Induction of cancer stem cell properties in colon cancer cells by defined factors.
ABSTRACT: Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are considered to be responsible for the dismal prognosis of cancer patients. However, little is known about the molecular mechanisms underlying the acquisition and maintenance of CSC properties in cancer cells because of their rarity in clinical samples. We herein induced CSC properties in cancer cells using defined factors. We retrovirally introduced a set of defined factors (OCT3/4, SOX2 and KLF4) into human colon cancer cells, followed by culture with conventional serum-containing medium, not human embryonic stem cell medium. We then evaluated the CSC properties in the cells. The colon cancer cells transduced with the three factors showed significantly enhanced CSC properties in terms of the marker gene expression, sphere formation, chemoresistance and tumorigenicity. We designated the cells with CSC properties induced by the factors, a subset of the transduced cells, as induced CSCs (iCSCs). Moreover, we established a novel technology to isolate and collect the iCSCs based on the differences in the degree of the dye-effluxing activity enhancement. The xenografts derived from our iCSCs were not teratomas. Notably, in contrast to the tumors from the parental cancer cells, the iCSC-based tumors mimicked actual human colon cancer tissues in terms of their immunohistological findings, which showed colonic lineage differentiation. In addition, we confirmed that the phenotypes of our iCSCs were reproducible in serial transplantation experiments. By introducing defined factors, we generated iCSCs with lineage specificity directly from cancer cells, not via an induced pluripotent stem cell state. The novel method enables us to obtain abundant materials of CSCs that not only have enhanced tumorigenicity, but also the ability to differentiate to recapitulate a specific type of cancer tissues. Our method can be of great value to fully understand CSCs and develop new therapies targeting CSCs.
Project description:We have previously reported that colon cancer stem-like cells can be induced from human colon cancer cell lines by retrovirally introducing OCT3/4, SOX2 and KLF4, and we designated these cells as induced cancer stem cells (iCSCs). iCSCs showed significantly enhanced CSC properties in terms of the marker gene expression, sphere formation, chemoresistance and tumorigenicity. In the current study, we generated iCSCs using a polycistronic retroviral expression vector, and indicated that iCSCs-derived tissues in vitro are able to recapitulate human colon cancer tissues. To identify the molecular mechanisms that promote the properties of CSCs, we compared the global gene expression patterns of Mock-SW480 cells, non-V50 cells from 1st V50-OKS cells, and 2nd V50-OKS cells. Overall design: We extracted total RNA from 3 Mock-SW480 cells, 3 NonV50-cells from 1st V50-OKS cells and 3 2ndV50-OKS cells and hybridized them to Agilent gene expression microarrays.
Project description:Liver cancer cells can be reprogrammed into induced cancer stem cells (iCSCs) by exogenous expression of the reprogramming transcription factors Oct4, Sox2, Klf4 and c-Myc (OSKM). The nucleosome remodeling and deacetylase (NuRD) complex is essential for reprogramming somatic cells. In this study, we investigated the function of NuRD in the induction of liver CSCs. We showed that suppression of methyl-CpG binding domain protein 3 (MBD3), a core subunit of the NuRD repressor complex, together with OSKM transduction, induces conversion of liver cancer cells into stem-like cells. Expression of the transcription factor c-JUN is increased in MBD3-depleted iCSCs, and c-JUN activates endogenous pluripotent genes and regulates iCSC-related genes. These results indicate that MBD3/NuRD inhibits the induction of iCSCs, while c-JUN facilitates the generation of CSC-like properties. The iCSC reprogramming approach devised here provides a novel platform for dissection of the disordered signaling in liver CSCs. In addition, our results indicate that c-JUN may serve as a potential target for liver cancer therapy.
Project description:Ovarian cancer is one of the most important causes of cancer-related death among women in the world. Despite advances in ovarian cancer treatment, 70-80% of women who initially respond to therapy eventually relapse and die. There is evidence that a small population of cells within the tumors called cancer stem cells (CSCs) could be responsible for treatment failure due to their enhanced chemoresistance and tumorigenicity. These cells reside in a niche that maintains the principal properties of CSCs. These properties are associated with the capacity of CSCs to interact with different cells of the tumor microenvironment including mesenchymal stem cells, endothelial cells, immune cells, and fibroblasts, promoting cancer progression. This interaction can be mediated by cytokines, growth factors, lipids, and/or extracellular vesicles released in the CSC niche. In this review, we will discuss how the interaction between ovarian CSCs and the tumor microenvironment can contribute to the maintenance of the CSC niche and consequently to tumor progression in ovarian cancer.
Project description:Cancer stem cells (CSC) are a subpopulation of tumor cells with properties of high tumorigenicity and drug resistance, which lead to recurrence and poor prognosis. Although a better understanding of CSC is essential for developing cancer therapies, scarcity of the CSC population has hindered such analyses. The aim of the present study was to elucidate whether the E-cadherin-Fc chimera protein (E-cad-Fc) enhances cancer stem-like properties because studies show that soluble E-cadherin stimulates human epithelial growth factor receptor (EGFR) and downstream signaling pathways that are reported to play a crucial role in CSC. For this purpose, we used ornithine decarboxylase (ODC)-degron-transduced (Degron(+)) KM12SM cells as a CSC model that retains relatively low CSC properties. Compared to cultures without E-cad-Fc treatment, we found that E-cad-Fc treatment further suppressed proteasome activity and largely enhanced cancer stem-like properties of ODC-degron-transduced KM12SM cells. These results include increased expression of stem cell markers Lgr5, Bmi-1, SOX9, CD44, and CD44v9, aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH), and enhancement of robust spheroid formation, and chemoresistance to 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and oxaliplatin (L-OHP). These effects could be attributed to activation of the EGFR pathway as identified by extensive phosphorylation of EGFR, ERK, PI3K, AKT, and mTOR. In SW480 cells, E-cad-Fc matrix induced some CSC markers such as CD44v9 and ALDH. We also found that E-cad-Fc matrix showed high efficiency of inducing mesenchymal changes in colon cancer cells. Our data suggest that the E-cad-Fc matrix may enhance CSC properties such as enhancement of chemoresistance and sphere formation.
Project description:A major challenge in the treatment of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma is the failure of chemotherapy, which is likely due to the presence of the cancer stem cells (CSCs).To identify side population (SP) cells and characterize s-like properties in human pancreatic cancer cell lines (h-PCCLs) and to exploit the efficacy of concomitant targeting of multiple key transcription factors governing the stemness of pancreatic CSCs in suppressing CSC-like phenotypes.Flow cytometry and Hoechst 33342 DNA-binding dye efflux assay were used to sort SP and non-SP (NSP) cells from three h-PCCLs: PANC-1, SW1990, and BxPc-3. The self-renewal ability, invasiveness, migration and drug resistance of SP cells were evaluated. Expression of CSC marker genes was analyzed. Tumorigenicity was assessed using a xenograft model in nude mice. Effects of a complex decoy oligonucleotide (cdODN-SCO) designed to simultaneously targeting Sox2, Oct4 and c-Myc were assessed.CSCs were enriched in the side proportion (SP) cells contained in the h-PCCLs and they possessed aggressive growth, invasion, migration and drug-resistance properties, compared with NSP cells. SP cells overexpressed stem cell markers CD133 and ALDH1, pluripotency maintaining factors Nanog, Sox2 and Oct4, oncogenic transcription factor c-Myc, signaling molecule Notch1, and drug resistant gene ABCG2. Moreover, SP cells consistently demonstrated significantly greater tumorigenicity than NSP cells in xenograft model of nude mice. CdODN-SOC efficiently suppressed all CSC properties and phenotypes, and minimized the tumorigenic capability of the SP cells and the resistance to chemotherapy. By comparison, the negative control failed to do so.The findings indicate that targeting the key genes conferring the stemness of CSCs can efficiently eliminate CSC-like phenotypes, and thus may be considered a new approach for cancer therapy. Specifically, the present study establishes the combination of Sox2/Oct4/c-Myc targeting as a potential anti-pancreatic cancer agent worthy of further studies in preclinical settings.
Project description:Colon cancer is one of the most prevalent cancer types in developed countries. Metastasis and drug resistance are two contributing factors to the high mortality rate. Accumulating evidence suggest that cancer stem-like cells (CSCs) represents as a major contributor to these malignant features. Here, we identified and isolated colon cancer stem-like cells using side-population (SP) method from human colon cancer cell lines. SP colon cells demonstrate cancer stem-like cell properties including enhanced sphere-forming ability and resistance towards fluorouracil (5-FU). The CSC properties were associated with the increased expression level of major oncogenic and stem cell markers including ?-catenin, NF-kB, Akt/mTOR, KRAS and c-Myc. Trichostatin A (TSA), an antifungal antibiotic also a HDAC inhibitor, was found to function not only to decrease the expression of oncogenic markers but also the colon CSC properties. Importantly, TSA and 5-FU combined treatment synergistically suppressed colon cancer viability. Finally, in vivo results demonstrated that TSA alone and in combination with 5-FU effectively suppressed colon tumorigenesis. Collectively, this study provides preclinical evidence that TSA may function as a potential colon cancer therapeutic agent by targeting CSC and overcoming 5-FU resistance.
Project description:Cancer stem cells (CSCs) possess high tumor-initiating capacity and have been reported to be resistant to therapeutics. Vice versa, therapy-resistant cancer cells seem to manifest CSC phenotypes and properties. It has been generally assumed that drug-resistant cancer cells may all be CSCs although the generality of this assumption is unknown. Here, we chronically treated Du145 prostate cancer cells with etoposide, paclitaxel and some experimental drugs (i.e., staurosporine and 2 paclitaxel analogs), which led to populations of drug-tolerant cells (DTCs). Surprisingly, these DTCs, when implanted either subcutaneously or orthotopically into NOD/SCID mice, exhibited much reduced tumorigenicity or were even non-tumorigenic. Drug-tolerant DLD1 colon cancer cells selected by a similar chronic selection protocol also displayed reduced tumorigenicity whereas drug-tolerant UC14 bladder cancer cells demonstrated either increased or decreased tumor-regenerating capacity. Drug-tolerant Du145 cells demonstrated low proliferative and clonogenic potential and were virtually devoid of CD44(+) cells. Prospective knockdown of CD44 in Du145 cells inhibited cell proliferation and tumor regeneration, whereas restoration of CD44 expression in drug-tolerant Du145 cells increased cell proliferation and partially increased tumorigenicity. Interestingly, drug-tolerant Du145 cells showed both increases and decreases in many "stemness" genes. Finally, evidence was provided that chronic drug exposure generated DTCs via epigenetic mechanisms involving molecules such as CD44 and KDM5A. Our results thus reveal that 1) not all DTCs are necessarily CSCs; 2) conventional chemotherapeutic drugs such as taxol and etoposide may directly target CD44(+) tumor-initiating cells; and 3) DTCs generated via chronic drug selection involve epigenetic mechanisms.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are considered to be responsible for tumor initiation, formation, and poor prognosis of cancer patients. However, the rarity of CSCs in clinical samples makes it difficult to elucidate characteristics of CSCs, especially in osteosarcoma (OS). The aim of this study is to verify whether it is possible to generate CSC-like cells by transducing defined factors into an OS cell line. METHODS:We retrovirally transduced the Octamer-binding transcription factor 3/4 (OCT3/4), Kruppel-like factor 4 (KLF4), and SRY-box transcription factor 2 (SOX2) genes into the MG-63 human OS cell line (MG-OKS). Parental and GFP-transduced MG-63 cells were used as negative control. We assessed the properties of the generated cells in vitro and in vivo. Multiple comparisons among groups were made using a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) followed by post hoc testing with Tukey's procedure. RESULTS:MG-OKS cells in vitro exhibited the significantly increased mRNA expression levels of CSC markers (CD24, CD26, and CD133), decreased cell growth, increased chemoresistance and cell migration, and enhanced sphere formation. Notably, MG-OKS cells cultured under osteogenic differentiation conditions showed strongly positive staining for both Alizarin Red S and alkaline phosphatase, indicating osteogenesis of the cells. Gene ontology analysis of microarray data revealed significant upregulation of epidermal-related genes. Tumors derived from MG-OKS cells in vivo were significantly larger than those from other cells in ?CT analysis, and immunohistochemical staining showed that Ki-67, osteocalcin, and HIF-1?-positive cells were more frequently detected in the MG-OKS-derived tumors. CONCLUSIONS:In this study, we successfully generated OS CSC-like cells with significantly enhanced CSC properties following transduction of defined factors.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a highly heterogeneous and aggressive brain tumor with a dismal prognosis. Development of resistance towards cytostatic drugs like the GBM standard drug temozolomide is a severe problem in GBM treatment. One potential source of GBM relapse could be so called cancer stem like cells (CSCs). These represent an undifferentiated subpopulation of cells with high potential for tumor initiation. Furthermore, it has been shown that differentiated GBM cells can regain CSC properties when exposed to continuous temozolomide treatment in vitro. In this study, treatment of several primary GBM cell lines with clinically relevant doses of temozolomide increased their tumorigenicity as determined by colony formation assays in soft agar. Increased tumorigenicity is a known property of CSCs. Hence, therapy options that specifically target CSCs are under investigation. CSCs appear to be particularly dependent on mitochondria biogenesis which may represent a useful target for CSC elimination. Toxicity towards mitochondria is a known side effect of several antibiotics. Thus, addition of antibiotics like doxycycline may represent a useful tool to inhibit CSCs in GBM. Here, we show that combining temozolomide treatment of primary GBM cells with doxycycline could counteract the increase of tumorigenicity induced by temozolomide treatment.