TRIB2 acts downstream of Wnt/TCF in liver cancer cells to regulate YAP and C/EBPα function

Jiayi Wang, Joo Seop Park, Yingying Wei, Mihir Rajurkar, Jennifer L. Cotton, Qishi Fan, Brian C. Lewis, Hongkai Ji, Junhao Mao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Dysregulation of Wnt signaling is closely associated with human liver tumorigenesis. However, liver cancer-specific Wnt transcriptional programs and downstream effectors remain poorly understood. Here, we identify tribbles homolog 2 (TRIB2) as a direct target of Wnt/TCF in liver cancer and demonstrate that transcription of Wnt target genes, including TRIB2, is coordinated by the TCF and FoxA transcription factors in liver cancer cells. We show that Wnt-TRIB2 activation is critical for cancer cell survival and transformation. Mechanistically, TRIB2 promotes protein stabilization of the YAP transcription coactivator through interaction with the βTrCP ubiquitin ligase. Furthermore, we find that TRIB2 relieves the liver tumor suppressor protein C/EBPα-mediated inhibition of YAP/TEAD transcriptional activation in liver cancer cells. Altogether, our study uncovers a regulatory mechanism underlying liver cancer-specific Wnt transcriptional output, and suggests that TRIB2 functions as a signaling nexus to integrate the Wnt/β-catenin, Hippo/YAP, and C/EBPα pathways in cancer cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-225
Number of pages15
JournalMolecular cell
Volume51
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 25 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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