Aberrant expression of NPPB through YAP1 and TAZ activation in mesothelioma with Hippo pathway gene alterations

Tatsuhiro Sato, Ken Akao, Ayuko Sato, Tohru Tsujimura, Satomi Mukai, Yoshitaka Sekido

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Mesothelioma is a neoplastic disease associated with asbestos exposure. It is highly malignant and has a poor prognosis; thus, early detection is desirable. Recent whole-genome analysis has revealed that mesothelioma is characterized by a high frequency of mutations in a set of genes involved in the Hippo pathway, such as NF2 and LATS2. However, a rapid, simple, and precise method for finding mesothelioma with these mutations has not yet been established. Methods: Clustering of Hippo pathway gene alteration groups and the differential expression of each gene in mesothelioma patients were analyzed using The Cancer Genome Atlas database. Gene expression levels in various tumors and normal tissues were analyzed using public databases. Knockdown or transient expression of YAP1 or TAZ was performed to evaluate the regulation of gene expression by these genes. NT-proBNP was measured in the pleural effusions of 18 patients and was compared with NF2 expression in five cases where cell lines had been successfully established. Results: NPPB mRNA expression was markedly higher in the group of mesothelioma patients with Hippo pathway gene mutations than in the group without them. NPPB expression was low in all normal tissues except heart, and was highest in mesothelioma. Mesothelioma patients in the high NPPB expression group had a significantly worse prognosis than those in the low NPPB expression group. NPPB expression was suppressed by knockdown of YAP1 or TAZ. NT-proBNP was abundant in the effusions of mesothelioma patients and was particularly high in those with impaired NF2 expression. Conclusions: NPPB, whose levels can be measured in pleural effusions of mesothelioma patients, has the potential to act as a biomarker to detect NF2-Hippo pathway gene alterations and/or predict patient prognosis. Additionally, it may provide useful molecular insights for a better understanding of mesothelioma pathogenesis and for the development of novel therapies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13586-13598
Number of pages13
JournalCancer Medicine
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 06-2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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