Frizzled 4 regulates stemness and invasiveness of migrating glioma cells established by serial intracranial transplantation.
ABSTRACT One of the most detrimental hallmarks of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is cellular invasiveness, which is considered a potential cause of tumor recurrence. Infiltrated GBM cells are difficult to completely eradicate surgically and with local therapeutic modalities. Although much effort has focused on understanding the various mechanisms controlling GBM invasiveness, its nature remains poorly understood. In this study, we established highly serial intracranial transplantation. U87R4 cells were highly invasive and displayed stem cell-like properties, as compared to noninvasive but proliferative U87L4 cells. Microarray analysis during serial transplantation revealed that apoptosis-inducing genes (caspase3 and PDCD4) were downregulated whereas several cancer stem cell-relevant genes [Frizzled 4 (FZD4) and CD44] were upregulated in more invasive cells. U87R4 cells were resistant to anticancer drug-induced cell death, partly due to downregulation of caspase3 and PDCD4, and they retained activated Wnt/β-catenin signaling due to upregulation of Frizzled 4, which was sufficient to control neurosphere formation. We also found that FZD4 promoted expression of the epithelial to mesenchymal transition regulator SNAI1, along with acquisition of a mesenchymal phenotype. Taken together, our results argue that Frizzled 4 is a member of the Wnt signaling family that governs both stemness and invasiveness of glioma stem cells, and that it may be a major cause of GBM recurrence and poor prognosis.
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ABSTRACT: Histology of malignant glioma depicts dense proliferative areas rich in angiogenesis as well as dissemination of neoplastic cells into adjacent brain tissue. Although the mechanisms that trigger transition from proliferative to invasive phenotypes are complex, the dichotomy of cell proliferation and migration, the "Go or Grow" hypothesis, argues for specific and coordinated regulation of these phenotypes. We investigated transcriptional elements that accompany the phenotypes of migration and proliferation, and consider the therapeutic significance of the "Go or Grow" hypothesis. Interrogation of matched core and rim regions from human glioblastoma biopsy specimens in situ (n = 44) revealed higher proliferation (Ki67 labeling index) in cells residing at the core compared to the rim. Profiling activated transcription factors in a panel of migration-activated versus migration-restricted GBM cells portrayed strong NF-κB activity in the migratory cell population. In contrast, increased c-Myc activity was found in migration-restricted proliferative cells. Validation of transcriptional activity by NF-κB- or c-Myc-driven GFP or RFP, respectively, showed an increased NF-κB activity in the active migrating cells, whereas the proliferative, migration restricted cells displayed increased c-Myc activity. Immunohistochemistry on clinical specimens validated a robust phosphorylated c-Myc staining in tumor cells at the core, whereas increased phosphorylated NF-κB staining was detected in the invasive tumor cells at the rim. Functional genomics revealed that depletion of c-Myc expression by siRNA oligonucleotides reduced cell proliferation in vitro, but surprisingly, cell migration was enhanced significantly. Conversely, inhibition of NF-κB by pharmacological inhibitors, SN50 or BAY-11, decreased both cell migration in vitro and invasion ex vivo. Notably, inhibition of NF-κB was found to have no effect on the proliferation rate of glioma cells. These findings suggest that the reciprocal and coordinated suppression/activation of transcription factors, such as c-Myc and NF-κB may underlie the shift of glioma cells from a "growing-to-going" phenotype.PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(8):e72134. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer-related mortality worldwide. It is necessary to improve the understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in lung cancer in order to develop more effective therapeutics for the treatment of this fatal disease. The canonical Wnt signaling pathway has been known to be important in a number of cancer types, including lung cancer. Pygopus (Pygo) is a recently identified downstream component of the Wnt signaling pathway required for β-catenin/T-cell factor (TCF)-dependent transcription. However, the role of Pygo in lung cancer remains to be elucidated. The present study showed that Pygo2 is overexpressed in human lung cancer tissue samples and cell lines. Expression levels of Pygo2 were found to correlate with cytosolic β-catenin protein levels in the samples examined. Co-immunofluorescent staining showed that Pygo2 protein accumulated in the nuclei and colocalized with nuclear β-catenin in lung cancer cell lines expressing Pygo2. To investigate the functional importance of the Pygo2 overexpression in lung cancer, short hairpin RNA (shRNA) was used to knockdown Pygo2 mRNA in lung cancer cells expressing the gene. Pygo2 shRNA was observed to inhibit cell proliferation and decrease β-catenin/TCF-dependent transcriptional activity in vitro. Furthermore, Pygo2 shRNA significantly suppressed lung cancer xenograft models in vivo (P<0.05). These results suggested that Pygo2 is a putative therapeutic target for human lung cancer and overexpression of Pygo2 may be important for aberrant Wnt activation in lung cancer.Oncology letters 01/2014; 7(1):233-238. · 0.24 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Unique astrocytic cell infiltrating growth and glial tumor growth in the confined skull make human glioblastoma (GBM) one of the most difficult cancers to treat in modern medicine. Prognosis for patients is very poor, as they die more or less within 12 months. Patients either die of the cancer itself, or secondary complications such as cerebral edema, herniations, or hemorrhages. GBMs rarely metastasize to other organs. However, GBM recurrence associated with resistance to therapeutic drugs is common. Patients die shortly after relapse. GBM is indeed an outstanding cancer model to search for potential mechanisms for drug resistance. Here, we reviewed the current cancer biology of gliomas and their pathophysiological events that contribute to the development of therapeutic resistance. We have addressed the potential roles of cancer stem cells, epigenetic modifications, and epithelial mesenchymal transition (EMT) in the development of resistance to inhibitor drugs in GBMs. The potential role of TIAF1 (TGF-β-induced antiapoptotic factor) overexpression and generation of intratumor amyloid fibrils for conferring drug resistance in GBMs is discussed.Frontiers in Oncology 01/2013; 3:59.