Elevated ETV6 Expression in Glioma Promotes an Aggressive In Vitro Phenotype Associated with Shorter Patient Survival. Genes Xiong, Z., Wu, S., Li, F., Luo, C., Jin, Q., Connolly, I. D., Hayden Gephart, M., You, L. 2022; 13 (10)


Background: GBM astrocytes may adopt fetal astrocyte transcriptomic signatures involved in brain development and migration programs to facilitate diffuse tumor infiltration. Our previous data show that ETS variant 6 (ETV6) is highly expressed in human GBM and fetal astrocytes compared to normal mature astrocytes. We hypothesized that ETV6 played a role in GBM tumor progression. Methods: Expression of ETV6 was first examined in two American and three Chinese tissue microarrays. The correlation between ETV6 staining intensity and patient survival was calculated, followed by validation using public databases-TCGA and REMBRANDT. The effect of ETV6 knockdown on glioma cell proliferation (EdU), viability (AnnexinV labeling), clonogenic growth (colony formation), and migration/invasion (transwell assays) in GBM cells was tested. RNA sequencing and Western blot were performed to elucidate the underlying molecular mechanisms. Results: ETV6 was highly expressed in GBM and associated with an unfavorable prognosis. ETV6 silencing in glioma cells led to increased apoptosis or decreased proliferation, clonogenicity, migration, and invasion. RNA-Seq-based gene expression and pathway analyses revealed that ETV6 knockdown in U251 cells led to the upregulation of genes involved in extracellular matrix organization, NF-kappaB signaling, TNF-mediated signaling, and the downregulation of genes in the regulation of cell motility, cell proliferation, PI3K-AKT signaling, and the Ras pathway. The downregulation of the PI3K-AKT and Ras-MAPK pathways were further validated by immunoblotting. Conclusion: Our findings suggested that ETV6 was highly expressed in GBM and its high expression correlated with poor survival. ETV6 silencing decreased an aggressive in vitro phenotype probably via the PI3K-AKT and Ras-MAPK pathways. The study encourages further investigation of ETV6 as a potential therapeutic target of GBM.

View details for DOI 10.3390/genes13101882

View details for PubMedID 36292767