Chronic exposure to FGF2 converts iPSCs into cancer stem cells with an enhanced integrin/focal adhesion/PI3K/AKT axis

Mona Sheta, Ghmkin Hassan, Said M. Afify, Sadia Monzur, Kazuki Kumon, Hagar A. Abu Quora, Mahmoud Farahat, Maram H. Zahra, Xiaoying Fu, Akimasa Seno, Masaharu Seno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We previously demonstrated the conversion of normal stem cells, including induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), into cancer stem cells (CSCs) without genetic manipulation. Herein, we designed a meta-analysis to assess gene expression profiles in different breast cancer cell lines focusing on the secretory factors responsible for conversion. As a result, fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2) was found to be the best candidate in T47D and BT549 cells, of which conditioned medium was previously successful in inducing CSCs. When treated with 3.1 μg/ml FGF2, mouse iPSCs not only maintained survival without LIF for three weeks but also acquired growth ability independent of FGF2. The resultant cells exhibited expression of stemness and cancer stem cell markers, sphere-forming ability, differentiation, and tumorigenicity with malignancy. The primary cultures of the tumor confirmed the signatures of CSCs with two different phenotypes with or without GFP expression under control of the Nanog promoter. Bioinformatic analysis of gene expression profiles suggested constitutive autocrine activation of the FGF receptor, integrins, focal adhesions, and PI3K/AKT pathways. FGF2 could potently initiate cancer as a component of the inflammatory microenvironment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)142-154
Number of pages13
JournalCancer Letters
Volume521
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 28 2021

Keywords

  • Cancer initiation
  • Cancer stem cells
  • Chronic inflammation
  • FGF2
  • iPSCs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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