alexa Nestin is a potential mediator of malignancy in human neuroblastoma cells.
Molecular Biology

Molecular Biology

Journal of Cytology & Histology

Author(s): Thomas SK, Messam CA, Spengler BA, Biedler JL, Ross RA

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Abstract Amplification of the N-myc proto-oncogene signifies aggressive behavior in human neuroblastoma. Likewise, overexpression of the intermediate filament nestin, a neuroectodermal stem cell marker, is linked to increased aggressiveness in several nervous system tumors. We investigated the interaction of these two proteins in human neuroblastoma cells. Neuroblastic cell variants with high levels of N-Myc protein have significantly higher nestin protein levels than non-amplified cell lines, suggesting that the transcription factor N-Myc may regulate nestin expression. Stable transfection of a nestin antisense sequence into neuroblastic, N-myc-amplified, LA1-55n cells results in a 2-fold reduction in nestin protein without altering N-Myc expression. However, cell functions attributed to N-Myc (growth rate, anchorage-independent growth, and motility) all decrease significantly. Transfection studies that modulate N-Myc levels also result in commensurate changes in nestin mRNA and protein amounts as well as in cell proliferation and motility. Thus, nestin appears to be downstream of and regulated by N-Myc. Gel mobility shift assays show that N-Myc binds specifically to E-box sequences in the regulatory second intron of the nestin gene and nuclear run-off studies show that increases in N-Myc protein up-regulate nestin transcription rate. Subcellular fractionation and immunoblot studies indicate that nestin is present in the nucleus as well as in the cytoplasm of neuroblastoma cell lines. Finally, DNA cross-linking experiments show that nestin binds DNA in N-myc-amplified N-type cell lines. Thus, nestin may be one mediator of N-myc-associated tumor aggressiveness of human neuroblastoma. This article was published in J Biol Chem and referenced in Journal of Cytology & Histology

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