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1.
Am J Pathol ; 2021 Feb 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33545120

RESUMO

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and hepatoblastoma are the major types of primary liver cancer in adulthood and childhood, respectively. Wnt/ß-catenin signaling deregulation is one of the most frequent genetic events in hepatocarcinogenesis. APC regulator of WNT signaling pathway (APC) encodes an inhibitor of the Wnt cascade and acts as a tumor suppressor. Germline defects of the APC gene lead to familial adenomatous polyposis, and its somatic mutations occur in multiple tumor types. However, the contribution of APC in hepatocarcinogenesis remains unclear. We therefore examined APC mutations and expression patterns in human HCC and hepatoblastoma samples. Whether loss of Apc alone or in cooperation with other oncogenes triggers liver tumor development in vivo was also investigated. sgApc alone could not drive liver tumor formation, but synergized with activated oncogenes (YapS127A, TazS89A, and c-Met) to induce hepatocarcinogenesis. Mechanistically, Apc deletion induced the activation of ß-catenin and its downstream targets in mouse liver tumors. Furthermore, Ctnnb1 ablation or TCF4-mediated transcription blockade completely prevented liver tumor formation, indicating the requirement of a functional ß-catenin pathway for loss of Apc-driven hepatocarcinogenesis. This study shows that a subset of HCC patients with loss-of-function APC mutations might benefit from therapeutic strategies targeting the Wnt/ß-catenin pathway.

2.
Cell Death Dis ; 12(2): 200, 2021 Feb 19.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33608500

RESUMO

Dysregulation of transforming growth factor-beta (TGFß) signaling has been implicated in liver carcinogenesis with both tumor promoting and inhibiting activities. Activation of the c-MYC protooncogene is another critical genetic event in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, the precise functional crosstalk between c-MYC and TGFß signaling pathways remains unclear. In the present investigation, we investigated the expression of TGFß signaling in c-MYC amplified human HCC samples as well as the mechanisms whereby TGFß modulates c-Myc driven hepatocarcinogenesis during initiation and progression. We found that several TGFß target genes are overexpressed in human HCCs with c-MYC amplification. In vivo, activation of TGFß1 impaired c-Myc murine HCC initiation, whereas inhibition of TGFß pathway accelerated this process. In contrast, overexpression of TGFß1 enhanced c-Myc HCC progression by promoting tumor cell metastasis. Mechanistically, activation of TGFß promoted tumor microenvironment reprogramming rather than inducing epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition during HCC progression. Moreover, we identified PMEPA1 as a potential TGFß1 target. Altogether, our data underline the divergent roles of TGFß signaling during c-MYC induced HCC initiation and progression.

3.
Phytomedicine ; : 153498, 2021 Feb 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33640247

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: The incidence of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), especially nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), has significantly increased in recent years and has become an important public health issue. However, no U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved first-line drug is currently available for the treatment of NAFLD and NASH; therefore, research on new drugs is currently a hot topic. Oroxylum indicum (Linn.) Kurz is extensively distributed in South China and South Asia and has many biological activities. However, its effects on NAFLD or even NASH and the corresponding mechanisms are still not clear. PURPOSE: To investigate the effect and mechanism of O. indicum seed extract (OISE) on preventing anti-inflammatory action in the progression from simple nonalcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) to NASH. METHODS: A network pharmacology method to construct ingredient-target networks and the protein-protein interaction (PPI) network of OISE in NASH were constructed for topological analyses and hub-target screening. Enrichment analyses were performed to identify the critical biological processes and signaling pathways. Simultaneously, in vitro and in vivo experiments investigated the effect and mechanism of OISE, baicalein, and chrysin on inflammation by biochemical indicator detection, luciferase reporters, pathological staining, and immunoblotting in oleic acid-stimulated HepG2 cells or in high-fat diet-fed rats. RESULTS: The network pharmacology showed that OISE prevented the development and progression of NAFL into NASH through various pathways and targets and that the nuclear factor NF-κB (NF-κB) pathway regulated by baicalein and chrysin played an important role in the treatment of NASH. In in vitro experiments, we further showed that OISE and its ingredients, namely, baicalein and chrysin, all improved the inflammatory status in oleic acid-stimulated HepG2 cells, inhibited the nuclear transcriptional activities of NF-κB, increased the IκB level, and decreased the phosphorylation level of NF-κB. Furthermore, in a high-fat diet-induced NASH model in rats, we also showed that OISE prevented the development and progression of NASH by inhibiting the nuclear transcriptional activity of NF-κB. CONCLUSION: OISE suppressed inflammatory responses and prevented the development and progression of NAFL into NASH through inhibition of the nuclear transcriptional activity of NF-κB. OISE may be used to treat NAFLD through many functions, including an increase in insulin sensitivity, a decrease in lipid accumulation in the liver, suppression of inflammation, and clearance of free radicals.

4.
J Hepatol ; 2021 Feb 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33577921

RESUMO

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Gain of function (GOF) mutations in the CTNNB1 gene are one of the most frequent genetic events in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). T-box transcription factor 3 (TBX3) is a liver-specific target of the Wnt/ß-catenin pathway and thought to be an oncogene mediating activated ß-catenin-driven HCC formation. METHODS: We evaluated the expression pattern of TBX3 in human HCC specimens. Tbx3 was conditionally knocked out in murine HCC models by hydrodynamic tail vein injection of Cre together with c-Met and ΔN90-ß-catenin (c-Met/ß-catenin) in Tbx3flox/flox mice. TBX3 was overexpressed in human HCC cell lines to investigate the functions of TBX3 in vitro. RESULTS: A bimodal expression pattern of TBX3 in human HCC samples was detected: high expression of TBX3 in GOF CTNNB1 HCC and downregulation of TBX3 in non-CTNNB1 mutant tumors. High expression of TBX3 was associated with increased differentiation and decreased expression signatures of tumor growth. Using Tbx3flox/flox mice, we found that ablation of Tbx3 significantly accelerates c-Met/ß-catenin-driven HCC formation. Moreover, Tbx3(-) HCC demonstrated increased YAP/TAZ activity. The accelerated tumor growth induced by loss of TBX3 in c-Met/ß-catenin mouse HCC was successfully prevented by overexpression of LATS2, which inhibited YAP/TAZ activity. In human HCC cell lines, overexpression of TBX3 inhibited HCC cell growth as well as YAP/TAZ activation. A negative correlation between TBX3 and YAP/TAZ target genes was observed in human HCC samples. Mechanistically, phospholipase D1 (PLD1), a known positive regulator of YAP/TAZ, was identified as a novel transcriptional target repressed by TBX3. CONCLUSION: Our study suggests that TBX3 is induced by GOF CTNNB1 mutants and suppresses HCC growth by inactivating PLD1, thus leading to the inhibition of YAP/TAZ oncogenes. LAY SUMMARY: TBX3 is a liver-specific target of the Wnt/ß-catenin pathway and thought to be an oncogene in promoting liver cancer development. Herein, we demonstrate that TBX3 is in fact a tumor suppressor gene that restricts liver tumor growth. Strategies which increase TBX3 expression and/or activities may be effective for HCC treatment.

5.
Hepatology ; 2020 Dec 24.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33368437

RESUMO

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Mothers against decapentaplegic homolog 7 (SMAD7) is an antagonist of the transforming growth factor ß (TGF-ß) signaling. In the present investigation, we sought to determine the relevance of SMAD7 in liver carcinogenesis using in vitro and in vivo approaches. APPROACH & RESULTS: We found that SMAD7 is upregulated in a subset of human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) samples with poor prognosis. Gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) revealed that SMAD7 expression correlates with activated YAP/NOTCH pathway and cholangiocellular signature genes in HCCs. These findings were substantiated in human HCC cell lines. In vivo, overexpression of Smad7 alone was unable to initiate HCC development, but it significantly accelerated c-Myc/MCL1 induced mouse HCC formation. Consistent with human HCC data, c-Myc/MCL1/Smad7 liver tumors exhibited an increased cholangiocellular gene expression along with Yap/Notch activation and epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). Intriguingly, blocking of the Notch signaling did not affect c-Myc/MCL1/Smad7-induced hepatocarcinogenesis while preventing cholangiocellular signature expression and EMT, whereas ablation of Yap abolished c-Myc/MCL1/Smad7-driven HCC formation. In mice overexpressing a myristoylated/activated form of AKT, co-expression of SMAD7 accelerated carcinogenesis and switched the phenotype from HCC to intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (iCCA) lesions. In human iCCA, SMAD7 expression was robustly upregulated, especially in the most aggressive tumors and directly correlated with the levels of YAP/NOTCH targets as well as cholangiocellular and EMT markers. CONCLUSIONS: The present data indicate that SMAD7 contributes to liver carcinogenesis by activating the YAP/NOTCH signaling cascade and by inducing a cholangiocellular and EMT signature.

6.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33232824

RESUMO

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Yes-associated protein (YAP) and its paralog transcriptional co-activator with PDZ-binding motif (TAZ) are 2 co-activators downstream of Hippo tumor-suppressor cascade. Both have been implicated in the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, whether YAP and TAZ have distinct or overlapping functions during hepatocarcinogenesis remains unknown. METHODS: Expression patterns of YAP and TAZ were analyzed in human HCC samples. The requirement of Yap and/or Taz in protein kinase B (Akt)/NRas-driven liver tumorigenesis was analyzed using conditional Yap, Taz, and Yap;Taz knockout mice. Transcriptional programs regulated by YAP and/or TAZ were identified via RNA sequencing. RESULTS: We found that in human HCC samples, an almost ubiquitous activation of YAP or TAZ occurs, underlying their role in this tumor type. Intriguingly, 70% of HCC samples showed only nuclear YAP or TAZ immunoreactivity. In the Akt/NRas liver tumor model, where nuclear Yap and Taz can be detected readily, deletion of Yap or Taz alone only mildly delayed liver tumor development, whereas their concomitant ablation strongly inhibited tumor cell proliferation and significantly suppressed Akt/NRas-driven hepatocarcinogenesis. In HCC cell lines, silencing of either YAP or TAZ led to decreased expression of both overlapping and distinct sets of genes, with the most prominent gene signatures related to cell-cycle progression and DNA replication. CONCLUSIONS: YAP and TAZ have overlapping and distinct roles in hepatocarcinogenesis. HCCs may display unique activation of YAP or TAZ, thus relying on either YAP or TAZ for their growth.

7.
Gut ; 2020 Nov 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33144318

RESUMO

OBJECTIVE: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common type of primary liver cancer with limited treatment options. Cabozantinib, an orally bioavailable multikinase inhibitor is now approved by Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for HCC patients. We evaluated the therapeutic efficacy of cabozantinib, either alone or in combination, in vitro and in vivo. DESIGN: Human HCC cell lines and HCC mouse models were used to assess the therapeutic efficacy and targeted molecular pathways of cabozantinib, either alone or in combination with the pan-mTOR inhibitor MLN0128 or the checkpoint inhibitor anti-PD-L1 antibody. RESULTS: Cabozantinib treatment led to stable disease in c-Met/ß-catenin and Akt/c-Met mouse HCC while possessing limited efficacy on Akt/Ras and c-Myc liver tumours. Importantly, cabozantinib effectively inhibited c-MET and ERK activity, leading to decreased PKM2 and increased p21 expression in HCC cells and in c-Met/ß-catenin and Akt/c-Met HCC. However, cabozantinib was ineffective in inhibiting the Akt/mTOR cascade. Intriguingly, a strong inhibition of angiogenesis by cabozantinib occurred regardless of the oncogenic drivers. However, cabozantinib had limited impact on other tumour microenvironment parameters, including tumour infiltrating T cells, and did not induce programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) expression. Combining cabozantinib with MLN0128 led to tumour regression in c-Met/ß-catenin mice. In contrast, combined treatment with cabozantinib and the checkpoint inhibitor anti-PD-L1 antibody did not provide any additional therapeutic benefit in the four mouse HCC models tested. CONCLUSION: c-MET/ERK/p21/PKM2 cascade and VEGFR2-induced angiogenesis are the primary targets of cabozantinib in HCC treatment. Combination therapies with cabozantinib and mTOR inhibitors may be effective against human HCC.

8.
Mol Cell Biochem ; 2020 Sep 30.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33000352

RESUMO

Mitochondria have various cellular functions, including ATP synthesis, calcium homeostasis, cell senescence, and death. Mitochondrial dysfunction has been identified in a variety of disorders correlated with human health. Among the many underlying mechanisms of mitochondrial dysfunction, the opening up of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP) is one that has drawn increasing interest in recent years. It plays an important role in apoptosis and necrosis; however, the molecular structure and function of the mPTP have still not been fully elucidated. In recent years, the abnormal opening up of the mPTP has been implicated in the development and pathogenesis of diverse diseases including ischemia/reperfusion injury (IRI), neurodegenerative disorders, tumors, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This review provides a systematic introduction to the possible molecular makeup of the mPTP and summarizes the mitochondrial dysfunction-correlated diseases and highlights possible underlying mechanisms. Since the mPTP is an important target in mitochondrial dysfunction, this review also summarizes potential treatments, which may be used to inhibit pore opening up via the molecules composing mPTP complexes, thus suppressing the progression of mitochondrial dysfunction-related diseases.

9.
Front Genet ; 11: 563798, 2020.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33101382

RESUMO

In vivo cell fate reprogramming has emerged as a new method for understanding cell plasticity and as potential treatment for tissue regeneration. Highly efficient and precise reprogramming requires fully understanding of the transcriptomes which function within different cell types. Here, we adopt weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA) to explore the molecular mechanisms of self-renewal in several well-known stem cell types, including embryonic stem cells (ESC), primordial germ cells (PGC), spermatogonia stem cells (SSC), neural stem cells (NSC), mesenchymal stem cells (MSC), and hematopoietic stem cells (HSC). We identified 37 core genes that were up-regulated in all of the stem cell types examined, as well as stem cell correlated gene co-expression networks. The validation of the co-expression genes revealed a continued protein-protein interaction network that included 823 nodes and 3113 edges. Based on the topology, we identified six densely connected regions within the continued protein-protein interaction network. The SSC specific genes Itgam, Cxcr6, and Agtr2 bridged four densely connected regions that consisted primarily of HSC-, NSC-, and MSC-correlated genes. The expression levels of identified stem cell related transcription factors were confirmed consistent with bioinformatics prediction in ESCs and NSCs by qPCR. Exploring the mechanisms underlying adult stem cell self-renewal will aid in the understanding of stem cell pool maintenance and will promote more accurate and efficient strategies for tissue regeneration and repair.

10.
J Pharm Biomed Anal ; 186: 113312, 2020 Jul 15.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32361090

RESUMO

A simple, rapid, reliable and sensitive ultra-high performance liquid chromatography tandem spectrometry (UHPLC-MS/MS) method was established for determination of eight serum protein-bound uremic toxins (hippuric acid, indoxyl sulfate, indole-3-acetic acid, kynurenic acid, L-kynurenine, melatonin, 3-carboxy-4-methyl-5-propyl-2-furanpropionic acid, 4-hydroxyhippuric acid) in serum from chronic kidney disease (CKD) dialysis patients. The chromatographic separation was achieved on an Atlantis T3 column (3 µm, 2.1 mm × 100 mm) using a gradient elution with acetonitrile (phase B) and 0.1% formic acid and 10 mmol/L ammonium acetate aqueous solution (phase A). The flow rate was 0.3 mL/min with analytical time of 5 min. The pretreatment procedure was developed with a simple protein precipitation and the hydrochlorothiazide was used as internal standard. The calibration ranges were set as 156.250-20000.000 ng/mL for indoxyl sulfate, hippuric acid, 3-carboxy-4-methyl-5-propyl-2-furanpropionic acid; 78.125-10000.000 ng/mL for L-kynurenine, indole-3-acetic acid and 4-hydroxyhippuricacid; 1.562-200.000 ng/mL for kynurenic acid; 0.078-10.000 ng/mL for melatonin. The UHPLC-MS/MS method for quantification of eight protein-bound uremic toxins was successfully developed and validated, and its clinical practicability was assessed on 81 serum samples from CKD patients.

11.
Am J Pathol ; 190(7): 1414-1426, 2020 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32275903

RESUMO

Cholestatic liver injury may lead to a series of hepatobiliary syndromes, which can progress to cirrhosis and impaired liver regeneration, eventually resulting in liver-related death. Mammalian target of rapamycin complex 2 (mTORC2) is a major regulator of liver metabolism and tumor development. However, the role of mTORC2 signaling in cholestatic liver injury has not been characterized to date. In this study, we generated liver-specific Rictor knockout mice to block the mTORC2 signaling pathway. Mice were treated with 3,5-diethoxycarbonyl-1,4-dihydrocollidine (DDC) to induce cholestatic liver injury. DDC feeding induced cholestatic liver injury and ductular reaction as well as activation of the mTORC2/Akt signaling pathway in wild-type mice. Loss of mTORC2 led to significantly decreased oval cell expansion after DDC feeding. Mechanistically, this phenotype was independent of mTORC1/fatty acid synthase cascade (Fasn) or yes-associated protein (Yap) signaling. Notch pathway was instead strongly inhibited during DDC-induced cholestatic liver injury in liver-specific Rictor knockout mice. Furthermore, mTORC2 deficiency in adult hepatocytes did not inhibit ductular reaction in this cholestatic live injury mouse model. Our results indicated that mTORC2 signaling effectively regulates liver regeneration by inducing oval cell proliferation. Liver progenitor cells or bile duct cells, rather than mature hepatocytes, would be the major source of ductular reaction in DDC-induced cholestatic liver injury.


Assuntos
Colestase/metabolismo , Hepatopatias/metabolismo , Regeneração Hepática/fisiologia , Alvo Mecanístico do Complexo 2 de Rapamicina/metabolismo , Transdução de Sinais/fisiologia , Animais , Ductos Biliares/metabolismo , Colestase/fisiopatologia , Modelos Animais de Doenças , Hepatócitos/metabolismo , Hepatopatias/fisiopatologia , Camundongos , Camundongos Endogâmicos C57BL , Camundongos Knockout , Células-Tronco/metabolismo
12.
Cell Death Dis ; 11(2): 91, 2020 02 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32019910

RESUMO

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the major type of primary liver cancer. Genomic studies have revealed that HCC is a heterogeneous disease with multiple subtypes. BRG1, encoded by the SMARCA4 gene, is a key component of SWI/SNF chromatin-remodeling complexes. Based on TCGA studies, somatic mutations of SMARCA4 occur in ~3% of human HCC samples. Additional studies suggest that BRG1 is overexpressed in human HCC specimens and may promote HCC growth and invasion. However, the precise functional roles of BRG1 in HCC remain poorly delineated. Here, we analyzed BRG1 in human HCC samples as well as in mouse models. We found that BRG1 is overexpressed in most of human HCC samples, especially in those associated with poorer prognosis. BRG1 expression levels positively correlate with cell cycle and negatively with metabolic pathways in the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) human HCC data set. In a murine HCC model induced by c-MYC overexpression, ablation of the Brg1 gene completely repressed HCC formation. In striking contrast, however, we discovered that concomitant deletion of Brg1 and overexpression of c-Met or mutant NRas (NRASV12) triggered HCC formation in mice. Altogether, the present data indicate that BRG1 possesses both oncogenic and tumor-suppressing roles depending on the oncogenic stimuli during hepatocarcinogenesis.

13.
Am J Pathol ; 190(4): 817-829, 2020 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32035060

RESUMO

Liver regeneration is a fundamental biological process required for sustaining body homeostasis and restoring liver function after injury. Emerging evidence demonstrates that cytokines, growth factors, and multiple signaling pathways contribute to liver regeneration. Mammalian target of rapamycin complex 2 (mTORC2) regulates cell metabolism, proliferation and survival. The major substrates for mTORC2 are the AGC family members of kinases, including AKT, SGK, and PKC-α. We investigated the functional roles of mTORC2 during liver regeneration. Partial hepatectomy (PHx) was performed in liver-specific Rictor (the pivotal unit of mTORC2 complex) knockout (RictorLKO) and wild-type (Rictorfl/fl) mice. Rictor-deficient mice were found to be more intolerant to PHx and displayed higher mortality after PHx. Mechanistically, loss of Rictor resulted in decreased Akt phosphorylation, leading to a delay in hepatocyte proliferation and lipid droplets formation along liver regeneration. Overall, these results indicate an essential role of the mTORC2 signaling pathway during liver regeneration.


Assuntos
Proliferação de Células , Hepatectomia , Regeneração Hepática , Fígado/citologia , Alvo Mecanístico do Complexo 2 de Rapamicina/metabolismo , Proteína Companheira de mTOR Insensível à Rapamicina/fisiologia , Animais , Pontos de Checagem do Ciclo Celular , Feminino , Lipídeos/análise , Fígado/metabolismo , Fígado/cirurgia , Masculino , Alvo Mecanístico do Complexo 2 de Rapamicina/genética , Camundongos , Camundongos Endogâmicos C57BL , Camundongos Knockout , Fosforilação , Transdução de Sinais
14.
Gut ; 69(1): 177-186, 2020 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30954949

RESUMO

OBJECTIVE: Increased de novo fatty acid (FA) synthesis and cholesterol biosynthesis have been independently described in many tumour types, including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). DESIGN: We investigated the functional contribution of fatty acid synthase (Fasn)-mediated de novo FA synthesis in a murine HCC model induced by loss of Pten and overexpression of c-Met (sgPten/c-Met) using liver-specific Fasn knockout mice. Expression arrays and lipidomic analysis were performed to characterise the global gene expression and lipid profiles, respectively, of sgPten/c-Met HCC from wild-type and Fasn knockout mice. Human HCC cell lines were used for in vitro studies. RESULTS: Ablation of Fasn significantly delayed sgPten/c-Met-driven hepatocarcinogenesis in mice. However, eventually, HCC emerged in Fasn knockout mice. Comparative genomic and lipidomic analyses revealed the upregulation of genes involved in cholesterol biosynthesis, as well as decreased triglyceride levels and increased cholesterol esters, in HCC from these mice. Mechanistically, loss of Fasn promoted nuclear localisation and activation of sterol regulatory element binding protein 2 (Srebp2), which triggered cholesterogenesis. Blocking cholesterol synthesis via the dominant negative form of Srebp2 (dnSrebp2) completely prevented sgPten/c-Met-driven hepatocarcinogenesis in Fasn knockout mice. Similarly, silencing of FASN resulted in increased SREBP2 activation and hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl-CoA (HMG-CoA) reductase (HMGCR) expression in human HCC cell lines. Concomitant inhibition of FASN-mediated FA synthesis and HMGCR-driven cholesterol production was highly detrimental for HCC cell growth in culture. CONCLUSION: Our study uncovers a novel functional crosstalk between aberrant lipogenesis and cholesterol biosynthesis pathways in hepatocarcinogenesis, whose concomitant inhibition might represent a therapeutic option for HCC.


Assuntos
Carcinoma Hepatocelular/metabolismo , Colesterol/biossíntese , Ácido Graxo Sintase Tipo I/metabolismo , Ácidos Graxos/biossíntese , Neoplasias Hepáticas/metabolismo , Animais , Vias Biossintéticas/efeitos dos fármacos , Vias Biossintéticas/genética , Carcinogênese/genética , Carcinoma Hepatocelular/genética , Linhagem Celular Tumoral , Ácido Graxo Sintase Tipo I/genética , Feminino , Técnicas de Silenciamento de Genes , Inativação Gênica , Genômica , Humanos , Hidroximetilglutaril-CoA Redutases/genética , Hidroximetilglutaril-CoA Redutases/metabolismo , Lipidômica , Neoplasias Hepáticas/genética , Masculino , Camundongos , Camundongos Knockout , PTEN Fosfo-Hidrolase/metabolismo , Proteínas Proto-Oncogênicas c-met/metabolismo , Proteína de Ligação a Elemento Regulador de Esterol 2/genética , Proteína de Ligação a Elemento Regulador de Esterol 2/metabolismo , Transcriptoma
15.
Cancer Res ; 79(21): 5563-5574, 2019 11 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31383647

RESUMO

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common type of liver cancer and has limited treatment options. Snail family transcriptional repressor 1 (SNAI1) is a master regulator of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and has been implicated in HCC initiation and progression. However, the precise role of SNAI1 and the way it contributes to hepatocarcinogenesis have not been investigated in depth, especially in vivo. Here, we analyzed the functional relevance of SNAI1 in promoting hepatocarcinogenesis in the context of the AKT/c-Met-driven mouse liver tumor model (AKT/c-Met/SNAI1). Overexpression of SNAI1 did not accelerate AKT/c-Met-induced HCC development or induce metastasis in mice. Elevated SNAI1 expression rather led to the formation of cholangiocellular (CCA) lesions in the mouse liver, a phenotype that was paralleled by increased activation of Yap and Notch. Ablation of Yap strongly inhibited AKT/c-Met/SNAI-induced HCC and CCA development, whereas inhibition of the Notch pathway specifically blocked the CCA-like phenotype in mice. Intriguingly, overexpression of SNAI1 failed to induce EMT, indicated by strong E-cadherin expression and lack of vimentin expression by AKT/c-Met/SNAI tumor cells. SNAI1 mRNA levels strongly correlated with the expression of CCA markers, including SOX9, CK19, and EPCAM, but not with EMT markers such as E-CADHERIN and ZO-1, in human HCC samples. Overall, our findings suggest SNAI1 regulates the CCA-like phenotype in hepatocarcinogenesis via regulation of Yap and Notch. SIGNIFICANCE: These findings report a new function of SNAI1 to promote cholangiocellular transdifferentiation instead of epithelial-mesenchymal transition in hepatocellular carcinoma.


Assuntos
Carcinoma Hepatocelular/genética , Colangiocarcinoma/genética , Transição Epitelial-Mesenquimal/genética , Neoplasias Hepáticas/genética , Fatores de Transcrição da Família Snail/genética , Animais , Caderinas/genética , Carcinoma Hepatocelular/patologia , Movimento Celular/genética , Colangiocarcinoma/patologia , Modelos Animais de Doenças , Regulação Neoplásica da Expressão Gênica/genética , Humanos , Neoplasias Hepáticas/patologia , Camundongos , Fenótipo , Proteínas Proto-Oncogênicas c-akt/genética , Proteínas Proto-Oncogênicas c-met/genética , Vimentina/genética
16.
Cancers (Basel) ; 11(7)2019 Jul 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31277283

RESUMO

Background: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common primary liver cancer histotype, characterized by high biological aggressiveness and scarce treatment options. Recently, we have established a clinically relevant murine HCC model by co-expressing activated forms of v-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene homolog (AKT) and oncogene c-mesenchymal-epithelial transition (c-Met) proto-oncogenes in the mouse liver via hydrodynamic tail vein injection (AKT/c-MET mice). Tumor cells from these mice demonstrated high activity of the AKT/ mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) and Ras/ Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling cascades, two pathways frequently co-induced in human HCC. Methods: Here, we investigated the therapeutic efficacy of sorafenib, regorafenib, the MEK inhibitor PD901 as well as the pan-mTOR inhibitor MLN0128 in the AKT/c-Met preclinical HCC model. Results: In these mice, neither sorafenib nor regorafenib demonstrated any efficacy. In contrast, administration of PD901 inhibited cell cycle progression of HCC cells in vitro. Combined PD901 and MLN0128 administration resulted in a pronounced growth constraint of HCC cell lines. In vivo, treatment with PD901 or MLN0128 alone moderately slowed HCC growth in AKT/c-MET mice. Importantly, the simultaneous administration of the two drugs led to a stable disease with limited tumor progression in mice. Mechanistically, combined mitogen-activated extracellular signal-regulated kinase (MEK) and mTOR inhibition resulted in a stronger cell cycle inhibition and growth arrest both in vitro and in vivo. Conclusions: Our study indicates that combination of MEK and mTOR inhibitors might represent an effective therapeutic approach against human HCC.

17.
J Hepatol ; 71(4): 742-752, 2019 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31195063

RESUMO

BACKGROUND & AIMS: The ubiquitin ligase F-box and WD repeat domain-containing 7 (FBXW7) is recognized as a tumor suppressor in many cancer types due to its ability to promote the degradation of numerous oncogenic target proteins. Herein, we aimed to elucidate its role in intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (iCCA). METHODS: Herein, we first confirmed that FBXW7 gene expression was reduced in human iCCA specimens. To identify the molecular mechanisms by which FBXW7 dysfunction promotes cholangiocarcinogenesis, we generated a mouse model by hydrodynamic tail vein injection of Fbxw7ΔF, a dominant negative form of Fbxw7, either alone or in association with an activated/myristylated form of AKT (myr-AKT). We then confirmed the role of c-MYC in human iCCA cell lines and its relationship to FBXW7 expression in human iCCA specimens. RESULTS: FBXW7 mRNA expression is almost ubiquitously downregulated in human iCCA specimens. While forced overexpression of Fbxw7ΔF alone did not induce any appreciable abnormality in the mouse liver, co-expression with AKT triggered cholangiocarcinogenesis and mice had to be euthanized by 15 weeks post-injection. At the molecular level, a strong induction of Fbxw7 canonical targets, including Yap, Notch2, and c-Myc oncoproteins, was detected. However, only c-MYC was consistently confirmed as a FBXW7 target in human CCA cell lines. Most importantly, selected ablation of c-Myc completely impaired iCCA formation in AKT/Fbxw7ΔF mice, whereas deletion of either Yap or Notch2 only delayed tumorigenesis in the same model. In human iCCA specimens, an inverse correlation between the expression levels of FBXW7 and c-MYC transcriptional activity was observed. CONCLUSIONS: Downregulation of FBXW7 is ubiquitous in human iCCA and cooperates with AKT to induce cholangiocarcinogenesis in mice via c-Myc-dependent mechanisms. Targeting c-MYC might represent an innovative therapy against iCCA exhibiting low FBXW7 expression. LAY SUMMARY: There is mounting evidence that FBXW7 functions as a tumor suppressor in many cancer types, including intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma, through its ability to promote the degradation of numerous oncoproteins. Herein, we have shown that the low expression of FBXW7 is ubiquitous in human cholangiocarcinoma specimens. This low expression is correlated with increased c-MYC activity, leading to tumorigenesis. Our findings suggest that targeting c-MYC might be an effective treatment for intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma.

18.
Am J Pathol ; 189(5): 1077-1090, 2019 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30794805

RESUMO

Hepatoblastoma (HB) is the most common type of pediatric liver cancer. Activation of yes-associated protein (YAP) has been implicated in HB molecular pathogenesis. The transcriptional co-activator Yap regulates downstream gene expression through interaction with the TEA domain (TEAD) proteins. Nonetheless, YAP also displays functions that are independent of its transcriptional activity. The underlying molecular mechanisms by which Yap promotes HB development remain elusive. In the current study, we demonstrated that blocking TEAD function via the dominant-negative form of TEAD2 abolishes Yap-driven HB formation in mice and restrains human HB growth in vitro. When TEAD2 DNA-binding domain was fused with virus protein 16 transcriptional activation domain, it synergized with activated ß-catenin to promote HB formation in vivo. Among TEAD genes, silencing of TEAD4 consistently inhibited tumor growth and Yap target gene expression in HB cell lines. Furthermore, TEAD4 mRNA expression was significantly higher in human HB lesions when compared with corresponding nontumorous liver tissues. Human HB specimens also exhibited strong nuclear immunoreactivity for TEAD4. Altogether, data demonstrate that TEAD-mediated transcriptional activity is both sufficient and necessary for Yap-driven HB development. TEAD4 is the major TEAD isoform and Yap partner in human HB. Targeting TEAD4 may represent an effective treatment option for human HB.


Assuntos
Proteínas Adaptadoras de Transdução de Sinal/metabolismo , Biomarcadores Tumorais/metabolismo , Carcinoma Hepatocelular/patologia , Proteínas de Ligação a DNA/metabolismo , Neoplasias Hepáticas/patologia , Neoplasias Pulmonares/secundário , Proteínas Musculares/metabolismo , Fatores de Transcrição/metabolismo , Proteínas Adaptadoras de Transdução de Sinal/genética , Animais , Apoptose , Biomarcadores Tumorais/genética , Carcinoma Hepatocelular/genética , Carcinoma Hepatocelular/metabolismo , Proliferação de Células , Proteínas de Ligação a DNA/genética , Feminino , Seguimentos , Regulação Neoplásica da Expressão Gênica , Humanos , Neoplasias Hepáticas/genética , Neoplasias Hepáticas/metabolismo , Neoplasias Pulmonares/genética , Neoplasias Pulmonares/metabolismo , Masculino , Camundongos , Proteínas Musculares/genética , Prognóstico , Fatores de Transcrição/genética , Células Tumorais Cultivadas
19.
Cell Death Dis ; 10(2): 120, 2019 02 11.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30741922

RESUMO

PD901, a MEK inhibitor, has been demonstrated of therapeutic efficacy against cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) harboring K-Ras oncogenic mutations. However, most CCA exhibit no K-Ras mutations. In the current study, we investigated the therapeutic potential of PD901, either alone or in combination with the pan-mTOR inhibitor MLN0128, for the treatment of K-Ras wild-type CCA in vitro using human CCA cell lines, and in vivo using AKT/YapS127A CCA mouse model. We discovered that in vitro, PD901 treatment strongly inhibited CCA cell proliferation, and combined PD901 and MLN0128 therapy further increased growth inhibition. In vivo, treatment of PD901 alone triggered tumor regression, which was not further increased when the two drugs were administered simultaneously. Mechanistically, PD901 efficiently hampered ERK activation in vitro and in vivo, leading to strong inhibition of CCA tumor cell cycle progression. Intriguingly, we discovered that PD901, but not MLN0128 treatment resulted in changes affecting the vasculature and cancer-associated fibroblasts in AKT/YapS127A mouse lesions. It led to the decreased hypoxia within tumor lesions, which may further enhance the anti-cell proliferation activities of PD901. Altogether, our study demonstrates that MEK inhibitors could be effective for the treatment of K-Ras wild-type CCA via inhibiting cell proliferation and modulating tumor microenvironment.


Assuntos
Proliferação de Células/efeitos dos fármacos , MAP Quinase Quinase Quinases/metabolismo , Inibidores de Proteínas Quinases/farmacologia , Proteínas Proto-Oncogênicas p21(ras)/metabolismo , Microambiente Tumoral/efeitos dos fármacos , Animais , Apoptose/efeitos dos fármacos , Benzoxazóis/farmacologia , Benzoxazóis/uso terapêutico , Pontos de Checagem do Ciclo Celular/efeitos dos fármacos , Hipóxia Celular , Linhagem Celular Tumoral , Colangiocarcinoma/tratamento farmacológico , Colangiocarcinoma/metabolismo , Colangiocarcinoma/patologia , MAP Quinases Reguladas por Sinal Extracelular/metabolismo , Feminino , Humanos , Fígado/patologia , MAP Quinase Quinase Quinases/antagonistas & inibidores , Camundongos , Inibidores de Proteínas Quinases/uso terapêutico , Proteínas Proto-Oncogênicas c-akt/metabolismo , Pirimidinas/farmacologia , Pirimidinas/uso terapêutico , Transdução de Sinais/efeitos dos fármacos , Serina-Treonina Quinases TOR/metabolismo
20.
Hepatology ; 70(6): 2003-2017, 2019 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30737831

RESUMO

Inactivating mutations of axis inhibition protein 1 (AXIN1), a negative regulator of the Wnt/ß-Catenin cascade, are among the common genetic events in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), affecting approximately 10% of cases. In the present manuscript, we sought to define the genetic crosstalk between Axin1 mutants and Wnt/ß-catenin as well as Notch signaling cascades along hepatocarcinogenesis. We discovered that c-MET activation and AXIN1 mutations occur concomitantly in ~3%-5% of human HCC samples. Subsequently, we generated a murine HCC model by means of CRISPR/Cas9-based gene deletion of Axin1 (sgAxin1) in combination with transposon-based expression of c-Met in the mouse liver (c-Met/sgAxin1). Global gene expression analysis of mouse normal liver, HCCs induced by c-Met/sgAxin1, and HCCs induced by c-Met/∆N90-ß-Catenin revealed activation of the Wnt/ß-Catenin and Notch signaling in c-Met/sgAxin1 HCCs. However, only a few of the canonical Wnt/ß-Catenin target genes were induced in c-Met/sgAxin1 HCC when compared with corresponding lesions from c-Met/∆N90-ß-Catenin mice. To study whether endogenous ß-Catenin is required for c-Met/sgAxin1-driven HCC development, we expressed c-Met/sgAxin1 in liver-specific Ctnnb1 null mice, which completely prevented HCC development. Consistently, in AXIN1 mutant or null human HCC cell lines, silencing of ß-Catenin strongly inhibited cell proliferation. In striking contrast, blocking the Notch cascade through expression of either the dominant negative form of the recombinant signal-binding protein for immunoglobulin kappa J region (RBP-J) or the ablation of Notch2 did not significantly affect c-Met/sgAxin1-driven hepatocarcinogenesis. Conclusion: We demonstrated here that loss of Axin1 cooperates with c-Met to induce HCC in mice, in a ß-Catenin signaling-dependent but Notch cascade-independent way.


Assuntos
Proteína Axina/fisiologia , Carcinoma Hepatocelular/etiologia , Neoplasias Hepáticas Experimentais/etiologia , Receptores Notch/fisiologia , beta Catenina/fisiologia , Animais , Feminino , Masculino , Camundongos , Camundongos Endogâmicos C57BL , Proteínas Proto-Oncogênicas c-met/fisiologia , Via de Sinalização Wnt/fisiologia
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