Cancers 2021 February 6 [Link]

Joman Javadi, Ghazal Heidari-Hamedani, Angelika Schmalzl, Tünde Szatmári, Muzaffer Metintas, Pontus Aspenström, Anders Hjerpe, Katalin Dobra


Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive tumor of the serosal cavities. Angiogenesis is important for mesothelioma progression, but so far, anti-angiogenic agents have not improved patient survival. Our hypothesis is that better understanding of the regulation of angiogenesis in this tumor would largely improve the success of such a therapy. Syndecan-1 (SDC-1) is a transmembrane heparan sulfate proteoglycan that acts as a co-receptor in various cellular processes including angiogenesis. In MM, the expression of SDC-1 is generally low but when present, SDC-1 associates to epithelioid differentiation, inhibition of tumor cell migration and favorable prognosis, meanwhile SDC-1 decrease deteriorates the prognosis. In the present study, we studied the effect of SDC-1 overexpression and silencing on MM cells ability to secrete angiogenic factors and monitored the downstream effect of SDC-1 modulation on endothelial cells proliferation, wound healing, and tube formation. This was done by adding conditioned medium from SDC-1 transfected and SDC-1 silenced mesothelioma cells to endothelial cells. Moreover, we investigated the interplay and molecular functional changes in angiogenesis in a co-culture system and characterized the soluble angiogenesis-related factors secreted to the conditioned media. We demonstrated that SDC-1 over-expression inhibited the proliferation, wound healing, and tube formation of endothelial cells. This effect was mediated by a multitude of angiogenic factors comprising angiopoietin-1 (Fold change ± SD: 0.65 ± 0.07), FGF-4 (1.45 ± 0.04), HGF (1.33 ± 0.07), NRG1-β1 (1.35 ± 0.08), TSP-1 (0.8 ± 0.02), TIMP-1 (0.89 ± 0.01) and TGF-β1 (1.35 ± 0.01). SDC-1 silencing increased IL8 (1.33 ± 0.06), promoted wound closure, but did not influence the tube formation of endothelial cells. Pleural effusions from mesothelioma patients showed that Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) levels correlate to soluble SDC-1 levels and have prognostic value. In conclusion, SDC-1 over-expression affects the angiogenic factor secretion of mesothelioma cells and thereby inhibits endothelial cells proliferation, tube formation, and wound healing. VEGF could be used in prognostic evaluation of mesothelioma patients together with SDC-1.