Density-Dependent Regulation of Glioma Cell Proliferation and Invasion Mediated by miR-9

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Cancer Microenviron


The phenotypic axis of invasion and proliferation in malignant glioma cells is a well-documented phenomenon. Invasive glioma cells exhibit a decreased proliferation rate and a resistance to apoptosis, and invasive tumor cells dispersed in brain subsequently revert to proliferation and contribute to secondary tumor formation. One miRNA can affect dozens of mRNAs, and some miRNAs are potent oncogenes. Multiple miRNAs are implicated in glioma malignancy, and several of which have been identified to regulate tumor cell motility and division. Using rat 9 L gliosarcoma and human U87 glioblastoma cell lines, we investigated miRNAs associated with the switch between glioma cell invasion and proliferation. Using micro-dissection of 9 L glioma tumor xenografts in rat brain, we identified disparate expression of miR-9 between cells within the periphery of the primary tumor, and those comprising tumor islets within the invasive zone. Modifying miR-9 expression in in vitro assays, we report that miR-9 controls the axis of glioma cell invasion/proliferation, and that its contribution to invasion or proliferation is biphasic and dependent upon local tumor cell density. In addition, immunohistochemistry revealed elevated hypoxia inducible factor 1 alpha (HIF-1α) in the invasive zone as compared to the primary tumor periphery. We also found that hypoxia promotes miR-9 expression in glioma cells. Based upon these findings, we propose a hypothesis for the contribution of miR-9 to the dynamics glioma invasion and satellite tumor formation in brain adjacent to tumor.

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