MATERIALS AND METHODS: GLC-14, GLC-16 and GLC-19 SCLC cell lines derived from one patient, representing increasing progressive stages of disease were used. CSC marker expressions was determined by RT-qPCR and western blotting analyses, and heterogeneity was studied by CSC marker expression by immunofluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry. Colony formation assays were used to assess stem cell properties and therapy sensitivity.
RESULTS: Increasing expression of stem cell markers MYC, SOX2 and particularly CD44 were found in association with advancing disease. Single and overlapping expression of these markers indicated the presence of different CSC populations. The accumulation of more homogeneous double- and triple-positive CSC populations evolved with disease progression. Functional characterization of CSC properties affirmed higher proficiency of colony forming ability and increased resistance to γ-irradiation in GLC-16 and GLC-19 compared to GLC-14. GLC-19 colony formation was significantly inhibited by a human anti-CD44 antibody.
CONCLUSION: The progressive increase of MYC, SOX2 and particularly CD44 expression that was accompanied with enhanced colony forming capacity and resistance in the in vitro GLC disease progression model, supports the potential clinical relevance of CSC populations in malignancy and disease relapse of SCLC.
DESIGN: Phase contrast microscope, acridine orange/propidium iodide (AO/PI) analysis of cells under fluorescence microscope, annexin-V flow-cytometry, DNA fragmentation, mitochondrial membrane potential, and caspase 3/7, 8 and 9 assays were performed. In vivo study, the rats were given 4NQO in their drinking water. The tongue was subjected to histopathological study to evaluate the incidence of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC).
RESULTS: DCBME showed cytotoxic effect on H103 cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Furthermore, DCBME showed low cytotoxic effect on a normal cell line. In H103 cells, it caused cell morphology changes, S and G2/M-phase cell cycle arrest, significant reduction of cell migration and induced apoptosis through the intrinsic (mitochondrial) pathway. The incidence of SCC was 85.7% in the induced cancer and vehicle groups while in rats treated with DCBME at 100, 500 and 1000 mg/kg was 57.1%, 28.6% and 14.3%, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: (DCBME)-apoptosis induction reported in this work can be exploited as a potential antitumor agent with applications in medicinal treatments of tongue SCC.