bims-instec Biomed News
on Intestinal stem cells and chemoresistance in colon cancer and intestinal regeneration
Issue of 2022‒10‒09
seventeen papers selected by
Maria-Virginia Giolito
Free University of Brussels

  1. Anat Rec (Hoboken). 2022 Oct 05.
      The effect of Western diets in the gastrointestinal system is largely mediated by their ability to promote alterations in the immunity and physiology of the intestinal epithelium, and to affect the composition of the commensal microbiota. To investigate the response of the colonic epithelium to high-fat/high-cholesterol diets (HFHCDs), we evaluated the synthesis of host defense factors involved in the maintenance of the colonic homeostasis. C57BL/6 mice were fed an HFHCD for 3 weeks and their colons were evaluated for histopathology, gene expression, and microbiota composition. In addition, intestinal permeability and susceptibility to Citrobacter rodentium were also studied. HFHCD caused colonic hyperplasia, loss of goblet cells, thinning of the mucus layer, moderate changes in the composition of the intestinal microbiota, and an increase in intestinal permeability. Gene expression analyses revealed significant drops in the transcript levels of Muc1, Muc2, Agr2, Atoh1, Spdef, Ang4, Camp, Tff3, Dmbt1, Fcgbp, Saa3, and Retnlb. The goblet cell granules of HFHCD-fed mice were devoid of Relmβ and Tff3, indicating defective production of those two factors critical for intestinal epithelial defense and homeostasis. In correspondence with these defects, colonic bacteria were in close contact with, and invading the epithelium. Fecal shedding of C. rodentium showed an increased bacterial burden in HFHCD-fed animals accompanied by increased epithelial damage. Collectively, our results show that HFHCD perturbs the synthesis of colonic host defense factors, which associate with alterations in the commensal microbiota, the integrity of the intestinal barrier, and the host's susceptibility to enteric infections.
    Keywords:  C. rodentium colitis; colonic host defense peptides; epithelial damage; goblet cells; high-fat/high cholesterol diets; intestinal permeability; mucus layer
  2. Nature. 2022 Oct 05.
      Loss of Paneth cells and their antimicrobial granules compromises the intestinal epithelial barrier and is associated with Crohn's disease, a major type of inflammatory bowel disease1-7. Non-classical lymphoid cells, broadly referred to as intraepithelial lymphocytes (IELs), intercalate the intestinal epithelium8,9. This anatomical position has implicated them as first-line defenders in resistance to infections, but their role in inflammatory disease pathogenesis requires clarification. The identification of mediators that coordinate crosstalk between specific IEL and epithelial subsets could provide insight into intestinal barrier mechanisms in health and disease. Here we show that the subset of IELs that express γ and δ T cell receptor subunits (γδ IELs) promotes the viability of Paneth cells deficient in the Crohn's disease susceptibility gene ATG16L1. Using an ex vivo lymphocyte-epithelium co-culture system, we identified apoptosis inhibitor 5 (API5) as a Paneth cell-protective factor secreted by γδ IELs. In the Atg16l1-mutant mouse model, viral infection induced a loss of Paneth cells and enhanced susceptibility to intestinal injury by inhibiting the secretion of API5 from γδ IELs. Therapeutic administration of recombinant API5 protected Paneth cells in vivo in mice and ex vivo in human organoids with the ATG16L1 risk allele. Thus, we identify API5 as a protective γδ IEL effector that masks genetic susceptibility to Paneth cell death.
  3. Oncoimmunology. 2022 ;11(1): 2127271
      Janus kinase Tyk2 is implicated in cancer immune surveillance, but its role in solid tumors is not well defined. We used Tyk2 knockout mice (Tyk2Δ/Δ) and mice with conditional deletion of Tyk2 in hematopoietic (Tyk2ΔHem) or intestinal epithelial cells (Tyk2ΔIEC) to assess their cell type-specific functions in chemically induced colorectal cancer. All Tyk2-deficient mouse models showed a higher tumor burden after AOM-DSS treatment compared to their corresponding wild-type controls (Tyk2+/+ and Tyk2fl/fl), demonstrating tumor-suppressive functions of Tyk2 in immune cells and epithelial cancer cells. However, specific deletion of Tyk2 in hematopoietic cells or in intestinal epithelial cells was insufficient to accelerate tumor progression, while deletion in both compartments promoted carcinoma formation. RNA-seq and proteomics revealed that tumors of Tyk2Δ/Δ and Tyk2ΔIEC mice were immunoedited in different ways with downregulated and upregulated IFNγ signatures, respectively. Accordingly, the IFNγ-regulated immune checkpoint Ido1 was downregulated in Tyk2Δ/Δ and upregulated in Tyk2ΔIEC tumors, although both showed reduced CD8+ T cell infiltration. These data suggest that Tyk2Δ/Δ tumors are Ido1-independent and poorly immunoedited while Tyk2ΔIEC tumors require Ido1 for immune evasion. Our study shows that Tyk2 prevents Ido1 expression in CRC cells and promotes CRC immune surveillance in the tumor stroma. Both of these Tyk2-dependent mechanisms must work together to prevent CRC progression.
    Keywords:  3-dioxygenase 1 Ido1; azoxymethane AOM; colitis-associated colorectal cancer; dextran sulfate salt DSS; indoleamine 2; interferon gamma
  4. World J Gastrointest Oncol. 2022 Sep 15. 14(9): 1654-1664
      Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a major cause of mortality worldwide, associated with a steadily growing prevalence. Notably, the identification of KRAS, NRAS, and BRAF mutations has markedly improved targeted CRC therapy by affording treatments directed against the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and other anti-angiogenic therapies. However, the survival benefit conferred by these therapies remains variable and difficult to predict, owing to the high level of molecular heterogeneity among patients with CRC. Although classification into consensus molecular subtypes could optimize response prediction to targeted therapies, the acquisition of resistance mutations to targeted therapy is, in part, responsible for the lack of response in some patients. However, the acquisition of such mutations can induce challenges in clinical practice. The utility of liquid biopsy to detect resistance mutations against anti-EGFR therapy has recently been described. This approach may constitute a new standard in the decision algorithm for targeted CRC therapy.
    Keywords:  Cetuximab; Colorectal neoplasms; Liquid biopsy; Panitumumab; Precision medicine
  5. Ann Clin Lab Sci. 2022 Jul;52(4): 571-579
      OBJECTIVE: The NLRP3 inflammasome plays a key role in the progression and metastasis of colorectal cancer (CRC).METHODS: Macrophages (MΦs), as an important cellular component of the tumor microenvironment (TME), highly express the NLRP3 inflammasome. Rigorous investigation of the interaction and network between macrophages and colorectal cancer may help in understanding the role of the NLRP3 inflammasome in metastatic colorectal cancer.
    RESULTS: Herein, we demonstrated that NLRP3 inflammasome activation in MΦs-CRC crosstalk markedly promotes the invasion, migration, and epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) of colorectal cancer cells in vitro. MΦs-CRC crosstalk activated the NLRP3 inflammasome to secrete the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1β. Notably, IL-1β neutralizing antibody (NA) weakened the invasion and migration promotion effects of MΦs-CRC crosstalk in vitro. Based on Spearman's rank correlation analysis, we found that the expression of NLRP3 was positively associated with the expression of the macrophage surface marker CD68 and the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1β. Clinical investigations suggested that the expression of NLRP3 in patients with colorectal cancer was positively associated with advanced AJCC stage and poor prognosis.
    CONCLUSION: This study found that the activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome in macrophages can secrete the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1β to promote the invasion and migration of colorectal cancer cells by regulating epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). This research provides a new strategy for developing the NLRP3 inflammasome as a potential therapeutic target to prevent metastatic colorectal cancer.
    Keywords:  NLRP3 inflammasome; colorectal cancer; macrophages; metastasis
  6. Nat Commun. 2022 Oct 07. 13(1): 5915
      Genome-wide mutation analyses have revealed that specific anti-cancer drugs are highly mutagenic to cancer cells, but the mutational impact of anti-cancer therapies on normal cells is not known. Here, we examine genome-wide somatic mutation patterns in 42 healthy adult stem cells (ASCs) of the colon or the liver from 14 cancer patients (mean of 3.2 ASC per donor) that received systemic chemotherapy and/or local radiotherapy. The platinum-based chemo-drug Oxaliplatin induces on average 535 ± 260 mutations in colon ASC, while 5-FU shows a complete mutagenic absence in most, but not all colon ASCs. In contrast with the colon, normal liver ASCs escape mutagenesis from systemic treatment with Oxaliplatin and 5-FU. Thus, while chemotherapies are highly effective at killing cancer cells, their systemic use also increases the mutational burden of long-lived normal stem cells responsible for tissue renewal thereby increasing the risk for developing second cancers.
  7. Gut. 2022 Oct 03. pii: gutjnl-2021-326305. [Epub ahead of print]
      OBJECTIVE: Loss-of-function mutations in genes generating reactive oxygen species (ROS), such as NOX1, are associated with IBD. Mechanisms whereby loss of ROS drive IBD are incompletely defined.DESIGN: ROS measurements and single-cell transcriptomics were performed on colonoids stratified by NOX1 genotype and TNFα stimulation. Clustering of epithelial cells from human UC (inflamed and uninflamed) scRNASeq was performed. Validation of M cell induction was performed by immunohistochemistry using UEA1 (ulex europaeus agglutin-1 lectin) and in vivo with DSS injury.
    RESULTS: TNFα induces ROS production more in NOX1-WT versus NOX1-deficient murine colonoids under a range of Wnt-mediated and Notch-mediated conditions. scRNASeq from inflamed and uninflamed human colitis versus TNFα stimulated, in vitro colonoids defines substantially shared, induced transcription factors; NOX1-deficient colonoids express substantially lower levels of STAT3 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 3), CEBPD (CCAAT enhancer-binding protein delta), DNMT1 (DNA methyltransferase) and HIF1A (hypoxia-inducible factor) baseline. Subclustering unexpectedly showed marked TNFα-mediated induction of M cells (sentinel cells overlying lymphoid aggregates) in NOX1-deficient colonoids. M cell induction by UEA1 staining is rescued with H2O2 and paraquat, defining extra- and intracellular ROS roles in maintenance of LGR5+ stem cells. DSS injury demonstrated GP2 (glycoprotein-2), basal lymphoplasmacytosis and UEA1 induction in NOX1-deficiency. Principal components analyses of M cell genes and decreased DNMT1 RNA velocity correlate with UC inflammation.
    CONCLUSIONS: NOX1 deficiency plus TNFα stimulation contribute to colitis through dysregulation of the stem cell niche and altered cell differentiation, enhancing basal lymphoplasmacytosis. Our findings prioritise ROS modulation for future therapies.
    Keywords:  IBD - genetics; epithelial cells; intestinal stem cell; ulcerative colitis
  8. J Cancer. 2022 ;13(12): 3308-3317
      Background: Since metastasis is the primary cause of death in human colorectal cancer (CRC) patients, the exact mechanism underlying CRC metastasis remains unclear. Here, we provide evidence for a unique function of HomeoboxC10 (HOXC10) in driving CRC metastasis, as well as treatment options for these subpopulation patients. Methods: Immunohistochemistry detected the expression of HOXC10 in the human CRC cohort. The function of HOXC10 in CRC metastasis was investigated using the cecum orthotopic model. Results: In CRC patients, elevated expression of HOXC10 expression was linked to lymph node metastases, distant metastasis, worse tumor differentiation, higher AJCC stage, and poor prognosis. HOXC10 is also an independent predictive predictor for CRC patients (P<0.001). HOXC10 overexpression increased the metastasis ability of MC38 cells and promoted the infiltration of MDSCs by upregulating CXCL5 at the same time. The CXCR2 inhibitor can reduce the rate of metastasis in MC38 cells by reducing MDSCs infiltration. SB225002, a CXCR2 inhibitor, and anti-programmed death-ligand 1 (anti-PD-L1) can significantly prevent CRC metastasis. Conclusions: HOXC10 overexpression upregulated CXCL5, which promoted MDSCs infiltration. Interrupting this loop might be a potential therapy option for HOXC10-induced CRC metastasis.
    Keywords:  HOXC10; colorectal cancer; myeloid-derived suppressor cells.
  9. Cell Biol Int. 2022 Oct 06.
      Oxaliplatin (L-OHP) is a standard treatment drug for colorectal cancer (CRC), but acquired drug resistance limits the outcome of patients. We investigated the involvement of sirtuin 1 (SIRT1) in L-OHP resistance in the setting of CRC via microRNA-20b-3p/DEP domain containing 1 (miR-20b-3p/DEPDC1) axis. CRC tissues that were resistant or sensitive to L-OHP were harvested, in which SIRT1, miR-20b-3p, and DEPDC1 levels were tested. L-OHP-resistant-resistant CRC cells were transfected, subsequently, cellular proliferation, invasion, migration, and apoptosis were tested, and tumor resistance to L-OHP was observed. The binding of SIRT1 to miR-20b-3p promoter and the targeting relationship between miR-20b-3p and DEPDC1 were verified. An aberrant elevation in SIRT1 expression was seen in L-OHP-resistant CRC tissues and cells. Knockdown of SIRT1 sensitized CRC cells and xenografted CRC tumors to L-OHP. SIRT1 bound with miR-20b-3p promoter to regulate DEPDC1. Reducing miR-20b-3p or raising DEPDC1 levels weakened the effect of SIRT1 knockdown on L-OHP-resistant-CRC cells. SIRT1 enhances L-OHP resistance in CRC by mediating miR-20b-3p/DEPDC1 axis.
    Keywords:  DEP domain containing 1; Sirtuin 1; colorectal cancer; microRNA-20b-3p; oxaliplatin; resistance; sensitivity
  10. Lab Chip. 2022 Oct 06.
      Stem cell-derived organoids are a promising tool to model native human tissues as they resemble human organs functionally and structurally compared to traditional monolayer cell-based assays. For instance, colon organoids can spontaneously develop crypt-like structures similar to those found in the native colon. While analyzing the structural development of organoids can be a valuable readout, using traditional image analysis tools makes it challenging because of the heterogeneities and the abstract nature of organoid morphologies. To address this limitation, we developed and validated a deep learning-based image analysis tool, named D-CryptO, for the classification of organoid morphology. D-CryptO can automatically assess the crypt formation and opacity of colorectal organoids from brightfield images to determine the extent of organoid structural maturity. To validate this tool, changes in organoid morphology were analyzed during organoid passaging and short-term forskolin stimulation. To further demonstrate the potential of D-CryptO for drug testing, organoid structures were analyzed following treatments with a panel of chemotherapeutic drugs. With D-CryptO, subtle variations in how colon organoids responded to the different chemotherapeutic drugs were detected, which suggest potentially distinct mechanisms of action. This tool could be expanded to other organoid types, like intestinal organoids, to facilitate 3D tissue morphological analysis.
  11. World J Gastrointest Oncol. 2022 Sep 15. 14(9): 1665-1674
      Colorectal cancer (CRC) constitutes the third most frequently reported malignancy in the male population and the second most common in women in the last two decades. Colon carcinogenesis is a complex, multifactorial event, resulting from genetic and epigenetic aberrations, the impact of environmental factors, as well as the disturbance of the gut microbial ecosystem. The relationship between the intestinal microbiome and carcinogenesis was relatively undervalued in the last decade. However, its remarkable effect on metabolic and immune functions on the host has been in the spotlight as of recent years. There is a strong relationship between gut microbiome dysbiosis, bowel pathogenicity and responsiveness to anti-cancer treatment; including immunotherapy. Modifications of bacteriome consistency are closely associated with the immunologic response to immunotherapeutic agents. This condition that implies the necessity of gut microbiome manipulation. Thus, creatingan optimal response for CRC patients to immunotherapeutic agents. In this paper, we will review the current literature observing how gut microbiota influence the response of immunotherapy on CRC patients.
    Keywords:  Checkpoint inhibitors; Colorectal cancer; Gut microbiome; Immunotherapy; Tumor microenvironment
  12. ACS Biomater Sci Eng. 2022 Oct 03.
      Crypt-villus architecture in the small intestine is crucial for the structural integrity of the intestinal epithelium and maintenance of gut homeostasis. We utilized three-dimensional (3D) printing and inverse molding techniques to form three-dimensional (3D) spongy scaffold systems that resemble the intestinal crypt-villus microarchitecture. The scaffolds consist of silk fibroin protein with curved lumens with rows of protruding villi with invaginating crypts to generate the architecture. Intestinal cell (Caco-2, HT29-MTX) attachment and growth, as well as long-term culture support were demonstrated with cell polarization and tissue barrier properties compared to two-dimensional (2D) Transwell culture controls. Further, physiologically relevant oxygen gradients were generated in the 3D system. The various advantages of this system may be ascribed to the more physiologically relevant 3D environment, offering a system for the exploration of disease pathogenesis, host-microbiome interactions, and therapeutic discovery.
    Keywords:  3D printing; crypts; intestine tissue; oxygen profile; silk; tissue engineering; villi
  13. Front Immunol. 2022 ;13 951455
      Background: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the most common digestive system tumors worldwide. Hypoxia and immunity are closely related in CRC; however, the role of hypoxia-immune-related lncRNAs in CRC prognosis is unknown.Methods: Data used in the current study were sourced from the Gene Expression Omnibus and The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) databases. CRC patients were divided into low- and high-hypoxia groups using the single-sample gene set enrichment analysis (ssGSEA) algorithm and into low- and high-immune groups using the Estimation of STromal and Immune cells in MAlignant Tumours using Expression data (ESTIMATE) algorithm. Differentially expressed lncRNAs (DElncRNAs) between low- and high-hypoxia groups, low- and high-immune groups, and tumor and control samples were identified using the limma package. Hypoxia-immune-related lncRNAs were obtained by intersecting these DElncRNAs. A hypoxia-immune-related lncRNA risk signature was developed using univariate Cox regression and least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (LASSO) analyses. The tumor microenvironments in the low- and high-risk groups were evaluated using ssGSEA, ESTIMATE, and the expression of immune checkpoints. The therapeutic response in the two groups was assessed using TIDE, IPS, and IC50. A ceRNA network based on signature lncRNAs was constructed. Finally, we used RT-qPCR to verify the expression of hypoxia-immune-related lncRNA signatures in normal and cancer tissues.
    Results: Using differential expression analysis, and univariate Cox and LASSO regression analyses, ZNF667-AS1, LINC01354, LINC00996, DANCR, CECR7, and LINC01116 were selected to construct a hypoxia-immune-related lncRNA signature. The performance of the risk signature in predicting CRC prognosis was validated in internal and external datasets, as evidenced by receiver operating characteristic curves. In addition, we observed significant differences in the tumor microenvironment and immunotherapy response between low- and high-risk groups and constructed a CECR7-miRNA-mRNA regulatory network in CRC. Furthermore, RT-qPCR results confirmed that the expression patterns of the six lncRNA signatures were consistent with those in TCGA-CRC cohort.
    Conclusion: Our study identified six hypoxia-immune-related lncRNAs for predicting CRC survival and sensitivity to immunotherapy. These findings may enrich our understanding of CRC and help improve CRC treatment. However, large-scale long-term follow-up studies are required for verification.
    Keywords:  Hypoxia; colorectal cancer; immune; lncRNA; prognosis
  14. Cell Immunol. 2022 Sep 24. pii: S0008-8749(22)00139-3. [Epub ahead of print]381 104614
      Intestinal macrophages are heterogenous cell populations with different developmental ontogeny and tissue anatomy. The concerted actions of intestinal macrophage subsets are critical to maintaining tissue homeostasis. However, the dysregulation of macrophages following tissue injury or chronic inflammation could also lead to intestinal fibrosis, with few treatment options in the clinic. In this review, we will characterize the features of intestinal macrophages in light of the latest advances in lineage tracing and single-cell sequencing technology. The roles of macrophages in distinct stages of intestinal fibrosis would be also elaborated. Finally, based on the reciprocal interaction between macrophages and intestinal fibrosis, we will propose the potential macrophage targeting anti-intestinal fibrosis therapies.
    Keywords:  Fibrosis; Gastrointestinal tract; Inflammation; Inflammatory bowel disease; Macrophages
  15. Front Immunol. 2022 ;13 944982
      The gut epithelium not only provides a physical barrier to separate a noxious outside from a sterile inside but also allows for highly regulated interactions between bacteria and their products, and components of the immune system. Homeostatic maintenance of an intact epithelial barrier is paramount to health, requiring an intricately regulated and highly adaptive response of various cells of the immune system. Prolonged homeostatic imbalance can result in chronic inflammation, tumorigenesis and inefficient antitumor immune control. Here we provide an update on the role of innate lymphoid cells, macrophages and dendritic cells, which collectively play a critical role in epithelial barrier maintenance and provide an important linkage between the classical innate and adaptive arm of the immune system. These interactions modify the capacity of the gut epithelium to undergo continuous renewal, safeguard against tumor formation and provide feedback to the gut microbiome, which acts as a seminal contributor to cellular homeostasis of the gut.
    Keywords:  cancer; dendritic cells (DC); homeostasis; inflammation; innate lymphoid cells (ILC); intestinal epithelium; macrophages (MΦ)
  16. Toxicol Lett. 2022 Sep 29. pii: S0378-4274(22)01749-0. [Epub ahead of print]371 17-24
      Capecitabine is a chemotherapeutic drug that is widely used as a monotherapy option in advanced cancer patients. After administration, it is converted into its active metabolite 5-fluorouracil (5-FU), a cytotoxic compound that may also induce adverse side effects in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Although these side effects can interfere with the continuation of the chemotherapy, diagnostic tools to detect early onset and prevention strategies are not available. In this explorative case study, we aim to identify differentially expressed genes (DEGs) that provide insight into the molecular mechanisms of toxicity induced by 5-FU in healthy colon tissue of breast cancer patients receiving capecitabine. Gene expression responses observed in patients were compared with those established in an in vitro model of healthy colon organoids. Colon biopsies from two patients with advanced breast cancer were collected before and after the treatment with capecitabine and used for RNA sequencing to determine transcriptomic responses. Differential expression analysis resulted in 31 affected genes, showing that the most affected pathways were transport of small molecules, cellular responses to stress, folate metabolism, NF-kB signalling pathway and immune system responses. The most biologically relevant genes were haemoglobin subunits encoding genes, involved in several processes; ATP12A, SLC26A3 and AQP8, involved in the transport of ions and water; TRIM31, a regulator of NF-kB signalling pathway; MST1P2 and MST1L, stimulators of macrophages. Comparison of human in vitro and in vivo responses showed that the gene expression of TRIM31 was similarly altered in the colon organoids exposed to 5-FU. Therefore, this gene constitutes a potential biomarker of colon toxicity that might be used in future in vitro drug safety design and screening.
    Keywords:  5-FU; Intestinal toxicity; Molecular mechanisms; Organoids; Transcriptomics; Translation
  17. Curr Stem Cell Res Ther. 2022 Oct 03.
      Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are transformed form of normal stem cells within heterogeneous mixture of cancer cells. These are mainly responsible for recurrence of cancer after treatment because of their ability to develop resistance against chemo and radiotherapy due to various factors such as, activation of signalling pathways important for self-renewal, DNA repair capacity, microenvironment and expression of ABC transporters. Targeting these mechanisms as potential factors can eliminate CSCs which eventually decreases cancer recurrence. This review focuses on the characteristics of CSCs, their role in development of resistance to chemotherapy and radiotherapy along with the therapeutic potential targets for successful elimination of CSC population.
    Keywords:  Cancer Stem cells; Cancer therapy; Chemotherapy; Drug resistance; Radiotherapy