Wnt/Snail signaling regulates cytochrome C oxidase and glucose metabolism
Lee, SY; Jeon, HM; Ju, MK; Kim, CH; Yoon, G; Han, SI; Park, HG; Kang, HS
Cancer research, 72(14):3607-3617, 2012
Wnt signaling plays a critical role in embryonic development, and its deregulation is closely linked to the occurrence of a number of malignant tumors, including breast and colon cancer. The pathway also induces Snail-dependent epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), which is responsible for tumor invasion and metastasis. In this study, we show that Wnt suppresses mitochondrial respiration and cytochrome C oxidase (COX) activity by inhibiting the expression of 3 COX subunits, namely, COXVIc, COXVIIa, and COXVIIc. We found that Wnt induced a glycolytic switch via increased glucose consumption and lactate production, with induction of pyruvate carboxylase (PC), a key enzyme of anaplerosis. In addition, Wnt-induced mitochondrial repression and glycolytic switching occurred through the canonical β-catenin/T-cell factor 4/Snail pathway. Short hairpin RNA-mediated knockdown of E-cadherin, a regulator of EMT, repressed mitochondrial respiration and induced a glycolytic switch via Snail activation, indicating that EMT may contribute to Wnt/Snail regulation of mitochondrial respiration and glucose metabolism. Together, our findings provide a new function for Wnt/Snail signaling in the regulation of mitochondrial respiration (via COX gene expression) and glucose metabolism (via PC gene expression) in tumor growth and progression.
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