Mechanical cue-induced YAP instructs Skp2-dependent cell cycle exit and oncogenic signaling

Wonyul Jang, Tackhoon Kim, Ja Seung Koo, Sang Kyum Kim, Dae Sik Lim

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44 Citations (Scopus)


Mechanical tensions are usually generated during development at spatially defined regions within tissues. Such physical cues dictate the cellular decisions of proliferation or cell cycle arrest. Yet, the mechanisms by which mechanical stress controls the cell cycle are not yet fully understood. Here, we report that mechanical cues function upstream of Skp2 transcription in human breast cancer cells. We found that YAP, the mechano-responsive oncogenic Hippo signaling effector, directly promotes Skp2 transcription. YAP inactivation induces cell cycle exit (G0) by down-regulating Skp2, causing p21/p27 to accumulate. Both Skp2 reconstitution and p21/p27 depletion can rescue the observed defect in cell cycle progression. In the context of a tissue-mimicking 3D culture system, Skp2 inactivation effectively suppresses YAP-driven oncogenesis and aberrant stiff 3D matrix-evoked epithelial tissue behaviors. Finally, we also found that the expression of Skp2 and YAP is positively correlated in breast cancer patients. Our results not only reveal the molecular mechanism by which mechanical cues induce Skp2 transcription, but also uncover a role for YAP-Skp2 oncogenic signaling in the relationship between tissue rigidity and cancer progression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2510-2528
Number of pages19
JournalEMBO Journal
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Sept 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank all our laboratory members for critical comments for manuscript, especially DaeHee Hwang and Wonyoung Choi. This work was funded by a grant from the National Creative Research Initiative Program (20120001228) and Science Research Center Program (NRF-2016R1A5A1010764).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 The Authors

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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