BMP and activin membrane-bound inhibitor regulate connective tissue growth factor controlling mesothelioma cell proliferation

BMC Cancer 2022 September 15 [Link]

Nguyen Truong Duc Hoang, Ghmkin Hassan, Tomoya Suehiro, Yuichi Mine, Tohru Matsuki, Makiko Fujii


Background: Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive mesothelial cell cancer type linked mainly to asbestos inhalation. MM characterizes by rapid progression and resistance to standard therapeutic modalities such as surgery, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy. Our previous studies have suggested that tumor cell-derived connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) regulates the proliferation of MM cells as well as the tumor growth in mouse xenograft models.

Methods: In this study, we knock downed the bone morphogenetic protein and activin membrane-bound inhibitor (BAMBI) and CTGF in MM cells and investigated the relationship between both and their impact on the cell cycle and cell proliferation.

Results: The knockdown of CTGF or BAMBI reduced MM cell proliferation. In contrast to CTGF knockdown which decreased BAMBI, knockdown of BAMBI increased CTGF levels. Knockdown of either BAMBI or CTGF reduced expression of the cell cycle regulators; cyclin D3, cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK)2, and CDK4. Further, in silico analysis revealed that higher BAMBI expression was associated with shorter overall survival rates among MM patients.

Conclusions: Our findings suggest that BAMBI is regulated by CTGF promoting mesothelioma growth by driving cell cycle progression. Therefore, the crosstalk between BAMBI and CTGF may be an effective therapeutic target for MM treatment.