Amino acid limitation induces down-regulation of WNT5a at transcriptional level

Zuguang Wang, Hong Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


An aberrant WNT signaling contributes to the development and progression of multiple cancers. WNT5a is one of the WNT signaling molecules. This study was designed to test the hypothesis that amino acid deprivation induces changes in the WNT signaling pathway in colon cancer cells. Results showed that targets of the amino acid response pathway, ATF3 and p21, were induced in the human colon cancer cell line SW480 during amino acid limitation. There was a significant decrease in the WNT5a mRNA level following amino acid deprivation. The down-regulation of WNT5a mRNA by amino acid deprivation is not due to mRNA destabilization. There is a reduction of nuclear β-catenin protein level by amino acid limitation. Under amino acid limitation, phosphorylation of ERK1/2 was increased and the blockage of ERK1/2 by the inhibitor U0126 partially restored WNT5a mRNA level. In conclusion, amino acid limitation in colon cancer cells induces phosphorylation of ERK1/2, which then down-regulates WNT5a expression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)789-794
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 23 2009


  • AAR
  • Amino acid deprivation
  • ERK
  • MAPK
  • SW480
  • WNT

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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