Molecules and Cells

, Volume 36, Issue 6, pp 548–555 | Cite as

SMURF1 Plays a role in EGF-induced breast cancer cell migration and invasion

  • Arang Kwon
  • Hye-Lim Lee
  • Kyung Mi Woo
  • Hyun-Mo Ryoo
  • Jeong-Hwa Baek
Research Article


Epidermal growth factor (EGF) is a well-known growth factor that induces cancer cell migration and invasion. Previous studies have shown that SMAD ubiquitination regulatory factor 1 (SMURF1), an E3 ubiquitin ligase, regulates cell motility by inducing RhoA degradation. Therefore, we examined the role of SMURF1 in EGF-induced cell migration and invasion using MDA-MB-231 cells, a human breast cancer cell line. EGF increased SMURF1 expression at both the mRNA and protein levels. All ErbB family members were expressed in MDA-MB-231 cells and receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors specific for the EGF receptor (EGFR) or ErbB2 blocked the EGF-mediated induction of SMURF1 expression. Within the signaling pathways examined, ERK1/2 and protein kinase C activity were required for EGF-induced SMURF1 expression. The overexpression of constitutively active MEK1 increased the SMURF1 to levels similar to those induced by EGF. SMURF1 induction by EGF treatment or by the overexpression of MEK1 or SMURF1 resulted in enhanced cell migration and invasion, whereas SMURF1 knockdown suppressed EGF- or MEK1-induced cell migration and invasion. EGF treatment or SMURF1 overexpression decreased the endogenous RhoA protein levels. The overexpression of constitutively active RhoA prevented EGF- or SMURF1-induced cell migration and invasion. These results suggest that EGFinduced SMURF1 plays a role in breast cancer cell migration and invasion through the downregulation of RhoA.


breast cancer EGF invasion migration SMURF1 


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Copyright information

© The Korean Society for Molecular and Cellular Biology and Springer Netherlands 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arang Kwon
    • 1
  • Hye-Lim Lee
    • 1
  • Kyung Mi Woo
    • 1
  • Hyun-Mo Ryoo
    • 1
  • Jeong-Hwa Baek
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Molecular Genetics, School of Dentistry and Dental Research InstituteSeoul National UniversitySeoulKorea

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