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YAP transcriptionally regulates ErbB2 to promote liver cell proliferation

Posted July 20, 2018 | Publications

Wang EY, Cheng JC, Thakur A, Yi Y, Tsai SH, Hoodless PA. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2018 Jul 17. pii: S1874-9399(18)30039-7. doi: 10.1016/j.bbagrm.2018.07.004. [Epub ahead of print]


The Hippo signaling pathway is implicated in regulation of liver size and dysregulation of this pathway contributes to tumorigenesis. The transcriptional targets and downstream pathways of the Hippo pathway effector YAP that contribute to liver growth have yet to be well-characterized. We examined the liver transcriptome in response to YAP overexpression and identify the ErbB signaling pathway as a mediator of cell growth downstream of YAP. ErbB2 is transcriptionally regulated by YAP in both the mouse liver and in HepG2 human hepatoma cells. Knockdown of YAP or pharmacological inhibition with verteporfin reduced ERBB2 levels in HepG2 cells. Analysis of ChIP-seq data revealed enrichment of the transcription factor TEAD4 at the ERBB2 promoter. Using luciferase reporter and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, we show that YAP and TEAD4 directly bind to and activate a regulatory element in the ErbB2 promoter in both the mouse liver and HepG2 cells. Functionally, knockdown of YAP reduced EGF-induced ERBB2-mediated HepG2 cell proliferation and PI3K/AKT activation. Our findings highlight a mechanism by which YAP exerts its effects on liver cell proliferation through the ErbB signaling pathway by directly regulating the transcription of ErbB2.

Graphical abstract image © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. The appropriate RightsLink Licence was obtained.

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PMID: 30025876