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Open AccessArticle

The Transcription Factor Elf3 Is Essential for a Successful Mesenchymal to Epithelial Transition

Izmir Biomedicine and Genome Center, 35340 Izmir, Turkey
Izmir International Biomedicine and Genome Institute, Dokuz Eylül University, 35340 Izmir, Turkey
Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Medical Sciences, Rawalpindi 46000, Pakistan
Vocational School of Health Services, Dokuz Eylül University, 35340 Izmir, Turkey
Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Bilkent University, 06800 Ankara, Turkey
Department of Experimental Medicine 1, Nikolaus-Fiebiger Center for Molecular Medicine, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nürnberg, D-91054 Erlangen, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Cells 2019, 8(8), 858;
Received: 10 June 2019 / Revised: 22 July 2019 / Accepted: 27 July 2019 / Published: 9 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epithelial–Mesenchymal Transition and Hallmarks of Cancer)
The epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and the mesenchymal to epithelial transition (MET) are two critical biological processes that are involved in both physiological events such as embryogenesis and development and also pathological events such as tumorigenesis. They present with dramatic changes in cellular morphology and gene expression exhibiting acute changes in E-cadherin expression. Despite the comprehensive understanding of EMT, the regulation of MET is far from being understood. To find novel regulators of MET, we hypothesized that such factors would correlate with Cdh1 expression. Bioinformatics examination of several expression profiles suggested Elf3 as a strong candidate. Depletion of Elf3 at the onset of MET severely impaired the progression to the epithelial state. This MET defect was explained, in part, by the absence of E-cadherin at the plasma membrane. Moreover, during MET, ELF3 interacts with the Grhl3 promoter and activates its expression. Our findings present novel insights into the regulation of MET and reveal ELF3 as an indispensable guardian of the epithelial state. A better understanding of MET will, eventually, lead to better management of metastatic cancers. View Full-Text
Keywords: mesenchymal to epithelial transition; Elf3; Grhl3; Cadherins mesenchymal to epithelial transition; Elf3; Grhl3; Cadherins
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sengez, B.; Aygün, I.; Shehwana, H.; Toyran, N.; Tercan Avci, S.; Konu, O.; Stemmler, M.P.; Alotaibi, H. The Transcription Factor Elf3 Is Essential for a Successful Mesenchymal to Epithelial Transition. Cells 2019, 8, 858.

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