BMC cancer

Higher proliferation of peritumoral endothelial cells to IL-6/sIL-6R than tumoral endothelial cells in hepatocellular carcinoma.

PMID 26525581


This study aimed to explore the responses to the interleukin-6 (IL-6)/soluble interleukin-6 receptor (sIL-6R) complex in peritumoral endothelial cells (PECs) and tumor endothelial cells (TECs), as well as determine the signaling pathways in the angiogenesis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The expression of IL-6, IL-6R, gp130, CD68, HIF-1α, and microvessel density (MVD) were assessed with an orthotopic xenograft model in nude mice. ECs were incubated under hypoxic conditions to detect IL-6 and gp130. The proliferation of PECs and TECs in the presence of IL-6 and sIL-6R, as well as the expression of gp130, JAK2/STAT3, PI3K/AKT in endothelial cells were measured. Peritumoral IL-6, IL-6R, gp130, CD68, and HIF-1α expression, as well as MVD, gradually increased during tumor growth. Hypoxia could directly induce IL-6 expression, but not gp130 in PECs. The co-culture of IL-6/sIL-6R induced much higher PEC proliferation and gp130 expression, as well as the elevated phosphorylation of JAK2 and STAT3, however not the phosphorylation of PI3K and AKT. PECs exhibited higher proliferation in response to IL-6/sIL-6R co-treatment compared with TECs in HCC via the up-regulation of gp130 /JAK2/STAT3. PEC and its associated peritumoral angiogenesis microenvironment may be a potential novel target for anti-angiogenic treatment.