Effects of IGF-1 on Proliferation, Angiogenesis, Tumor Stem Cell Populations and Activation of AKT and Hedgehog Pathways in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma
(1) Background: Activation of the PI3K-AKT pathway controls most hallmarks of cancer, and the hedgehog (HH) pathway has been associated with oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) development and progression. We hypothesized that fibroblast-derived insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) acts in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) cells, leading to the non-canonical activation of the HH pathway, maintaining AKT activity and promoting tumor aggressiveness. (2) Methods: Primary fibroblasts (MF1) were genetically engineered for IGF-1 overexpression (MF1-IGF1) and CRISPR/Cas9-mediated IGF1R silencing was performed in SCC-4 cells. SCC-4 cells were co-cultured with fibroblasts or incubated with fibroblast conditioned medium (CM) or rIGF-1 for functional assays and the evaluation of AKT and HH pathways. (3) Results: Gene expression analysis confirmed IGF-1 overexpression in MF1-IGF1 and the absence of IGF-1 expression in SCC-4, while elevated IGF1R expression was detected. IGF1R silencing was associated with decreased survival of SCC-4 cells. Ihh was expressed in both MF1 and MF1-IGF1, and increased levels of GLI1 mRNA were observed in SCC-4 after stimulation with CM-MF1. Activation of both PI3K-AKT and the HH pathway (GLI1, Ihh and SMO) were identified in SCC-4 cells cultured in the presence of MF1-IGF1-CM. rIGF-1 promoted tumor cell proliferation, migration, invasion and tumorsphere formation, whereas CM-MF1 significantly stimulated angiogenesis. (4) Conclusions: IGF-1 exerts pro-tumorigenic effects by stimulating SCC-4 cell proliferation, migration, invasion and stemness. AKT and HH pathways were activated by IGF-1 in SCC-4, reinforcing its influence on the regulation of these signaling pathways.
|Authors||Ferreira Mendes JM, de Faro Valverde L, Torres Andion Vidal M, Paredes BD, Coelho P, Allahdadi KJ, Coletta RD, Souza BSF, Rocha CAG|
|Journal||International journal of molecular sciences|
|Publication Date||2020 Sep 5;21(18)|