Porcupine Inhibitor LGK974 Downregulates the Wnt Signaling Pathway and Inhibits Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma

Biomed Res Int. 2020 Feb 13:2020:2527643. doi: 10.1155/2020/2527643. eCollection 2020.


Targeted therapy for kidney cancer has achieved significant clinical results. However, because most patients who use targeted therapy will develop drug resistance, we still need to constantly explore new therapeutic targets. Although porcupine (PORCN) as a palmitoyltransferase plays a crucial role in the activation and secretion of Wnt proteins and affects the activity of the Wnt signaling pathway, little is known about the role of PORCN in clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC). We found that PORCN is highly expressed in renal cancer cell lines and patients with renal cell carcinoma with high expression of PORCN have a poor prognosis. Pathway analysis of PORCN and its related proteins showed that PORCN played a role through the Wnt signaling pathway, and there was a strong coexpression relationship between PORCN and Wnt proteins. Therefore, PORCN may be a potential and effective target for ccRCC. In the present study, we found that LGK974 could inhibit proliferation and colony formation and induce apoptosis in ccRCC cells. We also found that LGK974 could inhibit the migration and invasion of renal cell carcinoma and reduce the expression of mesenchymal markers. After treatment with LGK974, the expression level of β-catenin, a key protein in the classical Wnt pathway, was significantly decreased, and the expression levels of the target genes cyclin D1, c-Myc, MMP9, and MMP2 in the Wnt signaling pathway were also significantly decreased, which represented a significant decrease in the activity of the Wnt signaling pathway. At the same time, the cycle of renal cancer cells was significantly blocked. In conclusion, our results indicate that LGK974 could significantly inhibit the progression of renal cancer cells in a safe concentration range, so PORCN may be a safe and effective target for patients with renal cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Acyltransferases / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Acyltransferases / metabolism
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / drug therapy
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / metabolism*
  • Carcinoma, Renal Cell / pathology
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Down-Regulation / drug effects*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Kidney Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Kidney Neoplasms / pathology
  • Membrane Proteins / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism
  • Neoplasm Proteins* / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Neoplasm Proteins* / metabolism
  • Pyrazines / pharmacology*
  • Pyridines / pharmacology*
  • Wnt Signaling Pathway / drug effects*


  • Membrane Proteins
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Pyrazines
  • Pyridines
  • Acyltransferases
  • PORCN protein, human
  • LGK974