Mesenchymal cell interaction with ovarian cancer cells triggers pro-metastatic properties
Mesenchymal Stromal Cells
Tumor microenvironment is an important actor of ovarian cancer progression but the relations between mesenchymal cells and ovarian cancer cells remain unclear. The objective of this study was to determine the ovarian cancer cells' biological modifications induced by mesenchymal cells. To address this issue, we used two different ovarian cancer cell lines (NIH:OVCAR3 and SKOV3) and co-cultured them with mesenchymal cells. Upon co-culture the different cell populations were sorted to study their transcriptome and biological properties. Transcriptomic analysis revealed three biological-function gene clusters were enriched upon contact with mesenchymal cells. These were related to the increase of metastatic abilities (adhesion, migration and invasion), proliferation and chemoresistance in vitro. Therefore, contact with the mesenchymal cell niche could increase metastatic initiation and expansion through modification of cancer cells. Taken together these findings suggest that pathways involved in hetero-cellular interaction may be targeted to disrupt the acquired pro-metastatic profile.