Spatial Regulation of RhoA Activity during Pancreatic Cancer Cell Invasion Driven by Mutant p53

Timpson, P. et al. (2011) Spatial Regulation of RhoA Activity during Pancreatic Cancer Cell Invasion Driven by Mutant p53. Cancer Research, 71(3), pp. 747-757. (doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-10-2267)

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The ability to observe changes in molecular behavior during cancer cell invasion in vivo remains a major challenge to our understanding of the metastatic process. Here, we demonstrate for the first time, an analysis of RhoA activity at a subcellular level using FLIM-FRET (fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy-fluorescence resonance energy transfer) imaging in a live animal model of pancreatic cancer. In invasive mouse pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) cells driven by mutant p53 (p53(R172H)), we observed a discrete fraction of high RhoA activity at both the leading edge and rear of cells in vivo which was absent in two-dimensional in vitro cultures. Notably, this pool of active RhoA was absent in noninvasive p53(fl) knockout PDAC cells, correlating with their poor invasive potential in vivo. We used dasatanib, a clinically approved anti-invasive agent that is active in this model, to illustrate the functional importance of spatially regulated RhoA. Dasatanib inhibited the activity of RhoA at the poles of p53(R172H) cells in vivo and this effect was independent of basal RhoA activity within the cell body. Taken together, quantitative in vivo fluorescence lifetime imaging illustrated that RhoA is not only necessary for invasion, but also that subcellular spatial regulation of RhoA activity, as opposed to its global activity, is likely to govern invasion efficiency in vivo. Our findings reveal the utility of FLIM-FRET in analyzing dynamic biomarkers during drug treatment in living animals, and they also show how discrete intracellular molecular pools might be differentially manipulated by future anti-invasive therapies.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Anderson, Professor Kurt and Quinn, Dr Jean and Edward, Dr Michael and Morton, Professor Jen and Sansom, Professor Owen and Olson, Professor Michael
Authors: Timpson, P., McGhee, E. J., Morton, J. P., Von Kriegsheim, A., Schwarz, J. P., Karim, S. A., Doyle, B., Quinn, J. A., Carragher, N. O., Edward, M., Olson, M.F., Frame, M. C., Brunton, V. G., Sansom, O. J., and Anderson, K. I.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Cancer Sciences
Journal Name:Cancer Research

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