Nuclear PTHrP targeting regulates PTHrP secretion and enhances LoVo cell growth and survival

V. Bhatia, M. K. Saini, M. Falzon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Parathyroid hormone-related protein (PTHrP) is expressed by human colon cancer tissue and cell lines; expression correlates with colon carcinoma severity. PTHrP is synthesized as a prepro isoform and contains two targeting sequences - a signal sequence and a nuclear localization signal (NLS). The signal peptide (SP) directs PTHrP to the secretory pathway, where it exerts autocrine/paracrine effects. The NLS directs PTHrP to the nucleus/nucleolus, where it exerts intracrine effects. In this study, we used the human colon cancer cell line LoVo as a model system to study the effects of autocrine/paracrine and intracrine PTHrP action on cell growth and survival, hallmarks of malignant tumor cells. We report that PTHrP increases cell growth and survival, protects cells from serum-starvation-induced apoptosis, and promotes anchorage-independent cell growth via an intracrine pathway. Conversely, autocrine/paracrine PTHrP action decreases cell growth and survival. We also show an inverse relationship between secreted and nuclear PTHrP levels, in that cells overexpressing NLS-deleted PTHrP secrete higher PTHrP levels than those overexpressing the wild-type isoform. Conversely, SP deletion results in higher nuclear PTHrP levels. These observations provide evidence of a link between intracrine PTHrP action and cell growth and survival. Targeting PTHrP production in colon cancer may thus prove therapeutically beneficial.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-155
Number of pages7
JournalRegulatory Peptides
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Nov 27 2009


  • Anchorage independence
  • Apoptosis
  • LoVo (colon cancer cells)
  • Nuclear localization signal
  • Parathyroid hormone-related protein
  • Signal peptide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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