Gene Summary

Gene:LAMC2; laminin, gamma 2
Aliases: B2T, CSF, EBR2, BM600, EBR2A, LAMB2T, LAMNB2
Summary:Laminins, a family of extracellular matrix glycoproteins, are the major noncollagenous constituent of basement membranes. They have been implicated in a wide variety of biological processes including cell adhesion, differentiation, migration, signaling, neurite outgrowth and metastasis. Laminins, composed of 3 non identical chains: laminin alpha, beta and gamma (formerly A, B1, and B2, respectively), have a cruciform structure consisting of 3 short arms, each formed by a different chain, and a long arm composed of all 3 chains. Each laminin chain is a multidomain protein encoded by a distinct gene. Several isoforms of each chain have been described. Different alpha, beta and gamma chain isomers combine to give rise to different heterotrimeric laminin isoforms which are designated by Arabic numerals in the order of their discovery, i.e. alpha1beta1gamma1 heterotrimer is laminin 1. The biological functions of the different chains and trimer molecules are largely unknown, but some of the chains have been shown to differ with respect to their tissue distribution, presumably reflecting diverse functions in vivo. This gene encodes the gamma chain isoform laminin, gamma 2. The gamma 2 chain, formerly thought to be a truncated version of beta chain (B2t), is highly homologous to the gamma 1 chain; however, it lacks domain VI, and domains V, IV and III are shorter. It is expressed in several fetal tissues but differently from gamma 1, and is specifically localized to epithelial cells in skin, lung and kidney. The gamma 2 chain together with alpha 3 and beta 3 chains constitute laminin 5 (earlier known as kalinin), which is an integral part of the anchoring filaments that connect epithelial cells to the underlying basement membrane. The epithelium-specific expression of the gamma 2 chain implied its role as an epithelium attachment molecule, and mutations in this gene have been associated with junctional epidermolysis bullosa, a skin disease characterized by blisters due to disruption of the epidermal-dermal junction. Two transcript variants resulting from alternative splicing of the 3' terminal exon, and encoding different isoforms of gamma 2 chain, have been described. The two variants are differentially expressed in embryonic tissues, however, the biological significance of the two forms is not known. Transcript variants utilizing alternative polyA_signal have also been noted in literature. [provided by RefSeq, Aug 2011]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:laminin subunit gamma-2
Source:NCBIAccessed: 25 June, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 25 June 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 25 June, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (8)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: LAMC2 (cancer-related)

Duan Y, Li Z, Cheng S, et al.
Nasopharyngeal carcinoma progression is mediated by EBER-triggered inflammation via the RIG-I pathway.
Cancer Lett. 2015; 361(1):67-74 [PubMed] Related Publications
EBERs (EBER1 and EBER2) are suggested to be involved in cellular transformation and tumor growth. Cytoplasmic pattern recognition receptor-RIG-I, which is characterized by the recognition of viral dsRNAs, could efficiently trigger the downstream pathways of innate immunity. Although some previous reports have shown that EBERs and RIG-I associate with hematological malignancies, the role of EBERs-RIG-I signaling in solid tumors remains to be clarified. Here we demonstrate that EBER mediation of the inflammatory response via RIG-I contributes to NPC development in vitro and in vivo. We first verified that the expression level of RIG-I was associated with EBER transcription in a dose-dependent manner in NPC cells and specimens from NPC patients. Furthermore, pro-inflammatory cytokine transcription and release were sharply reduced after RIG-I knockdown compared with the control shRNA group in the presence of EBERs, accompanied by an attenuation of the NF-κB and MAPK signaling pathways. Consequently, the tumor burden was greatly alleviated in the RIG-I knockdown group in a xenograft model. In addition, macrophage colony-stimulating factor (M-CSF) and monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP-1), which promote the maturation and attraction of tumor-associated macrophages, were stimulated upon the introduction of EBERs, and this upregulation conceivably led to the tumor-promoting subset transition of the macrophages. Taken together, our results reveal that EBERs could promote NPC progression through RIG-I-mediated cancer-related inflammation.

Tanaka T, Kajiwara T, Torigoe T, et al.
Cancer-associated oxidoreductase ERO1-α drives the production of tumor-promoting myeloid-derived suppressor cells via oxidative protein folding.
J Immunol. 2015; 194(4):2004-10 [PubMed] Related Publications
Endoplasmic reticulum disulfide oxidase ERO1-α plays a role in the formation of disulfide bonds in collaboration with protein disulfide isomerase. Disulfide bond formation is required for the proper conformation and function of secreted and cell surface proteins. We found that ERO1-α was overexpressed in a variety of tumor types; therefore, we examined its role in tumor growth. In BALB/c mice, knockdown of ERO1-α within 4T1 mouse mammary gland cancer (KD) cells caused retardation of in vivo tumor growth compared with tumor growth of scrambled control (SCR) cells. In contrast, when ERO1-α-overexpressed 4T1 (OE) cells were compared with mock control cells, OE cells showed augmented tumor growth. However, differences in tumor growth were not observed among four groups of nude mice, suggesting that expression of ERO1-α diminished antitumor immunity. We observed dense peritumoral granulocytic infiltrates in tumors of wild-type 4T1 and SCR cells but not KD cells, and these cells were identified as polymorphonuclear myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs). In addition, production of G-CSF and CXCL1/2, which have intramolecular disulfide bonds, from KD cells was significantly decreased compared with that from SCR cells. In contrast, OE cells produced a larger amount of these molecules than did mock cells. These changes were regulated at the posttranscriptional level. These results suggest that overexpression of ERO1-α in the tumor inhibits the T cell response by recruiting polymorphonuclear MDSCs via regulation of MDSC-prone cytokines and chemokines.

Ushach I, Burkhardt AM, Martinez C, et al.
METEORIN-LIKE is a cytokine associated with barrier tissues and alternatively activated macrophages.
Clin Immunol. 2015; 156(2):119-27 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2016 Related Publications
Cytokines are involved in many functions of the immune system including initiating, amplifying and resolving immune responses. Through bioinformatics analyses of a comprehensive database of gene expression (BIGE: Body Index of Gene Expression) we observed that a small secreted protein encoded by a poorly characterized gene called meteorin-like (METRNL), is highly expressed in mucosal tissues, skin and activated macrophages. Further studies indicate that Metrnl is produced by Alternatively Activated Macrophages (AAM) and M-CSF cultured bone marrow macrophages (M2-like macrophages). In the skin, METRNL is expressed by resting fibroblasts and IFNγ-treated keratinocytes. A screen of human skin-associated diseases showed significant over-expression of METRNL in psoriasis, prurigo nodularis, actinic keratosis and atopic dermatitis. METRNL is also up-regulated in synovial membranes of human rheumatoid arthritis. Taken together, these results indicate that Metrnl represents a novel cytokine, which is likely involved in both innate and acquired immune responses.

Filgueira CS, Benod C, Lou X, et al.
A screening cascade to identify ERβ ligands.
Nucl Recept Signal. 2014; 12:e003 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2016 Related Publications
The establishment of effective high throughput screening cascades to identify nuclear receptor (NR) ligands that will trigger defined, therapeutically useful sets of NR activities is of considerable importance. Repositioning of existing approved drugs with known side effect profiles can provide advantages because de novo drug design suffers from high developmental failure rates and undesirable side effects which have dramatically increased costs. Ligands that target estrogen receptor β (ERβ) could be useful in a variety of diseases ranging from cancer to neurological to cardiovascular disorders. In this context, it is important to minimize cross-reactivity with ERα, which has been shown to trigger increased rates of several types of cancer. Because of high sequence similarities between the ligand binding domains of ERα and ERβ, preferentially targeting one subtype can prove challenging. Here, we describe a sequential ligand screening approach comprised of complementary in-house assays to identify small molecules that are selective for ERβ. Methods include differential scanning fluorimetry, fluorescence polarization and a GAL4 transactivation assay. We used this strategy to screen several commercially-available chemical libraries, identifying thirty ERβ binders that were examined for their selectivity for ERβ versus ERα, and tested the effects of selected ligands in a prostate cancer cell proliferation assay. We suggest that this approach could be used to rapidly identify candidates for drug repurposing.

Authier A, Farrand KJ, Broadley KW, et al.
Enhanced immunosuppression by therapy-exposed glioblastoma multiforme tumor cells.
Int J Cancer. 2015; 136(11):2566-78 [PubMed] Related Publications
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a highly malignant brain tumor with an extremely short time to relapse following standard treatment. Since recurrent GBM is often resistant to subsequent radiotherapy and chemotherapy, immunotherapy has been proposed as an alternative treatment option. Although it is well established that GBM induces immune suppression, it is currently unclear what impact prior conventional therapy has on the ability of GBM cells to modulate the immune environment. In this study, we investigated the interaction between immune cells and glioma cells that had been exposed to chemotherapy or irradiation in vitro. We demonstrate that treated glioma cells are more immunosuppressive than untreated cells and form tumors at a faster rate in vivo in an animal model. Cultured supernatant from in vitro-treated primary human GBM cells were also shown to increase suppression, which was independent of accessory suppressor cells or T regulatory cell generation, and could act directly on CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cell proliferation. While a number of key immunosuppressive cytokines were overexpressed in the treated cells, including IL-10, IL-6 and GM-CSF, suppression could be alleviated in a number of treated GBM lines by inhibition of prostaglandin E2. These results reveal for the first time that conventional therapies can alter immunosuppressive pathways in GBM tumor cells, a finding with important implications for the combination of immunotherapy with standard treatment.

Borkowski J, Li L, Steinmann U, et al.
Neisseria meningitidis elicits a pro-inflammatory response involving IκBζ in a human blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier model.
J Neuroinflammation. 2014; 11:163 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2016 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The human-specific, Gram-negative bacterium Neisseria meningitidis (Nm) is a leading cause of bacterial meningitis worldwide. The blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier (BCSFB), which is constituted by the epithelial cells of the choroid plexus (CP), has been suggested as one of the potential entry sites of Nm into the CSF and can contribute to the inflammatory response during infectious diseases of the brain. Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are involved in mediating signal transduction caused by the pathogens.
METHODS: Using a recently established in vitro model of the human BCSFB based on human malignant CP papilloma (HIBCPP) cells we investigated the cellular response of HIBCPP cells challenged with the meningitis-causing Nm strain, MC58, employing transcriptome and RT-PCR analysis, cytokine bead array, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). In comparison, we analyzed the answer to the closely related unencapsulated carrier isolate Nm α14. The presence of TLRs in HIBCPP and their role during signal transduction caused by Nm was studied by RT-PCR and the use of specific agonists and mutant bacteria.
RESULTS: We observed a stronger transcriptional response after infection with strain MC58, in particular with its capsule-deficient mutant MC58siaD-, which correlated with bacterial invasion levels. Expression evaluation and Gene Set Enrichment Analysis pointed to a NFκB-mediated pro-inflammatory immune response involving up-regulation of the transcription factor IκBζ. Infected cells secreted significant levels of pro-inflammatory chemokines and cytokines, including, among others, IL8, CXCL1-3, and the IκBζ target gene product IL6. The expression profile of pattern recognition receptors in HIBCPP cells and the response to specific agonists indicates that TLR2/TLR6, rather than TLR4 or TLR2/TLR1, is involved in the cellular reaction following Nm infection.
CONCLUSIONS: Our data show that Nm can initiate a pro-inflammatory response in human CP epithelial cells probably involving TLR2/TLR6 signaling and the transcriptional regulator IκBζ.

Lebel A, Yacobovich J, Krasnov T, et al.
Genetic analysis and clinical picture of severe congenital neutropenia in Israel.
Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2015; 62(1):103-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The relative frequency of mutated genes among patients with severe congenital neutropenia (SCN) may differ between various ethnic groups. To date, few population-based genetic studies have been reported. This study describes the genetic analysis of 32 Israeli patients with SCN.
PROCEDURES: Clinical data were retrieved from the prospective Israeli Inherited Bone Marrow Failure Registry. Recruitment included living and deceased patients who were diagnosed between 1982 and 2012, for whom molecular diagnosis was performed. ELANE, HAX1 and G6PC3 genes were sequenced in all patients, and GFI-1 and WAS genes were sequenced if other genes were wildtype.
RESULTS: Eleven patients (34%) had heterozygous mutations in ELANE (10 kindreds), eight (25%) had homozygous mutations in G6PC3 (5 kindreds) and 13 (41%) had no detected mutations. No patients had mutations in HAX1 or WAS. Four of the eight patients with G6PC3 mutations had congenital anomalies. The probability of survival for all patients was 50% at age of 18. Deaths were mainly due to sepsis (5 patients, 4/5 not responding to G-CSF, none with G6PC3 mutation). Two patients developed acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) and one myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), none with G6PC3 mutation.
CONCLUSIONS: We found a unique pattern of SCN mutations in Israel with homozygous G6PC3 mutations in eight (25%) patients, the highest frequency described so far. HAX1 mutations, reported mainly in Sweden and Iran, were absent. Patients with G6PC3 mutations had congenital anomalies, appeared to have a better response to G-CSF, and so far have not developed AML or MDS.

Hatfield KJ, Reikvam H, Bruserud Ø
Identification of a subset of patients with acute myeloid leukemia characterized by long-term in vitro proliferation and altered cell cycle regulation of the leukemic cells.
Expert Opin Ther Targets. 2014; 18(11):1237-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The malignant cell population of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) includes a small population of stem/progenitor cells with long-term in vitro proliferation. We wanted to compare long-term AML cell proliferation for unselected patients, investigate the influence of endothelial cells on AML cell proliferation and identify biological characteristics associated with clonogenic capacity.
METHODS: Cells were cultured in medium supplemented with recombinant growth factors FMS-like tyrosine kinase-3 ligand, stem cell factor, IL-3, G-CSF and thrombopoietin. The colony-forming unit assay was used to estimate the number of progenitors in AML cell populations after 35 days of culture, and microarray was used to study global gene expression profiles between AML patients.
RESULTS: Long-term cell proliferation was observed in 7 of 31 patients, whereas 3 additional patients showed long-term proliferation after endothelial cell coculture. Patient-specific differences in constitutive cytokine release were maintained during cell culture. Patients with long-term proliferation showed altered expression in six cell cycle-related genes (HMMR, BUB1, NUSAP1, AURKB, CCNF, DLGAP5), two genes involved in DNA replication (TOP2A, RFC3) and one gene with unknown function (LHFPL2).
CONCLUSION: We identified a subset of AML patients characterized by long-term in vitro cell proliferation and altered expression of cell cycle regulators that may be potential candidates for treatment of AML.

Liu S, Sun J, Lan Q
Glioblastoma microvesicles promote endothelial cell proliferation through Akt/beta-catenin pathway.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2014; 7(8):4857-66 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/02/2016 Related Publications
Glioblastoma tumor cells release microvesicles, which contain mRNA, miRNA and angiogenic proteins. These tumor-derived microvesicles transfer genetic information and proteins to normal cells. Previous reports demonstrated that the increased microvesicles in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of patients with glioblastoma up-regulate procoagulant activity. The concentration of microvesicles was closely related to thromboembolism incidence and clinical therapeutic effects of glioblastoma patients. However, it is still not clear how CSF microvesicles and what factors affect glioblastoma development. In this study, we collected the plasma and CSF from glioblastoma patients and healthy volunteers. Microvesicles acquired from serum or CSF were added to cultured endothelial cells. And the effects of these microvesicles on endothelial cells were examined. Our results showed that microvesicles from CSF of patients, but not from circulating blood, promoted endothelial cells migration and proliferation in vitro. In addition, the degree of endothelial cell proliferation triggered by microvesicles from CSF was reduced when treated with siRNA targeting Akt/beta-catenin, suggesting that the Akt/beta-catenin pathway is involved in the microvesicle-initiated endothelial cell proliferation. In conclusion, glioblastoma mainly affects microvesicles within CSF without showing significant impact on microvesicles in circulating blood. Microvesicles from the CSF of glioblastoma patients may initiate endothelial cell growth and thus promote cell invasion. This effect may be directly exerted by activated Akt/beta-catenin pathway.

Mathew E, Collins MA, Fernandez-Barrena MG, et al.
The transcription factor GLI1 modulates the inflammatory response during pancreatic tissue remodeling.
J Biol Chem. 2014; 289(40):27727-43 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 03/10/2015 Related Publications
Pancreatic cancer, one of the deadliest human malignancies, is almost uniformly associated with a mutant, constitutively active form of the oncogene Kras. Studies in genetically engineered mouse models have defined a requirement for oncogenic KRAS in both the formation of pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasias, the most common precursor lesions to pancreatic cancer, and in the maintenance and progression of these lesions. Previous work using an inducible model allowing tissue-specific and reversible expression of oncogenic Kras in the pancreas indicates that inactivation of this GTPase at the pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia stage promotes pancreatic tissue repair. Here, we extend these findings to identify GLI1, a transcriptional effector of the Hedgehog pathway, as a central player in pancreatic tissue repair upon Kras inactivation. Deletion of a single allele of Gli1 results in improper stromal remodeling and perdurance of the inflammatory infiltrate characteristic of pancreatic tumorigenesis. Strikingly, this partial loss of Gli1 affects activated fibroblasts in the pancreas and the recruitment of immune cells that are vital for tissue recovery. Analysis of the mechanism using expression and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays identified a subset of cytokines, including IL-6, mIL-8, Mcp-1, and M-csf (Csf1), as direct GLI1 target genes potentially mediating this phenomenon. Finally, we demonstrate that canonical Hedgehog signaling, a known regulator of Gli1 activity, is required for pancreas recovery. Collectively, these data delineate a new pathway controlling tissue repair and highlight the importance of GLI1 in regulation of the pancreatic microenvironment during this cellular process.

Sakashita K, Kato I, Daifu T, et al.
In vitro expansion of CD34(+)CD38(-) cells under stimulation with hematopoietic growth factors on AGM-S3 cells in juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia.
Leukemia. 2015; 29(3):606-14 [PubMed] Related Publications
Using serum-containing culture, we examined whether AGM-S3 stromal cells, alone or in combination with hematopoietic growth factor(s), stimulated the proliferation of CD34(+) cells from patients with juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML). AGM-S3 cells in concert with stem cell factor plus thrombopoietin increased the numbers of peripheral blood CD34(+) cells to approximately 20-fold of the input value after 2 weeks in nine JMML patients with either PTPN11 mutations or RAS mutations, who received allogeneic hematopoietic transplantation. Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) also augmented the proliferation of JMML CD34(+) cells on AGM-S3 cells. The expansion potential of CD34(+) cells was markedly low in four patients who achieved spontaneous hematological improvement. A large proportion of day-14-cultured CD34(+) cells were negative for CD38 and cryopreservable. Cultured JMML CD34(+)CD38(-) cells expressed CD117, CD116, c-mpl, CD123, CD90, but not CXCR4, and formed GM and erythroid colonies. Day-7-cultured CD34(+) cells from two of three JMML patients injected intrafemorally into immunodeficient mice stimulated with human GM-CSF after transplantation displayed significant hematopoietic reconstitution. The abilities of OP9 cells and MS-5 cells were one-third and one-tenth, respectively, of the value obtained with AGM-S3 cells. Our culture system may provide a useful tool for elucidating leukemogenesis and for therapeutic approaches in JMML.

Tanis T, Cincin ZB, Gokcen-Rohlig B, et al.
The role of components of the extracellular matrix and inflammation on oral squamous cell carcinoma metastasis.
Arch Oral Biol. 2014; 59(11):1155-63 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) accounts for about 90% of malignant oral lesions, and is identified as the most frequently occurring malignant tumour of oral structures. We aimed to investigate the genes and pathways related with metastasis on Turkish OSCC patients.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We performed whole genome expression profiling array on an Illumina platform. A total of 24 samples with 12 OSCC and 12-paired controls that had no tumour were included in the study. Hierarchic clustering and heat map were used for data visualisation and p-values assessed to identify differentially expressed genes. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) and Ingenuity Pathway Systems (IPA) analysis were performed to consider biologic meaning of differential expression of the genes between tumour and control groups.
RESULTS: We identified 790 probe sets, corresponding to 648 genes that were effective in separating invasive and metastatic OSCC. Consequently, we found statistically relevant expression results on extracellular matrix members on MMPs such as MMP3, MMP10, MMP1 and MMP9; on laminin such as LAMC2, LAMA3 and LAMB3; several genes in the collagen family; and also on chemokines from the inflammation process.
CONCLUSION: Statistically relevant expression changes for MMPs, laminins, collagens, and chemokines, which are components of the extracellular matrix and inflammation process, may be considered as a molecular biomarker for early prediction. Further studies are necessary to determine and understand the molecular mechanisms that underlie OSCC metastasis.

Riccardo F, Arigoni M, Buson G, et al.
Characterization of a genetic mouse model of lung cancer: a promise to identify Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer therapeutic targets and biomarkers.
BMC Genomics. 2014; 15 Suppl 3:S1 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 03/10/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) accounts for 81% of all cases of lung cancer and they are often fatal because 60% of the patients are diagnosed at an advanced stage. Besides the need for earlier diagnosis, there is a high need for additional effective therapies. In this work, we investigated the feasibility of a lung cancer progression mouse model, mimicking features of human aggressive NSCLC, as biological reservoir for potential therapeutic targets and biomarkers.
RESULTS: We performed RNA-seq profiling on total RNA extracted from lungs of a 30 week-old K-ras(LA1)/p53(R172HΔg) and wild type (WT) mice to detect fusion genes and gene/exon-level differential expression associated to the increase of tumor mass. Fusion events were not detected in K-ras(LA1)/p53(R172HΔg) tumors. Differential expression at exon-level detected 33 genes with differential exon usage. Among them nine, i.e. those secreted or expressed on the plasma membrane, were used for a meta-analysis of more than 500 NSCLC RNA-seq transcriptomes. None of the genes showed a significant correlation between exon-level expression and disease prognosis. Differential expression at gene-level allowed the identification of 1513 genes with a significant increase in expression associated to tumor mass increase. 74 genes, i.e. those secreted or expressed on the plasma membrane, were used for a meta-analysis of two transcriptomics datasets of human NSCLC samples, encompassing more than 900 samples. SPP1 was the only molecule whose over-expression resulted statistically related to poor outcome regarding both survival and metastasis formation. Two other molecules showed over-expression associated to poor outcome due to metastasis formation: GM-CSF and ADORA3. GM-CSF is a secreted protein, and we confirmed its expression in the supernatant of a cell line derived by a K-ras(LA1)/p53(R172HΔg) mouse tumor. ADORA3 is instead involved in the induction of p53-mediated apoptosis in lung cancer cell lines. Since in our model p53 is inactivated, ADORA3 does not negatively affect tumor growth but remains expressed on tumor cells. Thus, it could represent an interesting target for the development of antibody-targeted therapy on a subset of NSCLC, which are p53 null and ADORA3 positive.
CONCLUSIONS: Our study provided a complete transcription overview of the K-ras(LA1)/p53(R172HΔg) mouse NSCLC model. This approach allowed the detection of ADORA3 as a potential target for antibody-based therapy in p53 mutated tumors.

Jehs T, Faber C, Juel HB, et al.
Inflammation-induced chemokine expression in uveal melanoma cell lines stimulates monocyte chemotaxis.
Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2014; 55(8):5169-75 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Uveal melanoma (UM) is the most common primary intraocular tumor in adults and the presence of infiltrating leucocytes is associated with a poor prognosis. Little is known how infiltrating leucocytes influence the tumor cells. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of activated T cells on the expression of chemotactic cytokines in UM cells. Furthermore, we examined the ability of stimulated UM cells to attract monocytes.
METHODS: We used an in vitro coculture system in which UM cell lines and T cells were cultured together, but separated by a membrane. Uveal melanoma gene expression was quantified using a microarray. Protein expression in the supernatant was quantified with ELISA or cytometric bead array. For the monocyte migration assay, a transwell plate was used.
RESULTS: Gene-expression analysis of UM cell lines showed that coculture with activated T cells resulted in an upregulation of chemokines such as CXCL8, CXCL9, CXCL10, CXCL11, CCL2, CCL5, VEGF, intracellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM1), and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF). The upregulation of these molecules was confirmed at the protein level. This increase of chemokines coincided with an increased chemotactic capacity of the supernatant toward monocytes.
CONCLUSIONS: Cytokines derived from activated T cells shifted the UM cell transcriptome toward a more inflammatory state, including upregulation of several chemokines, which led to an increased migration of monocytes. Therefore, UM cells might actively participate in generating a tumor-promoting inflammatory microenvironment.

Du T, Shi G, Li YM, et al.
Tumor-specific oncolytic adenoviruses expressing granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor or anti-CTLA4 antibody for the treatment of cancers.
Cancer Gene Ther. 2014; 21(8):340-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The purpose of this study was to examine the tumor specificity, cytotoxicity and the antitumor activity of two conditionally replicating oncolytic adenoviruses, SKL001 and SKL002, which expressed granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) or anti-cytotoxic T lymphocyte-associated antigen-4 (CTLA4) antibody, respectively, and determine their antitumor efficacy in A549 lung tumor model, B16F10 mouse melanoma tumor model and CMT-64 mouse small lung carcinoma tumor model. Virus yield and cytotoxicity were used to determine tumor specificity and virus replication-mediated cytotoxicity of SKL001 and SKL002 in a panel of human tumor cell lines and primary cells in vitro. Two subcutaneous (s.c.) tumor nexograft tumor models were used to assess their antitumor activity. Under the control of the E2F promoter, the expression of E1a genes appeared only in tumor cells, whereas the wild-type Ad5 expressed its E1a genes in both tumor cells and normal cells. GM-CSF and anti-CTLA4 production were significantly higher in tumor cells than normal cells. SKL001 and SKL002 replicated in Rb-defective cell lines as efficiently as wild-type adenovirus but produced 100-fold less virus in normal human cells. SKL001 and SKL002 was up to 1000-fold more cytotoxic in Rb pathway-defective human tumor cells in comparison with normal human cells. Antitumor activity of SKL001 and SKL002 following intravenous administration was shown in a human lung A549 s.c. xenograft tumor model and mouse B16F10 melanoma tumor model when compared with phosphate-buffered saline treatment. In immune-competent mice, the addition of GM-CSF produced a stronger antitumor activity and induced a higher number of mature dendritic cells and macrophages, whereas additive antitumor activity was observed in the group when SKL001 and SKL002 were combined. In vitro and in vivo studies showed the selective replication, cytotoxicity, gene production and antitumor efficacy of SKL001 and SKL002 in human tumor model, suggesting a potential utility of this oncolytic agent for the treatment of human cancer. Further studies are warranted to show the role of human GM-CSF and anti-CTLA4 antibody in the antitumor efficacy of these two oncolytic viruses.

Vu-Han TL, Frühwald MC, Hasselblatt M, et al.
Identifying molecular markers for the sensitive detection of residual atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor cells.
Cancer Genet. 2014; 207(9):390-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor (AT/RT), a rare and highly malignant tumor entity of the central nervous system that presents in early childhood, has a poor prognosis. AT/RTs are characterized by biallelic inactivating mutations of the gene SMARCB1 in 98% of patients; these mutations may serve as molecular markers for residual tumor cell detection in liquid biopsies. We developed a marker-specific method to detect residual AT/RT cells. Seven of 150 patient samples were selected, each with a histological and genetically ascertained diagnosis of AT/RT. Tumor tissue was either formalin fixed or fresh frozen. DNA was extracted from the patients' peripheral blood leukocytes (PBL) and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification, DNA sequencing, and fluorescence in situ hybridization were used to characterize the tumors' mutations. Residual tumor cell detection used mutation-specific primers and real-time PCR. The detection limit for the residual tumor cell search was 1-18%, depending on the quality of the template provided. The residual tumor cell search in PBL and CSF was negative for all seven patients. The SMARCB1 region of chromosome 22 is prone to DNA double-strand breaks. The individual breakpoints and breakpoint-specific PCR offer the option to detect minimal residual tumor cells in CSF or blood. Even if we did not detect minimal residual tumor cells in the investigated material, proof of principle for this method was confirmed.

Zhang X, Blaskovich MA, Forinash KD, Sebti SM
Withacnistin inhibits recruitment of STAT3 and STAT5 to growth factor and cytokine receptors and induces regression of breast tumours.
Br J Cancer. 2014; 111(5):894-902 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 26/08/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The binding of STAT3 and STAT5 to growth factor and cytokine receptors such as EGFR and IL-6 receptor gp130 is critical to their activation and ability to contribute to malignant transformation. Therefore, interfering with these biochemical processes could lead to the discovery of novel anticancer agents.
METHODS: Co-immunoprecipitation, western blotting, microscopy, DNA binding, invasion, and soft agar assays as well as a mouse model were used to investigate the mechanism by which the natural product Withacnistin (Wit) inhibits STAT 3/5 tyrosine phosphoryaltion and activation.
RESULTS: Wit blocks EGF- and IL-6-stimulated binding of STAT3 and STAT5 to EGFR and gp130. Wit inhibits EGF-, PDGF-, IL-6-, IFNβ-, and GM-CSF-stimulation of tyrosine phosphorylation of STAT3 and STAT5 but not of EGFR or PDGFR. The inhibition of P-STAT3 and P-STAT5 occurred rapidly, within minutes of Wit treatment and growth factor stimulation. Wit also inhibits STAT3 nuclear translocation, DNA binding, promoter transcriptional activation, and it suppresses the expression levels of STAT3 target genes such as Bcl-xL and Mcl-1. Finally, Wit induces apoptosis, inhibits anchorage-dependent and -independent growth and invasion, and causes breast tumour regression in an ErbB2-driven transgenic mouse model.
CONCLUSIONS: These data warrant further development of Wit as a novel anticancer drug for targeting tumours that harbour hyperactivated STAT3 and STAT5.

Garg M, Braunstein G, Koeffler HP
LAMC2 as a therapeutic target for cancers.
Expert Opin Ther Targets. 2014; 18(9):979-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancer is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in developed countries and the second major cause of death in developing countries. Laminins are crucial proteins in the basal lamina (one of the layers of the basement membrane), and these form a protein network that influences both normal and transformed cell differentiation, migration and adhesion, as well as phenotype and survival. The basement membranes act as a mechanical barrier to tumor growth, but these molecules, including laminins, are also important autocrine factors produced by cancers to promote tumorigenesis. Several studies in cancers have shown the importance of LAMC2, a laminin component. The elevated expression of LAMC2 on cancer cells appears to drive tumorigenesis through its interactions with several cell-surface receptors including α6β4 and α3β1 integrins and EGFRs. The accumulating evidence indicates that LAMC2-mediated signaling network plays an important role in the progression, migration and invasion of multiple types of cancer, suggesting that it might be a potential therapeutic anticancer target for inhibiting tumorigenesis. Furthermore, elevated serum levels of LAMC2 in cancer patients might be an attractive serum-based diagnostic biomarker.

Van Overmeire E, Laoui D, Keirsse J, et al.
STAT of the union: dynamics of distinct tumor-associated macrophage subsets governed by STAT1.
Eur J Immunol. 2014; 44(8):2238-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
The tumor stroma has long been ignored as therapeutic target, but it has become clear that several stromal cell types play a nonredundant role during tumor progression. In particular, macrophages possess the capacity to stimulate tumor growth and metastasis via multiple mechanisms. In this issue of the European Journal of Immunology, a study by Tymoszuk et al. Eur. J. Immunol. 2014. 44: 2247-2262 demonstrates that both monocyte recruitment and local macrophage proliferation determines the tumor-associated macrophage (TAM) pool size in HER2/Neu-driven mammary carcinomas. These tumors contain two main TAM subsets--MHC class II (MHC-II)(lo) F4/80(hi) and MHC-II(hi) F4/80(lo)--similar to what was observed in other tumor models. Interestingly, only the MHC-II(lo) F4/80(hi) subset is largely absent in a STAT1-deficient background. STAT1 induces the expression of CSF-1, which in turn drives TAM proliferation and possibly also the M2 gene signature of MHC-II(lo) F4/80(hi) TAM. Conversely, STAT1 deficiency upregulates M2 gene expression in MHC-II(hi) F4/80(lo) TAM, demonstrating that both TAM subsets are differentially regulated, probably as a consequence of their distinct intratumoral localization. In this Commentary, we place these findings in the context of current knowledge and propose new avenues for future research.

Villaverde MS, Combe K, Duchene AG, et al.
Suicide plus immune gene therapy prevents post-surgical local relapse and increases overall survival in an aggressive mouse melanoma setting.
Int Immunopharmacol. 2014; 22(1):167-75 [PubMed] Related Publications
In an aggressive B16-F10 murine melanoma model, we evaluated the effectiveness and antitumor mechanisms triggered by a surgery adjuvant treatment that combined a local suicide gene therapy (SG) with a subcutaneous genetic vaccine (Vx) composed of B16-F10 cell extracts and lipoplexes carrying the genes of human interleukin-2 and murine granulocyte and macrophage colony stimulating factor. Pre-surgical SG treatment, neither alone nor combined with Vx was able to slow down the fast evolution of this tumor. After surgery, both SG and SG + Vx treatments, significantly prevented (in 50% of mice) or delayed (in the remaining 50%) post-surgical recurrence, as well as significantly prolonged recurrence-free (SG and SG + Vx) and overall median survival (SG + Vx). The treatment induced the generation of a pseudocapsule wrapping and separating the tumor from surrounding host tissue. Both, SG and the subcutaneous Vx, induced this envelope that was absent in the control group. On the other hand, PET scan imaging of the SG + Vx group suggested the development of an effective systemic immunostimulation that enhanced (18)FDG accrual in the thymus, spleen and vertebral column. When combined with surgery, direct intralesional injection of suicide gene plus distal subcutaneous genetic vaccine displayed efficacy and systemic antitumor immune response without host toxicity. This suggests the potential value of the assayed approach for clinical purposes.

Nemunaitis J, Barve M, Orr D, et al.
Summary of bi-shRNA/GM-CSF augmented autologous tumor cell immunotherapy (FANG™) in advanced cancer of the liver.
Oncology. 2014; 87(1):21-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Therapies for advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) are limited. We carried out a phase I trial of a novel autologous whole-cell tumor cell immunotherapy (FANG™), which incorporates a dual granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) expressive/bifunctional small hairpin RNA interference (bi-shRNAi) vector. The bi-shRNAi DNA targets furin, which is a proconvertase of transforming growth factors beta (TGFβ) 1 and 2. Safety, mechanism, immunoeffectiveness, and suggested benefit were previously shown [Senzer et al.: Mol Ther 2012;20:679-689; Senzer et al.: J Vaccines Vaccin 2013;4:209]. We now provide further follow-up of a subset of 8 HCC patients. FANG manufacturing was successful in 7 of 8 attempts (one failure due to insufficient cell yield). Median GM-CSF expression was 144 pg/10(6) cells, TGFβ1 knockdown was 100%, and TGFβ2 knockdown was 93% of the vector-transported cells. Five patients were vaccinated (1 or 2.5×10(7) cells/intradermal injection, 6-11 vaccinations). No FANG toxicity was observed. Three of these patients demonstrated evidence of an immune response to the autologous tumor cell sample. Long-term follow-up demonstrated survival of 319, 729, 784, 931+, and 1,043+ days of the FANG-treated patients. In conclusion, evidence supports further assessment of the FANG immunotherapy in HCC.

Liverani C, Mercatali L, Spadazzi C, et al.
CSF-1 blockade impairs breast cancer osteoclastogenic potential in co-culture systems.
Bone. 2014; 66:214-22 [PubMed] Related Publications
Metastatic bone disease has a major impact on the morbidity and mortality of breast cancer patients, and studies on bone metastasis biology have led to the development of the most widely used drugs for bone metastases treatment: zoledronate (Zol) and denosumab (Den). The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of soluble mediators produced by breast cancer cells on human osteoclast maturation in a co-culture model. We also tested the ability of zoledronate, denosumab and 5H4, an antibody directed against CSF-1, to interfere with the osteoclastogenic potential of breast cancer. The study was performed on the triple negative cell line MDA-MB-231 and on human osteoclasts obtained from the differentiation of peripheral blood monocytes of a healthy volunteer. Osteoclastogenesis was evaluated by TRAP assay after 14days of differentiation with 10% MDA-MB-231-conditioned media or with CSF-1 and RANKL. Den, Zol and 5H4 were administered after 7days of differentiation. MDA-MB-231-conditioned media doubled the differentiation of monocytes into osteoclasts. MDA-MB-231 secreted CSF-1, especially when cells were cultured to confluence. Induced osteoclasts were sensitive to bone-targeted drugs: Den and 5H4 blocked osteoclast differentiation and survival, while Zol induced osteoclast apoptosis. Osteoclasts differentiated by breast cancer cells were less sensitive to Zol than those induced by differentiation factors, whereas sensitivity to Den was similar. Conversely, breast cancer-induced osteoclast activation resulted in a higher sensitivity to 5H4. A significant increase in CSF-1 secretion was observed in osteoclast precursors after treatment with the highest concentration of Den. Further research is ongoing to evaluate the efficacy of 5H4 combination with Den.

Staff C, Mozaffari F, Frödin JE, et al.
Telomerase (GV1001) vaccination together with gemcitabine in advanced pancreatic cancer patients.
Int J Oncol. 2014; 45(3):1293-303 [PubMed] Related Publications
Telomerase is expressed in 85-90 % of pancreatic adenocarcinomas and might be a target for active cancer immunotherapy. A study was conducted to investigate safety and immunogenicity in non-resectable pancreatic carcinoma patients using a 16-amino acid telomerase peptide (GV1001) for vaccination in combination with GM-CSF and gemcitabine as first line treatment. Three different vaccine treatment schedules were used; [A (n=6), B (n=6) and C (n=5)]. Groups A/B received GV1001, GM-CSF and gemcitabine concurrently. Group C received initially GV1001 and GM-CSF while gemcitabine was added at disease progression. Group D (n=4) was treated with gemcitabine alone. Adverse events (AE) related to vaccination were mild (grades I-II). Grade III AEs were few and transient. An induced GV 1001‑specific immune response was defined as an increase ≥2 above the baseline value in one of the assays (DTH, proliferation, ELISPOT and cytokine secretion assays, respectively). A telomerase‑specific immune response was noted in 4/6 patients in group A, 4/6 patients in group B and 2/5 patients in group C. An induced ras‑specific immune response (antigenic spreading) was seen in 5 of the 17 patients. The cytokine pattern was that of a Th1-like profile. A treatment induced telomerase or ras response was also noted in group D. All responses were weak and transient. A significant decrease in regulatory T-cells over time was noted in patients in groups A and B (p<0.05). Telomerase vaccination (GV1001) in combination with chemotherapy appeared to be safe but the immune responses were weak and transient. Measures have to be taken to optimize immune responses of GV1001 for it to be considered of clinical interest.

Moscato EH, Peng X, Jain A, et al.
Acute mechanisms underlying antibody effects in anti-N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor encephalitis.
Ann Neurol. 2014; 76(1):108-19 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 26/08/2015 Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: A severe but treatable form of immune-mediated encephalitis is associated with antibodies in serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) against the GluN1 subunit of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR). Prolonged exposure of hippocampal neurons to antibodies from patients with anti-NMDAR encephalitis caused a reversible decrease in the synaptic localization and function of NMDARs. However, acute effects of the antibodies, fate of the internalized receptors, type of neurons affected, and whether neurons develop compensatory homeostatic mechanisms were unknown and are the focus of this study.
METHODS: Dissociated hippocampal neuron cultures and rodent brain sections were used for immunocytochemical, physiological, and molecular studies.
RESULTS: Patient antibodies bind to NMDARs throughout the rodent brain, and decrease NMDAR cluster density in both excitatory and inhibitory hippocampal neurons. They rapidly increase the internalization rate of surface NMDAR clusters, independent of receptor activity. This internalization likely accounts for the observed decrease in NMDAR-mediated currents, as no evidence of direct blockade was detected. Once internalized, antibody-bound NMDARs traffic through both recycling endosomes and lysosomes, similar to pharmacologically induced NMDAR endocytosis. The antibodies are responsible for receptor internalization, as their depletion from CSF abrogates these effects in hippocampal neurons. We find that although anti-NMDAR antibodies do not induce compensatory changes in glutamate receptor gene expression, they cause a decrease in inhibitory synapse density onto excitatory hippocampal neurons.
INTERPRETATION: Our data support an antibody-mediated mechanism of disease pathogenesis driven by immunoglobulin-induced receptor internalization. Antibody-mediated downregulation of surface NMDARs engages homeostatic synaptic plasticity mechanisms, which may inadvertently contribute to disease progression.

Cary LH, Noutai D, Salber RE, et al.
Interactions between endothelial cells and T cells modulate responses to mixed neutron/gamma radiation.
Radiat Res. 2014; 181(6):592-604 [PubMed] Related Publications
Detonation of an improvised nuclear device near a population center would cause significant casualties from the acute radiation syndrome (ARS) due to exposure to mixed neutron/gamma fields (MF). The pathophysiology of ARS involves inflammation, microvascular damage and alterations in immune function. Interactions between endothelial cells (EC) and hematopoietic cells are important not only for regulating immune cell traffic and function, but also for providing the microenvironment that controls survival, differentiation and migration of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells in blood-forming tissues. Endothelial cells/leukocyte interactions also influence tumor progression and the results of anticancer therapies. In this study, we hypothesized that irradiation of endothelial cells would modulate their effects on hematopoietic cells and vice versa. Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) and immortalized T lymphocytes (Jurkat cells) were cultured individually and in co-culture after exposure to mixed fields. Effects of nonirradiated cells were compared to effects of irradiated cells and alterations in signaling pathways were determined. Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) p38 and p44/42 (ERK1/2) in HUVEC exhibited higher levels of phosphorylated protein after exposure to mixed field radiation. IL-6, IL-8, G-CSF, platelet derived growth factor (PDGF) and angiopoietin 2 (ANG2) protein expression were upregulated in HUVEC by exposure to mixed field radiation. PCR arrays using HUVEC mRNA revealed alterations in gene expression after exposure to mixed fields and/or co-culture with Jurkat cells. The presence of HUVEC also influenced the function of Jurkat cells. Nonirradiated Jurkat cells showed an increase in proliferation when co-cultured with nonirradiated HUVEC, and a decrease in proliferation when co-cultured with irradiated HUVEC. Additionally, nonirradiated Jurkat cells incubated in media from irradiated HUVEC exhibited upregulation of activated caspase 3. Irradiation of Jurkat cells caused a G2/M arrest and increased adherence to HUVEC. When co-cultured with HUVEC, irradiated Jurkat cells exhibited G0/G1 arrest and increased apoptosis. The data indicate that gene expression and cell function of endothelial cells and hematopoietic cells are influenced by radiation and by interactions between the two cell types. These phenomena may affect the success of therapies for ARS and cancer.

Su S, Liu Q, Chen J, et al.
A positive feedback loop between mesenchymal-like cancer cells and macrophages is essential to breast cancer metastasis.
Cancer Cell. 2014; 25(5):605-20 [PubMed] Related Publications
The close vicinity of cancer cells undergoing epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) at the invasive front of tumors suggests that these two cell type may mutually interact. We show that mesenchymal-like breast cancer cells activate macrophages to a TAM-like phenotype by GM-CSF. Reciprocally, CCL18 from TAMs induces cancer cell EMT, forming a positive feedback loop, in coculture systems and humanized mice. Inhibition of GM-CSF or CCL18 breaks this loop and reduces cancer metastasis. High GM-CSF expression in breast cancer samples is associated with more CCL18(+) macrophages, cancer cell EMT, enhanced metastasis, and reduced patient survival. These findings suggest that a positive feedback loop between GM-CSF and CCL18 is important in breast cancer metastasis.

Gupta MK, Jayaram S, Madugundu AK, et al.
Chromosome-centric human proteome project: deciphering proteins associated with glioma and neurodegenerative disorders on chromosome 12.
J Proteome Res. 2014; 13(7):3178-90 [PubMed] Related Publications
In line with the aims of the Chromosome-centric Human Proteome Project (C-HPP) to completely annotate proteins of each chromosome and biology/disease driven HPP (B/D-HPP) to decipher their relation to diseases, we have generated a nonredundant catalogue of protein-coding genes for Chromosome 12 (Chr. 12) and further annotated proteins associated with major neurological disorders. Integrating high level proteomic evidence from four major databases (neXtProt, Global Proteome Machine (GPMdb), PeptideAtlas, and Human Protein Atlas (HPA)) along with Ensembl data resource resulted in the identification of 1066 protein coding genes, of which 171 were defined as "missing proteins" based on the weak or complete absence of experimental evidence. With functional annotations using DAVID and GAD, about 40% of the proteins could be grouped as brain related with implications in cancer or neurological disorders. We used published and unpublished high confidence mass spectrometry data from our group and other literature consisting of more than 5000 proteins derived from clinical specimens from patients with human gliomas, Alzheimer's disease, and Parkinson's disease and mapped it onto Chr. 12. We observed a total of 202 proteins mapping to human Chr. 12, 136 of which were differentially expressed in these disease conditions as compared to the normal. Functional grouping indicated their association with cell cycle, cell-to-cell signaling, and other important processes and networks, whereas their disease association analysis confirmed neurological diseases and cancer as the major group along with psycological disorders, with several overexpressed genes/proteins mapping to 12q13-15 amplicon region. Using multiple strategies and bioinformatics tools, we identified 103 differentially expressed proteins to have secretory potential, 17 of which have already been reported in direct analysis of the plasma or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from the patients and 21 of them mapped to cancer associated protein (CAPs) database that are amenable to selective reaction monitoring (SRM) assays for targeted proteomic analysis. Our analysis also reveals, for the first time, mass spectrometric evidence for two "missing proteins" from Chr. 12, namely, synaptic vesicle 2-related protein (SVOP) and IQ motif containing D (IQCD). The analysis provides a snapshot of Chr. 12 encoded proteins associated with gliomas and major neurological conditions and their secretability which can be used to drive efforts for clinical applications.

Chu TY, Yang JT, Huang TH, Liu HW
Crosstalk with cancer-associated fibroblasts increases the growth and radiation survival of cervical cancer cells.
Radiat Res. 2014; 181(5):540-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Crosstalk between cancer cells and the surrounding cancer associated fibroblasts (CAFs) plays an illusive role in cancer radiotherapy. This study investigated the effect of cancer cell-cancer associated fibroblasts crosstalk on the proliferation and survival of irradiated cervical cancer cells. A pretreatment with conditioned medium from a mixed culture of CAF and HeLa cells (mixCAF) had a stronger effect on enhancing the proliferation and survival of irradiated HeLa cells compared to pretreatment with CAF conditioned medium alone. In addition, pretreatment with a mixed culture of CAF and HeLa cells conditioned medium reduced the levels of two major radiation-induced genes, GADD45 and BTG2, and phosphorylation of p38. Profiling of the growth and survival factors in the conditioned medium revealed PDGF and VEGF, and IGF2, EGF, FGF-4, IGFBPs and GM-CSF to be specifically secreted from HeLa cells and CAFs, respectively. This study demonstrated radiation protective effects of CAF-cancer cell crosstalk, and identified multiple growth factors and radiation response genes that might be involved in these effects.

Cioce M, Canino C, Goparaju C, et al.
Autocrine CSF-1R signaling drives mesothelioma chemoresistance via AKT activation.
Cell Death Dis. 2014; 5:e1167 [PubMed] Related Publications
Clinical management of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is very challenging because of the uncommon resistance of this tumor to chemotherapy. We report here increased expression of macrophage colony-stimulating-factor-1-receptor (M-CSF/CSF-1R) mRNA in mesothelioma versus normal tissue specimens and demonstrate that CSF-1R expression identifies chemoresistant cells of mesothelial nature in both primary cultures and mesothelioma cell lines. By using RNAi or ligand trapping, we demonstrate that the chemoresistance properties of those cells depend on autocrine CSF-1R signaling. At the single-cell level, the isolated CSF-1R(pos) cells exhibit a complex repertoire of pluripotency, epithelial-mesenchymal transition and detoxifying factors, which define a clonogenic, chemoresistant, precursor-like cell sub-population. The simple activation of CSF-1R in untransformed mesothelial cells is sufficient to confer clonogenicity and resistance to pemetrexed, hallmarks of mesothelioma. In addition, this induced a gene expression profile highly mimicking that observed in the MPM cells endogenously expressing the receptor and the ligands, suggesting that CSF-1R expression is mainly responsible for the phenotype of the identified cell sub-populations. The survival of CSF1R(pos) cells requires active AKT (v-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene homolog 1) signaling, which contributed to increased levels of nuclear, transcriptionally competent β-catenin. Inhibition of AKT reduced the transcriptional activity of β-catenin-dependent reporters and sensitized the cells to senescence-induced clonogenic death after pemetrexed treatment. This work expands what is known on the non-macrophage functions of CSF-1R and its role in solid tumors, and suggests that CSF-1R signaling may have a critical pathogenic role in a prototypical, inflammation-related cancer such as MPM and therefore may represent a promising target for therapeutic intervention.

Szmigielska-Kaplon A, Szemraj J, Hamara K, et al.
Polymorphism of CD44 influences the efficacy of CD34(+) cells mobilization in patients with hematological malignancies.
Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 2014; 20(7):986-91 [PubMed] Related Publications
In the last decade, peripheral blood was the main source of hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) for autologous and allogeneic transplantation. The exact mechanisms of HSC mobilization are still not clear and the efficacy of the procedure is hardly predictable. Ligand-receptor interactions of adhesion molecules, such as SDF1/CXCR4, VLA4/VCAM-1, or CD44/osteopontin, play an important role in homing of HSC in the hematopoietic niche. There is some evidence that disruption of the ligand-receptor complex leads to the egress of HSCs to the peripheral blood. The aim of the present study was the evaluation of constitutive polymorphism of genes encoding cytokines and receptors present in the HSC niche and their impact on the efficacy of mobilization of HSCs in patients with hematological malignancies. We enrolled 110 patients (60 females and 50 males) in the study. The median age of the patients was 55 (range, 22 to 69) years. The group consisted of patients with multiple myeloma (n = 74), non-Hodgkin lymphoma (n = 19), Hodgkin lymphoma (n = 15), or acute myeloid leukemia (n = 2). The mobilization procedures comprised chemotherapy and subsequent granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) at a dose of 10 μg/kg daily. The poor mobilizers group was defined according to Italian National Bone Marrow Transplant Registry criteria: patients with peak CD34(+) in the peripheral blood < 20/μL or total yield < 2 × 10(6) CD34(+) cells/kg body weight in maximum 3 aphereses. Genotyping was performed using standard PCR-based assays. The group of patients (N = 108) who achieved minimal threshold for collections (CD34(+) at least 10/μL) proceeded to apheresis. The median total yield of CD34(+) in this group was 5.6 × 10(6) cells/kg body weight, whereas the median number of cells collected during the first apheresis was 3.3 × 10(6) cells/kg body weight. Median number of days of G-CSF treatment before first apheresis was 10. Fifteen patients fulfilled the criteria for poor mobilizer. The group of poor mobilizers had higher frequency of TT genotype in rs13347 (CD44) gene (CC+ CT versus TT P = .047). Patients homozygous for T allele had a lower total yield of CD34(+) cells/kg body weight than the group with allele C (median, 3.7 × 10(6)/kg versus 5.8 × 10(6)/kg; P = .019) and a lower number of CD34(+) cells gathered during first apheresis (.95 × 10(6)/kg versus 3.3 × 10(6)/kg, P = .04). Multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed that the CD44 TT genotype was the only factor associated with 5-fold higher risk of poor mobilization (P = .037). Polymorphic variants of CXCR4 and VCAM-1 did not significantly influence the efficacy of HSCs mobilization in our group of patients. In conclusion, our results indicate that among investigated single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), only CD44 rs13347 has an impact on the efficacy of HSCs mobilization in patients with hematologic malignancies. CD44 SNPs analysis may be helpful for predicting the poor mobilizers population who may benefit from newer modalities using adhesion molecules inhibitors.

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