HPaf1/PD2 interacts with OCT3/4 to promote self-renewal of ovarian cancer stem cells.
ABSTRACT: Cancer stem cells (CSCs), which mediate drug resistance and disease recurrence in several cancers, are therapeutically relevant to ovarian cancer (OC), wherein approximately 80% of patients manifest with tumor recurrence. While there are several markers for ovarian CSCs (OCSCs), the mechanism for their self-renewal maintenance by unique driver/markers is poorly understood. Here, we evaluated the role of hPaf1/PD2, a core component of RNA Polymerase II-Associated Factor (PAF) complex, in self-renewal of OCSCs through marker and functional analyses, including CRISPR/Cas9-silencing of hPaf1/PD2 in OCSCs and provided a possible mechanism for maintenance of OCSCs. Expression of hPaf1/PD2 showed moderate to intense staining in 32.4% of human OC tissues, whereas 67.6% demonstrated basal expression by immunohistochemistry analysis, implying that the minor proportion of cells overexpressing hPaf1/PD2 could be putative OCSCs. Isolated OCSCs showed higher expression of hPaf1/PD2 along with established CSC and self-renewal markers. Knockdown of hPaf1/PD2 in OCSCs resulted in a significant downregulation of CSC and self-renewal markers, and impairment of in vitro tumor sphere (P < 0.05) and colony formation (P = 0.013). Co-immunoprecipitation revealed that OCT3/4 specifically interacts with hPaf1/PD2, and not with other PAF components (Ctr9, Leo1, Parafibromin) in OCSCs, suggesting a complex-independent role for hPaf1/PD2 in OCSC maintenance. Moreover, there was a significant overexpression and co-localization of hPaf1/PD2 with OCT3/4 in OC tissues compared to normal ovary tissues. Our results indicate that hPaf1/PD2 is overexpressed in OCSCs and maintains the self-renewal of OCSCs through its interaction with OCT3/4; thus, hPaf1/PD2 may be a potential therapeutic target to overcome tumor relapse in OC.
Project description:Cancer stem cells (CSCs) contribute towards disease aggressiveness and drug resistance. Specific identification of CSC maintenance genes and targeting can improve the efficiency of currently available treatment modalities. Pancreatic differentiation 2 (PD2) has a major role in the self-renewal of mouse embryonic stem cells. In the present study, we investigated the role of PD2 in pancreatic CSCs.Characterisation of CSCs and non-CSCs from mouse models, pancreatic cancer cells and human tissues by CSC and self-renewal marker analysis using confocal assay. Effect of PD2 knockdown in CSCs (after gemcitabine treatment) was studied by immunoblot and apoptosis assays.A subpopulation of cells displayed PD2 overexpression in mouse (Kras(G12D); Pdx1-Cre and Kras(G12D); Trp53(R172H/+); Pdx1-Cre) and human pancreatic tumours, which co-express CSC markers. Cancer stem cells exhibited elevated expression of PD2 and self-renewal markers, such as Oct3/4, Shh and ?-catenin. Gemcitabine treatment maintained the CSC population with simultaneous maintenance of PD2 and CSC marker expression. Knockdown of PD2 in CSCs resulted in reduced viability of cells and enhanced apoptosis along with abrogated expression of CD133 and MDR2.Our results suggest that PD2 is a novel CSC maintenance protein, loss of which renders the CSCs more susceptible to drug-induced cell death.
Project description:Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) maintain self-renewal while ensuring a rapid response to differentiation signals, but the exact mechanism of this process remains unknown. PD2 is the human homolog of the RNA polymerase II-associated factor 1 (Paf1). The Paf1/PD2 is a member of the human PAF complex that consists of four other subunits, hCdc73, hLeo1, hCtr9, and hSki8, and is involved in the regulation of transcriptional elongation and further downstream events. Here, we show that Paf1/PD2 is overexpressed in mouse ESCs and is involved in the maintenance of mouse ESCs. The Paf1/PD2 knockdown and knockout ESCs grown under self-renewal conditions express substantially reduced levels of self-renewal regulators, including Oct3/4, SOX2, Nanog, and Shh. We observed that the level of Paf1/PD2 expression is much higher in self-renewing mouse embryonic carcinoma cells than in the differentiating cells. Knockout of Paf1/PD2 altered ESC phenotype by increasing apoptosis and decreasing the percentage of cells in S-phase of the cell cycle. Interestingly, we found that the key genes that regulate endodermal differentiation (Gata4, Gata6, and Fgf8) are induced in the Paf1/PD2 heterozygous knockout ESCs. This suggests that Paf1/PD2 plays a specific role in regulating early commitment of ESCs to endodermal differentiation. Furthermore, for the first time, we showed that Paf1/PD2 protein interacts with Oct3/4 and RNA polymerase II, and through this interaction Paf1/PD2 may regulate Oct3/4-mediated gene expression. Thus, the Paf1/PD2 protein is a newly discovered element of the interconnected regulatory network that maintains the self-renewal of mouse ESCs.
Project description:Change in gene expression associated with pancreatic cancer could be attributed to the variation in histone posttranslational modifications leading to subsequent remodeling of the chromatin template during transcription. However, the interconnected network of molecules involved in regulating such processes remains elusive. hPaf1/PD2, a subunit of the human PAF-complex, involved in the regulation of transcriptional elongation has oncogenic potential. Our study explores the possibility that regulation of histone methylation by hPaf1 can contribute towards alteration in gene expression by nucleosomal rearrangement. Here, we show that knockdown of hPaf1/PD2 leads to decreased di- and tri-methylation at histone H3 lysine 4 residues in pancreatic cancer cells. Interestingly, hPaf1/PD2 colocalizes with MLL1 (Mixed Lineage Leukemia 1), a histone methyltransferase that methylates H3K4 residues. Also, a reduction in hPaf1 level resulted in reduced MLL1 expression and a corresponding decrease in the level of CHD1 (Chromohelicase DNA-binding protein 1), an ATPase dependent chromatin remodeling enzyme that specifically binds to H3K4 di and trimethyl marks. hPaf1/PD2 was also found to interact and colocalize with CHD1 in both cytoplasmic and nuclear extracts of pancreatic cancer cells. Further, reduced level of CHD1 localization in the nucleus in hPaf1/PD2 Knockdown cells could be rescued by ectopic expression of hPaf1/PD2. Micrococcal nuclease digestion showed an altered chromatin structure in hPaf1/PD2-KD cells. Overall, our results suggest that hPaf1/PD2 in association with MLL1 regulates methylation of H3K4 residues, as well as interacts and regulates nuclear shuttling of chromatin remodeling protein CHD1, facilitating its function in pancreatic cancer cells.
Project description:Cancer stem cells (CSCs) have been identified to exert tumor-initiating ability, resulting in the recurrence, metastasis and chemoresistance of oral squamous cell carcinomas. In the present study, we showed that GMI, an immunomodulatory protein from Ganoderma microsporum, induc ed a cytotoxic effect in oral carcinomas stem cells (OCSCs). Treatment of GMI dose-dependently inhibited the expression of CSC markers, including ALDH1 activity and CD44 positivity. Moreover, GMI suppressed the self-renewal property, colony formation, migration, and invasion abilities as well as potentiated chemo-sensitivity in OCSCs. Our results suggested that the tumor suppressive effect of GMI was mediated through inhibition of IL-6/Stat3 signaling pathway. Furthermore, tumor growth was reduced in mice bearing xenograft tumors after oral administration of GMI. Taken together, we demonstrated the anti-CSC effect of GMI in oral cancer and GMI may serve as a natural cisplatin adjuvant to prevent cancer recurrence.
Project description:Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are a group of cells which possess the ability of self-renewing and unlimited proliferation. And these CSCs are thought to be the cause of metastasis, recurrence and resistance. Recent study has found that pro-inflammatory cytokine and chemotactic factor mediate the self-renewing and differentiation of most of CSCs. Thus we speculate that ovarian cancer stem cells (OCSCs) can also maintain the ability of self-renewing and differentiation by releasing inflammatory factor. This report we discuss the biological characteristics and the specific molecular mechanism mediated by interleukin-23 (IL-23) and its receptor on the self-renewing of OCSCs. We found that OCSCs had high expression of IL-23 and IL-23R. IL-23 could promote the self-renewal ability of OCSCs and played a very important role to maintain the stable expression of stem cell markers in vitro. Moreover, we verified that IL-23 could maintain the potential tumorigenic of OCSCs in vivo and mediate the self-renewal ability and the formation of tumor in OCSCs by activating the signal pathways of STAT3 and NF-?B. In addition, human low differentiation tissues showed overexpression of IL-23. And IL-23 positively correlated to the expression level of CD133, Nanog and Oct4. In conclusion, Our discoveries demonstrate that autocrine IL-23 contribute to ovarian cancer malignancy through promoting the self-renewal of CD133+ ovarian cancer stem-like cells, and this suggests that IL-23 and its signaling pathway might serve as therapeutic targets for the treatment of ovarian cancer.
Project description:Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are considered to be the origin of ovarian cancer (OC) development, recurrence, and chemoresistance. We investigated changes in expression levels of the CSC biomarker, cluster of differentiation 133 (CD133), from primary OC cell lines to induction of CSC-spheres in an attempt to explore the mechanisms related to modulation of stemness, drug resistance, and tumorigenesis in CSCs, thus facilitating the search for new therapeutics for OC. The effect of CD133 overexpression on the induction of CSC properties was evaluated by sphere-forming assays, RT-qPCR, flow cytometry, cell viability assays, and in vivo xenograft experiments. Moreover, the potential signaling molecules that participate in CD133 maintenance of stemness were screened by RNA-sequencing. CD133 expression was upregulated during OCSC induction and chemotherapeutic drug treatment over time, which increased the expressions of stemness-related markers (SOX2, OCT4, and Nanog). CD133 overexpression also promoted tumorigenesis in NOD/SCID mice. Several signalings were controlled by CD133 spheres, including extracellular matrix receptor interactions, chemokine signaling, and Wnt signaling, all of which promote cell survival and cell cycle progression. Our findings suggest that CD133 possesses the ability to maintain functional stemness and tumorigenesis of OCSCs by promoting cell survival signaling and may serve as a potential target for stem cell-targeted therapy of OC.
Project description:Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are regarded as the main cell type responsible for the initiation, metastasis, drug resistance, and recurrence of cancer. But the mechanism by which cancer stem cells maintain their stemness remains unclear.In the present study, ovarian cancer stem cells (OCSCs) were revealed to have an enhanced autophagic flux. Furthermore, their chemoresistance and ability to self-renewal in vitro were decreased when autophagy was inhibited by Bafilomycin A1(BafA1), Chloroquine(CQ) or autophagy related 5(ATG5) knockdown. PCR array screening determined that Forkhead Box A2(FOXA2) was highly expressed in OCSCs, and correspondingly regulated by autophagy activity. In addition, the self-renewal ability was decreased in the case of FOXA2 knockdown by shRNA in OCSCs. Overexpression of FOXA2 from the pEGFP(+)-FOXA2 plasmid partially reversed the depressed self-renewal ability of OCSCs during autophagy inhibition.Our findings suggest that autophagy, through participation of FOXA2, maintains the characteristics of OCSCs. Autophagy and FOXA2 are therefore potential targets for ovarian cancer stem cell directed therapies.
Project description:A major burden in the treatment of ovarian cancer is the high percentage of recurrence and chemoresistance. Cancer stem cells (CSCs) provide a reservoir of cells that can self-renew, can maintain the tumor by generating differentiated cells [non-stem cells (non-CSCs)] which make up the bulk of the tumor and may be the primary source of recurrence. We describe the characterization of human ovarian cancer stem cells (OCSCs). These cells have a distinctive genetic profile that confers them with the capacity to recapitulate the original tumor, proliferate with chemotherapy, and promote recurrence. CSC identified in EOC cells isolated form ascites and solid tumors are characterized by: CD44+, MyD88+, constitutive NFkappaB activity and cytokine and chemokine production, high capacity for repair, chemoresistance to conventional chemotherapies, resistance to TNFalpha-mediated apoptosis, capacity to form spheroids in suspension, and the ability to recapitulate in vivo the original tumor. Chemotherapy eliminates the bulk of the tumor but it leaves a core of cancer cells with high capacity for repair and renewal. The molecular properties identified in these cells may explain some of the unique characteristics of CSCs that control self-renewal and drive metastasis. The identification and cloning of human OCSCs can aid in the development of better therapeutic approaches for ovarian cancer patients.
Project description:Expounding the heterogeneity for ovarian cancer (OC) with the cognition in developmental biology might be helpful to search for robust prognostic markers and effective treatments. In the present study, we employed single-cell RNA-seq with ovarian cancers, normal ovary, and embryo tissue to explore their heterogeneity. Then the differentiation process of clusters was explored; the pivotal cluster and markers were identified. Furthermore, the consensus clustering algorithm was used to explore the different clinical phenotypes in OC. At last, a prognostic model was construct and used to assess the prognosis for OCs. As a result, eight diverse clusters were identified, and the similarity existed in some clusters between embryo and tumours based on their gene expression. Meaningfully, a subtype of malignant epithelial cluster, PEG10+ EME, was associated with poor survival and was an intermediate stage of embryo to tumour. PEG10 was a CSC marker and might influence CSC self-renewal and promote cisplatin resistance via NOTCH pathway. Utilising specific gene profiles of PEG10+ EME based on public data sets, four phenotypes with different survival and clinical response to anti-PD-1/PD-L1 immunotherapy were identified. These insights allowed for the investigation of single-cell transcriptome of OCs and embryo, which advanced our current understanding of OC pathogenesis and resulted in promising therapeutic strategies.
Project description:Ovarian cancer (OCa) is the deadliest gynecologic cancer. Emerging studies suggest ovarian cancer stem cells (OCSCs) contribute to chemotherapy resistance and tumor relapse. Recent studies demonstrated estrogen receptor beta (ERβ) exerts tumor suppressor functions in OCa. However, the status of ERβ expression in OCSCs and the therapeutic utility of the ERβ agonist LY500307 for targeting OCSCs remain unknown. OCSCs were enriched from ES2, OV90, SKOV3, OVSAHO, and A2780 cells using ALDEFLUOR kit. RT-qPCR results showed ERβ, particularly ERβ isoform 1, is highly expressed in OCSCs and that ERβ agonist LY500307 significantly reduced the viability of OCSCs. Treatment of OCSCs with LY500307 significantly reduced sphere formation, self-renewal, and invasion, while also promoting apoptosis and G2/M cell cycle arrest. Mechanistic studies using RNA-seq analysis demonstrated that LY500307 treatment resulted in modulation of pathways related to cell cycle and apoptosis. Western blot and RT-qPCR assays demonstrated the upregulation of apoptosis and cell cycle arrest genes such as FDXR, p21/CDKN1A, cleaved PARP, and caspase 3, and the downregulation of stemness markers SOX2, Oct4, and Nanog. Importantly, treatment of LY500307 significantly attenuated the tumor-initiating capacity of OCSCs in orthotopic OCa murine xenograft models. Our results demonstrate that ERβ agonist LY500307 is highly efficacious in reducing the stemness and promoting apoptosis of OCSCs and shows significant promise as a novel therapeutic agent in treating OCa.