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Uveal melanoma, G protein, GTPase activating protein (GAP), regulator of G protein signaling (RGS), RGS2, cell proliferation, effector antagonism, extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK)


Activating mutations in Gαq/11 are a major driver of uveal melanoma (UM), the most common intraocular cancer in adults. While progress has recently been made in targeting Gαq/11 for UM therapy, the crucial role for these proteins in normal physiology and their high structural similarity with many other important GTPase proteins renders this approach challenging. The aim of the current study was to validate whether a key regulator of Gq signaling, regulator of G protein signaling 2 (RGS2), can inhibit Gαq-mediated UM cell growth. We used two UM cell lines, 92.1 and Mel-202, which both contain the most common activating mutation GαqQ209L and developed stable cell lines with doxycycline-inducible RGS2 protein expression. Using cell viability assays, we showed that RGS2 could inhibit cell growth in both of these UM cell lines. We also found that this effect was independent of the canonical GTPase-activating protein activity of RGS2 but was dependent on the association between RGS2 and Gαq. Furthermore, RGS2 induction resulted in only partial reduction in cell growth as compared to siRNA-mediated Gαq knockdown, perhaps because RGS2 was only able to reduce mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling downstream of phospholipase Cβ, while leaving activation of the Hippo signaling mediators yes-associated protein 1/TAZ, the other major pathway downstream of Gαq, unaffected. Taken together, our data indicate that RGS2 can inhibit UM cancer cell growth by associating with GαqQ209L as a partial effector antagonist.


This is the publisher's version of Zhang Q, Haak AJ, Sjögren B. Regulator of G protein signaling 2 inhibits Gαq-dependent uveal melanoma cell growth. J Biol Chem. 2022 Jun;298(6):101955. doi: 10.1016/j.jbc.2022.101955