Knockdown of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α accelerates peritoneal dissemination via the upregulation of MMP-1 expression in gastric cancer cell lines

Masatsugu Hiraki, Yoshihiko Kitajima, Keita Kai, Jun Nakamura, Kazuyoshi Hashiguchi, Hirokazu Noshiro, Kohji Miyazaki
Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine 2012, 4 (3): 355-362
This study was performed to clarify the role of hypoxia-inducible factor-1 α (HIF-1α) in the development of peritoneal dissemination in a xenograft mouse model of gastric cancer. HIF-1α knockdown (KD) and control (SC) gastric cancer cells, which were established using the MKN45 and MKN74 cell lines, were studied. The two paired cell lines were directly inoculated into the peritoneal cavity of nude mice. The number and the weight of disseminated nodules were compared between tumors generated from the KD and SC cells. In addition, the molecular mechanism was addressed through analysis of the expression levels of metastasis-related genes. The MKN45-KD cell line demonstrated significantly greater numbers of disseminated nodules and formed a larger tumor mass than the MKN45-SC cell line (p<0.05). MKN74-KD cells also tended to induce a greater number of nodules and to produce those with a heavier weight than the SC cells. An in vitro adhesion assay revealed differing results regarding the adhesion activity to extracellular matrix and monolayer mesothelium cells of the gastric cancer cells derived from the various parental cells. However, the expression of MMP-1 mRNA in the disseminated nodules was significantly increased in the KD cells compared to the SC cells derived from the two parental cell lines (p<0.01). An immunohisto-chemical study further demonstrated that there was stronger staining for MMP-1 in the MKN74-KD in comparison to MKN74-SC cells. Loss of HIF-1α may contribute to the development of aggressive peritoneal dissemination via the upregulation of MMP-1 in gastric cancer cells.

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