Chaperone-mediated autophagy degradation of IGF-1Rβ induced by NVP-AUY922 in pancreatic cancer

  • Nina Xue
  • Fangfang Lai
  • Tingting Du
  • Ming Ji
  • Di Liu
  • Chunhong Yan
  • Sen Zhang
  • Xiaoming Yu
  • Jing JinEmail author
  • Xiaoguang ChenEmail author
Original Article


Enhancement of insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF-IR) degradation by heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) inhibitor is a potential antitumor therapeutic strategy. However, very little is known about how IGF-IR protein levels are degraded by HSP90 inhibitors in pancreatic cancer (PC). We found that the HSP90α inhibitor NVP-AUY922 (922) effectively downregulated and destabilized the IGF-1Rβ protein, substantially reduced the levels of downstream signaling molecules (p-AKT, AKT and p-ERK1/2), and resulted in growth inhibition and apoptosis in IGF-1Rβ-overexpressing PC cells. Preincubation with a proteasome or lysosome inhibitor (MG132, 3 MA or CQ) mainly led to IGF-1Rβ degradation via the lysosome degradation pathway, rather than the proteasome-dependent pathway, after PC cells were treated with 922 for 24 h. These results might be associated with the inhibition of pancreatic cellular chymotrypsin–peptidase activity by 922 for 24 h. Interestingly, 922 induced autophagic flux by increasing LC3II expression and puncta formation. However, knockdown of the crucial autophagy component AGT5 and the chemical inhibitor 3 MA-blocked 922-induced autophagy did not abrogate 922-triggered IGF-1Rβ degradation. Furthermore, 922 could enhance chaperone-mediated autophagy (CMA) activity and promote the association between HSP/HSC70 and IGF-1Rβ or LAMP2A in coimmunoprecipitation and immunofluorescence analyses. Silencing of LAMP2A to inhibit CMA activity reversed 922-induced IGF-1Rβ degradation, suggesting that IGF-1Rβ degradation by 922 was partially dependent on the CMA pathway rather than macroautophagy. This finding is mirrored by the identification of the KFERQ-like motif in IGF-1Rβ. These observations support the potential application of 922 for IGF-1Rβ-overexpressing PC therapy and first identify the role of the CMA pathway in IGF-1Rβ degradation by an HSP90 inhibitor.


Insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor β Pancreatic cancer Heat shock protein 90 Autophagy 





Autophagy-related 5




Chaperone-mediated autophagy








Heat shock cognate 70 kDa


Heat shock 70 kDa protein


Heat shock protein 90


Insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor


The drug concentration that inhibited cell growth by 50%


Janus kinase


Lysosome-associated membrane protein 2

3 MA

3 Methyladenine


Microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (MAP1LC3)


Mitogen-activated protein kinase


Pancreatic cancer


Phosphatidyl inositol 3-kinase


Propidium iodide


Signal transducer and activator of transcription


Ubiquitin–proteasome system



This project was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81573466). We thank Ms. Long Long for her assistance in the high content analysis experiments using an InCell Analyzer 1000.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

18_2019_3080_MOESM1_ESM.docx (6.7 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 6875 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nina Xue
    • 1
  • Fangfang Lai
    • 1
  • Tingting Du
    • 1
  • Ming Ji
    • 1
  • Di Liu
    • 1
  • Chunhong Yan
    • 2
  • Sen Zhang
    • 1
  • Xiaoming Yu
    • 1
  • Jing Jin
    • 1
    Email author
  • Xiaoguang Chen
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Bioactive Substances and Functions of Natural Medicines, Beijing Key Laboratory of Non-Clinical Drug Metabolism and PK/PD Study, Institute of Materia Medica, Peking Union Medical CollegeChinese Academy of Medical SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.Georgia Cancer CenterAugusta UniversityAugustaUSA

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