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CD24 expression and stem-associated features define tumor cell heterogeneity and tumorigenic capacities in a model of carcinogenesis

Authors Ortiz-Montero P, Liu-Bordes WY, Londoño-Vallejo A, Vernot JP

Received 8 June 2018

Accepted for publication 20 July 2018

Published 16 November 2018 Volume 2018:10 Pages 5767—5784

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/CMAR.S176654

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Beicheng Sun


Paola Ortiz-Montero,1 Win-Yan Liu-Bordes,2 Arturo Londoño-Vallejo,2 Jean-Paul Vernot1,3

1Cellular and Molecular Physiology Group, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Physiological Sciences, National University of Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia; 2Institut Curie, PSL Research University, Sorbonne University, CNRS UMR3244 Telomere and Cancer Lab, Paris, France; 3Biomedical Research Institute, Faculty of Medicine, National University of Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia

Background: Most carcinomas are composed of heterogeneous populations of tumor cells with distinct and apparently stable phenotypic characteristics.
Methods: Using an in vitro model of carcinogenesis we aimed at experimentally elucidating the significance of heterogeneity in the expression of CD24, a marker frequently overexpressed in various cancers and correlated with poor prognosis.
Results: We show that CD24Neg and CD24Pos cells issued from the same tumorigenic cell line display striking differences in stem-related properties, expression of epithelial–mesenchymal transition/mesenchymal-epithelial transition markers, and tumorigenic capacity. Indeed, while CD24Neg cells were as tumorigenic as the parental cell line, CD24Pos cells, although unable to form tumors, were unexpectedly more mesenchymal, displayed enhanced stemness-related properties, and expressed a proinflammatory signature.
Conclusion: Our findings support the view that acquisition of stem-like cell, CD24-associated, attributes like migration, invasion, and plasticity by a tumor subpopulation is not necessarily related to local tumor growth but may be required for escaping the niche and colonizing distant sites.

Keywords: cancer stem cells, CD24, HEK cells, stemness, tumorigenicity

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