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postgraduate thesis: Identification and characterization of tumor suppressor gene and cancer stemness gene in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma

TitleIdentification and characterization of tumor suppressor gene and cancer stemness gene in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma
Authors
Issue Date2015
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Zhang, L. [張麗儀]. (2015). Identification and characterization of tumor suppressor gene and cancer stemness gene in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5387999
AbstractEsophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), the major histological subtype of esophageal cancer, is one of the most common malignancies with poor prognosis in the world. Despite continued development of diagnosis and treatment, ESCC remains the sixth leading cause of cancer death worldwide. Current treatment regimens in ESCC are often characterized by ineffectiveness and poor selectivity. Therapeutic methods directed at cancer-associated genes or cancer stem cells (CSCs) may be effective approaches to cure this deadly cancer. Therefore, this study aims to identify specific ESCC-related genes and cancer stemness genes which help us to develop new targeted agents to achieving objective, long-lasting therapeutic responses in ESCC. To obtain an accurate overview of genetic changes occurring in ESCC patients, our group performed microarray-based mRNA expression profiling and high-throughout transcriptome sequencing (RNA-Seq) to compare differentially expressed genes between ESCC tumors and their corresponding non-tumorous tissues. Prostate stem cell antigen (PSCA) was considered to be a candidate of primary interest due to significantly reduced expression in both microarray and RNA-Seq data. In this study, we examined the role of PSCA on the pathogenesis of esophageal cancer. Our results showed that PSCA was frequently down-regulated in ESCC. Its expression was negatively regulated by transcription factor SOX5. Also, we provided evidence that down-regulation of PSCA was associated with poor clinical outcomes of patients with ESCC. Both in vitro and in vivo assays revealed that PSCA could arrest cell cycle progression and promote differentiation. To further elucidate the mechanism involved in biological function of PSCA, we performed co-immunoprecipitation and mass spectroscopy to identify proteins that associate with PSCA. This study found that RB1CC1, a key signaling node to regulate cellular proliferation and differentiation, interacted specifically with PSCA both in vitro and in vivo. Binding of PSCA and RB1CC1 in cytoplasm resulted in stabilization and translocation of RB1CC1 into nucleus and then further regulates the crucial cell cycle and differentiation genes. Furthermore, in order to identify the cancer stemness genes specifically expressed in CSCs of ESCC, we utilized gene expression analysis to profile 34 stemness-associated genes in ESCC specimens. Developmental pluripotency associated 4 (DPPA4), a well known pluripotent marker of stem cell, was considered as the best candidate. Our following histopathological study demonstrated that DPPA4 rigorously marked the rare CSCs, in contrast to core stemness factors (OCT4 and SOX2) and previous reported CSC markers (CD90 and CD44), which expressed in a large population of cancer cells. Moreover, the expression of DPPA4 was also found to have prognostic value in ESCC, as the appearance of DPPA4+ cells was significantly associated with poor differentiation, advanced stage and higher incidences of lymph node metastasis. Finally, our functional studies showed that ESCC cells expressing exogenous DPPA4 conferred an enhanced ability to initiate tumor, self-renew, resist chemotherapy and metastasize through lymphatic system. In summary, this study provide evidence indicating that novel tumor suppressor gene PSCA and cancer stemness gene DPPA4 may contribute to the development and progression of ESCC. Additionally, they may serve as potential targets for development of effective therapeutic strategies.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
SubjectStem cells
Antioncogenes
Esophagus - Cancer - Treatment
Dept/ProgramClinical Oncology
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/208563

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorZhang, Liyi-
dc.contributor.author張麗儀-
dc.date.accessioned2015-03-13T01:43:55Z-
dc.date.available2015-03-13T01:43:55Z-
dc.date.issued2015-
dc.identifier.citationZhang, L. [張麗儀]. (2015). Identification and characterization of tumor suppressor gene and cancer stemness gene in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5387999-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/208563-
dc.description.abstractEsophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), the major histological subtype of esophageal cancer, is one of the most common malignancies with poor prognosis in the world. Despite continued development of diagnosis and treatment, ESCC remains the sixth leading cause of cancer death worldwide. Current treatment regimens in ESCC are often characterized by ineffectiveness and poor selectivity. Therapeutic methods directed at cancer-associated genes or cancer stem cells (CSCs) may be effective approaches to cure this deadly cancer. Therefore, this study aims to identify specific ESCC-related genes and cancer stemness genes which help us to develop new targeted agents to achieving objective, long-lasting therapeutic responses in ESCC. To obtain an accurate overview of genetic changes occurring in ESCC patients, our group performed microarray-based mRNA expression profiling and high-throughout transcriptome sequencing (RNA-Seq) to compare differentially expressed genes between ESCC tumors and their corresponding non-tumorous tissues. Prostate stem cell antigen (PSCA) was considered to be a candidate of primary interest due to significantly reduced expression in both microarray and RNA-Seq data. In this study, we examined the role of PSCA on the pathogenesis of esophageal cancer. Our results showed that PSCA was frequently down-regulated in ESCC. Its expression was negatively regulated by transcription factor SOX5. Also, we provided evidence that down-regulation of PSCA was associated with poor clinical outcomes of patients with ESCC. Both in vitro and in vivo assays revealed that PSCA could arrest cell cycle progression and promote differentiation. To further elucidate the mechanism involved in biological function of PSCA, we performed co-immunoprecipitation and mass spectroscopy to identify proteins that associate with PSCA. This study found that RB1CC1, a key signaling node to regulate cellular proliferation and differentiation, interacted specifically with PSCA both in vitro and in vivo. Binding of PSCA and RB1CC1 in cytoplasm resulted in stabilization and translocation of RB1CC1 into nucleus and then further regulates the crucial cell cycle and differentiation genes. Furthermore, in order to identify the cancer stemness genes specifically expressed in CSCs of ESCC, we utilized gene expression analysis to profile 34 stemness-associated genes in ESCC specimens. Developmental pluripotency associated 4 (DPPA4), a well known pluripotent marker of stem cell, was considered as the best candidate. Our following histopathological study demonstrated that DPPA4 rigorously marked the rare CSCs, in contrast to core stemness factors (OCT4 and SOX2) and previous reported CSC markers (CD90 and CD44), which expressed in a large population of cancer cells. Moreover, the expression of DPPA4 was also found to have prognostic value in ESCC, as the appearance of DPPA4+ cells was significantly associated with poor differentiation, advanced stage and higher incidences of lymph node metastasis. Finally, our functional studies showed that ESCC cells expressing exogenous DPPA4 conferred an enhanced ability to initiate tumor, self-renew, resist chemotherapy and metastasize through lymphatic system. In summary, this study provide evidence indicating that novel tumor suppressor gene PSCA and cancer stemness gene DPPA4 may contribute to the development and progression of ESCC. Additionally, they may serve as potential targets for development of effective therapeutic strategies.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subject.lcshStem cells-
dc.subject.lcshAntioncogenes-
dc.subject.lcshEsophagus - Cancer - Treatment-
dc.titleIdentification and characterization of tumor suppressor gene and cancer stemness gene in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb5387999-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineClinical Oncology-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.5353/th_b5387999-

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