Reelin (RELN), which is a glycoprotein secreted by Cajal-Retzius cells of the developing cerebral cortex, plays an important role in neuronal migration, but its role in cell migration and cancer metastasis is largely unclear. Here, we showed that cell motility was significantly increased in KYSE-510 cells by TGF-β1 treatment. Moreover, TGF-β1 decreased RELN mRNA expression and overexpression of Reelin at least partly reversed TGF-β1-induced cell migration in KYSE-30 cells. Furthermore, this negative regulation of Reelin expression by TGF-β1 was through Snail, one transcription factor which was induced by TGF-β1 in KYSE-510 cells. RELN promoter activity was reduced in parallel with the induction of Snail after TGF-β1 treatment and Snail suppressed both RELN promoter activity and expression through binding to E-box sequences in the RELN promoter region in ESCC cells. Knockdown of RELN induced cell migration in KYSE-510 cells, together with the increase of mesenchymal markers expression. Taken together, Reelin is an essential negative regulator in the TGF-β1-induced cell migration process, and is suppressed by TGF-β pathway at the transcriptional level through Snail regulation. Therefore, the correlation of Reelin and TGF-β pathway was critical in cancer metastasis, and Reelin could be one potential anti-metastasis target in future clinical practice.
Yuan, Y., Chen, H., Ma, G., Cao, X., & Liu, Z. (2012). Reelin is involved in transforming growth factor-β1-induced cell migration in esophageal carcinoma cells. PLoS ONE, 7(2). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0031802