Bone mesenchymal stem cell (BMSC)-based regenerative therapy is critical for the craniofacial defect reconstruction. However, oxidative stress microenvironment after transplantation limits the therapeutic efficiency of BMSC. The miR-181c has been found to be associated with cell survival and proliferation. Herein, we investigated whether prior miR-181c treatment promoted BMSC proliferation and survival under oxidative stress injury. The results in our study demonstrated that hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) treatment reduced BMSC viability and this effect could be reversed via additional supplementation of miR181-c. Mechanistically, oxidative stress increased cell apoptosis, augmented caspase-3 activity, promoted reactive oxygen species synthesis, impaired mitochondrial potential, and induced mitochondrial dynamics imbalance. However, miR-181c pretreatment reversed these effects of oxidative stress on BMSC. Moreover, miR-181c treatment improved BMSC proliferation, migration and paracrine, which are very important for craniofacial reconstruction. In addition, we identified that AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK)-mitofusins-1 (Mfn1) axis was the direct targets of miR-181c in BMSC. Mfn1 silencing impaired the protective effects miR-181c on BMSC viability and proliferation under oxidative stress environment. Collectively, our results indicate that miR-181c participates in oxidative stress-mediated BMSC damage by modulating the AMPK-Mfn1 signaling pathway, suggesting miR-181c-AMPK-Mfn1 axis may serves as novel therapeutic targets to facilitate craniofacial defect reconstruction.
The development of ef?cient and repeatable protocols for biobanking and prolonged storage of cancer stem cells (CSCs), with minimum alterations in biological function, is valuable and desired, particularly for retrospective analysis and clinical applications. In particular, data regarding the effect of cryopreservation on CSCs's functional features is scarce. In this regard, few studies have been shown that 3D spheroid structures, which enriched for CSCs, can keep their biological phenotype and genetic profiles. Here, for the first time, we present data on cryopreservation of CT-26 colonospheres, with the focus on essential stem cell-like properties after thawing. Tumor biopsy-derived colonospheres were frozen in standard freezing media (90% fetal bovine serum + 10% dimethyl sulfoxide) and stored in liquid nitrogen for 10 months. Then, cryopreservation effect on preservation of CSCs-related features was verified using real-time polymerase chain reaction for evaluation of stemness genes and flow cytometry for the putative colorectal CSC surface biomarkers. The self-renewal capacity of thawed spheres was also compared with their fresh counterparts using serial formation assay. Finally, tumorigenic capacity of both groups was evaluated in immunocompetence mouse model. Our data indicated that postthawed colonospheres had high viability without drastic alteration in biological and structural features and maintained self-renewal potential after sequential passages. Real-time analysis showed that both fresh and frozen colonospheres displayed similar expression pattern for key stemness genes: SOX2 and OCT4. Cryopreserved spheroids expressed CD133, CD166, and DCLK1 CSCs surface biomarkers at elevated levels when compared with parental as non-cryopreserved counterparts. Our electron scanning microscopy micrographs clearly demonstrated that postthawed colonospheres retain their integrity and cell surface morphology and characteristics. We also found that both fresh and frozen spheroids were equally tumorigenic. This study represented an effective strategy for reliable storage of intact CT-26 colonospheres; this can provide researchers with a functionally reliable repository of murine colorectal CSCs for their future CSCs projects.
Bacterial toxins have received a great deal of attention in the development of antitumor agents. Currently, these protein toxins were used in the immunotoxins as a cancer therapy strategy. Despite the successful use of immunotoxins, immunotherapy strategies are still expensive and limited to hematologic malignancies. In the current study, for the first time, a nano-toxin comprised of truncated pseudomonas exotoxin (PE38) loaded silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) were prepared and their cytotoxicity effect was investigated on human breast cancer cells. The PE38 protein was cloned into pET28a and expressed in Escherichia coli, BL21 (DE3), and purified using metal affinity chromatography and was analyzed by 15% sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. AgNPs were biologically prepared using cell-free supernatant of E. Coli K12 strain. Nanoparticle formation was characterized by energy dispersive spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and dynamic light scattering. The PE38 protein was loaded on AgNPs and prepared the PE38-AgNPs nano-toxin. Additionally, in vitro release indicated a partial slow release of toxin in about 100 hr. The nano-toxin exhibited dose-dependent cytotoxicity on MCF-7 cells. Also, real-time polymerase chain reaction results demonstrated the ability of nano-toxin to upregulate Bax/Bcl-2 ratio and caspase-3, -8, -9, and P53 apoptotic genes in the MCF-7 tumor cells. Apoptosis induction was determined by Annexin-V/propidium flow cytometry and caspases activity assay after treatment of cancer cells with the nano-toxin. In general, in the current study, the nano-toxin exhibit an inhibitory effect on the viability of breast cancer cells through apoptosis, which suggests that AgNPs could be used as a delivery system for targeting of toxins to cancer cells.
Autophagy is considered as an important mechanism for maintaining homeostasis and responsible for the degradation of superfluous or potentially toxic components and organelles. Autophagy impairment is associated with a number of pathological conditions, such as aging, neurological disorders, cancer, and infection. Autophagy also plays a significant role in cancer chemotherapy. The multiple cancer drugs have been notably developed with the strategy of autophagy modulation. Statins, 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl-CoA inhibitors, are known due to their efficacy in decreasing low-density lipoprotein and extensively used for the management of cardiovascular diseases. Statins have other therapeutic and biological activities, such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antitumor, and neuroprotective known as pleiotropic effects. It seems that statins are capable of targeting various signaling pathways in the induction of their great pharmacological effects. At the present study, we demonstrate the therapeutic effects of statins mediated via autophagy regulation.
Exosomes derived from differentiated P12 cells and MSCs were proved to suppress apoptosis of neuron cells, and phosphatase and tensin homolog pseudogene 1 (PTENP1) was reported to inhibit cell proliferation. In this study, we aimed to investigate the role of PTENP1 in the process of post-spinal cord injury (SCI) recovery, so as to evaluate the therapeutic effects of exosomes derived from MSCs transfected with PTENP1 short hairpin RNA (shRNA), as a type of novel biomarkers in the treatment of SCI. Electron microscopy was used to observe the morphology of different exosomes. Real-time polymerase chain reaction and western blot, 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assays, flow cytometry, Nissl staining, immunohistochemistry assay, and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling assay were conducted to investigate and validate the underlying molecular signaling pathway. PTENP1-shRNA downregulated PTENP1 and PTEN while upregulating miR-21 and miR-19b. PTENP1-shRNA also accelerated cell apoptosis and reduced cell viability. In addition, PTENP1 reduced the miR-21 and miR-19b expression by directly targeting miR-21 and miR-19b. Meanwhile, both miR-21 and miR-19b reduced the expression of PTEN by directly targeting the 3 '-untranslated region of PTEN. Furthermore, PTEN level and apoptosis index of neuron cells was the highest in the SCI group, while the treatment with exosomes+PTENP1-shRNA reduced the PTEN expression to a level similar to that in the sham group. Finally, PTENP1 inhibited miR-21 and miR-19b expression but upregulated PTEN expression. The upregulation of miR-21/miR-19b also suppressed the apoptosis of neuron cells by downregulating the PTEN expression. PTENP1 is involved in the recovery of SCI by regulating the expression of miR-19b and miR-21, and exosomes from PTENP1-shRNA-transfected cells may be used as a novel biomarker in SCI treatment.
Non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) remains the leading cause of cancer death worldwide. As a platinum-based chemotherapeutic drug, cisplatin has been used for over 30 years in NSCLC treatment while its effects are diminished by drug resistance. Therefore, we aimed to study the potential role of UCA1 in the development of chemoresistance against cisplatin. Real-time polymerase chain reaction, western-blot analysis, and immunofluorescence were used to study the involvement of UCA1, miR-495, and NRF2 in chemoresistance against cisplatin. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay was performed to determine the effect of cisplatin on cell proliferation. Computational analysis and luciferase assay were carried out to explore the interaction among UCA1, miR-495, and NRF2. The cisplatin-R group exhibited lower levels of UCA1 and NRF2 expression but a higher level of miR-495 expression than the cisplatin-S group. The growth rate and half-maximal inhibitory concentration of cellular dipeptidyl peptidase (cisplatinum) of the cisplatin-R group were much higher than those in the cisplatin-S group. MiR-495 contained a complementary binding site of UCA1, and the luciferase activity of wild-type UCA1 was significantly reduced after the transfection of miR-495 mimics. MiR-495 directly targeted the 3 '-untranslated region (3 '-UTR) of NRF2, and the luciferase activity of wild-type NRF2 3 '-UTR was evidently inhibited by miR-495 mimics. Finally, UCA1 and NRF2 expressions in the effective group were much lower than that in the ineffective group, along with a much higher level of miR-495 expression. We suggested for the first time that high expression of UCA1 contributed to the development of chemoresistance to cisplatin through the UCA1/miR-495/NRF2 signaling pathway.
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) responds poorly to treatment. Efforts have been exerted to prolong the survival time of PDA, but the 5-year survival rates remain disappointing. Understanding the molecular mechanisms of PDA development is significant. MEK/ERK pathway signaling has been proven to be important in PDA. lncRNA-mRNA networks have become a vital part of molecular mechanisms in the MEK/ERK pathway. Herein, weighted gene coexpression network analysis was used to investigate the coexpressed lncRNA-mRNA networks in the MEK/ERK pathway based on GSE45765. Differently expressed long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) and messenger RNA (mRNA) were found and 10 modules were identified based on coexpression profiles. Gene ontology and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes were then performed to analyze the coexpressed lncRNA and mRNA in different modules. PDA cells and tissues were used to validate the analysis results. Finally, we found that NONHSAT185150.1 and B4GALT6 were negatively correlated with MEK1/2. By analyzing GSE45765, the genome-wide profiles of lncRNA-mRNA network after MEK1/2 was established, which might aid the development of drug-targeting MEK1/2 and the investigation of diagnostic markers.
Cardiac hypertrophy is a common phenomenon observed in progressive heart disease associated with heart failure. Insulin-like growth factor receptor II (IGF-IIR) has been much implicated in myocardial hypertrophy. Our previous studies have found that increased activities of signaling mediators, such as calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) and calcineurin induces pathological hypertrophy. Given the critical roles played by CaMKII and calcineurin signaling in the progression of maladaptive hypertrophy, we anticipated that inhibition of CaMKII and calcineurin signaling may attenuate IGF-IIR-induced cardiac hypertrophy. The current study, therefore, investigated the effects of IGF-IIR activation on the CaMKII and calcineurin signaling and whether the combinatorial inhibition of the CaMKII delta and calcineurin signaling could ameliorate IGF-IIR-induced pathological hypertrophy. In the present study, we induced IGF-IIR through the cardiomyocyte-specific transduction of IGFII(Y27L) via adeno-associated virus 2 (AAV2) to evaluate its effects on cardiac hypertrophy. Interestingly, it was observed that the activation of IGF-IIR signaling through IGFII(Y27L) induces significant hypertrophy of the myocardium and increased cardiac apoptosis and fibrosis. Moreover, we found that Leu(27)IGF-II significantly induced calcineurin and CaMKII expression. Furthermore and importantly, the combinatorial treatment with CaMKII and calcineurin inhibitors significantly alleviates IGF-IIR-induced hypertrophic responses. Thus, it could be envisaged that the inhibition of IGF-IIR may serve as a promising candidate for attenuating maladaptive hypertrophy. Both calcineurin and CaMKII could be valuable targets for developing treatment strategies against hypertension-induced cardiomyopathies.
Epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM), which is a transmembrane glycoprotein, is related to tumor progression. We demonstrated that EpCAM plays important roles in proliferation, apoptosis, and metastasis during breast cancer (BC) progression. But the role of N-glycosylation in EpCAM in tumor aggressiveness is not clear. Here, we evaluated the role of N-glycosylation of EpCAM in stemness and epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) characteristics. EpCAM overexpression increases the expression of stemness markers (NANOG?SOX2, and OCT4) and EMT markers (N-cadherin and vimentin) under the condition of hypoxia in BC. Knockdown of EpCAM and mutation of N-glycosylation of EpCAM maintained in severe hypoxia lead to a significant reduction of stemness/EMT markers. In addition, we found that N-glycosylation of EpCAM is a crucial factor during this process. This demonstrates that EpCAM has a novel regulatory role in stemness/EMT dependence of hypoxia-inducible factor 1-alpha via regulating nuclear factor kappa B in BC cells. Hence, our study reveals EpCAM glycosylation modification as a new regulator of stemness/EMT under hypoxic in BC and points out EpCAM as a potential therapeutic target.
Liver regeneration involves not only hepatocyte replication but progenitor aggregation and scarring. Partial hepatectomy (PH), an established model for liver regeneration, reactivates transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) signaling. Hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) are primarily responding cells for TGF-beta and resident in stem cell niche. In the current study, PH mice were treated with SB-431542, an inhibitor of TGF-beta Type I receptor, aiming to address the role of TGF-beta signaling on the fate determination of HSCs during liver regeneration. After PH, control mice exhibited HSCs activation, progenitor cells accumulation, and a fraction of HSCs acquired the phenotype of hepatocyte or cholangiocyte. Blocking TGF-beta signaling delayed proliferation, impaired progenitor response, and scarring repair. In SB-431542 group, merely no HSCs were found coexpressed progenitor makers, such as SOX9 and AFP. Inhibition of TGF-beta pathway disturbed the epithelial-mesenchymal transitions and diminished the nuclear accumulation of beta-catenin as well as the expression of cytochrome P450 2E1 in HSC during liver regeneration. We identify a key role of TGF-beta signaling on promoting HSC transition, which subsequently becomes progenitor for generating liver epithelial cells after PH. This process might interact with an acknowledged stem cell function signaling, Wnt/beta-catenin.
Apoptosis is the major cause of cardiomyocyte death in myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury (MI/RI). Increasing evidence suggests that microRNAs (miRNAs) can contribute to the regulation of cardiomyocytes apoptosis by posttranscriptional modulation of gene expression networks. However, the effects of miR-327 in regulating MI/RI-induced cardiomyocytes apoptosis have not been extensively investigated. This study was performed to test whether miR-327 participate in cardiomyocytes apoptosis both in vitro and in vivo, and reveal the potential molecular mechanism of miR-327 regulated MI/RI through targeting apoptosis repressor with caspase recruitment domain (ARC). Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were subjected to MI/RI by left anterior descending coronary artery occlusion for 30 min and reperfusion for 3 hr. H9c2 cells were exposed to hypoxia for 4 hr and reoxygenation for 12 hr to mimic I/R injury. miRNA-327 recombinant adenovirus vectors were transfected into H9c2 cells for 48 hr and rats for 72 hr before H/R and MI/RI treatment, respectively. The apoptosis rate, downstream molecules of apoptotic pathway, and the target reaction between miRNA-327 and ARC were evaluated. Our results showed that miR-327 was upregulated and ARC was downregulated in the myocardial tissues of MI/RI rats and in H9c2 cells with H/R treatment. Inhibition of miR-327 decreased the expression levels of proapoptotic proteins Fas, FasL, caspase-8, Bax, cleaved caspase-9, cleaved caspase-3, and the release of cytochrome-C, as well as increasing the expression levels of antiapoptotic protein Bcl-2 via negative regulation of ARC both in vivo or vitro. In contrast, overexpression miR-327 showed the reverse effect. Moreover, the results of luciferase reporter assay indicated miR-327 targets ARC directly at the posttranscriptional level. Taken together, inhibition of miR-327 could attenuate cardiomyocyte apoptosis and alleviate I/R-induced myocardial injury via targeting ARC, which offers a new therapeutic strategy for MI/RI.
Prostate cancer (PCa) is one of the leading causes of cancer deaths in men. In this cancer, the stem cell transcription factor SOX2 increases during tumor progression, especially as the cancer progresses to the highly aggressive neuroendocrine-like phenotype. Other studies have shown that knockdown of RB1 and TP53 increases the expression of neuroendocrine markers, decreases the sensitivity to enzalutamide, and increases the expression of SOX2. Importantly, knockdown of SOX2 in the context of RB1 and TP53 depletion restored sensitivity to enzalutamide and reduced the expression of neuroendocrine markers. In this study, we examined whether elevating SOX2 is not only necessary, but also sufficient on its own to promote the expression of neuroendocrine markers and confer enzalutamide resistance. For this purpose, we engineered LNCaP cells for inducible overexpression of SOX2 (i-SOX2-LNCaP). As shown previously for other tumor cell types, inducible elevation of SOX2 in i-SOX2-LNCaP inhibited cell proliferation. SOX2 elevation also increased the expression of several neuroendocrine markers, including several neuropeptides and synaptophysin. However, SOX2 elevation did not decrease the sensitivity of i-SOX2-LNCaP cells to enzalutamide, which indicates that elevating SOX2 on its own is not sufficient to confer enzalutamide resistance. Furthermore, knocking down SOX2 in C4-2B cells, a derivative of LNCaP cells which is far less sensitive to enzalutamide and which expresses much higher levels of SOX2 than LNCaP cells, did not alter the growth response to this antiandrogen. Thus, our studies indicate that NE marker expression can increase independently of the sensitivity to enzalutamide.
The aim of this study was to explore whether rhein could enhance the effects of pemetrexed (PTX) on the therapy of non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and to clarify the associated molecular mechanism. Our study shows that rhein in combination with PTX could obviously increase the systemic exposure of PTX in rats, which would be mediated by the inhibition of organic anion transporters (OATs). Furthermore, the toxicity of PTX was significantly raised by rhein in A549 cells in a concentration-dependent manner. Concomitant administration of rhein and PTX-induced cell apoptosis compared with PTX alone in flow cytometry assays, which was further validated by the protein expressions of the apoptotic markers B-cell lymphoma-2/Bcl-2-associated x (Bcl-2/Bax) and Cleaved-Caspase3 (Cl-Caspase3). Meanwhile, the results of monodansylcadaverine (MDC) dyeing experiments showed that PTX-induced autophagy could be enhanced by combination therapy with rhein in A549 cells. Western blot analysis indicated that the synergistic effect of rhein on PTX-mediated autophagy may be interrelated to PI3K-AKT-mTOR pathway inhibition and to the enhancement of p-AMPK and light chain 3-II (LC3-II) protein levels. From these findings, it could be surmised that rhein enhanced the antitumor activity of PTX through influencing autophagy and apoptosis by modulating the PI3K-AKT-mTOR pathway and Bcl-2 family of proteins in A549 cells. Our findings demonstrated that the potential application of rhein as a candidate drug in combination with PTX is promising for treatment of the human lung cancer.
Papillary thyroid cancer (PTC) accounts for 80% of all thyroid cancers and seriously impacts the quality of people's lives. Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) play an important role in PTC. In previous studies, thousands of lncRNAs were screened to study their potential relationships with PTC. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of RPL34-AS1 in PTC and to explore its potential mechanisms. Bioinformatic analyses were performed to characterize the possible function and biological features of RPL34-AS1. Apoptosis, proliferation, and invasion were detected to assess the effect of RPL34-AS1. Cell proliferation was measured using a Cell Counting Kit-8 assay. Western blot analysis was used to assess the apoptosis proteins Bax and Bcl-2. Cell invasion was measured using a Transwell assay. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) analysis was performed to examine RPL34-AS1, miR-3663-3P, and RGS4 expression. Dual-luciferase assay was performed to assess the binding of miR-3663-3P by RPL34-AS1. RIP experiment was used to verify the combination between miR-3663-3p and RGS4. We found that overexpression of RPL34-AS1 could inhibit proliferation and invasion while promoting apoptosis in PTC cell lines. Moreover, RPL34-AS1 could also competitively bind miR-3663-3p and exert its function by regulating the miR-3663-3p/RGS4 in PTC cell lines. We found a previously uncharacterized lncRNA, RPL34-AS1, and studied its function and mechanism in PTC. Our research will provide new insights into PTC and new clues for its clinical treatment.