The transcription factor ZEB1 (deltaEF1) represses Plakophilin 3 during human cancer progression

Kirsten Aigner, Luise Descovich, Mario Mikula, Aneesa Sultan, Dampier Brigitta, Stefan Bonne, Frans Van Roy, Wolfgang Mikulits, Martin Schreiber, Thomas Brabletz, Wolfgang Sommergruber, Norbert Schweifer, Andreas Wernitznig, Hartmut Beug, Roland Foisner, Andreas Eger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Abstract Plakophilin 3 (PKP3) belongs to the p120ctn family
of armadillo-related proteins predominantly functioning in desmosome
formation. Here we report that PKP3 is transcriptionally
repressed by the E-cadherin repressor ZEB1 in metastatic
cancer cells. ZEB1 physically associates with two conserved Ebox
elements in the PKP3 promoter and partially represses the
activity of corresponding human and mouse PKP3 promoter
fragments in reporter gene assays. In human tumours ZEB1 is
upregulated in invasive cancer cells at the tumour/host interface,
which is accompanied by downregulation of PKP3 expression
levels. Hence, the transcriptional repression of PKP3 by ZEB1
contributes to ZEB1-mediated disintegration of intercellular
adhesion and epithelial to mesenchymal transition.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1617-1624
Number of pages8
JournalFEBS Letters
Issue number581
Publication statusPublished - 21 Mar 2007


  • Epithelial to mesenchymal transition; Invasion;


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