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Cancer Res. 2018 Oct 1;78(19):5548-5560. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-17-3964. Epub 2018 Jul 31.

Canonical Wnt Signaling Remodels Lipid Metabolism in Zebrafish Hepatocytes following Ras Oncogenic Insult.

Author information

1
Key Laboratory of Metabolism and Molecular Medicine, Ministry of Education, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
2
Department of Pediatric Surgery, Guangzhou Institutes of Pediatrics, Guangzhou Women and Children's Medical Center, Guangzhou Medical University, Guangzhou, China.
3
Liver Cancer Institute, Zhongshan Hospital, Key Laboratory of Carcinogenesis and Cancer Invasion, Ministry of Education, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
4
State Key Laboratory of Surface Physics and Department of Physics, Collaborative Innovation Center of Genetics and Development, Key Laboratory of Micro & Nano Photonic Structures, Ministry of Education, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
5
Translational Medical Center for Development and Disease, Shanghai Key Laboratory of Birth Defect, Institute of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital of Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
6
Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore, Singapore.
7
Key Laboratory of Metabolism and Molecular Medicine, Ministry of Education, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai, China. wangxu2013@fudan.edu.cn.

Abstract

There is limited understanding of the effects of major oncogenic pathways and their combinatorial actions on lipid composition and transformation during hepatic tumorigenesis. Here, we report a negative correlation of Wnt/Myc activity with steatosis in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and perform in vivo functional studies using three conditional transgenic zebrafish models. Double-transgenic zebrafish larvae conditionally expressing human CTNNB1mt and zebrafish tcf7l2 or murine Myc together with krasv12 in hepatocytes led to severe hepatomegaly and significantly attenuated accumulation of lipid droplets and cell senescence triggered by krasv12 expression alone. UPLC-MS-based, nontargeted lipidomic profiling and transcriptome analyses revealed that Wnt/Myc activity promotes triacylglycerol to phospholipid transformation and increases unsaturated fatty acyl groups in phospholipids in a Ras-dependent manner. Small-scale screenings suggested that supplementation of certain free fatty acids (FA) or inhibition of FA desaturation significantly represses hepatic hyperplasia of double-transgenic larvae and proliferation of three human HCC cells with and without sorafenib. Together, our studies reveal novel Ras-dependent functions of Wnt signaling in remodeling the lipid metabolism of cancerous hepatocytes in zebrafish and identify the SCD inhibitor MK8245 as a candidate drug for therapeutic intervention.Significance: These findings identify FA desaturation as a significant downstream therapeutic target for antagonizing the combinatorial effects of Wnt and Ras signaling pathways in hepatocellular carcinoma.Graphical Abstract: http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/canres/78/19/5548/F1.large.jpg Cancer Res; 78(19); 5548-60. ©2018 AACR.

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