PlexinB1 Promotes Nuclear Translocation of the Glucocorticoid Receptor

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Androgen receptor (AR) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR) are nuclear receptors whose function depends on their entry into the nucleus where they activate transcription of an overlapping set of genes. Both AR and GR have a role in resistance to androgen deprivation therapy (ADT), the mainstay of treatment for late stage prostate cancer. PlexinB1, a receptor for semaphorins, has been implicated in various cancers including prostate cancer and has a role in resistance to ADT. We show here that activation of PlexinB1 by Sema4D and Sema3C results in translocation of endogenous GR to the nucleus in prostate cancer cells, and that this effect is dependent on PlexinB1 expression. Sema4D/Sema3C promotes the translocation of GR-GFP to the nucleus and mutation of the nuclear localization sequence (NLS1) of GR abrogates this response. These findings implicate the importin α/β system in the Sema4D/Sema3C-mediated nuclear import of GR. Knockdown of PlexinB1 in prostate cancer cells decreases the levels of glucocorticoid-responsive gene products and antagonizes the decrease in cell motility and cell area of prostate cancer cells upon dexamethasone treatment, demonstrating the functional significance of these findings. These results show that PlexinB1 activation has a role in the trafficking and activation of the nuclear receptor GR and thus may have a role in resistance to androgen deprivation therapy in late stage prostate cancer.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbercells9010003
Issue number1
Early online date18 Dec 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Dec 2019


  • Plexin; semaphorin; prostate cancer; glucocorticoid receptor; nucleocytoplasmic trafficking; dexamethasone; nuclear localization signal


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