Adrenergic signaling promotes the expansion of cancer stem-like cells of malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors

Rongsheng Huang, Atsushi Fujimura, Eiji Nakata, Shota Takihira, Hirofumi Inoue, Soichiro Yoshikawa, Takeshi Hiyama, Toshifumi Ozaki, Atsunori Kamiya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor (MPNST), a highly malignant tumor that arises in peripheral nerve tissues, is known to be highly resistant to radiation and chemotherapy. Although there are several reports on genetic mutations and epigenetic changes that define the pathogenesis of MPNST, there is insufficient information regarding the microenvironment that contributes to the malignancy of MPNST. In the present study, we demonstrate that adrenaline increases the cancer stem cell population in MPNST. This effect is mediated by adrenaline stimulation of beta-2 adrenergic receptor (ADRB2), which activates the Hippo transducer, YAP/TAZ. Inhibition and RNAi experiments revealed that inhibition of ADRB2 attenuated the adrenaline-triggered activity of YAP/TAZ and subsequently attenuated MPNST cells stemness. Furthermore, ADRB2-YAP/TAZ axis was confirmed in the MPNST patients’ specimens. The prognosis of patients with high levels of ADRB2 was found to be significantly worse. These data show that adrenaline exacerbates MPNST prognosis and may aid the development of new treatment strategies for MPNST.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-205
Number of pages7
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Publication statusPublished - Jun 11 2021


  • ADRB2
  • Cancer stem-like cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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