Up-regulating ribonuclease inhibitor inhibited epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and metastasis in murine melanoma cells.

Research paper by Xiangyang X Pan, Dongmei D Xiong, Xue X Yao, Yu Y Xin, Luyu L Zhang, Junxia J Chen

Indexed on: 03 Apr '12Published on: 03 Apr '12Published in: The International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology


Human ribonuclease inhibitor (RI) is a cytoplasmic acidic protein. RI is constructed almost entirely of leucine rich repeats, which might be involved in unknown biological effects except inhibiting RNase A and angiogenin activities. We previously reported that up-regulating RI inhibited the growth and metastasis of melanoma cells. Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a critical event of cancer cells that triggers invasion and metastasis. However, the role of RI in the EMT process remains unknown. Here we hypothesize that RI might inhibit melanoma invasion and metastasis by regulating EMT. We found that over-expression of RI induced up-regulation of E-cadherin, accompanied with decreased expressions of proteins associated with EMT such as N-cadherin, Snail, Slug, Vimentin and Twist both in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, RI restrained matrix metalloproteinase MMP-2 and MMP-9 secretions in B16 and B16-F10 melanoma cells. In addition, we also found that up-regulation of RI inhibited cell proliferation, migration and invasion as well as changed cell morphology, adhesion and rearranged cytoskeleton in vitro. Finally, the effects of RI on phenotype and invasiveness translated into suppressing metastasis by the experimental metastasis models of melanoma with lighter lung weight, a fewer metastasis nodules and a lower incidence rate, with respect to the control groups. Taken together, our data highlight, for the first time, that RI plays a novel role in inhibiting development and progression of murine melanoma cells through regulating EMT. These results suggest that RI could be a therapeutic target protein for melanoma and may be of biological importance.