Research Papers:

14,15-EET induces the infiltration and tumor-promoting function of neutrophils to trigger the growth of minimal dormant metastases

Jing Luo, Xin-Xia Feng, Chao Luo, Yu Wang, Dong Li, Yu Shu, Shan-Shan Wang, Jian Qin, Yong-Chao Li, Jiu-Ming Zou, De-An Tian, Gui-Mei Zhang and Zuo-Hua Feng _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:43324-43336. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.9709

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Jing Luo1,*, Xin-Xia Feng2,*, Chao Luo1, Yu Wang1, Dong Li1, Yu Shu1, Shan-Shan Wang1, Jian Qin1, Yong-Chao Li1, Jiu-Ming Zou1, De-An Tian2, Gui-Mei Zhang1, Zuo-Hua Feng1

1Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Basic Medicine, Wuhan 430030, People’s Republic of China

2Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430030, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Zuo-Hua Feng, email: fengzhg_tj@163.com

Gui-Mei Zhang, email: zhanggm58@163.com

Keywords: neutrophils, recruitment, metastases, dormancy, epoxyeicosatrienoic acids

Received: January 06, 2016     Accepted: May 13, 2016     Published: May 30, 2016


Infiltrating neutrophils are known to promote in the development of tumor. However, it is unclear whether and how neutrophils are involved in triggering the growth of dormant metastases. Here we show that 14,15-epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (14,15-EET) can trigger the growth of dormant micrometastases by inducing neutrophilic infiltration and converting neutrophil function. 14,15-EET triggered neutrophil infiltration in metastatic lesions by activating STAT3 and JNK pathways to induce the expression of human IL-8 and murine CXCL15 in corresponding tumor cells. The continuous expression of hIL-8/mCXCL15 was maintained by the sustained and enhanced activation of JNK pathway. 14,15-EET up-regulated miR-155 expression by activating STAT3 and JNK pathways. miR-155 in turn down-regulated the expression of SHIP1 and DET1, thus augmenting the activation of JNK and c-Jun. Moreover, the function of neutrophils was converted from tumor-suppressing to tumor-promoting by 14,15-EET in vivo. By inducing the production of G-CSF/IL-6 in vivo, 14,15-EET induced the enhancement of STAT3 activation in neutrophils to increase MMP-9 expression and decrease TRAIL expression. Neutrophil-derived MMP-9 was required for 14,15-EET to induce angiogenesis during the growth of dormant micrometastases. Depleting neutrophils or inhibiting hIL-8/mCXCL15 up-regulation resulted in the failure of 14,15-EET to promote the development of micrometastases. These findings reveal a mechanism through which the infiltration and tumor-promoting function of neutrophils could be induced to trigger the growth of dormant metastases, which might be a driving force for the tumor recurrence based on dormant metastases.

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