Scientific reports

In situ characterizing membrane lipid phenotype of breast cancer cells using mass spectrometry profiling.

PMID 26061164


Lipid composition in cell membrane is closely associated with cell characteristics. Here, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization- Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry was employed to in situ determine membrane components of human mammary epithelial cells (MCF-10 A) and six different breast cancer cell lines (i.e., BT-20, MCF-7, SK-BR-3, MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-157, and MDA-MB-361) without any lipid extraction and separation. Partial least-square discriminant analysis indicated that changes in the levels of these membrane lipids were closely correlated with the types of breast cell lines. Elevated levels of polyunsaturated lipids in MCF-10 A cells relative to six breast cancer cells and in BT-20 cells relative to other breast cancer cell lines were detected. The Western blotting assays indicated that the expression of five lipogenesis-related enzymes (i.e., fatty acid synthase 1(FASN1), stearoyl-CoA desaturase 1 (SCD1), stearoyl-CoA desaturase 5 (SCD5), choline kinase α (CKα), and sphingomyelin synthase 1) was associated with the types of the breast cells, and that the SCD1 level in MCF-7 cells was significantly increased relative to other breast cell lines. Our findings suggest that elevated expression levels of FASN1, SCD1, SCD5, and CKα may closely correlated with enhanced levels of saturated and monounsaturated lipids in breast cancer cell lines.

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