We established the role of the GPCR relaxin/insulin-like family peptide receptor 1 (RXFP1 receptor) as a novel active receptor in human glioblastoma (GB), a fatal brain tumour. We identified C1q/TNF-related protein 8 (CTRP8) as a novel agonist of the RXFP1 receptor. CTRP8 enhanced the motility and matrix invasion of GB, and this involved PKC-mediated up-regulation of cathepsin B, a marker for poor prognosis in GB patients. We conclude that the absence of relaxin isoforms does not preclude the activation of the RXFP1 receptor, as the least known member of the CTRP family, CTRP8, can effectively target and activate RXFP1 receptors.
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