58.1%) and in patients treated with epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) (OS HR = 1.59; 95% CI: 1.00-2.51; P = .048; I = 15.5%, and PFS HR = 2.35, 95% CI: 1.62-3.42; P < .001; I = 0.0%).
CONCLUSION: High expression of nuclear YAP1 was associated with shorter survival outcome in patients with NSCLC.

Keller M, Dubois F, Teulier S, et al.
NDR2 kinase contributes to cell invasion and cytokinesis defects induced by the inactivation of RASSF1A tumor-suppressor gene in lung cancer cells.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2019; 38(1):158 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: RASSF1A, a tumor suppressor gene, is frequently inactivated in lung cancer leading to a YAP-dependent epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). Such effects are partly due to the inactivation of the anti-migratory RhoB GTPase via the inhibitory phosphorylation of GEF-H1, the GDP/GTP exchange factor for RhoB. However, the kinase responsible for RhoB/GEF-H1 inactivation in RASSF1A-depleted cells remained unknown.
METHODS: NDR1/2 inactivation by siRNA or shRNA effects on epithelial-mesenchymal transition, invasion, xenograft formation and growth in SCID-/- Beige mice, apoptosis, proliferation, cytokinesis, YAP/TAZ activation were investigated upon RASSF1A loss in human bronchial epithelial cells (HBEC).
RESULTS: We demonstrate here that depletion of the YAP-kinases NDR1/2 reverts migration and metastatic properties upon RASSF1A loss in HBEC. We show that NDR2 interacts directly with GEF-H1 (which contains the NDR phosphorylation consensus motif HXRXXS/T), leading to GEF-H1 phosphorylation. We further report that the RASSF1A/NDR2/GEF-H1/RhoB/YAP axis is involved in proper cytokinesis in human bronchial cells, since chromosome proper segregation are NDR-dependent upon RASSF1A or GEF-H1 loss in HBEC.
CONCLUSION: To summarize, our data support a model in which, upon RASSF1A silencing, NDR2 gets activated, phosphorylates and inactivates GEF-H1, leading to RhoB inactivation. This cascade induced by RASSF1A loss in bronchial cells is responsible for metastasis properties, YAP activation and cytokinesis defects.

Yang LX, Wu J, Guo ML, et al.
Suppression of long non-coding RNA TNRC6C-AS1 protects against thyroid carcinoma through DNA demethylation of STK4 via the Hippo signalling pathway.
Cell Prolif. 2019; 52(3):e12564 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Thyroid carcinoma (TC) represents a malignant neoplasm affecting the thyroid. Current treatment strategies include the removal of part of the thyroid; however, this approach is associated with a significant risk of developing hypothyroidism. In order to adequately understand the expression profiles of TNRC6C-AS1 and STK4 and their potential functions in TC, an investigation into their involvement with Hippo signalling pathway and the mechanism by which they influence TC apoptosis and autophagy were conducted.
METHODS: A microarray analysis was performed to screen differentially expressed lncRNAs associated with TC. TC cells were employed to evaluate the role of TNRC6C-AS1 by over-expression or silencing means. The interaction of TNRC6C-AS1 with methylation of STK4 promoter was evaluated to elucidate its ability to elicit autophagy, proliferation and apoptosis.
RESULTS: TNRC6C-AS1 was up-regulated while STK4 was down-regulated, where methylation level was elevated. STK4 was verified as a target gene of TNRC6C-AS1, which was enriched by methyltransferase. Methyltransferase's binding to STK4 increased expression of its promoter. Over-expressed TNRC6C-AS1 inhibited STK4 by promoting STK4 methylation and reducing the total protein levels of MST1 and LATS1/2. The phosphorylation of YAP1 phosphorylation was decreased, which resulted in the promotion of SW579 cell proliferation and tumorigenicity.
CONCLUSION: Based on our observations, we subsequently confirmed the anti-proliferative, pro-apoptotic and pro-autophagy capabilities of TNRC6C-AS1 through STK4 methylation via the Hippo signalling pathway in TC.

Rudin CM, Poirier JT, Byers LA, et al.
Molecular subtypes of small cell lung cancer: a synthesis of human and mouse model data.
Nat Rev Cancer. 2019; 19(5):289-297 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2020 Related Publications
Small cell lung cancer (SCLC) is an exceptionally lethal malignancy for which more effective therapies are urgently needed. Several lines of evidence, from SCLC primary human tumours, patient-derived xenografts, cancer cell lines and genetically engineered mouse models, appear to be converging on a new model of SCLC subtypes defined by differential expression of four key transcription regulators: achaete-scute homologue 1 (ASCL1; also known as ASH1), neurogenic differentiation factor 1 (NeuroD1), yes-associated protein 1 (YAP1) and POU class 2 homeobox 3 (POU2F3). In this Perspectives article, we review and synthesize these recent lines of evidence and propose a working nomenclature for SCLC subtypes defined by relative expression of these four factors. Defining the unique therapeutic vulnerabilities of these subtypes of SCLC should help to focus and accelerate therapeutic research, leading to rationally targeted approaches that may ultimately improve clinical outcomes for patients with this disease.

Zheng X, Chen L, Zhou Y, et al.
A novel protein encoded by a circular RNA circPPP1R12A promotes tumor pathogenesis and metastasis of colon cancer via Hippo-YAP signaling.
Mol Cancer. 2019; 18(1):47 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2020 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: It has been well established that circular RNAs (circRNAs) play an important regulatory role during tumor progression. Recent studies have indicated that even though circRNAs generally regulate gene expression through miRNA sponges, they may encode small peptides in tumor pathogenesis. However, it remains largely unexplored whether circRNAs are involved in the tumorigenesis of colon cancer (CC).
METHODS: The expression profiles of circRNAs in CC tissues were assessed by circRNA microarray. Quantitative real-time PCR, RNase R digestion assay and tissue microarray were used to confirm the existence and expression pattern of circPPP1R12A. The subcellular distribution of circPPP1R12A was analyzed by nuclear mass separation assay and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). SDS-PAGE and LC/MS were employed to evaluate the protein-coding ability of circPPP1R12A. CC cells were stably transfected with lentivirus approach, and cell proliferation, migration and invasion, as well as tumorigenesis and metastasis in nude mice were assessed to clarify the functional roles of circPPP1R12A and its encoded protein circPPP1R12A-73aa. RNA-sequencing and Western blotting analysis were furthered employed to identify the critical signaling pathway regulated by circPPP1R12A-73aa.
RESULTS: We firstly screened the expression profiles of human circRNAs in CC tissues and found that the expression of hsa_circ_0000423 (termed as circPPP1R12A) was significantly increased in CC tissues. We also found that circPPP1R12A was mostly localized in the cytoplasm of CC cells. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed that patients with higher levels of circPPP1R12A had a significantly shorter overall survival. By gain- and loss-of-function approaches, the results suggested that circPPP1R12A played a critical role in proliferation, migration and invasion of CC cells. Furthermore, we showed that circPPP1R12A carried an open reading frame (ORF), which encoded a functional protein (termed as circPPP1R12A-73aa). Next, we found that PPP1R12A-C, not circPPP1R12A, promoted the proliferation, migration and invasion abilities of CC in vitro and in vivo. Finally, we identified that circPPP1R12A-73aa promoted the growth and metastasis of CC via activating Hippo-YAP signaling pathway. In addition, the YAP specific inhibitor Peptide 17 dramatically alleviated the promotive effect of circPPP1R12A-73aa on CC cells.
CONCLUSIONS: In the present study, we illustrated the coding-potential of circRNA circPPP1R12A in the progression of CC. Moreover, we identified that circPPP1R12A-73aa promoted the tumor pathogenesis and metastasis of CC via activating Hippo-YAP signaling pathway. Our findings might provide valuable insights into the development of novel potential therapeutic targets for CC.

Guo C, Liang C, Yang J, et al.
LATS2 inhibits cell proliferation and metastasis through the Hippo signaling pathway in glioma.
Oncol Rep. 2019; 41(5):2753-2761 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2020 Related Publications
As a core kinase in the Hippo pathway, large tumor suppressor kinase 2 (LATS2) regulates cell proliferation, migration and invasion through numerous signaling pathways. However, its functions on cell proliferation, migration and invasion in glioma have yet to be elucidated. The present study revealed that LATS2 was downregulated in glioma tissues and cells, as determined by reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction and immunohistochemistry. In addition, Cell Counting Kit‑8, scratch wound healing and Transwell assays revealed that overexpression of LATS2 in U‑372 MG cells inhibited cell proliferation, migration and invasion. Furthermore, western blot analysis indicated that the expression levels of phosphorylated (p)‑yes‑associated protein and p‑tafazzin were increased in cells with LATS2 overexpression. These results indicated that LATS2 is a potential tumor suppressor, and downregulation of LATS2 in glioma may contribute to cancer progression.

Zhou J, Zhang S, Li Z, et al.
Yap-Hippo promotes A549 lung cancer cell death via modulating MIEF1-related mitochondrial stress and activating JNK pathway.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2019; 113:108754 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although the role of Yes-associated protein (Yap) has been described in the progression of lung cancer, the downstream effector of the Yap-Hippo pathway has not been identified. Accordingly, the aim of our study is to explore whether Yap modulates the activity of lung cancer by controlling mitochondrial elongation factor 1 (MIEF1)-related mitochondrial stress in a manner dependent on the JNK pathway. Cell viability was determined via MTT, LDH release and immunofluorescence assays. ATP production, the mitochondrial membrane potential, and caspase-9 activity were investigated to assess mitochondrial function. siRNA transfection and pathway blockers were used to observe the roles of MIEF1 and JNK in Yap-modulated cell viability in lung cancer cells in vitro. Yap deletion reduced cell viability in A549 and H358 lung cancer cells. At the molecular level, Yap deletion promoted mitochondrial dysfunction, as evidenced by the decreased mitochondrial potential, increased mitochondrial oxidative stress, augmented mitochondrial pro-apoptotic factor leakage and elevated caspase-9 activity. In addition, we found that Yap modulated mitochondrial stress via MIEF1 and that loss of MIEF1 abolished the regulatory actions of Yap on mitochondrial stress and cell viability. Besides, we provided evidence to support the necessary role of JNK in Yap-mediated MIEF1 upregulation. Inhibition of JNK abolished the promotive effect of Yap deletion on MIEF1 activation. Taken together, our results identified the JNK-MIEF1 pathway and mitochondrial stress as downstream effectors of Yap in lung cancer. This finding suggests a novel approach for the treatment of lung cancer in clinical practice.

Liu Y, Wang Y, Yu S, et al.
The Role and Mechanism of CRT0066101 as an Effective Drug for Treatment of Triple-Negative Breast Cancer.
Cell Physiol Biochem. 2019; 52(3):382-396 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Breast cancer is clinically classified into three main subtypes: estrogen receptor-positive (ER
METHODS: The expression level of PRKDs was analyzed in breast cancer samples and breast cancer cell lines. The effects of inhibiting PRKD activity with CRT0066101 on TNBC cell proliferation, cell cycle, apoptosis, and tumor growth were studied by Cell Counting Kit8 assay, cell cycle assay, propidium iodide/annexin-V assay, and a xenograft mouse model, respectively. To uncover the molecular mechanism of CRT0066101 in TNBC, comparative phosphoproteomic analysis using iTRAQ was employed.
RESULTS: We found that PRKD2 and PRKD3 were preferentially expressed in breast cancers. Immunohistochemistry confirmed the overexpression of PRKD2 and PRKD3 in TNBC. CRT0066101, which inhibited the activity of PRKDs, dramatically inhibited proliferation, increased apoptosis and the G1-phase population of TNBC cells in vitro, and reduced breast tumor volume in vivo. Comparative phosphoproteomic analysis between breast cancer cells with and without CRT0066101 treatment revealed that the anti-breast cancer effects involved regulation of a complex network containing multiple enriched pathways and several hub-nodes contributing to multiple cancer-related processes, thus explaining the described effects of CRT0066101 on TNBC in vitro and in vivo. Finally, we validated several targets of PRKD inhibition by treatment with CRT0066101 and small interfering RNAs against PRKD2 and PRKD3 (siPRKD2 and siPRKD3), including p-MYC(T58/ S62), p-MAPK1/3(T202/Y204), p-AKT(S473), p-YAP(S127), and p-CDC2(T14).
CONCLUSION: PRKD inhibitor CRT0066101 exhibits anti-TNBC effects via modulating a phosphor-signaling network and inhibiting the phosphorylation of many cancer-driving factors, including MYC, MAPK1/3, AKT, YAP, and CDC2, providing insight into the important roles as well as the molecular mechanism of CRT0066101 as an effective drug for TNBC.

Kim E, Ahn B, Oh H, et al.
High Yes-associated protein 1 with concomitant negative LATS1/2 expression is associated with poor prognosis of advanced gastric cancer.
Pathology. 2019; 51(3):261-267 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Hippo pathway is a tumour-suppressive pathway and its inactivation is known to be associated with progression and metastasis of various cancers. LATS1/2 (large tumour suppressor homolog 1 and 2), YAP1 (Yes-associated protein 1), and TEAD4 (TEA domain-containing sequence-specific transcription factors 4) are core components of the Hippo pathway, and their prognostic roles have not yet been studied in advanced gastric cancers (AGCs). A total of 318 surgically resected AGCs were retrieved. Immunolabelling for LATS1/2, YAP1 and TEAD4 was compared with clinicopathological factors including patients' survival. High expression of YAP1 and TEAD4 was identified in 108 (34.0%) and 131 (41.2%) cases, respectively, and 223 (70.1%) cases were negative for LATS1/2 expression. High YAP1 expression was significantly correlated with the presence of perineural invasion (p=0.032). High YAP1 and high TEAD4 expressions were significantly associated with poor overall survival (p<0.001 and p=0.003, respectively), and negative LATS1/2 expression was also associated with poor overall survival (p=0.002). Combined expression of YAP1

Lee CK, Jeong SH, Jang C, et al.
Tumor metastasis to lymph nodes requires YAP-dependent metabolic adaptation.
Science. 2019; 363(6427):644-649 [PubMed] Related Publications
In cancer patients, metastasis of tumors to sentinel lymph nodes (LNs) predicts disease progression and often guides treatment decisions. The mechanisms underlying tumor LN metastasis are poorly understood. By using comparative transcriptomics and metabolomics analyses of primary and LN-metastatic tumors in mice, we found that LN metastasis requires that tumor cells undergo a metabolic shift toward fatty acid oxidation (FAO). Transcriptional coactivator yes-associated protein (YAP) is selectively activated in LN-metastatic tumors, leading to the up-regulation of genes in the FAO signaling pathway. Pharmacological inhibition of FAO or genetic ablation of YAP suppressed LN metastasis in mice. Several bioactive bile acids accumulated to high levels in the metastatic LNs, and these bile acids activated YAP in tumor cells, likely through the nuclear vitamin D receptor. Inhibition of FAO or YAP may merit exploration as a potential therapeutic strategy for mitigating tumor metastasis to LNs.

Van Haele M, Moya IM, Karaman R, et al.
YAP and TAZ Heterogeneity in Primary Liver Cancer: An Analysis of Its Prognostic and Diagnostic Role.
Int J Mol Sci. 2019; 20(3) [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2020 Related Publications
Primary liver cancer comprises a diverse group of liver tumors. The heterogeneity of these tumors is seen as one of the obstacles to finding an effective therapy. The Hippo pathway, with its downstream transcriptional co-activator Yes-associated protein (YAP) and transcriptional co-activator with PDZ-binding motif (TAZ), has a decisive role in the carcinogenesis of primary liver cancer. Therefore, we examined the expression pattern of YAP and TAZ in 141 patients with hepatocellular carcinoma keratin 19 positive (HCC K19⁺), hepatocellular carcinoma keratin 19 negative (HCC K19

Yang CE, Lee WY, Cheng HW, et al.
The antipsychotic chlorpromazine suppresses YAP signaling, stemness properties, and drug resistance in breast cancer cells.
Chem Biol Interact. 2019; 302:28-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
The major obstacle in current cancer therapy is the existence of cancer stem cells (CSCs), which are responsible for therapeutic resistance and contribute to metastasis and recurrence. Identification of reliable biomarkers for diagnostic and therapeutic targets is necessary for drug development and cancer treatment. In this study, we identified that the antipsychotic chlorpromazine (CPZ) exhibited potent anti-breast cancer and anti-CSC capabilities. Treatment with CPZ suppressed stemness properties including mammosphere formation, aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) activity, and stemness-related gene expressions in breast cancer cells and CSCs. Moreover, CPZ increased the susceptibility of breast cancer MCF7 cells and drug-resistant MCF7/ADR cells when combined with chemotherapies. Mechanistically, we identified that CPZ suppressed yes-associated protein (YAP) through modulating Hippo signaling and promoting proteasomal degradation of YAP. Elevated expression of YAP was confirmed to be crucial for stemness-related gene expressions, and was associated with invasiveness and stem-like signatures in breast cancer patients. Moreover, overexpression of YAP conferred poor outcomes particularly of basal-like breast cancer patients. Our data showed that YAP is a promising therapeutic target for breast CSCs, and CPZ has the potential to be a repurposed drug for breast cancer treatment.

Li H, Fu L, Liu B, et al.
Ajuba overexpression regulates mitochondrial potential and glucose uptake through YAP/Bcl-xL/GLUT1 in human gastric cancer.
Gene. 2019; 693:16-24 [PubMed] Related Publications
Ajuba dysregulation has been reported in several human cancers. However, its expression patterns and biological roles in human gastric cancers have not yet been characterized. In the current study, we found that Ajuba protein was increased in gastric cancer tissues and in cell lines. High Ajuba expression positively correlated with the tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage, lymph node metastasis and poor prognosis. The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and Oncomine microarray data mining also suggested that Ajuba mRNA upregulation in gastric cancer tissues. We used SGC-7901 and NCI-N87 cell lines for Ajuba overexpression and siRNA knockdown respectively. MTT and colony formation assays indicated that Ajuba overexpression increased proliferation rate and colony formation ability while Ajuba siRNA inhibited proliferation rate and colony formation ability. AnnexinV and JC1 staining showed that Ajuba downregulated cisplatin induced apoptosis while it upregulated mitochondrial membrane potential. Ajuba overexpression also inhibited caspase-3 and PARP cleavage, while Ajuba depletion showed the opposite effects. Notably, Ajuba enhanced glucose metabolism by upregulating glucose uptake, glucose consumption, lactate production and ATP production. We further revealed that Ajuba positively regulated cyclin D1, Bcl-xL and GLUT1 at both mRNA and protein levels. Analysis of TCGA dataset revealed that there were positive correlations between Ajuba and cyclin D1, Bcl-xL, GLUT1 at the mRNA levels. Further investigation demonstrated that Ajuba overexpression inhibited Hippo signaling by upregulating YAP protein expression. Depletion of YAP by siRNA abolished the effect of Ajuba on cyclin D1, Bcl-xL and GLUT1. Together, our study showed that Ajuba was overexpressed in human gastric cancers, where it increased cell growth and chemoresistance. Our data also identified novel roles of Ajuba in gastric cancer progression involving regulating glucose uptake and mitochondrial function through the YAP-GLUT1/Bcl-xL axis, making it a potential therapeutic target.

Ou H, Chen Z, Xiang L, et al.
Frizzled 2-induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition correlates with vasculogenic mimicry, stemness, and Hippo signaling in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Cancer Sci. 2019; 110(4):1169-1182 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2020 Related Publications
Prior observation has indicated that Frizzled 2 (FZD2)-induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) could be a key step in metastasis and early recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, the mechanism underlying tumor development and progression due to aberrant FZD2 expression is poorly defined. Here, we provide evidence that FZD2 is a driver for EMT, cancer stem cell properties, and vasculogenic mimicry (VM) in HCC. We found that FZD2 was highly expressed in two cohorts of Chinese hepatitis B virus-related HCC patients, and that high FZD2 expression was associated with poor prognosis. Concerning the mechanism, gain- and loss-of-function experiments showed the oncogenic action of FZD2 in HCC cell proliferation, apoptosis, migration, and invasion. Further investigations in vitro and in vivo suggested that FZD2 promotes the EMT process, enhances stem-like properties, and confers VM capacity to HCC cells. Notably, integrative RNA sequencing analysis of FZD2-knockdown cells indicated the enrichment of Hippo signaling pathway. Taken together, our data suggest for the first time that FZD2 could promote clinically relevant EMT, CD44

Piao L, Wang F, Wang Y, et al.
miR-424-5p Regulates Hepatoma Cell Proliferation and Apoptosis.
Cancer Biother Radiopharm. 2019; 34(3):196-202 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Yes-associated protein (Yes-associated protein 1 [YAP1]) is an important oncogene that is related to the pathogenesis and progression of liver cancer. It was found that miR-424-5p expression was significantly decreased in liver cancer tissues, revealing its anticancer effect. Bioinformatic analysis demonstrated the targeted relationship between miR-424-5p and the 3' untranslated region of YAP1. This study investigated the role of miR-424-5p in regulating YAP1 expression and affecting hepatoma cell proliferation and apoptosis.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Tumors and normal liver tissues adjacent to tumors were collected from patients to detect the expression of miR-424-5p and YAP1. A dual-luciferase reporter gene assay was adopted to explore the targeted regulation between miR-424-5p and YAP1. Liver cancer HCCLM3 and MHCC97-L cells and normal liver HL-7702 cells were cultured in vitro to compare expression levels of miR-424-5p and YAP1. HCCLM3 and MHCC97-L cells were divided into the miR-NC group and miR-424-5p mimic group. Cell apoptosis was detected by flow cytometry. Cell proliferation was determined by EdU staining.
RESULTS: Compared with normal liver tissue, miR-424-5p expression was significantly decreased, while YAP1 mRNA and protein levels were obviously upregulated in liver cancer tissues, which were related to the clinical stage. A negative correlation was found between miR-424-5p and YAP1 mRNA levels in liver cancer tissues. Dual-luciferase reporter gene assay confirmed the targeted relationship between miR-424-5p and YAP1. miR-424-5p expression in HCCLM3 and MHCC97-L cells decreased compared with L20 cells, which correlated with malignancy. YAP1 level in HCCLM3 and MHCC97-L cells was significantly enhanced, which correlated with malignancy. miR-424-5p mimic transfection significantly downregulated YAP1 expression in HCCLM3 and MHCC97-L cells, resulting in enhanced apoptosis and attenuated cell proliferation.
CONCLUSIONS: Decreased miR-424-5p expression and increased YAP1 expression are found in patients with liver cancer. Increased miR-424-5p can inhibit YAP1 expression, attenuate hepatoma cell proliferation, and induce cell apoptosis.

Daga M, Pizzimenti S, Dianzani C, et al.
Ailanthone inhibits cell growth and migration of cisplatin resistant bladder cancer cells through down-regulation of Nrf2, YAP, and c-Myc expression.
Phytomedicine. 2019; 56:156-164 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Ailanthone (Aila) is a natural active compound isolated from the Ailanthus altissima, which has been shown to possess an "in vitro" growth-inhibitory effect against several cancer cell lines. Advanced bladder cancer is a common disease characterized by a frequent onset of resistance to cisplatin-based therapy. The cisplatin (CDDP) resistance is accompanied by an increase in Nrf2 protein expression which contributes to conferring resistance. Recently, we demonstrated a cross-talk between Nrf2 and YAP. YAP has also been demonstrated to play an important role in chemoresistance of bladder cancer.
PURPOSE: We analyzed the antitumor effect of Aila in sensitive and CDDP-resistant bladder cancer cells and the molecular mechanisms involved in Aila activity.
STUDY DESIGN: Sensitive and CDDP-resistant 253J B-V and 253J bladder cancer cells, intrinsically CDDP-resistant T24 bladder cancer cells and HK-2 human renal cortex cells were used. Cells were treated with diverse concentrations of Aila and proliferation, cell cycle, apoptosis and gene expressions were determined.
METHODS: Aila toxicity and proliferation were determined by MTT and colony forming methods, respectively. Cell cycle was determined by cytofluorimetric analysis through PI staining method. Apoptosis was detected using Annexin V and PI double staining followed by quantitative flow cytometry. Expressions of Nrf2, Yap, c-Myc, and house-keeping genes were determined by western blot with specific antibodies. Cell migration was detected by wound healing and Boyden chamber analysis.
RESULTS: Aila inhibited the growth of sensitive and CDDP-resistant bladder cancer cells with the same effectiveness. On the contrary, the growth of HK-2 cells was only slightly reduced by Aila. Cell cycle analysis revealed an accumulation of Aila-treated bladder cancer cells in the G0/G1 phase. Interestingly, Aila strongly reduced Nrf2 expression in these cell lines. Moreover, Aila significantly reduced YAP, and c-Myc protein expression. The random and the oriented migration of bladder cancer cells were strongly inhibited by Aila treatment, in particular in CDDP-resistant cells.
CONCLUSION: Aila inhibited proliferation and invasiveness of bladder cancer cells. Its high effectiveness in CDDP resistant cells could be related to the inhibition of Nrf2, YAP, and c-Myc expressions. Aila could represent a new tool to treating CDDP-resistant bladder cancers.

Ferrari N, Ranftl R, Chicherova I, et al.
Dickkopf-3 links HSF1 and YAP/TAZ signalling to control aggressive behaviours in cancer-associated fibroblasts.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):130 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2020 Related Publications
Aggressive behaviours of solid tumours are highly influenced by the tumour microenvironment. Multiple signalling pathways can affect the normal function of stromal fibroblasts in tumours, but how these events are coordinated to generate tumour-promoting cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) is not well understood. Here we show that stromal expression of Dickkopf-3 (DKK3) is associated with aggressive breast, colorectal and ovarian cancers. We demonstrate that DKK3 is a HSF1 effector that modulates the pro-tumorigenic behaviour of CAFs in vitro and in vivo. DKK3 orchestrates a concomitant activation of β-catenin and YAP/TAZ. Whereas β-catenin is dispensable for CAF-mediated ECM remodelling, cancer cell growth and invasion, DKK3-driven YAP/TAZ activation is required to induce tumour-promoting phenotypes. Mechanistically, DKK3 in CAFs acts via canonical Wnt signalling by interfering with the negative regulator Kremen and increasing cell-surface levels of LRP6. This work reveals an unpredicted link between HSF1, Wnt signalling and YAP/TAZ relevant for the generation of tumour-promoting CAFs.

Zhang S, Zhang H, Ghia EM, et al.
Inhibition of chemotherapy resistant breast cancer stem cells by a ROR1 specific antibody.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2019; 116(4):1370-1377 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/05/2020 Related Publications
Breast cancers enduring treatment with chemotherapy may be enriched for cancer stem cells or tumor-initiating cells, which have an enhanced capacity for self-renewal, tumor initiation, and/or metastasis. Breast cancer cells that express the type I tyrosine kinaselike orphan receptor ROR1 also may have such features. Here we find that the expression of ROR1 increased in breast cancer cells following treatment with chemotherapy, which also enhanced expression of genes induced by the activation of Rho-GTPases, Hippo-YAP/TAZ, or B lymphoma Mo-MLV insertion region 1 homolog (BMI1). Expression of ROR1 also enhanced the capacity of breast cancer cells to invade Matrigel, form spheroids, engraft in Rag2

Zhang X, Yan Y, Lin W, et al.
Circular RNA Vav3 sponges gga-miR-375 to promote epithelial-mesenchymal transition.
RNA Biol. 2019; 16(1):118-132 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/01/2020 Related Publications
Circular RNAs (circRNAs) are evolutionarily conserved and widely present, but their functions remain largely unknown. Recent development has highlighted the importance of circRNAs as the sponge of microRNA (miRNA) in cancer. We previously reported that gga-miR-375 was downregulated in the liver tumors of chickens infected with avian leukosis virus subgroup J (ALV-J) by microRNA microarray assay. It can be reasonably assumed in accordance with previous studies that the gga-miR-375 may be related to circRNAs. However, the question as to which circRNA acts as the sponge for gga-miR-375 remains to be answered. In this study, circRNA sequencing results revealed that a circRNA Vav3 termed circ-Vav3 was upregulated in the liver tumors of chickens infected with ALV-J. In addition, RNA immunoprecipitation (RIP), biotinylated RNA pull-down and RNA-fluorescence in situ hybridization (RNA-FISH) experiments were conducted to confirm that circ-Vav3 serves as the sponge of gga-miR-375. Furthermore, we confirmed through dual luciferase reporter assay that YAP1 is the target gene of gga-miR-375. The effect of the sponge function of circ-Vav3 on its downstream genes has been further verified by our conclusion that the sponge function of circ-Vav3 can abrogate gga-miR-375 target gene YAP1 and increase the expression level of YAP1. We further confirmed that the circ-Vav3/gga-miR-375/YAP1 axis induces epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) through influencing EMT markers to promote tumorigenesis. Finally, clinical ALV-J-induced tumor livers were collected to detect core gene expression levels to provide a proof to the concluded tumorigenic mechanism. Together, our results suggest that circ-Vav3/gga-miR-375/YAP1 axis is another regulator of tumorigenesis.

Shen Y, Zhao S, Wang S, et al.
S1P/S1PR3 axis promotes aerobic glycolysis by YAP/c-MYC/PGAM1 axis in osteosarcoma.
EBioMedicine. 2019; 40:210-223 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/01/2020 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Osteosarcoma (OS) is a malignant tumor mainly occurring in young people. Due to the limited effective therapeutic strategies, OS patients cannot achieve further survival improvement. G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) constitute the largest family of cell membrane receptors and consequently hold the significant promise for tumor imaging and targeted therapy. We aimed to explore the biological functions of Sphingosine 1-phosphate receptor 3 (S1PR3), one of the members of GPCRs family, in OS and the possibility of S1PR3 as an effective target for the treatment of osteosarcoma.
METHODS: The quantitative real time PCR (qRT-PCR) and western blotting were used to analyze the mRNA and protein expressions. Cell counting kit-8 (CCK8), colony formation assay and cell apoptosis assay were performed to test the cellular proliferation in vitro. Subcutaneous xenograft mouse model was generated to evaluate the functions of S1PR3 in vivo. RNA sequencing was used to compare gene expression patterns between S1PR3-knockdown and control MNNG-HOS cells. In addition, metabolic alternations in OS cells were monitored by XF96 metabolic flux analyzer. Co-immunoprecipitation (Co-IP) assay was used to explore the interaction between Yes-associated protein (YAP) and c-MYC. Chromatin immunoprecipitation was used to investigate the binding capability of PGAM1 and YAP or c-MYC. Moreover, the activities of promoter were determined by the luciferase reporter assay.
FINDINGS: S1PR3 and its specific ligand Sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) were found elevated in OS, and the higher expression of S1PR3 was correlated with the poor survival rate. Moreover, our study has proved that the S1P/S1PR3 axis play roles in proliferation promotion, apoptosis inhibition, and aerobic glycolysis promotion of osteosarcoma cells. Mechanistically, the S1P/S1PR3 axis inhibited the phosphorylation of YAP and promoted the nuclear translocation of YAP, which contributed to the formation of the YAP-c-MYC complex and enhanced transcription of the important glycolysis enzyme PGAM1. Moreover, the S1PR3 antagonist TY52156 exhibited in vitro and in vivo synergistic inhibitory effects with methotrexate on OS cell growth.
INTERPRETATION: Our study unveiled a role of S1P, a bioactive phospholipid, in glucose metabolism reprogram through interaction with its receptor S1PR3. Targeting S1P/S1PR3 axis might serve as a potential therapeutic target for patients with OS. FUND: This research was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (81472445 and 81672587).

Callus BA, Finch-Edmondson ML, Fletcher S, Wilton SD
YAPping about and not forgetting TAZ.
FEBS Lett. 2019; 593(3):253-276 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Hippo pathway has emerged as a major eukaryotic signalling pathway and is increasingly the subject of intense interest, as are the key effectors of canonical Hippo signalling, YES-associated protein (YAP) and TAZ. The Hippo pathway has key roles in diverse biological processes, including network signalling regulation, development, organ growth, tissue repair and regeneration, cancer, stem cell regulation and mechanotransduction. YAP and TAZ are multidomain proteins and function as transcriptional coactivators of key genes to evoke their biological effects. YAP and TAZ interact with numerous partners and their activities are controlled by a complex set of processes. This review provides an overview of Hippo signalling and its role in growth. In particular, the functional domains of YAP and TAZ and the complex mechanisms that regulate their protein stability and activity are discussed. Notably, the similarities and key differences are highlighted between the two paralogues including which partner proteins interact with which functional domains to regulate their activity.

Chai Y, Xiang K, Wu Y, et al.
Cucurbitacin B Inhibits the Hippo-YAP Signaling Pathway and Exerts Anticancer Activity in Colorectal Cancer Cells.
Med Sci Monit. 2018; 24:9251-9258 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/01/2020 Related Publications
BACKGROUND Colorectal carcinoma (CRC) is one of the most frequently diagnosed malignancies. Cucurbitacin B (CuB) is a natural compound isolated from herbs and shows anticancer activity in several cancers. MATERIAL AND METHODS Here, we analyzed the effects of different CuB concentrations on the proliferative and invasive behaviors of CRC cells using MTT, clonogenic assay, Transwell invasion, and wound healing assays. Flow cytometry was performed to measure the apoptotic effects of CuB on CRC cells. Western blot and real-time PCR were used to investigate the expression of apoptosis and Hippo-YAP signaling pathway proteins. RESULTS CuB inhibited the proliferation and invasion of CRC cells while promoting apoptosis. In addition, the Western blot and real-time PCR results indicated that CuB suppressed YAP expression and its downstream target genes Cyr 61 and c-Myc in CRC cells. To assess the underlying mechanism, we investigated the upstream regulating factor LATS1, and the results revealed that CuB upregulated LATS1 expression in CRC cells. CONCLUSIONS In conclusion, our findings uncovered a novel therapeutic mechanism of CuB and suggest that there is therapeutic potential and feasibility in developing novel YAP inhibitors for cancer treatment.

Zhu Z, Wei D, Li X, et al.
RNA-binding protein QKI regulates contact inhibition via Yes-associate protein in ccRCC.
Acta Biochim Biophys Sin (Shanghai). 2019; 51(1):9-19 [PubMed] Related Publications
Contact inhibition adjusts organ size to the proper size and ensures the cultured cells growing to a monolayer. By regulating the downstream coordinator YAP, the evolutionarily conserved Hippo transduction pathway attunes cell growth and death in response to cell contact inhibition, polarity, self-renewal, and differentiation. Dysregulation of this pathway is involved in various diseases such as cancer. RNA-binding protein QKI regulates cell proliferation, metabolism, division, and immunity in various cancer models, but its role in cancer cell contact inhibition remains unclear. In this study, we aimed to clarify the relationship between QKI and YAP, and the role of their interaction in cell contact inhibition. We found a lower QKI expression level in sparse condition, whereas a higher expression level in confluent condition by western blot analysis and immunofluorescence assay. QKI knockdown elevated cell proliferation and invasion both in vitro and in vivo. Strikingly, the results of CCK-8 assay, colony formation assay, and transwell assay showed that the phenomenon was in accord with the expression level of pYAP and reverse with YAP. Higher levels of Wnt3a and β-catenin were also found in xenografts of QKI-knockdown clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) CAKI-1 cells by western blot analysis and immumohistochemical staining. Finally, a positive correlation between QKI and pYAP was found in clinical specimens by immunohistochemistry. Thus, as a negative regulator of YAP, QKI attuned the cell contact inhibition, leading to inhibition of cancer cell proliferation and invasion through Wnt and GPCR pathway.

Lamar JM, Xiao Y, Norton E, et al.
SRC tyrosine kinase activates the YAP/TAZ axis and thereby drives tumor growth and metastasis.
J Biol Chem. 2019; 294(7):2302-2317 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 15/01/2020 Related Publications
When properly employed, targeted therapies are effective cancer treatments. However, the development of such therapies requires the identification of targetable drivers of cancer development and metastasis. The expression and nuclear localization of the transcriptional coactivators Yes-associated protein (YAP) and transcriptional co-activator with PDZ-binding motif (TAZ) are increased in many human cancers, and experimental evidence indicates that aberrant YAP or TAZ activation drives tumor formation and metastasis. Although these findings make YAP and TAZ appealing therapeutic targets, both have important functions in adult tissues, so directly targeting them could cause adverse effects. The identification of pathways active in cancer cells and required for YAP/TAZ activity could provide a way to inhibit YAP and TAZ. Here, we show that SRC proto-oncogene, nonreceptor tyrosine kinase (SRC) is an important driver of YAP/TAZ activity in human breast cancer and melanoma cells. SRC activation increased YAP/TAZ activity and the expression of YAP/TAZ-regulated genes. In contrast, SRC inhibition or knockdown repressed both YAP/TAZ activity and the expression of YAP/TAZ-regulated genes. We also show that SRC increases the activity of YAP and TAZ by repressing large tumor suppressor homolog (LATS), and we identify the GTPase-activating protein GIT ArfGAP 1 (GIT1) as an SRC effector that regulates both YAP and TAZ. Importantly, we demonstrate that SRC-mediated YAP/TAZ activity promotes tumor growth and enhances metastasis and that SRC-dependent tumor progression depends, at least in part, on YAP and TAZ. Our findings suggest that therapies targeting SRC could help manage some YAP/TAZ-dependent cancers.

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