Hyunggee Kim

Chungbuk National University, Tyundyu, North Chungcheong, South Korea

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Publications (62)258.58 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The Rab protein family is composed of small GTP-binding proteins involved in intracellular vesicle trafficking. In particular, Rab3a which is one of four Rab3 proteins (a, b, c, and d isoforms) is associated with synaptic vesicle trafficking in normal brain. However, despite the elevated level of Rab3a in tumors, its role remains unclear. Here we report a tumorigenic role of Rab3a in brain tumors. Elevated level of Rab3a expression in human was confirmed in both glioma cell lines and glioblastoma multiforme patient specimens. Ectopic Rab3a expression in glioma cell lines and primary astrocytes promoted cell proliferation by increasing cyclin D1 expression, induced resistance to anti-cancer drug and irradiation, and accelerated foci formation in soft agar and tumor formation in nude mice. The overexpression of Rab3a augmented the tumorsphere-forming ability of glioma cells and p53(-/-) astrocytes and increased expression levels of various stem cell markers. Taken together, our results indicate that Rab3a is a novel oncogene involved in glioma initiation and progression.
    Molecular Biology Reports 06/2014; · 2.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Glioma initiating cells (GICs), which reside within the perivascular microenvironment to maintain self-renewal capacity, are responsible for glioblastoma initiation, progression, and recurrence. However, the molecular mechanisms controlling crosstalk between GICs and endothelial cells are poorly understood. Here we report that, in both GICs and endothelial cells, platelet derived growth factor (PDGF)-driven activation of nitric oxide (NO) synthase increases NO-dependent inhibitor of differentiation 4 (ID4) expression, which in turn promotes JAGGED1-NOTCH activity through suppression of miR-129 that specifically represses JAGGED1suppression. This signaling axis promotes tumor progression along with increased GIC self-renewal and growth of tumor vasculature in the xenograft tumors, which is dramatically suppressed by NOTCH inhibitor. ID4 levels correlate positively with NOS2, HES1, and HEY1 and negatively with miR-129 in primary GICs. Thus, targeting the PDGF-NOS-ID4-miR-129 axis and NOTCH activity in the perivascular microenvironment might serve as an efficacious therapeutic modality for glioblastoma.
    Cancer research. 06/2014;
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    Se-Yeong Oh, Hyunggee Kim
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    ABSTRACT: Despite current advances in multimodality therapies, such as surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, the outcome for patients with high-grade glioma remains fatal. Understanding how glioma cells resist various therapies may provide opportunities for developing new therapies. Accumulating evidence suggests that the main obstacle for successfully treating high-grade glioma is the existence of brain tumor stem cells (BTSCs), which share a number of cellular properties with adult stem cells, such as self-renewal and multipotent differentiation capabilities. Owing to their resistance to standard therapy coupled with their infiltrative nature, BTSCs are a primary cause of tumor recurrence post-therapy. Therefore, BTSCs are thought to be the main glioma cells representing a novel therapeutic target and should be eliminated to obtain successful treatment outcomes.
    Brain tumor research and treatment. 04/2013; 1(1):9-15.
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    ABSTRACT: Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are the most aggressive cell type in many malignancies. Cell surface proteins are generally used to isolate and characterize CSCs. Therefore, the identification of CSC-specific cell surface markers is very important for the diagnosis and treatment of malignancies. We found that Nestin (a type VI intermediate filament protein), like the glioma stem cell (GSC) markers CD133 and CD15, exhibited different levels of expression in primary human glioblastoma specimens. Similar to our previous finding that cytoplasmic Nestin is expressed as a cell surface form in mouse GSCs, the cell surface form of Nestin was also expressed at different levels in human GSCs. We isolated cell surface Nestin-positive cell populations from human GSCs by fluorescence-activated cell sorting FACS analysis, and observed that these populations exhibited robust CSC properties, such as increased tumorsphere-forming ability and tumorsphere size. Mechanistically, we found that DAPT, a γ-secretase (a multi-subunit protease complex) inhibitor, reduced the proportion of cell surface Nestin-positive cells in human GSCs in a time- and dose-dependent manner, without significant changes in total Nestin expression, implying that a post-translational modification was involved in the generation of cell surface Nestin. Taken together, our data provides the first evidence that cell surface Nestin may serve as a promising GSC marker for the isolation and characterization of heterogeneous GSCs in glioblastomas.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 03/2013; · 2.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Differing sensitivity of influenza A viruses to antiviral effects of the Myxovirus resistance (Mx) protein implies varying global gene expression profiles in the host. The role of Mx protein during lethal avian influenza (AI) virus infection was examined using Mx1-deficient C57BL/6 (B6-Mx1(-/-)) and congenic Mx1-expressing (B6-Mx1(+/+)) mice infected with a virulent, mouse-adapted avian H5N2 Ab/Korea/ma81/07 (Av/ma81) virus. After infection, B6-Mx1(+/+) mice were completely protected from lethal AI-induced mortality, and exhibited attenuated clinical disease and reduced viral titers and pathology in the lungs, compared with B6-Mx1(-/-) mice. Transcriptional profiling of lung tissues revealed that most of the genes up-regulated after infection are involved in activation of the immune response and host defense. Notably, more abundant and sustained expression of cytokine/chemokine genes was observed up to 3 dpi in B6-Mx1(-/-) mice, and this was associated with excessive induction of cytokines and chemokines. Consequently, massive infiltration of macrophages/monocytes and granulocytes into lung resulted in severe viral pneumonia and potentially contributed to decreased survival of B6-Mx1(-/-) mice. Taken together, our data show that dysregulated gene transcriptional activity corresponded to persistent induction of cytokine/chemokines and recruitment of cytokine-producing cells that promote inflammation in B6-Mx1(-/-) mouse lungs. Thus, we provide additional evidence of the interplay of genetic, molecular, and cellular correlates governed by the Mx1 protein that critically determine disease outcome during lethal AI virus infection.
    American Journal Of Pathology 02/2013; · 4.52 Impact Factor
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    Virology 02/2013; 436(1):245. · 3.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aberrant epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signaling is a typical oncogenic signature in glioblastoma. Here, we show that EGFR inhibition in primary glioma stem cells (GSCs) with oncogenic EGFRvIII and EGFRvIII-transduced glioma stem-like cells promotes invasion by decreasing ID3 levels. ID3 suppresses GSC invasiveness by inhibiting p27KIP1-RhoA-dependent migration and MMP3 expression. Xenograft and human glioblastoma specimens show that ID3 localizes within glioblastoma cores, whereas p27KIP1 and MMP3 are predominantly expressed in glioma cells in invasive fronts. Together, our findings show that EGFR inhibition induces GSC invasiveness by abolishing ID3-mediated inhibition of p27KIP1 and MMP3 expression.
    Cancer letters 01/2013; 328(2):235–242. · 4.86 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: CD44 is generally accepted as a surrogate marker for head and neck squamous carcinoma cancer stem cells (HNSC CSCs) and only CD44+ HNSC cells have tumour initiating capacity. However, a recent report suggested that CSCs themselves might be heterogenous due to various genetic alterations. Here, we compared in vitro stem-like cell characteristics, chemoresistance and in vivo tumour formation capacity of CD44+ and CD44- HNSC cells obtained from primary HNSC patient specimens. CD44- HNSC spheroid cells generated spheroid cells again after seeding of single-dissociated spheroid CD44- HNSC cells. Immunocytochemistry assays revealed that various stem cell markers, including octamer-binding transcription factor 4 (OCT4), sex determining region Y-box 2 (SOX2) and nestin were up-regulated in CD44- spheroid cells, similar to CD44+ spheroid cells. Furthermore, CD44- spheroid cells appeared to be chemoresistant to cisplatin and showed increased levels of ABCG2, similar to CD44+ spheroid cells. Of most interest, as few as 1000 CD44- spheroid cells were able to give rise to tumours in nude mice. The collective data indicate that the cell surface marker CD44 cannot be used as a selective marker of spheroid-forming, tumour-initiating or chemoresistant cell populations, and further indicate the limitation of current HNSC CSC identification methods using the CD44 cell surface marker.
    European journal of cancer (Oxford, England: 1990) 07/2012; · 4.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We synthesized fluorescent capsid nanoparticles (FCNPs) by genetically inserting fluorescent protein (FP) (DsRed or eGFP) into each of 240 surface spike tips of hepatitis B virus (HBV) capsid particles. That is, when expressed in E. coli, FCNPs formed spherical nanoparticles with uniform diameter of about 40 nm owing to the self-assembly function of HBV core protein (i.e. basic assembly unit of capsid) and were successfully purified through Ni(+2) affinity- and sucrose gradient based purification. We also added the glycine-rich fexible linker peptides in between DsRed (or eGFP) and capsid to reduce fluorescence quenching among the densely displayed DsReds (or eGFPs) on the capsid surface. As compared to cognate fluorescent monomer proteins, it is notable that FCNPs showed a significantly amplified (160-170-fold) fluorescence intensity and enhanced conformational stability even in 50% serum solutin at 37 °C. The high conformational stability of FCNPs seems to result both from the highly stable structure of HBV capsid particles and from the well oriented insertion of fluorescent protein into capsid spike tip to keep native conformation of DsRed or eGFP. When estimated with continuous exposure to strong excitation light, FCNPs also showed much higher photostability than DsRed, eGFP, and a commonly used organic fluorescent dye, which happened presumably because the enhanced conformational stability of FCNPs significantly reduced photobleaching of fluorophores. Especially, it is notable that rFCNPs stably emitted high-level fluorescence inside mouse for a prolonged period, thereby showing high in vivo stability. The developed FCNPs are likely to have a great potential to be used as an effective and non-cytotoxic tool for in vivo optical imaging as well as in vitro fluorescent reporter in various biomolecular detection assays.
    Biomaterials 06/2012; 33(26):6194-200. · 7.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Glioblastomas multiforme (GBM) contain highly tumorigenic, self-renewing populations of stem/initiating cells [glioblastoma stem cells (GSC)] that contribute to tumor propagation and treatment resistance. However, our knowledge of the specific signaling pathways that regulate GSCs is limited. The MET tyrosine kinase is known to stimulate the survival, proliferation, and invasion of various cancers including GBM. Here, we identified a distinct fraction of cells expressing a high level of MET in human primary GBM specimens that were preferentially localized in perivascular regions of human GBM biopsy tissues and were found to be highly clonogenic, tumorigenic, and resistant to radiation. Inhibition of MET signaling in GSCs disrupted tumor growth and invasiveness both in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that MET activation is required for GSCs. Together, our findings indicate that MET activation in GBM is a functional requisite for the cancer stem cell phenotype and a promising therapeutic target.
    Cancer Research 05/2012; 72(15):3828-38. · 8.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Inflammatory microenvironment signalling plays a crucial role in tumour progression (i.e. cancer cell proliferation, survival, angiogenesis and metastasis) in many types of human malignancies. However, the role of inflammation in brain tumour pathology remains poorly understood. Here, we report that interferon regulatory factor 7 is a crucial regulator of brain tumour progression and heterogeneity. Ectopic expression of interferon regulatory factor 7 in glioma cells promotes tumorigenicity, angiogenesis, microglia recruitment and cancer stemness in vivo and in vitro through induction of interleukin 6, C-X-C motif chemokine 1 and C-C motif chemokine 2. In particular, interferon regulatory factor 7-driven interleukin 6 plays a pivotal role in maintaining glioma stem cell properties via Janus kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription-mediated activation of Jagged-Notch signalling in glioma cells and glioma stem cells derived from glioma patients.  Accordingly, the short hairpin RNA-mediated depletion of interferon regulatory factor 7 in glioma stem cells markedly suppressed interleukin 6-Janus kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription-mediated Jagged-Notch-signalling pathway, leading to decreases in glioma stem cell marker expression, tumoursphere-forming ability, and tumorigenicity. Furthermore, in a mouse model of wound healing, depletion of interferon regulatory factor 7 suppressed tumour progression and decreased cellular heterogeneity. Finally, interferon regulatory factor 7 was overexpressed in patients with high-grade gliomas, suggesting its potential as an independent prognostic marker for glioma progression. Taken together, our findings indicate that interferon regulatory factor 7-mediated inflammatory signalling acts as a major driver of brain tumour progression and cellular heterogeneity via induction of glioma stem cell genesis and angiogenesis.
    Brain 03/2012; 135(Pt 4):1055-69. · 9.92 Impact Factor
  • Young Chang Lim, Se-Yeong Oh, Hyunggee Kim
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    ABSTRACT: Although head and neck squamous carcinoma cancer stem cells (HNSC-CSCs) can be enriched in serum-free suspension cultures, it is difficult to stably expand HNSC-CSC lines in suspension due to spontaneous apoptosis and differentiation. Here, we investigated whether HNSC-CSCs can be expanded without loss of stem cell properties by adherent culture methods. Cell culture plates were coated with type IV collagen, laminin, or fibronectin. We examined cancer stem cell traits of adherent HNSC-CSCs grown on these plates using immunocytochemistry for stem cell marker expression and analyses of chemo-resistance and xenograft tumorigenicity. We also assessed the growth rate, apoptosis rate, and gene transduction efficiency of adherent and suspended HNSC-CSCs. HNSC-CSCs grew much faster on type IV collagen-coated plates than in suspension. Adherent HNSC-CSCs expressed putative stem cell markers (OCT4 and CD44) and were chemo-resistant to various cytotoxic drugs (cisplatin, fluorouracil, paclitaxel, and docetaxel). Adherent HNSC-CSCs at the limiting dilution (1000 cells) produced tumors in nude mice. Adherent HNSC-CSCs also showed less spontaneous apoptotic cell death and were more competent to lentiviral transduction than suspended HNSC-CSCs. In conclusion, compared to suspension cultures, adherence on type IV collagen-coated culture plates provides better experimental conditions for HNSC-CSC expansion, which should facilitate various refined cellular studies.
    Experimental Cell Research 03/2012; 318(10):1104-11. · 3.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aberrant activation of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTK) is causally linked to the pathobiological traits of glioblastoma and genesis of glioma stem-like cells (GSC), but the underlying mechanism is still unknown. Here, we show that epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signaling regulates the proliferation, angiogenesis, and acquisition of GSC characteristics by inducing inhibitor of differentiation 3 (ID3) and ID3-regulated cytokines [GRO1 and interleukins (IL)-6 and 8] induction. We found that EGFR-mediated ID3 expression was regulated by Smad5, which was directly phosphorylated by AKT. Furthermore, ID3 alone imparted GSC features to primary astrocytes derived from Ink4a/Arf-deficient mouse, and EGFR-ID3-IL-6 signaling axis gave rise to tumor cell heterogeneity. Conversely, EGFR inhibitors suppressed EGFR-AKT-Smad5-driven induction of ID3, which led to a decrease in the tumorsphere forming ability of GSCs and U87MG cells that possess an active mutant EGFR, EGFRvIII, without obvious cytotoxic effects. However, these cells seemed to regain colonogenic ability after removal of the EGFR inhibitors. Together, the results delineate a novel integrative molecular mechanism in which the RTK-ID signaling pathway governs genesis and maintenance of GBM histopathologic features, such as GSCs-based tumor initiation, progression, and angiogenesis.
    Cancer Research 11/2011; 71(22):7125-34. · 8.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Glioma stem cells (GSCs) are presumably major culprits for brain tumor initiation, progression, and recurrence after conventional therapies. Thus, selective targeting and eradication of GSCs may provide a promising and effective therapeutic approach. Here, we isolated a GSC-targeting (GSCT) peptide that demonstrated selective binding affinity for many undifferentiated GSCs using in vitro phage display technology. This GSCT peptide binds to isotypes of Nestin proteins specifically expressed in GSCs, enabling it to target Nestin-positive cells in human glioblastoma tissues. In human glioblastoma tissue specimens, the fluorescence-conjugated GSCT peptide could visualize putative GSC populations, showing its possible use as a diagnostic agent. GSCT peptide is also internalized into undifferentiated GSCs specifically in vitro, and moreover, intravenously injected GSCT peptide effectively penetrated into tissues, specifically accumulated in gliomas that arise from subcutaneous and orthotopic implantation, and predominantly targeted Nestin-positive cells in these tumors. Thus, our GSCT peptide may be useful for the development of more promising therapeutic and diagnostic modalities that target GSCs in brain tumors.
    Biomaterials 08/2011; 32(33):8518-28. · 7.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Self-renewal, differentiation, and tumorigenicity characterize cancer stem cells (CSCs), which are rare and maintained by specific cell fate regulators. CSCs are isolated from glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) and may be responsible for the lethality of incurable brain tumors. Brain CSCs may arise from the transformation of undifferentiated, nestin-positive neural stem or progenitor cells and GFAP-expressing astrocytes. Here, we report a role of Nanog in the genesis of cancer stem-like cells. Using primary murine p53-knockout astrocytes (p53(-/-) astrocytes), we provide evidence that enforced Nanog expression can increase the cellular growth rate and transform phenotypes in vitro and in vivo. In addition, Nanog drives p53(-/-) astrocytes toward a dedifferentiated, CSC-like phenotype with characteristic neural stem cell/progenitor marker expression, neurosphere formation, self-renewal activity, and tumor development. These findings suggest that Nanog promotes dedifferentiation of p53-deficient mouse astrocytes into cancer stem-like cells by changing the cell fate and transforming cell properties.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 08/2011; 412(1):175-81. · 2.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Gene mutations and reassortment are key mechanisms by which influenza A virus acquires virulence factors. To evaluate the role of the viral polymerase replication machinery in producing virulent pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza viruses, we generated various polymerase point mutants (PB2, 627K/701N; PB1, expression of PB1-F2 protein; and PA, 97I) and reassortant viruses with various sources of influenza viruses by reverse genetics. Although the point mutations produced no significant change in pathogenicity, reassortment between the pandemic A/California/04/09 (CA04, H1N1) and current human and animal influenza viruses produced variants possessing a broad spectrum of pathogenicity in the mouse model. Although most polymerase reassortants had attenuated pathogenicity (including those containing seasonal human H3N2 and high-pathogenicity H5N1 virus segments) compared to that of the parental CA04 (H1N1) virus, some recombinants had significantly enhanced virulence. Unexpectedly, one of the five highly virulent reassortants contained a A/Swine/Korea/JNS06/04(H3N2)-like PB2 gene with no known virulence factors; the other four had mammalian-passaged avian-like genes encoding PB2 featuring 627K, PA featuring 97I, or both. Overall, the reassorted polymerase complexes were only moderately compatible for virus rescue, probably because of disrupted molecular interactions involving viral or host proteins. Although we observed close cooperation between PB2 and PB1 from similar virus origins, we found that PA appears to be crucial in maintaining viral gene functions in the context of the CA04 (H1N1) virus. These observations provide helpful insights into the pathogenic potential of reassortant influenza viruses composed of the pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza virus and prevailing human or animal influenza viruses that could emerge in the future.
    Journal of Virology 07/2011; 85(13):6275-86. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Glioma stem cells (GSC) possess tumor-initiating potential and are relatively resistant to conventional chemotherapy and irradiation. Thus, they are considered to be major drivers for glioma initiation, progression, and recurrence. However, the precise mechanism governing acquisition of their drug resistance remains to be elucidated. Our previous study has shown that inhibitor of differentiation 4 (ID4) dedifferentiates Ink4a/Arf(-/-) mouse astrocytes and human glioma cells to glioma stem-like cells (induced GSCs or iGSCs). In this article, we report that ID4-driven iGSCs exhibit chemoresistant behavior to anticancer drugs through activation of ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters. We found that ID4 enhanced SOX2 protein expression by suppressing microRNA-9* (miR-9*), which can repress SOX2 by targeting its 3'-untranslated region. Consequently, ID4-mediated SOX2 induction enhanced ABCC3 and ABCC6 expression through direct transcriptional regulation, indicating that ID4 regulates the chemoresistance of iGSCs by promoting SOX2-mediated induction of ABC transporters. Furthermore, we found that short hairpin RNA-mediated knockdown of SOX2 in ID4-driven iGSCs resulted in loss of cancer stemness. Moreover, ectopic expression of SOX2 could dedifferentiate Ink4a/Arf(-/-) astrocytes and glioma cells to iGSCs, indicating a crucial role of SOX2 in genesis and maintenance of GSCs. Finally, we found that the significance of the ID4-miR-9*-SOX2-ABCC3/ABCC6 regulatory pathway is recapitulated in GSCs derived from patients with glioma. Together, our results reveal a novel regulatory mechanism by which ID4-driven suppression of miR-9* induces SOX2, which imparts stemness potential and chemoresistance to glioma cells and GSCs.
    Cancer Research 05/2011; 71(9):3410-21. · 8.65 Impact Factor
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    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.
    Cancer Research 03/2011; 71(8):3066-75. · 8.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Glioma stem cells (GSCs) are known to be maintained within a "vascular niche"; thereby, disruption of this microenvironment using antiangiogenesis agents is a promising therapeutic modality. However, this regimen leads to treatment failure and tumor recurrence in patients with glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). Therefore, more effective therapeutic approaches that can eradicate GSCs and the bulk tumors are needed. Toward this goal, we examined the antitumor effects of an antiangiogenesis approach combined with conventional chemotherapy on suppressing glioma xenograft growth. We established three genetically engineered mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) lines (GE-AF-MSCs) by stably transducing the gene encoding endostatin (an antiangiogenesis factor), the gene encoding secretable form of carboxylesterase 2 (sCE2, a prodrug-activating enzyme), or a mixture of both genes. Among the three GE-AF-MSC cell lines, injection of amniotic fluid (AF)-MSCs-endostatin-sCE2 cells into U87MG-EGFRvIII-driven orthotopic brain tumor and postsurgery tumor recurrence models, and subsequent CPT11 treatment yielded the strongest antitumor responses, including diminished angiogenesis, increased cell death, and a reduced Nestin-positive GSC population. Therefore, our antitumor strategy provides a novel basis for designing stem cell-mediated therapeutic approaches to target and eradicate GSCs and the bulk tumors.
    Molecular Therapy 03/2011; 19(6):1161-9. · 7.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A subpopulation of cancer stem cells (CSCs), but not the majority of non-tumorigenic cancer cells, in a variety of human malignancies plays a critical role in cancer cell proliferation, invasion, metastasis, and tumor recurrence post-therapies. We report the isolation of sphere-forming cells (squamospheres) from primary head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCCs), and characterization of their CSC properties. Squamospheres appeared within 2 weeks after seeding as single-dissociated cells obtained from primary HNSCC specimens in serum-free culture conditions. Real-time RT-PCR and immunocytochemistry assays revealed that a number of stem cell markers, including CK5, OCT4, SOX2, and nestin, were up-regulated in HNSCC-driven squamospheres. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) analysis showed that squamospheres contain enriched side population cells compared to serum-induced differentiated squamosphere cells. Furthermore, HNSCC-driven squamospheres appeared to be chemoresistant to cisplatin, 5-fluorouracil (FU), paclitaxel and doxetaxel, and showed increased levels of ABCG2, one of the ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters. Of particular interest, in sharp contrast to subcutaneous injection of 1×10(6) differentiated squamosphere cells, as few as 100 squamosphere cells were able to give rise to tumors in nude mice. Altogether, we assert that primary HNSCC-driven squamospheres possess CSC properties, and its functional analysis may provide a novel tool for investigating the tumorigenic process of HNSCC.
    Oral Oncology 02/2011; 47(2):83-91. · 2.70 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

982 Citations
258.58 Total Impact Points


  • 2006–2013
    • Chungbuk National University
      • • Department of Microbiology
      • • College of Medicine and Medical Research Institute
      Tyundyu, North Chungcheong, South Korea
  • 2004–2013
    • Korea University
      • • Department of Biotechnology
      • • College of Life Sciences
      Sŏul, Seoul, South Korea
  • 2009–2011
    • St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
      • Department of Infectious Diseases
      Memphis, Tennessee, United States
    • Seoul National University
      • Department of Agricultural Biotechnology
      Seoul, Seoul, South Korea
  • 2002–2006
    • University of Minnesota Duluth
      Duluth, Minnesota, United States