Luminal MCF-12A & myoepithelial-like Hs 578Bst cells form bilayered acini similar to human breast.
ABSTRACT: The epithelium's functional unit is the bilayered acinus, made of a layer of luminal cells, surrounded by a layer of basal cells mainly composed of myoepithelial cells.The aim of this study was to develop a reproducible and manipulable 3D co-culture model of the bilayered acinus in vitro to study the interactions between the two layers.Two different combinations of cell lines were co-cultured in Matrigel: SCp2 and SCg6 mice cells, or MCF-12A and Hs 578Bst human cell lines.Confocal microscopy analysis showed that only MCF-12A and Hs 578Bst cells could form some bilayered acini. This in vitro bilayered acini model will allow us to understand the role of interactions between luminal and myoepithelial cells in the normal breast development.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:Estrogens regulate the proliferation of normal and neoplastic breast epithelium. Although the intracellular mechanisms of estrogens in the breast are largely understood, little is known about how they induce changes in the structure of the mammary epithelium, which are characteristic of breast cancer. In vitro three dimensional (3D) cultures of immortalised breast epithelial cells recapitulate features of the breast epithelium in vivo, including formation of growth arrested acini with hollow lumen and basement membrane. This model can also reproduce features of malignant transformation and breast cancer, such as increased cellular proliferation and filling of the lumen. However, a system where a connection between estrogen receptor (ER) activation and disruption of acini formation can be studied to elucidate the role of estrogens is still missing. METHODS/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:We describe an in vitro 3D model for breast glandular structure development, using breast epithelial MCF-12A cells cultured in a reconstituted basement membrane matrix. These cells are estrogen receptor (ER)?, ER? and G-protein coupled estrogen receptor 1 (GPER) competent, allowing the investigation of the effects of estrogens on mammary gland formation and disruption. Under normal conditions, MCF-12A cells formed organised acini, with deposition of basement membrane and hollow lumen. However, treatment with 17?-estradiol, and the exogenous estrogens bisphenol A and propylparaben resulted in deformed acini and filling of the acinar lumen. When these chemicals were combined with ER and GPER inhibitors (ICI 182,780 and G-15, respectively), the deformed acini recovered normal features, such as a spheroid shape, proliferative arrest and luminal clearing, suggesting a role for the ER and GPER in the estrogenic disruption of acinar formation. CONCLUSION:This new model offers the opportunity to better understand the role of the ER and GPER in the morphogenesis of breast glandular structure as well as the events implicated in breast cancer initiation and progression.
Project description:The salivary epithelium initiates as a solid mass of epithelial cells that are organized into a primary bud that undergoes morphogenesis and differentiation to yield bilayered acini consisting of interior secretory acinar cells that are surrounded by contractile myoepithelial cells in mature salivary glands. How the primary bud transitions into acini has not been previously documented. We document here that the outer epithelial cells subsequently undergo a vertical compression as they express smooth muscle α-actin and differentiate into myoepithelial cells. The outermost layer of polarized epithelial cells assemble and organize the basal deposition of basement membrane, which requires basal positioning of the polarity protein, Par-1b. Whether Par-1b is required for the vertical compression and differentiation of the myoepithelial cells is unknown. Following manipulation of Par-1b in salivary gland organ explants, Par-1b-inhibited explants showed both a reduced vertical compression of differentiating myoepithelial cells and reduced levels of smooth muscle α-actin. Rac1 knockdown and inhibition of Rac GTPase function also inhibited branching morphogenesis. Since Rac regulates cellular morphology, we investigated a contribution for Rac in myoepithelial cell differentiation. Inhibition of Rac GTPase activity showed a similar reduction in vertical compression and smooth muscle α-actin levels while decreasing the levels of Par-1b protein and altering its basal localization in the outer cells. Inhibition of ROCK, which is required for basal positioning of Par-1b, resulted in mislocalization of Par-1b and loss of vertical cellular compression, but did not significantly alter levels of smooth muscle α-actin in these cells. Overexpression of Par-1b in the presence of Rac inhibition restored basement membrane protein levels and localization. Our results indicate that the basal localization of Par-1b in the outer epithelial cells is required for myoepithelial cell compression, and Par-1b is required for myoepithelial differentiation, regardless of its localization.
Project description:Epithelial cells form tubular and acinar structures notable for a hollow lumen. In three-dimensional culture utilizing MCF10A mammary epithelial cells, acini form due to integrin-dependent polarization and survival of cells contacting extracellular matrix (ECM), and the apoptosis of inner cells of acini lacking contact with the ECM. In this paper, we report that cyclic AMP (cAMP)-dependent protein kinase A (PKA) promotes acinus formation via two mechanisms. First, cAMP accelerates redistribution of ?6-integrin to the periphery of the acinus and thus facilitates the polarization of outer acinar cells. Blocking of ?6-integrin function by inhibitory antibody prevents cAMP-dependent polarization. Second, cAMP promotes the death of inner cells occupying the lumen. In the absence of cAMP, apoptosis is delayed, resulting in perturbed luminal clearance. cAMP-dependent apoptosis is accompanied by a posttranscriptional PKA-dependent increase in the proapoptotic protein Bcl-2 interacting mediator of cell death. These data demonstrate that cAMP regulates lumen formation in mammary epithelial cells in vitro, both through acceleration of polarization of outer cells and apoptosis of inner cells of the acinus.
Project description:To determine how extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK) 1/2 promote mammary tumorigenesis, we examined the real-time behavior of cells in an organotypic culture of the mammary glandular epithelium. Inducible activation of ERK1/2 in mature acini elicits cell motility and disrupts epithelial architecture in a manner that is reminiscent of ductal carcinoma in situ; however, motile cells do not invade through the basement membrane and branching morphogenesis does not take place. ERK1/2-induced motility causes cells to move both within the cell monolayer that contacts the basement membrane surrounding the acinus and through the luminal space of the acinus. E-cadherin expression is reduced after ERK1/2 activation, but motility does not involve an epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Cell motility and the disruption of epithelial architecture require a Rho kinase- and myosin light chain kinase-dependent increase in the phosphorylation of myosin light chain 2. Our results identify a new mechanism for the disruption of architecture in epithelial acini and suggest that ERK1/2 can promote noninvasive motility in preinvasive mammary tumors.
Project description:Loss of organization is a principle feature of cancers; therefore it is important to understand how normal adult multilineage tissues, such as bilayered secretory epithelia, establish and maintain their architectures. The self-organization process that drives heterogeneous mixtures of cells to form organized tissues is well studied in embryology and with mammalian cell lines that were abnormal or engineered. Here we used a micropatterning approach that confined cells to a cylindrical geometry combined with an algorithm to quantify changes of cellular distribution over time to measure the ability of different cell types to self-organize relative to each other. Using normal human mammary epithelial cells enriched into pools of the two principal lineages, luminal and myoepithelial cells, we demonstrated that bilayered organization in mammary epithelium was driven mainly by lineage-specific differential E-cadherin expression, but that P-cadherin contributed specifically to organization of the myoepithelial layer. Disruption of the actomyosin network or of adherens junction proteins resulted in either prevention of bilayer formation or loss of preformed bilayers, consistent with continual sampling of the local microenvironment by cadherins. Together these data show that self-organization is an innate and reversible property of communities of normal adult human mammary epithelial cells.
Project description:Salivary secretion is crucial for successful tick feeding, and it is the mediator of pathogen transmission. Salivation functions to inhibit various components of the host immune system and remove excess water and ions during the ingestion of large blood meals. Control of salivary glands involves autocrine/paracrine dopamine, which is the most potent inducer of tick salivation. Previously, we reported the presence of two dopamine receptors in the salivary glands of the blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis): dopamine receptor (D1) and invertebrate specific D1-like dopamine receptor (InvD1L). Here, we investigated the different physiological roles of the dopamine receptors in tick salivary glands by using pharmacological tools that discriminate between the two distinct receptors. Heterologous expressions followed by reporter assays of the dopamine receptors identified receptor-specific antagonists and agonists. These pharmacological tools were further used to discriminate the physiological role of each receptor by using in vitro assays: measuring salivary secretions of isolated salivary glands and monitoring dynamic changes in the size of individual salivary gland acini. We propose that the D1 receptor acts on salivary gland acini epithelial cells for inward fluid transport. InvD1L controls (or modulates) each acinus for expelling saliva from the acini to the salivary ducts, presumably through the actions of myoepithelial cells and valves for pumping/gating. We conclude that dopamine acts on the D1 and the InvD1L receptors and leads different physiological actions to orchestrate tick salivary secretion.
Project description:Mammary MCF-10A cells seeded on reconstituted basement membrane form spherical structures with a hollow central lumen, termed acini, which are a physiologically relevant model of mammary morphogenesis. Bcl-2-associated athanogene 1 (Bag-1) is a multifunctional protein overexpressed in breast cancer and ductal carcinoma in situ. When present in the nucleus Bag-1 is predictive of clinical outcome in breast cancer. Bag-1 exists as three main isoforms, which are produced by alternative translation initiation from a single mRNA. The long isoform of Bag-1, Bag-1L, contains a nuclear localisation sequence not present in the other isoforms. When present in the nucleus Bag-1L, but not the other Bag-1 isoforms, can interact with and modulate the activities of estrogen-, androgen- and vitamin D-receptors. Overexpression of Bag-1 mRNA in MCF-10A is known to produce acini with luminal filling reminiscent of ductal carcinoma in situ. As this mRNA predominantly overexpresses the short isoform of Bag-1, Bag-1S, we set out to examine whether the nuclear Bag-1L isoform is sufficient to drive premalignant change by developing a Bag-1L-overexpressing MCF-10A model. Two clones differentially overexpressing Bag-1L were grown in two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) cultures and compared with an established model of HER2-driven transformation. In 2D cultures, Bag-1L overexpression reduced proliferation but did not affect growth factor responsiveness or clonogenicity. Acini formed by Bag-1L-overexpressing cells exhibited reduced luminal clearing when compared with controls. An abnormal branching morphology was also observed which correlated with the level of Bag-1L overexpression, suggesting further malignant change. Treatment with Thio-2, a small-molecule inhibitor of Bag-1, reduced the level of branching. In summary, 3D cultures of MCF-10A mammary epithelial cells overexpressing Bag-1L demonstrate a premalignant phenotype with features of ductal carcinoma in situ. Using this model to test the small-molecule Bag-1 inhibitor, Thio-2, reveals its potential to reverse the atypical branched morphology of acini that characterizes this premalignant change.
Project description:Luminal epithelial cells in the breast gradually alter gene and protein expression with age, appearing to lose lineage-specificity by acquiring myoepithelial-like characteristics. We hypothesize that the luminal lineage is particularly sensitive to microenvironment changes, and age-related microenvironment changes cause altered luminal cell phenotypes. To evaluate the effects of different microenvironments on the fidelity of epigenetically regulated luminal and myoepithelial gene expression, we generated a set of lineage-specific probes for genes that are controlled through DNA methylation. Culturing primary luminal cells under conditions that favor myoepithelial propogation led to their reprogramming at the level of gene methylation, and to a more myoepithelial-like expression profile. Primary luminal cells' lineage-specific gene expression could be maintained when they were cultured as bilayers with primary myoepithelial cells. Isogenic stromal fibroblast co-cultures were unable to maintain the luminal phenotype. Mixed-age luminal-myoepithelial bilayers revealed that luminal cells adopt transcription and methylation patterns consistent with the chronological age of the myoepithelial cells. We provide evidence that the luminal epithelial phenotype is exquisitely sensitive to microenvironment conditions, and that states of aging are cell non-autonomously communicated through microenvironment cues over at least one cell diameter.
Project description:Autophagy has been proposed to promote cell death during lumen formation in three-dimensional mammary epithelial acini because numerous autophagic vacuoles are observed in the dying central cells during morphogenesis. Because these central cells die due to extracellular matrix (ECM) deprivation (anoikis), we have directly interrogated how matrix detachment regulates autophagy. Detachment induces autophagy in both nontumorigenic epithelial lines and in primary epithelial cells. RNA interference-mediated depletion of autophagy regulators (ATGs) inhibits detachment-induced autophagy, enhances apoptosis, and reduces clonogenic recovery after anoikis. Remarkably, matrix-detached cells still exhibit autophagy when apoptosis is blocked by Bcl-2 overexpression, and ATG depletion reduces the clonogenic survival of Bcl-2-expressing cells after detachment. Finally, stable reduction of ATG5 or ATG7 in MCF-10A acini enhances luminal apoptosis during morphogenesis and fails to elicit long-term luminal filling, even when combined with apoptotic inhibition mediated by Bcl-2 overexpression. Thus, autophagy promotes epithelial cell survival during anoikis, including detached cells harboring antiapoptotic lesions.
Project description:The salivary gland of hard ticks is a highly innervated tissue where multiple intertwined axonal projections enter each individual acini. In the present study, we investigated the ultrastructural architecture of axonal projections within granular salivary gland type II and III acini of Ixodes ricinus female. Using immunogold labeling, we specifically examined the associations of SIFamide neuropeptide, SIFamide receptor (SIFa_R), neuropeptide pigment dispersing factor (PDF), and the invertebrate-specific D1-like dopamine receptor (InvD1L), with acinar cells. In both acini types, SIFamide-positive axons were found to be in direct contact with either basal epithelial cells or a single adlumenal myoepithelial cell in close proximity to the either the acinar duct or its valve, respectively. Accordingly, SIFa_R staining correlated with SIFamide-positive axons in both basal epithelial and myoepithelial cells. Immunoreactivity for both InvD1L and PDF (type II acini exclusively) revealed positive axons radiating along the acinar lumen. These axons were primarily enclosed by the adlumenal myoepithelial cell plasma membrane and interstitial projections of ablumenal epithelial cells. Our study has revealed the detailed ultrastructure of I. ricinus salivary glands, and provides a solid baseline for a comprehensive understanding of the cell-axon interactions and their functions in this essential tick organ.