The P2X7 receptor regulates cell survival, migration and invasion of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma cells.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is presently one of the cancers with the worst survival rates and least effective treatments. Moreover, total deaths due to PDAC are predicted to increase in the next 15 years. Therefore, novel insights into basic mechanism of PDAC development and therapies are needed. PDAC is characterized by a complex microenvironment, in which cancer and stromal cells release different molecules, such as ATP. ATP can be transported and/or exocytosed from active cancer cells and released from dying cells in the necrotic core of the cancer. We hypothesized that one of the ATP receptors, the P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) could be an important player in PDAC behaviour. METHODS:We determined the expression (real time PCR and Western blot) and localization (immunofluorescence) of P2X7R in human PDAC cell lines (AsPC-1, BxPC-3, Capan-1, MiaPaCa-2, Panc-1) and a "normal" human pancreatic duct epithelial cell line (HPDE). The function of P2X7R in proliferation (BrdU assay), migration (wound assay) and invasion (Boyden chamber with matrigel) was characterized. Furthermore, we studied P2X7R-dependent pore formation (YoPro-1 assay) and cell death (caspase and annexin V / propidium iodide assays). RESULTS:We found higher expression of P2X7R protein in PDAC compared to HPDE cells. P2X7R had notable disparate effects on PDAC survival. Firstly, high concentrations of ATP or the specific P2X7R agonist, BzATP, had cytotoxic effects in all cell lines, and cell death was mediated by necrosis. Moreover, the P2X7R-pore antagonist, A438079, prevented ATP-induced pore formation and cell death. Second, in basal conditions and with low concentrations of ATP/BzATP, the P2X7R allosteric inhibitor AZ10606120 reduced proliferation in all PDAC cell lines. P2X7R also affected other key characteristics of cancer cell behavior. AZ10606120 reduced cell migration and invasion in PDAC cell lines compared to that of untreated/vehicle-treated control cells, and stimulation with sub-millimolar concentrations of ATP or BzATP substantially increased cell invasion. CONCLUSIONS:PDAC cell lines overexpress P2X7R and the receptor plays crucial roles in cell survival, migration and invasion. Therefore, we propose that drugs targeting P2X7R could be exploited in therapy of pancreatic cancer.
Project description:The ATP-gated receptor P2X7 (P2X7R) is involved in regulation of cell survival and has been of interest in cancer field. Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a deadly cancer and new markers and therapeutic targets are needed. PDAC is characterized by a complex tumour microenvironment, which includes cancer and pancreatic stellate cells (PSCs), and potentially high nucleotide/side turnover. Our aim was to determine P2X7R expression and function in human pancreatic cancer cells in vitro as well as to perform in vivo efficacy study applying P2X7R inhibitor in an orthotopic xenograft mouse model of PDAC. In the in vitro studies we show that human PDAC cells with luciferase gene (PancTu-1 Luc cells) express high levels of P2X7R protein. Allosteric P2X7R antagonist AZ10606120 inhibited cell proliferation in basal conditions, indicating that P2X7R was tonically active. Extracellular ATP and BzATP, to which the P2X7R is more sensitive, further affected cell survival and confirmed complex functionality of P2X7R. PancTu-1 Luc migration and invasion was reduced by AZ10606120, and it was stimulated by PSCs, but not by PSCs from P2X7(-/-) animals. PancTu-1 Luc cells were orthotopically transplanted into nude mice and tumour growth was followed noninvasively by bioluminescence imaging. AZ10606120-treated mice showed reduced bioluminescence compared to saline-treated mice. Immunohistochemical analysis confirmed P2X7R expression in cancer and PSC cells, and in metaplastic/neoplastic acinar and duct structures. PSCs number/activity and collagen deposition was reduced in AZ10606120-treated tumours.
Project description:Pancreatic cancer (PC) is an almost uniformly lethal disease with inflammation playing an important role in its progression. Sustained stimulation of purinergic receptor P2X7 drives induction of NLRP inflammasome activation. To understand the role of P2X7 receptor and inflammasome, we performed transcriptomic analysis of p48Cre/+-LSL-KrasG12D/+ mice pancreatic tumors by next generation sequencing. Results showed that P2X7R's key inflammasome components, IL-1? and caspase-1 are highly expressed (p < 0.05) in pancreatic tumors. Hence, to target P2X7R, we tested effects of two P2X7R antagonists, A438079 and AZ10606120, on pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasms (PanINs) and their progression to PC in p48Cre/+-LSL-KrasG12D/+ mice. Following dose optimization studies, for chemoprevention efficacy, six-week-old p48Cre/+-LSL-KrasG12D/+ mice (24-36/group) were fed modified AIN-76A diets containing 0, 50 or 100 ppm A438079 and AZ10606120 for 38 weeks. Pancreata were collected, weighed, and evaluated for PanINs and PDAC. Control diet-fed male mice showed 50% PDAC incidence. Dietary A438079 and AZ10606120 showed 60% PDAC incidence. A marginal increase of PanIN 3 (carcinoma in-situ) was observed in drug-treated mice. Importantly, the carcinoma spread in untreated mice was 24% compared to 43-53% in treatment groups. Reduced survival rates were observed in mice exposed to P2X7R inhibitors. Both drugs showed a decrease in caspase-3, caspase-1, p21 and Cdc25c. Dietary A438079 showed modest inhibition of P2X7R, NLRP3, and IL-33, whereas AZ10606120 had no effects. In summary, targeting the P2X7R pathway by A438079 and AZ10606120 failed to show chemopreventive effects against PC and slightly enhanced PanIN progression to PDAC. Hence, caution is needed while treating high-risk individuals with P2X7R inhibitors.
Project description:Gliomas are the most lethal tumors of central nervous system. ATP is an important signaling molecule in CNS and it is a selective P2X7 purinergic receptor ligand at high concentrations. Herein, we investigated whether the activation of P2X7R might be implicated in death of a radiosensitive human glioma lineage. The effects of P2X7R agonists (ATP and BzATP) and irradiation (2 Gy) on glioma cells were analyzed by MTT assay and annexin-V/PI determination, whereas mRNA and protein P2X7R expression was assessed by qRT-PCR and flow cytometry, respectively. P2X7R pore formation was functionality examined by analyzing ethidium bromide uptake. The human glioma cells U-138 MG and U-251 MG were resistant to death when treated with either ATP (5 mM) or BzATP (100 ?M), but the radiosensitive M059J glioma cells displayed a significant decrease of cell viability (32.4 ± 4.1 % and 25.6 ± 3.3 %, respectively). The M059J lineage expresses significantly higher mRNA P2X7R levels when compared to the U-138 MG and U-251 cell lines (0.40 ± 0.00; 0.28 ± 0.01, and 0.31 ± 0.01, respectively), and irradiation upregulated P2X7R expression (0.55 ± 0.08) in this lineage. Noteworthy, P2X7R protein doubled after irradiation on M059J lineage, and increased in 50 % and 42.6 % when comparing M059J-irradiated to irradiated U-138 MG and U-251 MG cells, respectively. Ethidium bromide uptake was significantly increased in 104 % and 77.8 % when comparing M059J to U-138 MG and U-251MG, respectively. Finally, the selective P2X7R antagonist A740003 significantly decreased the cell death caused by irradiation. We provide novel evidence indicating that M059J human glioma cell line is ATP-P2X7R sensitive, pointing out the relevance of the purinergic P2X7R on glioma radiosensitivity.
Project description:The P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) plays an important role in diverse conditions associated with tissue damage and inflammation, meaning that the human P2X7R (hP2X7R) is an attractive therapeutic target. The crystal structures of the zebrafish P2X4R in the closed and ATP-bound open states provide an unprecedented opportunity for structure-guided identification of new ligands. The present study performed virtual screening of ?100,000 structurally diverse compounds against the ATP-binding pocket in the hP2X7R. This identified three compounds (C23, C40 and C60) out of 73 top-ranked compounds by testing against hP2X7R-mediated Ca(2+) responses. These compounds were further characterised using Ca(2+) imaging, patch-clamp current recording, YO-PRO-1 uptake and propidium iodide cell death assays. All three compounds inhibited BzATP-induced Ca(2+) responses concentration-dependently with IC50s of 5.1±0.3?M, 4.8±0.8?M and 3.2±0.2?M, respectively. C23 and C40 inhibited BzATP-induced currents in a reversible and concentration-dependent manner, with IC50s of 0.35±0.3?M and 1.2±0.1?M, respectively, but surprisingly C60 did not affect BzATP-induced currents up to 100?M. They suppressed BzATP-induced YO-PRO-1 uptake with IC50s of 1.8±0.9?M, 1.0±0.1?M and 0.8±0.2?M, respectively. Furthermore, these three compounds strongly protected against ATP-induced cell death. Among them, C40 and C60 exhibited strong specificity towards the hP2X7R over the hP2X4R and rP2X3R. In conclusion, our study reports the identification of three novel hP2X7R antagonists with micromolar potency for the first time using a structure-based approach, including the first P2X7R antagonist with preferential inhibition of large pore formation.
Project description:The P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) for ATP is a therapeutic target for pathophysiological states including inflammation, pain management and epilepsy. This is facilitated by the predicted low side effect profile as the high concentrations of ATP required to activate the receptor are usually only found following cell damage/disease and so P2X7Rs respond to a "danger" signal and are not normally active. AZ10606120 is a selective antagonist for P2X7Rs (IC50 of ~10?nM) and ineffective at the P2X1R (at 10??M). To determine the molecular basis of selectivity we generated a series of P2X7/1R chimeras and mutants. Two regions that are unique to the P2X7R, a loop insertion (residues 73-79) and threonine residues T90 and T94, are required for high affinity antagonist action. Point mutations ruled out an orthosteric antagonist site. Mutations and molecular modelling identified an allosteric binding site that forms at the subunit interface at the apex of the receptor. Molecular dynamics simulations indicated that unique P2X7R features regulate access of AZ10606120 to the allosteric site. The characterisation of the allosteric pocket provides a new and novel target for rational P2X7R drug development.
Project description:ATP can activate a variety of pathways through P2 purinoreceptors, leading to neuroprotection and pathology in the CNS. Among all P2X receptors, the P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) is a well-defined therapeutic target for inflammatory and neuropathic pain. Activation of P2X7R can generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) in macrophages and microglia. However, the role of ROS in P2X7R-induced pain remains un?explored. Here, we investigated the downstream effects of neuronal P2X7R activation in the spinal cord. We found that ATP induces ROS production in spinal cord dorsal horn neurons, an effect eliminated by ROS scavenger N-tert-butyl-?-phenylnitrone (PBN) and P2X7R antagonist A438079. A similar effect was observed with a P2X7R agonist, BzATP, and was attenuated by a NADPH oxidase inhibitor apocynin. Intrathecal administration of BzATP resulted in ROS production in the spinal cord and oxidative DNA damage in dorsal horn neurons. BzATP also induced robust biphasic spontaneous nociceptive behavior. Pre-treatment with A438079 abolished all BzATP-induced nociceptive behaviors, while ROS scavengers dose-dependently attenuated the secondary response. Here, we provide evidence that neuronal P2X7R activation leads to ROS production and subsequent nociceptive pain in mice. Together, the data indicate that P2X7R-induced ROS play a critical role in the P2X7R signaling pathway of the CNS.
Project description:Acute lung injury (ALI) is characterized by pulmonary endothelial and epithelial cell damage, and loss of the alveolar-capillary barrier. We have previously shown that P2X7 receptor (P2X7R), a cell death receptor, is specifically expressed in alveolar epithelial type I cells (AEC I). In this study, we hypothesized that P2X7R-mediated purinergic signaling and its interaction with Wnt/?-catenin signaling contributes to AEC I death. We examined the effect of P2X7R agonist 2'-3'-O-(4-benzoylbenzoyl)-ATP (BzATP) and Wnt agonist Wnt3a on AEC I death in vitro and in vivo. We also assessed the therapeutic potential of Wnt3a in a clinically relevant ALI model of intratracheal lipopolysaccharide (LPS) exposure in ventilated mice. We found that the activation of P2X7R by BzATP caused the death of AEC I by suppressing Wnt/?-catenin signaling through stimulating glycogen synthase kinase-3? (GSK-3?) and proteasome. On the other hand, the activation of Wnt/?-catenin signaling by Wnt3a, GSK-3? inhibitor, or proteasome inhibitor blocked the P2X7R-mediated cell death. More importantly, Wnt3a attenuated the AEC I damage caused by intratracheal instillation of BzATP in rats or LPS in ventilated mice. Our results suggest that Wnt3a overrides the effect of P2X7R on the Wnt/?-catenin signaling to prevent the AEC I death and restrict the severity of ALI.
Project description:The most common genetic lesions in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) have been identified. However, significant gaps still exist in our understanding of how such genetic alterations act in concert to induce PDAC development. In this study, we investigated the mechanism of tumorigenic transformation in the immortalized human pancreatic ductal epithelial (HPDE) cell line by sequentially introducing PDAC signature alterations into this cell line.The phenotype for stable expression of mutant K-ras, Her2, p16/p14shRNA, and Smad4shRNA in HPDE cells was examined by assays for cell proliferation, migration, invasion, soft agar, and orthotopic tumorigenesis. The mechanisms of tumorigenic transformation were further explored by gene expression profiling and pathway analyses.The transformed cells exhibited enhanced proliferation, migration, and invasion, displayed anchorage-independent growth in soft agar, and grew orthotopic tumors with some histopathologic features of PDAC. We found that Smad4 played key roles in the tumorigenic transformation of HPDE cells. We further found that MDM2 and Bmi-1 were overexpressed in the tumorigenic HPDE cells and that Bmi-1 overexpression was regulated by Smad4. Ingenuity Pathway Analysis software analysis of microarray data revealed that dysregulation of integrin-linked kinase signaling and the cell cycle were the most significant changes involved in tumorigenic transformation. Altogether, this cell culture model closely recapitulated human pancreatic carcinogenesis from gene lesions, activation of specific signaling pathways, and some histopathologic features.The combination of activated K-ras and Her2 with inactivated p16/p14 and Smad4 was sufficient and essential to transform HPDE cells, thus revealing the potential tumorigenic mechanism.
Project description:In ischemic stroke, neutrophils infiltrate damaged brain tissue immediately following the ischemic insult and aggravate inflammation via various mechanisms which include neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) formation. In the present study, we showed that adenosine triphosphate (ATP), a DAMP molecule, accumulates in the brain and induces NETosis in brain parenchyma and in circulating neutrophils (PMNs) isolated from a murine model of stroke induced by middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). Expression of peptidylarginine deiminase-4 (PAD4), which induces citrullination of histones H3 (CitH3) and initiates NETosis, was significantly enhanced in brain parenchyma and blood PMNs following MCAO. ATP or BzATP (a prototypic P2X7R agonist) significantly enhanced the inductions of PAD4 and CitH3 in a P2X7R-dependent manner and intracellular Ca2+ influx, PKC? activation, and NADPH oxidase-dependent reactive oxygen species (ROS) production play critical roles in this ATP-P2X7R-mediated NETosis. In our MCAO animal model, NETosis was markedly suppressed by treatment with apyrase, an enzyme hydrolyzing ATP, but enhanced by co-treatment of BzATP, confirming ATP-P2X7R-mediated NETosis. Since ATP not only induced NETosis but was also extruded after NETosis, our results indicate that ATP accumulated in the ischemic brain induces NETosis, mediating a cross-talk linking NETosis with neuronal damage that might aggravate inflammation and brain damage.
Project description:Neuroinflammation contributes to the pathogenesis of early brain injury (EBI) after subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). Cytotoxic events following SAH, such as extracellular accumulation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), may activate the P2X purinoceptor 7 (P2X7R)/cryopyrin inflammasome axis, thus inducing the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1?/IL-18 secretion. We therefore hypothesized that inhibition of P2X7R/cryopyrin inflammasome axis would ameliorate neuroinflammation after SAH. In the present study, SAH was induced by the endovascular perforation in rats. Small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) of P2X7R or cryopyrin were administered intracerebroventricularly 24h before SAH. Brilliant blue G (BBG), a non-competitive antagonist of P2X7R, was administered intraperitoneally 30min following SAH. Post-assessments including SAH severity score, neurobehavioral test, brain water content, Western blot and immunofluorescence, were performed. Administration of P2X7R and cryopyrin siRNA as well as pharmacologic blockade of P2X7R by BBG ameliorated neurological deficits and brain edema at 24h following SAH. Inhibition of P2X7R/cryopyrin inflammasome axis suppressed caspase-1 activation, which subsequently decreased maturation of IL-1?/IL-18. To investigate the link between P2X7R and cryopyrin inflammasome in vivo, Benzoylbenzoyl-ATP (BzATP), a P2X7R agonist, was given to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) primed naive rats with scramble or cryopyrin siRNAs. In LPS-primed naive rats, BzATP induced caspase-1 activation and mature IL-1? release were neutralized by cryopyrin siRNA. Thus, the P2X7R/cryopyrin inflammasome axis may contribute to neuroinflammation via activation of caspase-1 and thereafter mature IL-1?/IL-18 production following SAH. Therapeutic interventions targeting P2X7R/cryopyrin pathway may be a novel approach to ameliorate EBI following SAH.