Metastatic potential of mouse Lewis lung cancer cells is regulated via ganglioside GM1 by modulating the matrix metalloprotease-9 localization in lipid rafts

J Biol Chem. 2006 Jun 30;281(26):18145-55. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M512566200. Epub 2006 Apr 24.


To analyze mechanisms for cancer metastasis, we established high metastatic sublines from mouse Lewis lung cancer (P29) by repeated injection. Sublines established from the two subclones H7 and C4 commonly exhibited increased proliferation and invasion activity and reduced expression of ganglioside GM1, although they showed different preferences in their target organs of metastasis. The high metastatic sublines secreted higher levels of activated matrix metalloprotease (MMP)-9 as well as pro-MMP-9 in the culture medium than the parent lines. Furthermore, they contained MMP-9 at the glycolipid-enriched microdomain (GEM)/rafts fractionated by the sucrose density gradient ultracentrifugation of Triton X-100 extracts, whereas the parent cells showed faint bands at the fraction. When high metastatic sublines were treated with methyl-beta-cyclodextrin, their invasion activities were dramatically suppressed, and the MMP-9 secretion was also suppressed. All these results indicated that GEM/rafts play crucial roles in the increased invasion and high metastatic potential. To clarify the implication of reduced GM1 expression, low GM1-expressing cell lines were established using an RNA interference-expression vector of the GM1 synthase. Low GM1-expressing cell lines showed increased proliferation and invasion, enrichment in the GEM/rafts, and increased secretion of MMP-9. Among adhesion molecules, only integrin beta1 was detected in GEM/rafts with stronger intensity in high metastatic lines and low GM1-expressing cells. Taken together, integrins seemed to be enriched in the GEM/rafts by reduced GM1 levels, and subsequently MMP-9 was recruited to the GEM/rafts, resulting in its efficient secretion and activation, and eventually in the increased invasion and metastatic potentials.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Carcinoma, Lewis Lung / metabolism*
  • Carcinoma, Lewis Lung / secondary*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Down-Regulation
  • G(M1) Ganglioside / metabolism*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Integrins / metabolism
  • Lung Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 9 / metabolism*
  • Membrane Microdomains
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Neoplasm Transplantation
  • RNA, Small Interfering
  • Transfection
  • beta-Cyclodextrins / pharmacology


  • Integrins
  • Membrane Proteins
  • RNA, Small Interfering
  • beta-Cyclodextrins
  • methyl-beta-cyclodextrin
  • G(M1) Ganglioside
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 9