Multinuclear giant cell formation is enhanced by down-regulation of Wnt signaling in gastric cancer cell line, AGS

Shi Mun Kim, Rockki Kim, Jae Hyun Ryu, Eek Hoon Jho, Ki-Joon Song, Shyh Ing Jang, Sun-Ho Kee

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13 Citations (Scopus)


AGS cells, which were derived from malignant gastric adenocarcinoma tissue, lack E-cadherin-mediated cell adhesion but have a high level of nuclear β-catenin, which suggests altered Wnt signal. In addition, approximately 5% of AGS cells form multinuclear giant cells in the routine culture conditions, while taxol treatment causes most AGS cells to become giant cells. The observation of reduced nuclear β-catenin levels in giant cells induced by taxol treatment prompted us to investigate the relationship between Wnt signaling and giant cell formation. After overnight serum starvation, the shape of AGS cells became flattened, and this morphological change was accompanied by decrease in Myc expression and an increase in the giant cell population. Lithium chloride treatment, which inhibits GSK3β activity, reversed these serum starvation effects, which suggests an inverse relationship between Wnt signaling and giant cell formation. Furthermore, the down-regulation of Wnt signaling caused by the over-expression of ICAT, E-cadherin, and Axin enhanced giant cell formation. Therefore, down-regulation of Wnt signaling may be related to giant cell formation, which is considered to be a survival mechanism against induced cell death.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-28
Number of pages11
JournalExperimental Cell Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Aug 1



  • β-catenin
  • AGS cells
  • E-cadherin
  • Giant cell formation
  • ICAT
  • Wnt signaling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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