Pipkiγ regulates focal adhesion dynamics and colon cancer cell invasion

Zhaofei Wu, Xiang Li, Manjula Sunkara, Heather Spearman, Andrew J. Morris, Cai Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Focal adhesion assembly and disassembly are essential for cell migration and cancer invasion, but the detailed molecular mechanisms regulating these processes remain to be elucidated. Phosphatidylinositol phosphate kinase type Iγ (PIPKIγ) binds talin and is required for focal adhesion formation in EGF-stimulated cells, but its role in regulating focal adhesion dynamics and cancer invasion is poorly understood. We show here that overexpression of PIPKIγ promoted focal adhesion formation, whereas cells expressing either PIPKIγ K188,200R or PIPKIγ D316K, two kinase-dead mutants, had much fewer focal adhesions than those expressing WT PIPKIγ in CHO-K1 cells and HCT116 colon cancer cells. Furthermore, overexpression of PIPKIγ, but not PIPKIγ K188,200R, resulted in an increase in both focal adhesion assembly and disassembly rates. Depletion of PIPKIγ by using shRNA strongly inhibited formation of focal adhesions in HCT116 cells. Overexpression of PIPKIγ K188,200R or depletion of PIPKIγ reduced the strength of HCT116 cell adhesion to fibronection and inhibited the invasive capacities of HCT116 cells. PIPKIγ depletion reduced PIP 2 levels to ~40% of control and PIP 3 to undetectable levels, and inhibited vinculin localizing to focal adhesions. Taken together, PIPKIγ positively regulates focal adhesion dynamics and cancer invasion, most probably through PIP 2-mediated vinculin activation.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere24775
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 12 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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