144 research outputs found

    Transcriptomic profiling of human breast and melanoma cells selected by migration through narrow constraints

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    The metastatic spread of cancer cells is a step-wise process that starts with dissociation from primary tumours and local invasion of adjacent tissues. The ability to invade local tissues is the product of several processes, including degradation of extracellular matrices (ECM) and movement of tumour cells through physically-restricting gaps. To identify properties contributing to tumour cells squeezing through narrow gaps, invasive MDA-MB-231 human breast cancer and MDA-MB-435 human melanoma cells were subjected to three successive rounds of selection using cell culture inserts with highly constraining 3 μm pores. For comparison purposes, flow cytometry was also employed to enrich for small diameter MDA-MB-231 cells. RNA-Sequencing (RNA-seq) using the Illumina NextSeq 500 platform was undertaken to characterize how gene expression differed between parental, invasive pore selected or small diameter cells. Gene expression results obtained by RNA-seq were validated by comparing with RT-qPCR. Transcriptomic data generated could be used to determine how alterations that enable cell passage through narrow spaces contribute to local invasion and metastasis

    Sleeping Beauty screen reveals Pparg activation in metastatic prostate cancer

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    Prostate cancer (CaP) is the most common adult male cancer in the developed world. The paucity of biomarkers to predict prostate tumor biology makes it important to identify key pathways that confer poor prognosis and guide potential targeted therapy. Using a murine forward mutagenesis screen in a Pten-null background, we identified peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (Pparg), encoding a ligand-activated transcription factor, as a promoter of metastatic CaP through activation of lipid signaling pathways, including up-regulation of lipid synthesis enzymes [fatty acid synthase (FASN), acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC), ATP citrate lyase (ACLY)]. Importantly, inhibition of PPARG suppressed tumor growth in vivo, with down-regulation of the lipid synthesis program. We show that elevated levels of PPARG strongly correlate with elevation of FASN in human CaP and that high levels of PPARG/FASN and PI3K/pAKT pathway activation confer a poor prognosis. These data suggest that CaP patients could be stratified in terms of PPARG/FASN and PTEN levels to identify patients with aggressive CaP who may respond favorably to PPARG/FASN inhibition

    Sprouty2 loss‐induced IL6 drives castration‐resistant prostate cancer through scavenger receptor B1

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    Metastatic castration‐resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) is a lethal form of treatment‐resistant prostate cancer and poses significant therapeutic challenges. Deregulated receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) signalling mediated by loss of tumour suppressor Sprouty2 (SPRY2) is associated with treatment resistance. Using pre‐clinical human and murine mCRPC models, we show that SPRY2 deficiency leads to an androgen self‐sufficient form of CRPC. Mechanistically, HER2‐IL6 signalling axis enhances the expression of androgen biosynthetic enzyme HSD3B1 and increases SRB1‐mediated cholesterol uptake in SPRY2‐deficient tumours. Systemically, IL6 elevated the levels of circulating cholesterol by inducing host adipose lipolysis and hepatic cholesterol biosynthesis. SPRY2‐deficient CRPC is dependent on cholesterol bioavailability and SRB1‐mediated tumoral cholesterol uptake for androgen biosynthesis. Importantly, treatment with ITX5061, a clinically safe SRB1 antagonist, decreased treatment resistance. Our results indicate that cholesterol transport blockade may be effective against SPRY2‐deficient CRPC

    Reversed argininosuccinate lyase activity in fumarate hydratase-deficient cancer cells.

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    BACKGROUND: Loss of function of fumarate hydratase (FH), the mitochondrial tumor suppressor and tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle enzyme, is associated with a highly malignant form of papillary and collecting duct renal cell cancer. The accumulation of fumarate in these cells has been linked to the tumorigenic process. However, little is known about the overall effects of the loss of FH on cellular metabolism. METHODS: We performed comprehensive metabolomic analyses of urine from Fh1-deficient mice and stable isotopologue tracing from human and mouse FH-deficient cell lines to investigate the biochemical signature of the loss of FH. RESULTS: The metabolomics analysis revealed that the urea cycle metabolite argininosuccinate is a common metabolic biomarker of FH deficiency. Argininosuccinate was found to be produced from arginine and fumarate by the reverse activity of the urea cycle enzyme argininosuccinate lyase (ASL), making these cells auxotrophic for arginine. Depleting arginine from the growth media by the addition of pegylated arginine deiminase (ADI-PEG 20) decreased the production of argininosuccinate in FH-deficient cells and reduced cell survival and proliferation. CONCLUSIONS: These results unravel a previously unidentified correlation between fumarate accumulation and the urea cycle enzyme ASL in FH-deficient cells. The finding that FH-deficient cells become auxotrophic for arginine opens a new therapeutic perspective for the cure of hereditary leiomyomatosis and renal cell cancer (HLRCC).RIGHTS : This article is licensed under the BioMed Central licence at http://www.biomedcentral.com/about/license which is similar to the 'Creative Commons Attribution Licence'. In brief you may : copy, distribute, and display the work; make derivative works; or make commercial use of the work - under the following conditions: the original author must be given credit; for any reuse or distribution, it must be made clear to others what the license terms of this work are

    p53-mediated redox control promotes liver regeneration and maintains liver function in response to CCl4

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    The p53 transcription factor coordinates wide-ranging responses to stress that contribute to its function as a tumour suppressor. The responses to p53 induction are complex and range from mediating the elimination of stressed or damaged cells to promoting survival and repair. These activities of p53 can modulate tumour development but may also play a role in pathological responses to stress such as tissue damage and repair. Using a p53 reporter mouse, we have previously detected strong induction of p53 activity in the liver of mice treated with the hepatotoxin carbon tetrachloride (CCl ). Here, we show that p53 functions to support repair and recovery from CCl -mediated liver damage, control reactive oxygen species (ROS) and limit the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), in part through the activation of a detoxification cytochrome P450, CYP2A5 (CYP2A6 in humans). Our work demonstrates an important role for p53-mediated redox control in facilitating the hepatic regenerative response after damage and identifies CYP2A5/CYP2A6 as a mediator of this pathway with potential prognostic utility in human HCC

    E-cadherin can limit the transforming properties of activating β-catenin mutations

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    Wnt pathway deregulation is a common characteristic of many cancers. But only Colorectal Cancer predominantly harbours mutations in APC, whereas other cancer types (hepatocellular carcinoma, solid pseudopapillary tumours of pancreas) have activating mutations in β-catenin (CTNNB1). We have compared the dynamics and the potency of β-catenin mutations in vivo. Within the murine small intestine (SI), an activating mutation of β-catenin took much longer to achieve a Wnt deregulation and acquire a crypt-progenitor-cell (CPC) phenotype than Apc or Gsk3 loss. Within the colon, a single activating mutation of β-catenin was unable to drive Wnt deregulation or induce the CPC phenotype. This ability of β-catenin mutation to differentially transform the SI versus the colon correlated with significantly higher expression of the β-catenin binding partner E-cadherin. This increased expression is associated with a higher number of E-cadherin:β-catenin complexes at the membrane. Reduction of E-cadherin synergised with an activating mutation of β-catenin so there was now a rapid CPC phenotype within the colon and SI. Thus there is a threshold of β-catenin that is required to drive transformation and E-cadherin can act as a buffer to prevent β-catenin accumulation

    Replication Stress Drives Constitutive Activation of the DNA Damage Response and Radioresistance in Glioblastoma Stem-like Cells

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    Glioblastoma (GBM) is a lethal primary brain tumor characterized by treatment resistance and inevitable tumor recurrence, both of which are driven by a subpopulation of GBM cancer stem-like cells (GSC) with tumorigenic and self-renewal properties. Despite having broad implications for understanding GSC phenotype, the determinants of upregulated DNA damage response (DDR) and subsequent radiation resistance in GSC are unknown and represent a significant barrier to developing effective GBM treatments. In this study, we show that constitutive DDR activation and radiation resistance are driven by high levels of DNA replication stress (RS). CD133+ GSC exhibited reduced DNA replication velocity and a higher frequency of stalled replication forks than CD133- non-GSC in vitro; immunofluorescence studies confirmed these observations in a panel of orthotopic xenografts and human GBM specimens. Exposure of non-GSC to low-level exogenous RS generated radiation resistance in vitro, confirming RS as a novel determinant of radiation resistance in tumor cells. GSC exhibited DNA double strand breaks (DSB) which co-localized with 'replication factories' and RNA: DNA hybrids. GSC also demonstrated increased expression of long neural genes (>1Mbp) containing common fragile sites, supporting the hypothesis that replication/transcription collisions are the likely cause of RS in GSC. Targeting RS by combined inhibition of ATR and PARP (CAiPi) provided GSC-specific cytotoxicity and complete abrogation of GSC radiation resistance in vitro. These data identify RS as a cancer stem cell-specific target with significant clinical potential

    Linking toxicant physiological mode of action with induced gene expression changes in Caenorhabditis elegans

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    Background Physiologically based modelling using DEBtox (dynamic energy budget in toxicology) and transcriptional profiling were used in Caenorhabditis elegans to identify how physiological modes of action, as indicated by effects on system level resource allocation were associated with changes in gene expression following exposure to three toxic chemicals: cadmium, fluoranthene (FA) and atrazine (AZ). Results For Cd, the physiological mode of action as indicated by DEBtox model fitting was an effect on energy assimilation from food, suggesting that the transcriptional response to exposure should be dominated by changes in the expression of transcripts associated with energy metabolism and the mitochondria. While evidence for effect on genes associated with energy production were seen, an ontological analysis also indicated an effect of Cd exposure on DNA integrity and transcriptional activity. DEBtox modelling showed an effect of FA on costs for growth and reproduction (i.e. for production of new and differentiated biomass). The microarray analysis supported this effect, showing an effect of FA on protein integrity and turnover that would be expected to have consequences for rates of somatic growth. For AZ, the physiological mode of action predicted by DEBtox was increased cost for maintenance. The transcriptional analysis demonstrated that this increase resulted from effects on DNA integrity as indicated by changes in the expression of genes chromosomal repair. Conclusions Our results have established that outputs from process based models and transcriptomics analyses can help to link mechanisms of action of toxic chemicals with resulting demographic effects. Such complimentary analyses can assist in the categorisation of chemicals for risk assessment purposes

    The ERBB network facilitates KRAS-driven lung tumorigenesis

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    KRAS is the most frequently mutated driver oncogene in human adenocarcinoma of the lung. There are presently no clinically proven strategies for treatment of KRAS-driven lung cancer. Activating mutations in KRAS are thought to confer independence from upstream signaling; however, recent data suggest that this independence may not be absolute. We show that initiation and progression of KRAS-driven lung tumors require input from ERBB family receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs): Multiple ERBB RTKs are expressed and active from the earliest stages of KRAS-driven lung tumor development, and treatment with a multi-ERBB inhibitor suppresses formation of KRASG12D-driven lung tumors. We present evidence that ERBB activity amplifies signaling through the core RAS pathway, supporting proliferation of KRAS-mutant tumor cells in culture and progression to invasive disease in vivo. Brief pharmacological inhibition of the ERBB network enhances the therapeutic benefit of MEK (mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase) inhibition in an autochthonous tumor setting. Our data suggest that lung cancer patients with KRAS-driven disease may benefit from inclusion of multi-ERBB inhibitors in rationally designed treatment strategies

    Loss of BCL9/9l suppresses Wnt driven tumourigenesis in models that recapitulate human cancer.

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    Different thresholds of Wnt signalling are thought to drive stem cell maintenance, regeneration, differentiation and cancer. However, the principle that oncogenic Wnt signalling could be specifically targeted remains controversial. Here we examine the requirement of BCL9/9l, constituents of the Wnt-enhanceosome, for intestinal transformation following loss of the tumour suppressor APC. Although required for Lgr5+ intestinal stem cells and regeneration, Bcl9/9l deletion has no impact upon normal intestinal homeostasis. Loss of BCL9/9l suppressed many features of acute APC loss and subsequent Wnt pathway deregulation in vivo. This resulted in a level of Wnt pathway activation that favoured tumour initiation in the proximal small intestine (SI) and blocked tumour growth in the colon. Furthermore, Bcl9/9l deletion completely abrogated β-catenin driven intestinal and hepatocellular transformation. We speculate these results support the just-right hypothesis of Wnt-driven tumour formation. Importantly, loss of BCL9/9l is particularly effective at blocking colonic tumourigenesis and mutations that most resemble those that occur in human cancer
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