Krüppel-like factor 5 controls keratinocyte migration via the integrin-linked kinase

Yizeng Yang, Marie Pier Tetreault, Yuliya A. Yermolina, Bree G. Goldstein, Jonathan P. Katz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Migration of epithelial cells is critical for normal homeostasis in gut and skin, but the factors regulating this process are not completely understood. The zinc finger transcription factor Klf5 (IKLF; BTEB2) is highly expressed in proliferating cells of esophagus, skin, and other organs. We hypothesized that Klf5 regulates keratinocyte migration via the integrin-linked kinase (ILK), which, like Klf5, is localized to basal keratinocytes. We stably transduced mouse primary esophageal keratinocytes to overexpress Klf5 or small interfering RNA against Klf5. Klf5 overexpression in keratinocytes increased migration and correlated directly with ILK expression and activation. ILK expression restored migratory capacity in keratinocytes with suppression of Klf5, whereas ILK small interfering RNA blocked the increased migration resulting from Klf5 overexpression. By chromatin immunoprecipitation, electromobility shift assay, and luciferase reporter assays, we confirmed that ILK was a direct target for Klf5. In addition, Klf5 induced the activation of the ILK targets Cdc42 and myosin light chain, which are critical for cell migration and motility but not Rac1, AKT, or GSK3β. Overall, these results demonstrate that Klf5 is a key regulator of cell migration via ILK and provide new insight into the regulation of epithelial cell migration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18812-18820
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number27
StatePublished - Jul 4 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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