Stefanie Deucker

Technische Universität München, München, Bavaria, Germany

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Publications (4)14.82 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Although both cancer and stellate cells (PSCs) secrete proangiogenic factors, pancreatic cancer is a scirrhous and hypoxic tumor. The impact of cancer-PSCs interactions on angiogenesis was analyzed. Expression of periostin, CD31, and alpha-smooth muscle actin was assessed by immunohistochemistry. Human PSCs and cancer cells were cultivated under normoxia and hypoxia alone, or in coculture, to analyze the changes in their angiogenic and fibrogenic attributes, using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immunoblot, and quantitative polymerase chain reaction analyses and growth of cultured endothelial cells in vitro. On the invasive front of the activated stroma, PSCs deposited a periostin-rich matrix around the capillaries in the periacinar spaces. Compared with the normal pancreas, there was a significant reduction in the microvessel density in chronic pancreatitis (five-fold, P < .001) and pancreatic cancer (four-fold, P < .01) tissues. In vitro, hypoxia increased PSCs' activity and doubled the secretion of periostin, type I collagen, fibronectin, and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Cancer cells induced VEGF secretion of PSCs (390 +/- 60%, P < .001), whereas PSCs increased the endostatin production of cancer cells (210 +/- 14%, P < .001) by matrix metalloproteinase-dependent cleavage. In vitro, PSCs increased the endothelial cell growth, whereas cancer cells alone, or their coculture with PSCs, suppressed it. Although PSCs are the dominant producers of VEGF and increase endothelial cell growth in vitro, in the peritumoral stroma, they contribute to the fibrotic/hypoxic milieu through abnormal extracellular matrix deposition and by amplifying endostatin production of cancer cells.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2009 · Neoplasia (New York, N.Y.)
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    ABSTRACT: The chemokine fractalkine induces migration of inflammatory cells into inflamed tissues, thereby aggravating inflammatory tissue damage and fibrosis. Furthermore, fractalkine increases neuropathic pain through glial activation, which can be diminished by blocking of its receptor, CX3CR1, through neutralizing antibodies. As chronic pancreatitis (CP) is characterized by tissue infiltration of inflammatory cells, fibrosis, pancreatic neuritis and severe pain, the roles of fractalkine and CX3CR1 were investigated in CP (n=61) and normal pancreas (NP, n=21) by QRT-PCR, western blot and immunohistochemistry analyses. Their expression correlated with the severity of pancreatic neuritis, fibrosis, intrapancreatic nerve fiber density and hypertrophy, pain, CP duration and with the amount of inflammatory cell infiltrate immuno-positive for CD45 and CD68. To investigate the influence of fractalkine on pancreatic fibrogenesis, human pancreatic stellate cells (hPSCs) were isolated from patients with CP, incubated with fractalkine and then Collagen-1 and alpha-smooth muscle actin (alpha-SMA) expressions were measured. CX3CR1, but not fractalkine, mRNA was overexpressed in CP. In contrast, the protein levels of both CX3CR1 and fractalkine were upregulated. Neuro-immunoreactivity for fractalkine and CX3CR1 was strongest in patients suffering from severe pain and pancreatic neuritis. Long-term suffering from CP was noticeably related to increased neural immunoreactivity of fractalkine. Furthermore, fractalkine and CX3CR1 mRNA overexpressions were associated with enhanced lymphocyte and macrophage infiltration. Advanced fibrosis was associated with increased fractalkine expression, whereas in vitro fractalkine had no significant impact on collagen-1 and alpha-SMA expressions in hPSCs. Therefore, pancreatic fractalkine expression appears to be linked to visceral pain and to the recruitment of inflammatory cells into the pancreatic tissue and nerve fibers, with subsequent pancreatic neuritis. However, pancreatic fibrogenesis is probably indirectly influenced by fractalkine. Taken together, these novel findings suggest that CX3CR1 represents a potential novel therapeutic target to reduce inflammation and modulate pain in CP.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2009 · Laboratory Investigation

  • No preview · Article · Nov 2008 · Pancreas
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    ABSTRACT: Interactions between mononuclear cells and activated pancreatic myofibroblasts (pancreatic stellate cells; PSC) may contribute to inflammation and fibrosis in chronic pancreatitis (CP). Markers of fibrosis and inflammation were concomitantly analysed by immunohistochemistry in chronic pancreatitis tissues. In vitro, PSC were stimulated with TNFalpha and LPS. Primary human blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) and PSC were cocultured, followed by analysis of cytokines and extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. PBMC were derived from healthy donors and CP and septic shock patients. In areas of mononuclear cell infiltration in chronic pancreatitis tissues, there was decreased immunoreactivity for collagen1 and fibronectin, in contrast to areas with sparse mononuclear cells, although PSC were detectable in both areas. LPS and TNFalpha induced collagen1 and fibronectin levels as well as the matrix degradation enzyme MMP-1. Coculture experiments with PSC and PBMC revealed increased fibronectin secretion induced by PBMC. In addition, donor and CP PBMC significantly induced an increase in IL-6, MCP-1 and TGFbeta levels under coculture conditions. Determination of the source of cytokines and ECM proteins by mRNA expression analysis confirmed PSC as major contributors of ECM production. The increase in cytokine expression was PBMC- and also PSC-derived. Mononuclear cells modulate the activity of pancreatic stellate cells, which may in turn promote fibrosis and inflammation.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2007 · Journal of Translational Medicine

Publication Stats

166 Citations
14.82 Total Impact Points


  • 2009
    • Technische Universität München
      • Clinic and Polyclinic for Surgery
      München, Bavaria, Germany
  • 2007
    • Universität Heidelberg
      • Institute of Pathology (Mannheim)
      Heidelburg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany