The hyaluronan (HA) receptor RHAMM is an important regulator of cell growth. Overexpression of RHAMM is transforming and is required for H-ras transformation. The molecular mechanism underlying growth control by RHAMM and other extracellular matrix receptors remains largely unknown. We report that soluble RHAMM induces G2/M arrest by suppressing the expression of Cdc2/Cyclin B1, a protein kinase complex essential for mitosis. Down-regulation of RHAMM by use of dominant negative mutants or antisense of mRNA also decreases Cdc2 protein levels. Suppression of Cdc2 occurs as a result of an increased rate of cdc2 mRNA degradation. Moreover, tumor cells treated with soluble RHAMM are unable to form lung metastases. Thus, we show that mitosis is directly linked to RHAMM through control of Cdc2 and Cyclin B1 expression. Failure to sustain levels of Cdc2 and Cyclin B1 proteins leads to cell cycle arrest.

This content is only available as a PDF.