Knockdown of KRT17 by siRNA induces antitumoral effects on gastric cancer cells
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Keratin 17 (KRT17) was shown to be an important molecular marker for predicting the carcinogenesis, progression, and prognosis of various cancer types. Our previous studies identified KRT17 as a possible biomarker for gastric cancer by gene microarray, with an elevated expression that occurred early during tumorigenesis and increased during tumor progression. Based on these findings, we aimed to investigate KRT17 biological functions in gastric adenocarcinoma and its possible use as a rational molecular target for anticancer therapy.
We used RNA interference-mediated knockdown of KRT17 expression and analyzed the effects on cell proliferation, cell migration, and signal transduction in two gastric cell lines (AGS and NCI-N87) in vitro and on xenograft growth in vivo.
The functional analysis of KRT17 knockdown cell lines showed a decreased cell proliferation (with 42.36% ± 3.2%) and migration ability (with 37.2% ± 6.2%) relative to scrambled siRNA control. The in vivo tumorigenicity on nude mice exhibited a significant decrease in tumor weight with 69.14% in xenografts obtained from AGS cells and 84.43% in xeno-NCI-N87 tumors. The analysis on KRT17 knockdown outcome on intracellular signaling identifies AKT/mTOR as the main affected pathway that sustains proliferation and survival, and also the AMPKα1/CREB pathway that was recently shown to induce organ protection and antiinflammatory response.
Our results highlight KRT17 as a possible biomarker in gastric cancer promoting tumor growth, motility, and invasion, and suggest that KRT17 can be a valuable molecular target for development of anti-gastric cancer-specific therapies.
KeywordsKeratin 17 Biomarkers Gastric cancer Targeted therapy RNA interference
This study was supported by structural funds from POS CCE O2.2.1. 433/2012, UEFISCDI PCCA PN II 133/2012 and OPERATIONAL COMPETITIVITATY PROGRAM 2014-2020 POC-A1-A1.1.4-E-2015/P_37_798/149/2016.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All institutional and national guidelines for the care and use of laboratory animals were followed.