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Supplementary Data from Urinary-Type Plasminogen Activator Receptor/α3β1 Integrin Signaling, Altered Gene Expression, and Oral Tumor Progression

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posted on 2023-04-03, 18:01 authored by Supurna Ghosh, Jennifer Koblinski, Jeffrey Johnson, Yueying Liu, Aaron Ericsson, J. Wade Davis, Zonggao Shi, Matthew J. Ravosa, Susan Crawford, Shellaine Frazier, M. Sharon Stack
Supplementary Data from Urinary-Type Plasminogen Activator Receptor/α3β1 Integrin Signaling, Altered Gene Expression, and Oral Tumor Progression

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ARTICLE ABSTRACT

Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) has 50% 5-year survival rate, highlighting our limited understanding of the molecular events that contribute to disease progression. Microarray analyses of primary oral tumors have identified urinary-type plasminogen activator (uPA) and its receptor (uPAR) as key genes associated with human OSCC progression. The uPAR functions as both a proteinase receptor and an integrin ligand, modifying proteolysis, migration, integrin signaling, and cellular transcription. In the current study, uPAR expression levels were modified in OSCC cells followed by analysis of tumor growth in an in vivo orthotopic xenograft model and by transcriptional profiling. Overexpression of uPAR resulted in more infiltrative and less differentiated tumors, with ill-defined borders, cytologic atypia, and enhanced vascularity. Analysis of serial sections of both murine experimental tumors and microarrayed human OSCC showed a statistically significant association between uPAR and α3 integrin colocalization in areas exhibiting extracellular signal-regulated kinase phosphorylation, suggesting that uPAR/α3 integrin interaction potentiates extracellular signal-regulated kinase signaling in vivo. This is supported by cDNA microarray analysis, which showed differential expression of 148 genes (113 upregulated and 35 downregulated). Validation of gene expression changes in human OSCC using immunohistochemistry and quantitative real-time PCR showed increased growth factors, proteinases/inhibitors, and matrix components in uPAR-overexpressing tumors. Together, these results support a model wherein increased uPAR expression promotes α3β1 integrin association, resulting in increased mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling and transcriptional activation, leading to the formation of more aggressive tongue tumors. This combined approach has efficacy to identify additional biomarkers and/or prognostic indicators associated with aggressive human OSCC. Mol Cancer Res; 8(2); 145–58

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