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UNLABELLED - Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a potentially curative therapy for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, incomplete RFA can induce accelerated invasive growth at the periphery. The mechanisms underlying the RFA-induced tumor promotion remain largely unexplored. Three human HCC cell lines were exposed to 45°C-55°C for 10 minutes, simulating the marginal zone of RFA treatment. At 5-12 days post-treatment cell proliferation, parameters of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), and activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases were analyzed. Livers from patients with viral hepatitis without and with HCC (n = 114) were examined to confirm the relevance of altered kinase patterns. In vivo tumorigenic potential of heat-treated versus untreated HCC cells was studied in nude mice. Heating to 55°C killed all HCC cells, whereas 65%-85% of cells survived 48°C-50°C, developing spindle-like morphology and expressing CD133, cytokeratin (CK)7, CK19, procollagen-α1(I), and Snail at day 5 after heat exposure, which returned to baseline at day 12. Heat-exposed HCC cells showed enhanced proliferation and prominent activation of p46-Shc (Src homology and collagen) and downstream extracellular signal-related kinase (Erk)1/2. In patients, Shc expression correlated with malignant potential and overall survival. Blocking Erk1/2 reduced proliferation and EMT-like changes of heat-treated HCC cells. Implantation of heat-exposed HEPG2 cells into nude mice induced significantly larger, more aggressive tumors than untreated cells.
CONCLUSIONS - Sublethal heat treatment skews HCC cells toward EMT and transforms them to a progenitor-like, highly proliferative cellular phenotype in vitro and in vivo, which is driven significantly by p46Shc-Erk1/2. Suboptimal RFA accelerates HCC growth and spread by transiently inducing an EMT-like, more aggressive cellular phenotype.
© 2013 by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.
Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability in the U.S. and is now recognized as a global epidemic. There are currently no FDA-approved drugs to block the cell death that results from oxygen and glucose deprivation. This void in clinical medicine has sparked an intense interest in understanding endogenous cellular protective pathways that might be exploited for therapeutic development. The work highlighted here describes the critical role between redox tone and energetic stress signaling in mediating mitophagy and determining neuronal cell fate following acute oxygen glucose deprivation.
Ischemic preconditioning is a phenomenon in which low-level stressful stimuli upregulate endogenous defensive programs, resulting in subsequent resistance to otherwise lethal injuries. We previously observed that signal transduction systems typically associated with neurodegeneration such as caspase activation are requisite events for the expression of tolerance and induction of HSP70. In this work, we sought to determine the extent and duration of oxidative and energetic dysfunction as well as the role of effector kinases on metabolic function in preconditioned cells. Using an in vitro neuronal culture model, we observed a robust increase in Raf and p66(Shc) activation within 1 h of preconditioning. Total ATP content decreased by 25% 3 h after preconditioning but returned to baseline by 24 h. Use of a free radical spin trap or p66(shc) inhibitor increased ATP content whereas a Raf inhibitor had no effect. Phosphorylated p66(shc) rapidly relocalized to the mitochondria and in the absence of activated p66(shc), autophagic processing increased. The constitutively expressed chaperone HSC70 relocalized to autophagosomes. Preconditioned cells experience significant total oxidative stress measured by F(2)-isoprostanes and neuronal stress evaluated by F(4)-neuroprostane measurement. Neuroprostane levels were enhanced in the presence of Shc inhibitors. Finally, we found that inhibiting either p66(shc) or Raf blocked neuroprotection afforded by preconditioning as well as upregulation of HSP70, suggesting both kinases are critical for preconditioning but function in fundamentally different ways. This is the first work to demonstrate the essential role of p66(shc) in mediating requisite mitochondrial and energetic compensation after preconditioning and suggests a mechanism by which protein and organelle damage mediated by ROS can increase HSP70.
Oxidative stress and subsequent lipid peroxidation are involved in the pathogenesis of numerous neurodegenerative conditions, including stroke. Cyclopentenone isoprostanes (IsoPs) are novel electrophilic lipid peroxidation products formed under conditions of oxidative stress via the isoprostane pathway. These cyclopentenone IsoPs are isomeric to highly bioactive cyclopentenone prostaglandins, yet it has not been determined if these products are biologically active or are formed in the brain. Here we demonstrate that the major cyclopentenone IsoP isomer 15-A2t-IsoP potently induces apoptosis in neuronal cultures at submicromolar concentrations. We present a model in which 15-A2t-IsoP induced neuronal apoptosis involves initial depletion of glutathione and enhanced production of reactive oxygen species, followed by 12-lipoxygenase activation and phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 and the redox sensitive adaptor protein p66shc, which results in caspase-3 cleavage. 15-A2t-IsoP application also dramatically potentiates oxidative glutamate toxicity at concentrations as low as 100 nm, demonstrating the functional importance of these molecules in neurodegeneration. Finally, we employ novel mass spectrometric methods to show that cyclopentenone IsoPs are formed abundantly in brain tissue under conditions of oxidative stress. Together these findings suggest that cyclopentenone IsoPs may contribute to neuronal death caused by oxidative insults, and that their activity should perhaps be addressed when designing neuroprotective therapies.