Oncogenesis driven by the Ras/Raf pathway requires the SUMO E2 ligase Ubc9.

Yu B1, Swatkoski S, Holly A, Lee LC, Giroux V, Lee CS, Hsu D, Smith JL, Yuen G, Yue J, Ann DK, Simpson RM, Creighton CJ, Figg WD, Gucek M, Luo J.
Source: Proc Natl Acad Sci USA
Publication Date: (2015)
Issue: 112(14): E1724-33
Research Area:
Cancer Research/Cell Biology
Cells used in publication:
Species: human
Tissue Origin:
The small GTPase KRAS is frequently mutated in human cancer and currently there are no targeted therapies for KRAS mutant tumors. Here, we show that the small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) pathway is required for KRAS-driven transformation. RNAi depletion of the SUMO E2 ligase Ubc9 suppresses 3D growth of KRAS mutant colorectal cancer cells in vitro and attenuates tumor growth in vivo. In KRAS mutant cells, a subset of proteins exhibit elevated levels of SUMOylation. Among these proteins, KAP1, CHD1, and EIF3L collectively support anchorage-independent growth, and the SUMOylation of KAP1 is necessary for its activity in this context. Thus, the SUMO pathway critically contributes to the transformed phenotype of KRAS mutant cells and Ubc9 presents a potential target for the treatment of KRAS mutant colorectal cancer.