FAM46C is one of the most recurrently mutated genes in multiple myeloma; however its role in disease pathogenesis has not been determined. Here we demonstrate that wild-type (WT) FAM46C overexpression induces substantial cytotoxicity in multiple myeloma cells. In contrast, FAM46C mutations found in multiple myeloma patients abrogate this cytotoxicity, indicating a survival advantage conferred by the FAM46C mutant phenotype. WT FAM46C overexpression downregulated IRF4, CEBPB, and MYC and upregulated immunoglobulin (Ig) light chain and HSPA5/BIP. Furthermore, pathway analysis suggests that enforced FAM46C expression activated the unfolded protein response pathway and induced mitochondrial dysfunction. CRISPR-mediated depletion of endogenous FAM46C enhanced multiple myeloma cell growth, decreased Ig light chain and HSPA5/BIP expression, activated ERK and antiapoptotic signaling, and conferred relative resistance to dexamethasone and lenalidomide treatments. Genes altered in FAM46C-depleted cells were enriched for signaling pathways regulating estrogen, glucocorticoid, B-cell receptor signaling, and ATM signaling. Together these results implicate FAM46C in myeloma cell growth and survival and identify FAM46C mutation as a contributor to myeloma pathogenesis and disease progression via perturbation in plasma cell differentiation and endoplasmic reticulum homeostasis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research