Alkaline ceramidase 2 regulates beta;1 integrin maturation and cell adhesion

Wei Sun, Wei Hu, Ruijuan Xu, Junfei Jin, Zdzislaw M. Szulc, Guofeng Zhang, Sehamuddin H. Galadari, Lina M. Obeid, Cungui Mao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The polypeptide core of the integrin β1 subunit (β1) is glycosylated sequentially in the endoplasmic reticulum and the Golgi complex to form β1 precursor and mature β1, respectively. The β1 precursor to mature β1 conversion, termed β1 maturation, regulates the cell surface levels and function of β1- containing integrins, β1 integrins. Here we demonstrate that the human alkaline ceramidase 2 (ACER2), a Golgi enzyme, regulates β1 maturation by controlling the generation of sphingosine. ACER2 overexpression inhibited β1 maturation, thus leading to a decrease in the levels of mature β1 in T-REx HeLa cells, whereas RNA interference-mediated knockdown of ACER2 enhanced β1 maturation in MCF-7 cells. ACER2 overex- pression decreased the cell surface levels of β1 inte- grins, thus inhibiting cell adhesion to fibronectin or collagen, whereas ACER2 knockdown has the opposite effects. Treatment with all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) increased both the expression of ACER2 and the generation of sphingosine in HeLa cells and inhibited β1 maturation. ACER2 knockdown attenuated the inhibitory effects of ATRA on both β1 maturation and cell adhesion. In contrast, treatment with phorbol my- ristate acetate (PMA), a protein kinase C activator, decreased the expression of ACER2 and sphingosine in T-REx HeLa cells, thus enhancing β1 maturation. ACER2 overexpression inhibited the stimulatory effects of PMA on both β1 maturation and cell adhesion. These results suggest that the ACER2/sphingosine pathway plays an important role in regulating β1 maturation and cell adhesion mediated by β1 integrins. Alkaline cerami- dase 2 regulates β1 integrin maturation and cell adhesion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)656-666
Number of pages11
JournalFASEB Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2009


  • Golgi
  • Protein kinase C
  • Retinoic acid
  • Sphingo-lipid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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