GD1a was previously shown responsible for regulating cell motility, cellular adhesiveness to vitronectin, phosphorylation of c-Met and metastatic ability of mouse FBJ osteosarcoma cells. To determine the particular molecules regulated by GD1a, FBJ cells were assessed for tumor-related gene expression by semi-quantitative RT-PCR. Caveolin-1 and stromal interaction molecule 1 (Stim1) expression in FBJ-S1 cells, rich in GD1a, were found to be 6 and 4 times as much, respectively, than in FBJ-LL cells devoid of GD1a. Enhanced production of caveolin-1 in protein was confirmed by Western blotting. A low-metastatic FBJ-LL cell variant, having high GD1a expression through β1-4GalNAcT-1 (GM2/GD2 synthase) cDNA transfection (Hyuga S, et al, Int J Cancer 83: 685-91, 1999), showed enhanced production of caveolin-1 and Stim1 in mRNA and protein, compared to mock-transfectant M5. Incubation of FBJ-M5 cells with exogenous GD1a augmented the expression of caveolin-1 in mRNA and protein and Stim1 in mRNA as well. Treatment of FBJ-S1 with fumonisin B1, an inhibitor of N-acylsphinganine synthesis, for 15 days caused the complete depletion of gangliosides and suppressed the expression of caveolin-1 and Stim1. St3gal5 siRNA transfected cells showed decreased expression of caveolin-1 and Stim1 mRNA, as well as St3gal5 mRNA. These findings clearly indicate ganglioside GD1a to be involved in the regulation of the transformation suppressor genes, caveolin-1 and Stim1. Moreover, treatment with GD1a of mouse melanoma B16 cells and human hepatoma HepG2 cells brought about elevated expression of caveolin-1 and Stim1.
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