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Cyclic AMP regulates the migration and invasion potential of human pancreatic cancer cells. Mol Carcinog 2015 Mar;54(3):203-15



Pubmed ID


Pubmed Central ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-84926109550   38 Citations


Aggressive dissemination and metastasis of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) results in poor prognosis and marked lethality. Rho monomeric G protein levels are increased in pancreatic cancer tissue. As the mechanisms underlying PDAC malignancy are little understood, we investigated the role for cAMP in regulating monomeric G protein regulated invasion and migration of pancreatic cancer cells. Treatment of PDAC cells with cAMP elevating agents that activate adenylyl cyclases, forskolin, protein kinase A (PKA), 6-Bnz-cAMP, or the cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase inhibitor cilostamide significantly decreased migration and Matrigel invasion of PDAC cell lines. Inhibition was dose-dependent and not significantly different between forskolin or cilostamide treatment. cAMP elevating drugs not only blocked basal migration, but similarly abrogated transforming-growth factor-β-directed PDAC cell migration and invasion. The inhibitory effects of cAMP were prevented by the pharmacological blockade of PKA. Drugs that increase cellular cAMP levels decreased levels of active RhoA or RhoC, with a concomitant increase in phosphorylated RhoA. Diminished Rho signaling was correlated with the appearance of thickened cortical actin bands along the perimeter of non-motile forskolin or cilostamide-treated cells. Decreased migration did not reflect alterations in cell growth or programmed cell death. Collectively these data support the notion that increased levels of cAMP specifically hinder PDAC cell motility through F-actin remodeling.

Author List

Zimmerman NP, Roy I, Hauser AD, Wilson JM, Williams CL, Dwinell MB


Michael B. Dwinell PhD Director, Professor in the Microbiology and Immunology department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Carol L. Williams PhD Professor in the Pharmacology and Toxicology department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal
Cell Line, Tumor
Cell Movement
Cell Proliferation
Cyclic AMP
Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases
Enzyme Inhibitors
Neoplasm Invasiveness
Pancreatic Neoplasms
Phosphodiesterase Inhibitors
Vasodilator Agents
rho GTP-Binding Proteins
rhoA GTP-Binding Protein
rhoC GTP-Binding Protein