Document Type


Original Publication Date


Journal/Book/Conference Title






DOI of Original Publication



Originally published at

Date of Submission

December 2015


Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), a blood-borne lipid mediator, is present in elevated concentrations in ascites of ovarian cancer patients and other malignant effusions. LPA is a potent mitogen in cancer cells. The mechanism linking LPA signal to cancer cell proliferation is not well understood. Little is known about whether LPA affects glucose metabolism to accommodate rapid proliferation of cancer cells. Here we describe that in ovarian cancer cells, LPA enhances glycolytic rate and lactate efflux. A real time PCR-based miniarray showed that hexokinase II (HK2) was the most dramatically induced glycolytic gene to promote glycolysis in LPA-treated cells. Analysis of the human HK2 gene promoter identified the sterol regulatory element-binding protein as the primary mediator of LPA-induced HK2 transcription. The effects of LPA on HK2 and glycolysis rely on LPA2, an LPA receptor subtype overexpressed in ovarian cancer and many other malignancies. We further examined the general role of growth factor-induced glycolysis in cell proliferation. Like LPA, epidermal growth factor (EGF) elicited robust glycolytic and proliferative responses in ovarian cancer cells. Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) and insulin, however, potently stimulated cell proliferation but only modestly induced glycolysis. Consistent with their differential effects on glycolysis, LPA and EGF-dependent cell proliferation was highly sensitive to glycolytic inhibition while the growth-promoting effect of IGF-1 or insulin was more resistant. These results indicate that LPA- and EGF-induced cell proliferation selectively involves up-regulation of HK2 and glycolytic metabolism. The work is the first to implicate LPA signaling in promotion of glucose metabolism in cancer cells.


Copyright © 2015 The Authors. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (

Is Part Of

VCU Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Publications

mmc1.pptx (42 kB)
Quantitative PCR-based array of glycolytic genes in Caov-3 cells treated with LPA for 12 hours. Experimental conditions and data presentation were as described in Figure 2A.