PloS one

Blocking of stromal interaction molecule 1 expression influence cell proliferation and promote cell apoptosis in vitro and inhibit tumor growth in vivo in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

PMID 28494008


Calcium signal plays an important role in a variety of cancer cell metabolism, but knowledge on its role in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is limited. Store-operated calcium entry (SOCE) is the principal Ca2+ entry mechanism that maintains calcium concentration and produces calcium signal in non-excitable cells. SOCE is triggered by stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1), which is located in endoplasmic reticulum (ER) as Ca2+ sensor. Although, many studies demonstrated that STIM1 and SOCE play important functions in the regulation of many cancer progressions, their clinical relevance in HNSCC remains unclear. In this study, STIM1 expression levels notably increased in 89% HNSCC tissues compared with those in adjacent normal tissues. Meanwhile, this overexpression was close associated with tumor size but not with neck lymph node metastasis. Thus, this study mainly focuses on STIM1 function in HNSCC tumor growth. Three HNSCC cell lines, namely, TSCCA (oral cancer cell line) and Hep2 (laryngeal cell line) with high STIM1 expression levels and Tb3.1 (oral cancer cell line) with STIM1 expression level lower than previous two cell lines, were selected for in vitro study. Downregulated STIM1 expression levels in TSCCA and Hep2 arrested cells in G0/G1 stages, promoted cell apoptosis, and inhibited cell proliferation. By contrast, upregulated STIM1 expression in Tb3.1 inhibited cell apoptosis and promoted cell proliferation. Induced by thapsigargin (TG), ER stress was amplified when STIM1 expression was downregulated but was attenuated as STIM1 expression was upregulated. Furthermore, TSCCA cell xenograft models confirmed that STIM1 could promote HNSCC tumor growth in vivo. The present study provides new insight into HNSCC molecular mechanism and potential therapeutic target through targeting SOCE-dependent process. However, whether STIM1 participates in HNSCC metastasis requires further study.

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EHU026401 MISSION® esiRNA, esiRNA human STIM1 (esiRNA1)