Melanoma is one of the most aggressive cancers, and patients with distant metastases have dire outcomes. We observed previously that melanoma progression is driven by a high migratory potential of melanoma cells, which survive and proliferate under harsh environmental conditions. In this study, we report that CREPT (cell‐cycle related and expression‐elevated protein in tumor), an oncoprotein highly expressed in other cancers, is overexpressed in melanoma cells but not melanocytes. Overexpression of CREPT stimulates cell proliferation, migration, and invasion in several melanoma cell lines. Further, we show that CREPT enhances melanoma progression through upregulating and activating Ras homolog family member A (RhoA)‐induced actin organization and focal adhesion assembly. Our study reveals a novel role of CREPT in promoting melanoma progression. Targeting CREPT may be a promising strategy for melanoma treatment.

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Keywords CREPT, Cytoskeleton organization, Melanoma, Proliferation and migration, RhoA activation
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Journal Cancers
Liu, H. (Hui), Seynhaeve, A.L.B, Brouwer, R.W.W, van IJcken, W.F.J, Yang, L. (Liu), Wang, Y. (Yinyin), … ten Hagen, T.L.M. (2020). CREPT promotes melanoma progression through accelerated proliferation and enhanced migration by rhoa‐mediated actin filaments and focal adhesion formation. Cancers, 12(1). doi:10.3390/cancers12010033