The epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) that occurs during embryonic development has begun to attract attention as a potential mechanism for tumor cell metastasis. Snail is a well-known Zn-finger transcription factor that promotes EMT by repressing E-cadherin expression. It is known that Snail is phosphorylated by GSK3Β and degraded by Β-TrCP-mediated ubiquitination. Here we described another protein kinase, CK1, whose phosphorylation of Snail is required for the subsequent GSK3Β phosphorylation. Specific inhibition or depletion of CK1 inhibits the phosphorylation and degradation of Snail and promotes cell migration, suggesting a central role of CK1 in the EMT process. Furthermore, our study uncovered distinct roles and steps of Snail phosphorylation by CK1 and GSK3Β. Taken together, we identified CK1 as a new component of the Snail-mediated EMT process, providing insight into the mechanism of human cancer metastasis.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Xiao Ling Jin for assisting in DNA construction and protein purification. This study was supported by a grant from the National R&D Program for Cancer Control, Ministry for Health, Welfare and Family affairs, Republic of Korea (0920140).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cancer Research