Background The impact of the absence of gravity on cancer cells is of great interest, especially today that space is more accessible than ever. Despite advances, few and contradictory data are available mainly due to different setup, experimental design and time point analyzed. Methods Exploiting a Random Positioning Machine, we dissected the effects of long-term exposure to simulated microgravity (SMG) on pancreatic cancer cells performing proteomic, lipidomic and transcriptomic analysis at 1, 7 and 9 days. Results Our results indicated that SMG affects cellular morphology through a time-dependent activation of Actin-based motility via Rho and Cdc42 pathways leading to actin rearrangement, formation of 3D spheroids and enhancement of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. Bioinformatic analysis reveals that SMG may activates ERK5/NF-kappa B/IL-8 axis that triggers the expansion of cancer stem cells with an increased migratory capability. These cells, to remediate energy stress and apoptosis activation, undergo a metabolic reprogramming orchestrated by HIF-1 alpha and PI3K/Akt pathways that upregulate glycolysis and impair beta-oxidation, suggesting a de novo synthesis of triglycerides for the membrane lipid bilayer formation. Conclusions SMG revolutionizes tumor cell behavior and metabolism leading to the acquisition of an aggressive and metastatic stem cell-like phenotype. These results dissect the time-dependent cellular alterations induced by SMG and pave the base for altered gravity conditions as new anti-cancer technology.

Prolonged exposure to simulated microgravity promotes stemness impairing morphological, metabolic and migratory profile of pancreatic cancer cells: a comprehensive proteomic, lipidomic and transcriptomic analysis

Masini, Maria Angela;Robotti, Elisa;Andreoli, Francesca;Tavella, Sara;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Background The impact of the absence of gravity on cancer cells is of great interest, especially today that space is more accessible than ever. Despite advances, few and contradictory data are available mainly due to different setup, experimental design and time point analyzed. Methods Exploiting a Random Positioning Machine, we dissected the effects of long-term exposure to simulated microgravity (SMG) on pancreatic cancer cells performing proteomic, lipidomic and transcriptomic analysis at 1, 7 and 9 days. Results Our results indicated that SMG affects cellular morphology through a time-dependent activation of Actin-based motility via Rho and Cdc42 pathways leading to actin rearrangement, formation of 3D spheroids and enhancement of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. Bioinformatic analysis reveals that SMG may activates ERK5/NF-kappa B/IL-8 axis that triggers the expansion of cancer stem cells with an increased migratory capability. These cells, to remediate energy stress and apoptosis activation, undergo a metabolic reprogramming orchestrated by HIF-1 alpha and PI3K/Akt pathways that upregulate glycolysis and impair beta-oxidation, suggesting a de novo synthesis of triglycerides for the membrane lipid bilayer formation. Conclusions SMG revolutionizes tumor cell behavior and metabolism leading to the acquisition of an aggressive and metastatic stem cell-like phenotype. These results dissect the time-dependent cellular alterations induced by SMG and pave the base for altered gravity conditions as new anti-cancer technology.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11567/1109320
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