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Mol Cancer Res. 2019 Sep;17(9):1893-1909. doi: 10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-18-1191. Epub 2019 Jun 25.

Cigarette Smoke Induces Metabolic Reprogramming of the Tumor Stroma in Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Oncology, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
2
Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
3
Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
4
Department of Pathology, Anatomy and Cell Biology, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
5
Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. ubaldo.martinez-outschoorn@jefferson.edu joseph.curry@jefferson.edu.
6
Department of Medical Oncology, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. ubaldo.martinez-outschoorn@jefferson.edu joseph.curry@jefferson.edu.

Abstract

Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is comprised of metabolically linked distinct compartments. Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAF) and nonproliferative carcinoma cells display a glycolytic metabolism, while proliferative carcinoma cells rely on mitochondrial oxidative metabolism fueled by the catabolites provided by the adjacent CAFs. Metabolic coupling between these reprogrammed compartments contributes to HNSCC aggressiveness. In this study, we examined the effects of cigarette smoke-exposed CAFs on metabolic coupling and tumor aggressiveness of HNSCC. Cigarette smoke (CS) extract was generated by dissolving cigarette smoke in growth media. Fibroblasts were cultured in CS or control media. HNSCC cells were cocultured in vitro and coinjected in vivo with CS or control fibroblasts. We found that CS induced oxidative stress, glycolytic flux and MCT4 expression, and senescence in fibroblasts. MCT4 upregulation was critical for fibroblast viability under CS conditions. The effects of CS on fibroblasts were abrogated by antioxidant treatment. Coculture of carcinoma cells with CS fibroblasts induced metabolic coupling with upregulation of the marker of glycolysis MCT4 in fibroblasts and markers of mitochondrial metabolism MCT1 and TOMM20 in carcinoma cells. CS fibroblasts increased CCL2 expression and macrophage migration. Coculture with CS fibroblasts also increased two features of carcinoma cell aggressiveness: resistance to cell death and enhanced cell migration. Coinjection of carcinoma cells with CS fibroblasts generated larger tumors with reduced apoptosis than control coinjections, and upregulation of MCT4 by CS exposure was a driver of these effects. We demonstrate that a tumor microenvironment exposed to CS is sufficient to modulate metabolism and cancer aggressiveness in HNSCC. IMPLICATIONS: CS shifts cancer stroma toward glycolysis and induces head and neck cancer aggressiveness with a mitochondrial profile linked by catabolite transporters and oxidative stress. VISUAL OVERVIEW: http://mcr.aacrjournals.org/content/molcanres/17/9/1893/F1.large.jpg.

PMID:
31239287
PMCID:
PMC6726526
[Available on 2020-03-01]
DOI:
10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-18-1191

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