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LRIG1 regulates cadherin‐dependent contact inhibition directing epithelial homeostasis and pre‐invasive squamous cell carcinoma development

Abstract
Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) pathway activation is a frequent event in human carcinomas. Mutations in EGFR itself are, however, rare, and the mechanisms regulating EGFR activation remain elusive. Leucine‐rich immunoglobulin repeats‐1 (LRIG1), an inhibitor of EGFR activity, is one of four genes identified that predict patient survival across solid tumour types including breast, lung, melanoma, glioma, and bladder. We show that deletion of Lrig1 is sufficient to promote murine airway hyperplasia through loss of contact inhibition and that re‐expression of LRIG1 in human lung cancer cells inhibits tumourigenesis. LRIG1 regulation of contact inhibition occurs via ternary complex formation with EGFR and E‐cadherin with downstream modulation of EGFR activity. We find …

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