Versican is a large chondroitin sulphate proteoglycan produced by several tumor cell types, including high-grade gliomas. Increased expression of distinct versican isoforms in the extracellular matrix plays a role in tumor cell growth, adhesion and migration. We have recently shown that transforming growth factor (TGF-beta)2, an important modulator of glioma invasion, interacts with versican isoforms V0/V1 during malignant progression of glioma in vitro. However, the distinct subtype of versican that modulates these effects could not be specified. Here, we show that transient down-regulation of V1 by siRNA leads to a significant reduction of proliferation and migration in glioblastoma cell lines and glioblastoma progenitor cells, whereas tumor cell attachment stays unaffected. We conclude that V1 plays a predominant role in modulating central pathophysiological mechanisms as proliferation and migration in glioblastoma. Considering that TGF-beta is a master regulator of glioma pathophysiology, and that V0/1 is induced by TGF-beta2, therapeutic regulation of V1 may induce meaningful effects on glioma cell migration not only in vitro, but also in vivo.
High-grade gliomas are amongst the most deadly human tumors. Treatment results are disappointing. Still, in several trials around 20% of patients respond to therapy. To date, diagnostic strategies to identify patients that will profit from a specific therapy do not exist.
An important phenomenon observed in glioma metabolism is increased aerobic glycolysis in tumor cells, which is generally referred to as the Warburg effect. Transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta2, which we previously showed to be induced by lactic acid, is a key pathophysiological factor in glioblastoma, leading to increased invasion and severe local immunosuppression after proteolytic cleavage from its latency associated peptide. In this study we tested the hypothesis, that lactate regulates TGF-beta2 expression and glioma cell migration via induction of Thrombospondin-1 (THBS-1), a TGF-beta activating protein.
Lactate dehydrogenase type A (LDH-A) is a key metabolic enzyme catalyzing pyruvate into lactate and is excessively expressed by tumor cells. Transforming growth factor-beta2 (TGF-beta2) is a key regulator of invasion in high-grade gliomas, partially by inducing a mesenchymal phenotype and by remodeling the extracellular matrix. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that lactate metabolism regulates TGF-beta2-mediated migration of glioma cells. Small interfering RNA directed against LDH-A (siLDH-A) suppresses, and lactate induces, TGF-beta2 expression, suggesting that lactate metabolism is strongly associated with TGF-beta2 in glioma cells. Here we demonstrate that TGF-beta2 enhances expression, secretion, and activation of matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) and induces the cell surface expression of integrin alpha(v)beta(3) receptors. In spheroid and Boyden chamber migration assays, inhibition of MMP-2 activity using a specific MMP-2 inhibitor and blocking of integrin alpha(v)beta(3) abrogated glioma cell migration stimulated by TGF-beta2. Furthermore, siLDH-A inhibited MMP2 activity, leading to inhibition of glioma migration. Taken together, we define an LDH-A-induced and TGF-beta2-coordinated regulatory cascade of transcriptional regulation of MMP-2 and integrin alpha(v)beta(3). This novel interaction between lactate metabolism and TGF-beta2 might constitute a crucial mechanism for glioma migration.
Lactate formation in highly proliferative tumors such as malignant gliomas is associated with poor survival and contributes to the suppression of local immunity. Here, we report that diclofenac used at nontoxic concentrations significantly decreased lactate production in murine glioma cells and inhibited the expression of lactate dehydrogenase-A in vitro. Lactate reduction was accompanied by a dose-dependent inhibition of cell growth and a cell cycle arrest at the G2/M checkpoint. In the presence of diclofenac, murine bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (DCs) showed enhanced IL-12, but decreased IL-10 secretion on Toll-like receptor stimulation with R848 that correlated with reduced lactate levels in the glioma cell coculture and a blockade of signal transducers and activators of transcription 3 phosphorylation. In vivo, diclofenac treatment diminished intratumoral lactate levels and resulted in a significant delay of glioma growth. Ex vivo analyses revealed that tumor-infiltrating DCs regained their capacity to produce IL-12 on R848 stimulation. Moreover, diclofenac reduced the number of tumor-infiltrating regulatory T cells and impaired the upregulation of the Treg activation marker CD25. Nevertheless, a single intratumoral injection of R848 combined with diclofenac failed to induce an additional survival advantage in glioma-bearing mice. Further analyses illustrated that the presence of diclofenac during T-cell activation compromised INF-? production and T-cell proliferation, indicating that immunotherapeutic approaches have to be carefully timed when combined with diclofenac. In summary, diclofenac appears as an attractive agent for targeting lactate production and counteracting local immune suppression in malignant gliomas.
Immune cell infiltration varies widely between different glioblastomas (GBMs). The underlying mechanism, however, remains unknown. Here we show that TGF-beta regulates proliferation, migration, and tumorigenicity of mesenchymal GBM cancer stem cells (CSCs) in vivo and in vitro. In contrast, proneural GBM CSCs resisted TGF-beta due to TGFR2 deficiency. In vivo, a substantially increased infiltration of immune cells was observed in mesenchymal GBMs, while immune infiltrates were rare in proneural GBMs. On a functional level, proneural CSC lines caused a significantly stronger TGF-beta-dependent suppression of NKG2D expression on CD8(+) T and NK cells in vitro providing a mechanistic explanation for the reduced immune infiltration of proneural GBMs. Thus, the molecular subtype of CSCs TGF-beta-dependently contributes to the degree of immune infiltration.
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