The glucocorticoid receptor associates with RAS complexes to inhibit cell proliferation and tumor growth

Sci Signal. 2022 Mar 22;15(726):eabm4452. doi: 10.1126/scisignal.abm4452. Epub 2022 Mar 22.ABSTRACTMutations that activate members of the RAS family of GTPases are associated with various cancers and drive tumor growth. The glucocorticoid receptor (GR), a member of the nuclear receptor family, has been proposed to interact with and inhibit the activation of components of the PI3K-AKT and MAPK pathways downstream of RAS. In the absence of activating ligands, we found that GR was present in cytoplasmic KRAS-containing complexes and inhibited the activation of wild-type and oncogenic KRAS in mouse embryonic fibroblasts and human lung cancer A549 cells. The DNA binding domain of GR was involved in the interaction with KRAS, but GR-dependent inhibition of RAS activation did not depend on the nuclear translocation of GR. The addition of ligand released GR-dependent inhibition of RAS, AKT, the MAPK p38, and the MAPKK MEK. CRISPR-Cas9-mediated deletion of GR in A549 cells enhanced tumor growth in xenografts in mice. Patient samples of non-small cell lung carcinomas showed lower expression of NR3C1, the gene encoding GR, compared to adjacent normal tissues and lower NR3C1 expression correlated with a worse disease outcome. These results suggest that glucocorticoids prevent the ability of GR to limit tumor growth by inhibiting RAS activation, which has potential implications for the use of glucocorticoids in patients with cancer.PMID:35316097 | DOI:10.1126/scisignal.abm4452
Source: Science Signaling - Category: Biomedical Science Authors: Source Type: research