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PLoS One. 2012;7(6):e39540. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0039540. Epub 2012 Jun 25.

Blocking Fibroblast Growth Factor receptor signaling inhibits tumor growth, lymphangiogenesis, and metastasis.

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  • 1Laboratoire de l'Angiogenèse et du Microenvironement des Cancers, Université de Bordeaux, Talence, France.

Abstract

Fibroblast Growth Factor receptor (FGFR) activity plays crucial roles in tumor growth and patient survival. However, FGF (Fibroblast Growth Factor) signaling as a target for cancer therapy has been under-investigated compared to other receptor tyrosine kinases. Here, we studied the effect of FGFR signaling inhibition on tumor growth, metastasis and lymphangiogenesis by expressing a dominant negative FGFR (FGFR-2DN) in an orthotopic mouse mammary 66c14 carcinoma model. We show that FGFR-2DN-expressing 66c14 cells proliferate in vitro slower than controls. 66c14 tumor outgrowth and lung metastatic foci are reduced in mice implanted with FGFR-2DN-expressing cells, which also exhibited better overall survival. We found 66c14 cells in the lumen of tumor lymphatic vessels and in lymph nodes. FGFR-2DN-expressing tumors exhibited a decrease in VEGFR-3 (Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-3) or podoplanin-positive lymphatic vessels, an increase in isolated intratumoral lymphatic endothelial cells and a reduction in VEGF-C (Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-C) mRNA expression. FGFs may act in an autocrine manner as the inhibition of FGFR signaling in tumor cells suppresses VEGF-C expression in a COX-2 (cyclooxygenase-2) or HIF1-α (hypoxia-inducible factor-1 α) independent manner. FGFs may also act in a paracrine manner on tumor lymphatics by inducing expression of pro-lymphangiogenic molecules such as VEGFR-3, integrin α9, prox1 and netrin-1. Finally, in vitro lymphangiogenesis is impeded in the presence of FGFR-2DN 66c14 cells. These data confirm that both FGF and VEGF signaling are necessary for the maintenance of vascular morphogenesis and provide evidence that targeting FGFR signaling may be an interesting approach to inhibit tumor lymphangiogenesis and metastatic spread.

PMID:
22761819
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3382584
Free PMC Article
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