The basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor OLIG2 is a master regulator of oligodendroglial fateÂ decisions and tumorigenic competence of glioma stem-like cells (GSCs). However, the molecularÂ mechanisms underlying dysregulation of OLIG2 function during gliomagenesis remains poorly understood. Here, we show that OLIG2 modulates growth factor signaling in two distinct populations of GSCs, characterized by expression of either the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) or platelet-derived growth factor receptor alpha (PDGFRÎ±). Biochemical analyses of OLIG2 function in normal and malignant neural progenitors reveal a positive feedforward loop between OLIG2 and EGFR to sustain co-expression. Furthermore, loss of OLIG2 function results in mesenchymal transformation in PDGFRÎ±HIGH GSCs, a phenomenon that appears to be circumscribed in EGFRHIGH GSCs. Exploitation of OLIG2â€²s dual and antithetical, pro-mitotic (EGFR-driven), and lineage-specifying (PDGFRÎ±-driven) functions by glioma cells appears to be critical for sustaining growth factor signaling and GSC molecular subtype.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Kupp, Robert; Shtayer, Lior; Tien, An Chi; Szeto, Emily; Sanai, Nader; Rowitch, David H.; and Mehta, Shwetal, "Lineage-Restricted Olig2-Rtk Signaling Governs The Molecular Subtype Of Glioma Stem-Like Cells" (2016). Neurobiology. 296.