Helicobacter pylori infection is one of the most potent factors leading to gastric carcinogenesis. The seven in absentia homologue (Siah2) is an E3 ubiquitin ligase which has been implicated in various cancers but its role in H. pylori-mediated gastric carcinogenesis has not been established. We investigated the involvement of Siah2 in gastric cancer metastasis which was assessed by invasiveness and migration of H. pylori-infected gastric epithelial cancer cells. Cultured gastric cancer cells (GCCs) MKN45, AGS and Kato III showed significantly induced expression of Siah2, increased invasiveness and migration after being challenged with the pathogen. Siah2-expressing stable cells showed increased invasiveness and migration after H. pylori infection. Siah2 was transcriptionally activated by E26 transformation-specific sequence 2 (ETS2)- and Twist-related protein 1 (Twist1) induced in H. pylori-infected gastric epithelial cells. These transcription factors dose-dependently enhanced the aggressiveness of infected GCCs. Our data suggested that H. pylori-infected GCCs gained cell motility and invasiveness through Siah2 induction. As gastric cancer biopsy samples also showed highly induced expression of ETS2, Twist1 and Siah2 compared with noncancerous gastric tissue, we surmise that ETS2- and Twist1-mediated Siah2 up-regulation has potential diagnostic and prognostic significance and could be targeted for therapeutic purpose.

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