Muscle Apeclfic Gene Expression
Increased expression of the hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) receptor (c-met) and urokinase type plasminogen (uPA) correlated with the development and metastasis of cancers. To investigate the role of HGF/c-met signaling on metastasis in cancer cells stimulated with HGF, we examined the effects of a specific MEK1 inhibitor (PD98059) and a p38 MAP kinase inhibitor (SB203580) on HGF-induced uPA expression in pancreatic cancer cell lines, L3.6PL and IMIM-PC2. Pretreatment of PD98059 decreased HGF-mediated phosphorylation of extracellular receptor kinase (ERK), uPA secretion and expression of matrix metalloproteinases (MMP-2 and MMP-9) in a dose-dependent manner. In contrast, SB203580 pretreatment increased HGF-stimulated ERK phosphorylation, uPA secretion and expression of MMPs. SB203580 also reversed the inhibition of HGF-mediated ERK activation and uPA secretion in the PD98059-pretreated cells. These results suggest that ERK activation by HGF might play important roles in the metastasis of pancreatic cancer and the p38 MAPK pathway also involved in the HGF-mediated uPA secretion and metastasis by regulation of ERK pathway.