Elevation of GPRC5A expression in colorectal cancer promotes tumor progression through VNN-1 induced oxidative stress.

Research paper by Long L Zhang, Liang L Li, Ganglong G Gao, Gaigai G Wei, Yansen Y Zheng, Chunmei C Wang, Na N Gao, Yongliang Y Zhao, Jiong J Deng, Huaqing H Chen, Jialiang J Sun, Dali D Li, Xueli X Zhang, Mingyao M Liu

Indexed on: 21 Mar '17Published on: 21 Mar '17Published in: International Journal of Cancer


The clearance of oxidative stress compounds is critical for the protection of the organism from malignancy, but how this key physiological process is regulated is not fully understood. Here we found that the expression of GPRC5A, a well-characterized tumor suppressor in lung cancer, was elevated in colorectal cancer tissues in patients. In both cancer cell lines and a colitis-associated cancer model in mice, we found that GPRC5A deficiency reduced cell proliferation and increased cell apoptosis as well as inhibited tumorigenesis in vivo. Through RNA-Seq transcriptome analysis, we identified oxidative stress associated pathways were dysregulated. Moreover, in GPRC5A deficient cells and mouse tissues, the oxidative agents were reduced partially due to increased glutathione (GSH) level. Mechanistically, GPRC5A regulates NF-κB mediated Vanin-1 expression which is the predominant enzyme for cysteamine generation. Administration of cystamine (the disulfide form of cysteamine) in GPRC5A deficient cell lines inhibited γ-GCS activity, leading to reduction of GSH level and increase of cell growth. Taken together, our studies suggest that GPRC5a is a potential biomarker for colon cancer and promotes tumorigenesis through stimulation of Vanin-1 expression and oxidative stress in colitis associated cancer. This study revealed an unexpected oncogenic role of GPRC5A in colorectal cancer suggesting there are complicated functional and molecular mechanism differences of this gene in distinct tissues. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.