MiR-200c targets a NF-?B up-regulated TrkB/NTF3 autocrine signaling loop to enhance anoikis sensitivity in triple negative breast cancer.
ABSTRACT: Anoikis is apoptosis initiated upon cell detachment from the native extracellular matrix. Since survival upon detachment from basement membrane is required for metastasis, the ability to resist anoikis contributes to the metastatic potential of breast tumors. miR-200c, a potent repressor of epithelial to mesenchymal transition, is expressed in luminal breast cancers, but is lost in more aggressive basal-like, or triple negative breast cancers (TNBC). We previously demonstrated that miR-200c restores anoikis sensitivity to TNBC cells by directly targeting the neurotrophic receptor tyrosine kinase, TrkB. In this study, we identify a TrkB ligand, neurotrophin 3 (NTF3), as capable of activating TrkB to induce anoikis resistance, and show that NTF3 is also a direct target of miR-200c. We present the first evidence that anoikis resistant TNBC cells up-regulate both TrkB and NTF3 when suspended, and show that this up-regulation is necessary for survival in suspension. We further demonstrate that NF-?B activity increases 6 fold in suspended TNBC cells, and identify RelA and NF-?B1 as the transcription factors responsible for suspension-induced up-regulation of TrkB and NTF3. Consequently, inhibition of NF-?B activity represses anoikis resistance. Taken together, our findings define a critical mechanism for transcriptional and post-transcriptional control of suspension-induced up-regulation of TrkB and NTF3 in anoikis resistant breast cancer cells.
Project description:miR-200c and other members of the miR-200 family promote epithelial identity by directly targeting ZEB1 and ZEB2, which repress E-cadherin and other genes involved in polarity. Loss of miR-200c is often observed in carcinoma cells that have undergone epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT). Restoration of miR-200c to such cells leads to a reduction in stem cell-like characteristics, reduced migration and invasion, and increased sensitivity to taxanes. Here we investigate the functional role of novel targets of miR-200c in the aggressive behavior of breast and endometrial cancer cells.Putative target genes of miR-200c identified by microarray profiling were validated as direct targets using dual luciferase reporter assays. Following restoration of miR-200c to triple negative breast cancer and type 2 endometrial cancer cell lines that had undergone EMT, levels of endogenous target mRNA and respective protein products were measured. Migration and sensitivity to anoikis were determined using wound healing assays or cell-death ELISAs and viability assays respectively.We found that restoration of miR-200c suppresses anoikis resistance, a novel function for this influential miRNA. We identified novel targets of miR-200c, including genes encoding fibronectin 1 (FN1), moesin (MSN), neurotrophic tyrosine receptor kinase type 2 (NTRK2 or TrkB), leptin receptor (LEPR), and Rho GTPase activating protein 19 (ARHGAP19). These targets all encode proteins normally expressed in cells of mesenchymal or neuronal origin; however, in carcinoma cells that lack miR-200c they become aberrantly expressed and contribute to the EMT phenotype and aggressive behavior. We showed that these targets are inhibited upon restoration of miR-200c to aggressive breast and endometrial cancer cells. We demonstrated that inhibition of MSN and/or FN1 is sufficient to mediate the ability of miR-200c to suppress cell migration. Lastly, we showed that targeting of TrkB mediates the ability of miR-200c to restore anoikis sensitivity.miR-200c maintains the epithelial phenotype not only by targeting ZEB1/2, which usually facilitates restoration of E-cadherin expression, but also by actively repressing a program of mesenchymal and neuronal genes involved in cell motility and anoikis resistance.
Project description:The ability of a cancer cell to develop resistance to anoikis, a programmed cell death process triggered by substratum detachment, is a critical step in the metastatic cascade. Triple-negative breast cancers (TNBC) exhibit higher rates of metastasis after diagnosis, relative to estrogen-positive breast cancers, but while TNBC cells are relatively more resistant to anoikis, the mechanisms involved are unclear. Through gene expression and metabolomic profiling of TNBC cells in forced suspension culture, we identified a molecular pathway critical for anchorage-independent cell survival. TNBC cells in suspension upregulated multiple genes in the kynurenine pathway of tryptophan catabolism, including the enzyme tryptophan 2,3-dioxygenase (TDO2), in an NF-?B-dependent manner. Kynurenine production mediated by TDO2 in TNBC cells was sufficient to activate aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), an endogenous kynurenine receptor. Notably, pharmacologic inhibition or genetic attenuation of TDO2 or AhR increased cellular sensitivity to anoikis, and also reduced proliferation, migration, and invasion of TNBC cells. In vivo, TDO2 inhibitor-treated TNBC cells inhibited colonization of the lung, suggesting that TDO2 enhanced metastatic capacity. In clinical specimens of TNBC, elevated expression of TDO2 was associated with increased disease grade, estrogen receptor-negative status, and shorter overall survival. Our results define an NF-?B-regulated signaling axis that promotes anoikis resistance, suggest functional connections with inflammatory modulation by the kynurenine pathway, and highlight TDO2 as an attractive target for treatment of this aggressive breast cancer subtype.
Project description:A therapeutic intervention that could decrease tumor burden and increase sensitivity to chemotherapy would have a significant impact on the high morbidity rate associated with ovarian cancer. miRNAs have emerged as potential therapeutic candidates due to their ability to downregulate multiple targets involved in tumor progression and chemoresistance. miRNA-200c (miR-200c) is downregulated in ovarian cancer cell lines and stage III ovarian tumors, and low miR-200c correlates with poor prognosis. miR-200c increases sensitivity to taxanes in vitro by targeting class III ?-tubulin gene (TUBB3), a tubulin known to mediate chemoresistance. Indeed, we find that patients with tumors having low TUBB3 had significantly prolonged survival (average survival 52.73 ± 4.08 months) as compared with those having high TUBB3 (average survival 42.56 ± 3.19 months). miR-200c also targets TrkB, a mediator of resistance to anoikis. We show that restoration of miR-200c to ovarian cancer cells results in increased anoikis sensitivity and reduced adherence to biologic substrates in vitro. Because both chemo- and anoikis-resistance are critical steps in the progression of ovarian cancer, we sought to determine how restoration of miR-200c affects tumor burden and chemosensitivity in an in vivo preclinical model of ovarian cancer. Restoration of miR-200c in an intraperitoneal xenograft model of human ovarian cancer results in decreased tumor formation and tumor burden. Furthermore, even in established tumors, restoration of miR-200c, alone or in combination with paclitaxel, results in significantly decreased tumor burden. Our study suggests that restoration of miR-200c immediately before cytotoxic chemotherapy may allow for a better response or lower effective dose.
Project description:Members of microRNA-200 (miRNA-200) family have a regulatory role in epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) by suppressing Zeb1 and Zeb2 expression. Consistent with its role in suppressing EMT, Hsa-miR-200c-3p (miR-200c), a member of miR-200 family is poorly expressed in mesenchymal-like triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) cells and ectopic miR-200c expression suppresses cell migration. In this study, we demonstrated that miR-200c potently inhibited TNBC cell growth and tumor development in a mechanism distinct from its ability to downregulate Zeb1 and Zeb2 expression, because silencing them only marginally affected TNBC cell growth. We identified phosphodiesterase 7B (PDE7B) as a bona fide miR-200c target. Importantly, miR-200c-led inhibition in cell growth and tumor development was prevented by forcing PDE7B transgene expression, while knockdown of PDE7B effectively inhibited cell growth. These results suggest that miR-200c inhibits cell growth by targeting PDE7B mRNA. To elucidate mechanism underlying miR-200c/PDE7B regulation of TNBC cell growth, we showed that cAMP concentration was lower in TNBC cells compared with estrogen receptor-positive (ER?+?) cells, and that both miR-200c and PDE7B siRNAs were able to increase cAMP concentration in TNBC cells. High level of cellular cAMP has been shown to induce cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in TNBC cells. Our observation that ectopic expression of miR-200c triggered apoptosis indicates that it does so by elevating level of cellular cAMP. Analysis of breast tumor gene expression datasets revealed an inverse association between miR-200c and PDE7B expression. Especially, both low miR-200c and high PDE7B expression were correlated with poor survival of breast cancer patients. Our study supports a critical role of miR-200c/PDE7B relationship in TNBC tumorigenesis.
Project description:Mechanisms governing the metastasis of endometrial carcinoma (EC) are poorly defined. Recent data support a role for the cell surface receptor tyrosine kinase TrkB in the progression of several human tumors. Here we present evidence for a direct role of TrkB in human EC. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that TrkB and its secreted ligand, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), are more highly expressed in EC than in normal endometrium. High TrkB levels correlated with lymph node metastasis (p<0.05) and lymphovascular space involvement (p<0.05) in EC. Depletion of TrkB by stable shRNA-mediated knockdown decreased the migratory and invasive capacity of cancer cell lines in vitro and resulted in anoikis in suspended cells. Conversely, exogenous expression of TrkB increased cell migration and invasion and promoted anoikis resistance in suspension culture. Furthermore, over-expression of TrkB or stimulation by BDNF resulted in altered the expression of molecular mediators of the epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). RNA interference (RNAi)-mediated depletion of the downstream regulator, Twist, blocked TrkB-induced EMT-like transformation. The use of in vivo models revealed decreased peritoneal dissemination in TrkB-depleted EC cells. Additionally, TrkB-depleted EC cells underwent mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition and anoikis in vivo. Our data support a novel function for TrkB in promoting EMT and resistance to anoikis. Thus, TrkB may constitute a potential therapeutic target in human EC.
Project description:Tryptophan-2,3-dioxygenase (TDO2), a rate-limiting enzyme in the tryptophan catabolism pathway, is induced in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) by inflammatory signals and anchorage-independent conditions. TNBCs express extremely low levels of the miR-200 family compared with estrogen receptor-positive (ER+) breast cancer. In normal epithelial cells and ER+ breast cancers and cell lines, high levels of the family member miR-200c serve to target and repress genes involved in epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). To identify mechanism(s) that permit TNBC to express TDO2 and other proteins not expressed in the more well-differentiated ER+ breast cancers, miRNA-200c was restored in TNBC cell lines. The data demonstrate that miR-200c targeted TDO2 directly resulting in reduced production of the immunosuppressive metabolite kynurenine. Furthermore, in addition to reversing a classic EMT signature, miR-200c repressed many genes encoding immunosuppressive factors including CD274/CD273, HMOX-1, and GDF15. Restoration of miR-200c revealed a mechanism, whereby TNBC hijacks a gene expression program reminiscent of that used by trophoblasts to suppress the maternal immune system to ensure fetal tolerance during pregnancy. IMPLICATIONS: Knowledge of the regulation of tumor-derived immunosuppressive factors will facilitate development of novel therapeutic strategies that complement current immunotherapy to reduce mortality for patients with TNBC.
Project description:Although the efficacy of tamoxifen (TAM) for breast cancer has been attributed to inducing cell cycle arrest and apoptosis by inhibiting estrogen receptor (ER) signaling, recent evidence indicates that TAM also possesses ER-independent antitumor activity through an unclear mechanism. The present study investigated the anti-tumor mechanism of TAM on mesenchymal triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC).The inhibitory effect of TAM on tumor migration and metastasis was analyzed by transwell chamber in vitro and by murine xenograft model in vivo. The promoter sequence of miR-200c was predicted by an online CpG island predictor. Relative expression of miR-200c was measured by quantitative real-time PCR.After treatment with TAM, mesenchymal TNBC cells (MCF-7/ADR and MDA-MB-231) morphologically changed from mesenchymal to epithelial types. Meanwhile, cell migration ability was also significantly decreased in ER-positive breast cancer cells after exposure to TAM. Consistent with these in-vitro results, TAM significantly suppressed lung metastasis rate of mesenchymal TNBC cells in murine xenograft tumors. miRNA array analysis of two types of breast cancer cells showed that miR-200c expression was inhibited in mesenchymal TNBC cells, but increased after TAM treatment due to demethylation of miR-200c promoters.Our results indicate that TAM inhibits cell migration and enhances chemosensitivity of mesenchymal TNBC cells by reversing their EMT-like property; and that this EMT-reversal effect results from upregulation of miR-200c through demethylating its promoter. To our knowledge, this is the first explanation of a non-ER-related mechanism for the effect of TAM on mesenchymal TNBC cells.
Project description:Many immune suppressive mechanisms utilized by triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) are regulated by oncogenic epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). How TNBC EMT impacts innate immune cells is not fully understood. To determine how TNBC suppresses antitumor macrophages, we used microRNA-200c (miR-200c), a powerful repressor of EMT, to drive mesenchymal-like mouse mammary carcinoma and human TNBC cells toward a more epithelial state. MiR-200c restoration significantly decreased growth of mouse mammary carcinoma Met-1 cells in culture and in vivo. Cytokine profiling of Met-1 and human BT549 cells revealed that miR-200c upregulated cytokines, such as granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), promoted M1 antitumor macrophage polarization. Cytokines upregulated by miR-200c correlated with an epithelial gene signature and M1 macrophage polarization in BC patients and predicted a more favorable overall survival for TNBC patients. Our findings demonstrate that immunogenic cytokines (e.g., GM-CSF) are suppressed in aggressive TNBC, warranting further investigation of cytokine-based therapies to limit disease recurrence.
Project description:Acquired resistance to classical chemotherapeutics is a major obstacle in cancer treatment. Doxorubicin is frequently used in breast cancer therapy either as single-agent or in combination with other drugs like docetaxel and cyclophosphamide. All these chemotherapies have in common that they are administered sequentially and often result in chemoresistance. Here, we mimicked this pulse therapy of breast cancer patients in an in vitro cell culture model, where the epithelial breast cancer cell line BT474 was sequentially treated with doxorubicin for several treatment cycles. In consequence, we obtained chemoresistant cells displaying a mesenchymal-like phenotype with decreased levels of miR-200c. To investigate the involvement of miR-200c in resistance formation, we inhibited and overexpressed miR-200c in different cell lines. Thereby, the cells were rendered more resistant or susceptible to doxorubicin treatment. Moreover, the receptor tyrosine kinase TrkB and the transcriptional repressor Bmi1 were identified as miR-200c targets mediating the drug resistance. Hence, we provide a mechanism of acquired resistance to doxorubicin that is caused by the loss of miR-200c. Along with this, our study demonstrates the complex network of microRNA mediated chemoresistance highlighting the challenges in cancer therapy and the importance of novel microRNA-modulating anticancer agents.
Project description:Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in cancer cells could convert epithelial-like cells to mesenchymal-like cells, resulting in the increased capacity of migration and invasion of cancer cells, and is an essential step in triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) development. Recent reports exert that these EMT-activated TNBC cells are more resistant to immune attacks, with high levels of programmed death ligand1 (PD-L1). Hence, it is worthwhile to find an effective approach in inhibiting EMT-activated TNBC cells. (-)-Sativan (SA) is a naturally isolated isoflavane and could be isolated from Spatholobus suberectus, a common traditional Chinese medicine used for breast cancer treatment. It was the first time that SA exerted anti-cancer effects on breast cancer cells, according to our study. In this study, SA displayed a significant inhibitory effect on the proliferation of TNBC cells by inducing apoptosis. SA increased Bax expression, and decreased Bcl-2 protein levels. SA inhibited cell migration and invasion of MDA-MB-231 and BT-549 cells. SA could decrease N-cadherin, Snail, Vimentin, and PD-L1 expression. SA increased miR-200c expression, and decreased PD-L1 expression. Luciferase assay showed that miR-200c directly targeted PD-L1. SA promoted tumor cell susceptibility to CTL-mediated lysis. Further study confirmed that SA could inhibit PD-L1 expression and EMT by up-regulating miR-200c. In vivo results displayed that SA could also inhibit tumor volumes and weights. These findings indicate that SA exerts an inhibitory effect on TNBC cell proliferation, migration, invasion, and tumor gtrowth, and partly provide evidence for the anti-breast cancer effect of Spatholobus suberectus Dunn in TNBC therapy.