Mutually exclusive activating mutations in the GNAQ and GNA11 oncogenes, encoding heterotrimeric Gαq family members, have been identified in ∼ 83% and ∼ 6% of uveal and skin melanomas, respectively. However, the molecular events underlying these GNAQ-driven malignancies are not yet defined, thus limiting the ability to develop cancer-targeted therapies. Here, we focused on the transcriptional coactivator YAP, a critical component of the Hippo signaling pathway that controls organ size. We found that Gαq stimulates YAP through a Trio-Rho/Rac signaling circuitry promoting actin polymerization, independently of phospholipase Cβ and the canonical Hippo pathway. Furthermore, we show that Gαq promotes the YAP-dependent growth of uveal melanoma cells, thereby identifying YAP as a suitable therapeutic target in uveal melanoma, a GNAQ/GNA11-initiated human malignancy.
Cancer Cell. 2014 Jun 16;25(6):831-45.
Hippo-independent activation of YAP by the GNAQ uveal melanoma oncogene through a trio-regulated rho GTPase signaling circuitry.
Feng X, Degese MS, Iglesias-Bartolome R, Vaque JP, Molinolo AA, Rodrigues M, Zaidi MR, Ksander BR, Merlino G, Sodhi A, Chen Q, Gutkind JS.