Research Impact Fund
National Natural Science Foundation of China
National Key Research and Development Program of China
Shenzhen Science and Technology program
ARTICLE ABSTRACTThe ubiquitous second messenger Ca2+ has long been recognized as a key regulator in cell migration. Locally confined Ca2+, in particular, is essential for building front-to-rear Ca2+ gradient, which serves to maintain the morphologic polarity required in directionally migrating cells. However, little is known about the source of the Ca2+ and the mechanism by which they crosstalk between different signaling pathways in cancer cells. Here, we report that calcium release–activated calcium modulator 2 (ORAI2), a poorly characterized store-operated calcium (SOC) channel subunit, predominantly upregulated in the lymph node metastasis of gastric cancer, supports cell proliferation and migration. Clinical data reveal that a high frequency of ORAI2-positive cells in gastric cancer tissues significantly correlated with poor differentiation, invasion, lymph node metastasis, and worse prognosis. Gain- and loss-of-function showed that ORAI2 promotes cell motility, tumor formation, and metastasis in both gastric cancer cell lines and mice. Mechanistically, ORAI2 mediated SOC activity and regulated tumorigenic properties through the activation of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathways. Moreover, ORAI2 enhanced the metastatic ability of gastric cancer cells by inducing FAK-mediated MAPK/ERK activation and promoted focal adhesion disassembly at rear-edge of the cell. Collectively, our results demonstrate that ORAI2 is a novel gene that plays an important role in the tumorigenicity and metastasis of gastric cancer.
These findings describe the critical role of ORAI2 in gastric cancer cell migration and tumor metastasis and uncover the translational potential to advance drug discovery along the ORAI2 signaling pathway.