Autocrine regulation of TGF-β1-induced cell migration by exocytosis of ATP and activation of P2 receptors in human lung cancer cells

Erina Takai, Mitsutoshi Tsukimoto, Hitoshi Harada, Keisuke Sawada, Yoshinori Moriyama, Shuji Kojima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Citations (Scopus)


TGF-Β1 plays a key role in cancer progression through induction of various biological effects, including cell migration. Extracellular nucleotides, such as ATP, released from cells play a role in signaling through activation of P2 receptors. We show here that exocytosis of ATP followed by activation of P2 receptors play a key role in TGFΒ1-induced actin remodeling associated with cell migration. Treatment with TGF-Β1 facilitated migration of human lung cancer A549 cells, which was blocked by pretreatment with ectonucleotidase and P2 receptor antagonists. ATP and P2 agonists facilitated cell migration. TGFΒ1-induced actin remodeling, which contributes to cell migration, was also suppressed by pretreatment with ecto-nucleotidase and P2 receptor antagonists. Knockdown of P2X7 receptor suppressed TGFΒ1-induced migration and actin remodeling. These results indicate the involvement of TGFΒ1-induced ATP release in cell migration, at least in part, through activation of P2X7 receptors. TGFΒ1 caused release of ATP from A549 cells within 10 minutes. Both ATP-enriched vesicles and expression of a vesicular nucleotide transporter (VNUT) SLC17A9, which is responsible for exocytosis of ATP, were found in cytosol of A549 cells. TGFΒ1 failed to induce release of ATP from SLC17A9-knockdown cells. TGFΒ1-induced cell migration and actin remodeling were also decreased in SLC17A9-knockdown cells. These results suggest the importance of exocytosis of ATP in cell migration. We conclude that autocrine signaling through exocytosis of ATP and activation of P2 receptors is required for the amplification of TGFΒ1-induced migration of lung cancer cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5051-5060
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of cell science
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • ATP
  • Autocrine signaling
  • Cell migration
  • Exocytosis
  • P2 receptor
  • TGFΒ1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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