hMENA is a key regulator in endothelin-1/β-arrestin1–induced invadopodial function and metastatic process Academic Article uri icon

  • Overview
  • Research
  • Identity
  • Additional Document Info
  • View All


  • Aberrant activation of endothelin-1 receptors (ET-1R) elicits pleiotropic effects relevant for tumor progression. The network activated by this receptor might be finely, spatially, and temporarily orchestrated by β-arrestin1 (β-arr1)–driven interactome. Here, we identify hMENA, a member of the actin-regulatory protein ENA/VASP family, as an interacting partner of β-arr1, necessary for invadopodial function downstream of ET-1R in serous ovarian cancer (SOC) progression. ET-1R activation by ET-1 up-regulates expression of hMENA/hMENAΔv6 isoforms through β-arr1, restricted to mesenchymal-like invasive SOC cells. The interaction of β-arr1 with hMENA/hMENAΔv6 triggered by ET-1 leads to activation of RhoC and cortactin, recruitment of membrane type 1-matrix metalloprotease, and invadopodia maturation, thereby enhancing cell plasticity, transendothelial migration, and the resulting spread of invasive cells. The treatment with the ET-1R antagonist macitentan impairs the interaction of β-arr1 with hMENA and inhibits invadopodial maturation and tumor dissemination in SOC orthotopic xenografts. Finally, high ETAR/hMENA/β-arr1 gene expression signature is associated with a poor prognosis in SOC patients. These data define a pivotal function of hMENA/hMENAΔv6 for ET-1/β-arr1–induced invadopodial activity and ovarian cancer progression.


  • Di Modugno, Francesca
  • Caprara, Valentina
  • Chellini, Lidia
  • Tocci, Piera
  • Spadaro, Francesca
  • Ferrandina, Gabriella
  • Sacconi, Andrea
  • Blandino, Giovanni
  • Nisticò, Paola
  • Bagnato, Anna
  • Rosanò, Laura

publication date

  • March 20, 2018