ABSTRACT: The ovarian tumor marker CA125 is expressed on human MUC16, a cell surface bound mucin that is also shed by proteolytic cleavage. Human MUC16 is overexpressed by ovarian cancer cells. MUC16 facilitates the binding of ovarian tumor cells to mesothelial cells lining the peritoneal cavity. Additionally, MUC16 also is a potent inhibitor of natural killer cell mediated anti-tumor cytotoxic responses. Extensive studies using human as well as murine ovarian tumor cell models are required to clearly define the function of MUC16 in the progression of ovarian tumors. The major objective of this study was to determine if the murine ovarian tumor cells, MOVCAR, express Muc16 and to characterize antibodies that recognize this mucin.
RT-PCR analysis was used for detecting the Muc16 message and size exclusion column chromatography for isolating Muc16 produced by MOVCAR cells. Soluble and cell-associated murine Muc16 were analyzed, respectively, by Western blotting and flow cytometry assays using a new panel of antibodies. The presence of N-linked oligosaccharides on murine Muc16 was determined by ConA chromatography.
We demonstrate that murine Muc16 is expressed by mouse ovarian cancer cells as an ~250 kDa glycoprotein that carries both O-linked and N-linked oligosaccharides. In contrast to human MUC16, the murine ortholog is primarily released from the cells and cannot be detected on the cell surface. Since the released murine Muc16 is not detected by conventional anti-CA125 assays, we have for the first time identified a panel of anti-human MUC16 antibodies that also recognizes the murine counterpart.
The antibodies identified in this study can be used in future purification of murine Muc16 and exhaustive study of its properties. Furthermore, the initial identification and characterization of murine Muc16 is a vital preliminary step in the development of effective murine models of human ovarian cancer. These models will aid in the further elucidation of the role that human MUC16 plays in the etiology and progression of ovarian tumors.
Journal of Ovarian Research 07/2009; 2(1):8. · 2.57 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: Mesothelin is a 40 kDa protein present on the surface of normal mesothelial cells and overexpressed in many human tumours, including mesothelioma and ovarian and pancreatic adenocarcinoma. It forms a strong and specific complex with MUC16, which is also highly expressed on the surface of mesothelioma and ovarian cancer cells. This binding has been suggested to be the basis of ovarian cancer metastasis. Knowledge of the structure of this protein will be useful, for example, in building a structural model of the MUC16-mesothelin complex. Mesothelin is produced as a precursor, which is cleaved by furin to produce the N-terminal half, which is called the megakaryocyte potentiating factor (MPF), and the C-terminal half, which is mesothelin. Little is known about the function of mesothelin and there is no information on its possible three-dimensional structure. Mesothelin has been reported to be homologous to the deafness-related inner ear proteins otoancorin and stereocilin, for neither of which the three-dimensional structure is known.
The BLAST and PSI-BLAST searches confirmed that mesothelin and mesothelin precursor proteins are remotely homologous to stereocilin and otoancorin and more closely homologous to the hypothetical protein MPFL (MPF-like). Secondary structure prediction servers predicted a predominantly helical structure for both mesothelin and mesothelin precursor proteins and also for stereocilin and otoancorin. Three-dimensional structure prediction servers INHUB and I-TASSER produced structural models for mesothelin, which consisted of superhelical structures with ARM-type repeats in conformity with the secondary structure predictions. Similar ARM-type superhelical repeat structures were predicted by 3D-PSSM server for mesothelin precursor and for stereocilin and otoancorin proteins.
The mesothelin superfamily of proteins, which includes mesothelin, mesothelin precursor, megakaryocyte potentiating factor, MPFL, stereocilin and otoancorin, are predicted to have superhelical structures with ARM-type repeats. We suggest that all of these function as superhelical lectins to bind the carbohydrate moieties of extracellular glycoproteins.
BMC Structural Biology 02/2009; 9:1. · 2.48 Impact Factor
The mucin MUC16 and the glycosylphosphatidylinositol anchored glycoprotein mesothelin likely facilitate the peritoneal metastasis of ovarian tumors. The biochemical basis and the kinetics of the binding between these two glycoproteins are not clearly understood. Here we have addressed this deficit and provide further evidence supporting the role of the MUC16-mesothelin interaction in facilitating cell-cell binding under conditions that mimic the peritoneal environment.
In this study we utilize recombinant-Fc tagged human mesothelin to measure the binding kinetics of this glycoprotein to MUC16 expressed on the ovarian tumor cell line OVCAR-3. OVCAR-3 derived sublines that did not express MUC16 showed no affinity for mesothelin. In a flow cytometry-based assay mesothelin binds with very high affinity to the MUC16 on the OVCAR-3 cells with an apparent K<sub>d </sub>of 5–10 nM. Maximum interaction occurs within 5 mins of incubation of the recombinant mesothelin with the OVCAR-3 cells and significant binding is observed even after 10 sec. A five-fold molar excess of soluble MUC16 was unable to completely inhibit the binding of mesothelin to the OVCAR-3 cells. Oxidation of the MUC16 glycans, removal of its N-linked oligosaccharides, and treatment of the mucin with wheat germ agglutinin and erythroagglutinating phytohemagglutinin abrogates its binding to mesothelin. These observations suggest that at least a subset of the MUC16-asscociated N-glycans is required for binding to mesothelin. We also demonstrate that MUC16 positive ovarian tumor cells exhibit increased adherence to A431 cells transfected with mesothelin (A431-Meso<sup>+</sup>). Only minimal adhesion is observed between MUC16 knockdown cells and A431-Meso<sup>+ </sup>cells. The binding between the MUC16 expressing ovarian tumor cells and the A431-Meso<sup>+ </sup>cells occurs even in the presence of ascites from patients with ovarian cancer.
The strong binding kinetics of the mesothelin-MUC16 interaction and the cell adhesion between ovarian tumor cells and A431-Meso+ even in the presence of peritoneal fluid strongly support the importance of these two glycoproteins in the peritoneal metastasis of ovarian tumors. The demonstration that N-linked glycans are essential for mediating mesothlein-MUC16 binding may lead to novel therapeutic targets to control the spread of ovarian carcinoma.
Molecular Cancer. 01/2006;