Esophageal 3D organoids of MPV17-/- mouse model of mitochondrial DNA depletion show epithelial cell plasticity and telomere attrition
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Manti Guha1,4, Satish Srinivasan1, Maura M. Sheehan1, Takashi Kijima1,4, Gordon Ruthel1, Kelly Whelan2, Koji Tanaka2, Andres Klein-Szanto3, Prasanna M. Chandramouleeswaran2, Hiroshi Nakagawa2,4 and Narayan G. Avadhani1
1 Department of Biomedical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA
2 Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA
3 Histopathology Facility, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, USA
4 Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY, USA
|Narayan G. Avadhani,||email:||firstname.lastname@example.org|
Keywords: mitochondrial DNA;
Received: August 12, 2019 Accepted: October 04, 2019 Published: October 22, 2019
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) is an aggressive cancer with late-stage detection and poor prognosis. This emphasizes the need to identify new markers for early diagnosis and treatment. Altered mitochondrial genome (mtDNA) content in primary tumors correlates with poor patient prognosis. Here we used three-dimensional (3D) organoids of esophageal epithelial cells (EECs) from the MPV17-/- mouse model of mtDNA depletion to investigate the contribution of reduced mtDNA content in ESCC oncogenicity. To test if mtDNA defects are a contributing factor in ESCC, we used oncogenic stimuli such as ESCC carcinogen 4-nitroquinoline oxide (4-NQO) treatment, or expressing p53R175H oncogenic driver mutation. We observed that EECs and 3D-organoids with mtDNA depletion had cellular, morphological and genetic alterations typical of an oncogenic transition. Furthermore, mitochondrial dysfunction induced cellular transformation is accompanied by elevated mitochondrial fission protein, DRP1 and pharmacologic inhibition of mitochondrial fission by mDivi-1 in the MPV17-/- organoids reversed the phenotype to that of normal EEC organoids. Our studies show that mtDNA copy number depletion, activates a mitochondrial retrograde response, potentiates telomere defects, and increases the oncogenic susceptibility towards ESCC. Furthermore, mtDNA depletion driven cellular plasticity is mediated via altered mitochondrial fission-fusion dynamics.
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