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eISSN: 1643-3750

Regulation of Proliferation and Epithelial-to-Mesenchymal Transition (EMT) of Gastric Cancer by ZEB1 via Modulating Wnt5a and Related Mechanisms

Yongju Xue, Ligong Zhang, Yu Zhu, Xiquan Ke, Qizhi Wang, Haiyang Min

(Department of Gastroenterology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Bengbu Medical College, Bengbu, Anhui, China (mainland))

Med Sci Monit 2019; 25:1663-1670

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.912338

Published: 2019-03-04


BACKGROUND: As a member of the zinc-finger E-box binding protein (ZEB) family, ZEB1 can modulate onset and progression of various tumors, but its regulatory effect or mechanism in GC has not been defined.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: GC tumor tissues and adjacent tissues were collected from GC patients across different TNM stages. Real-time PCR was used to measure ZEB1 expression to analyze its correlation with pathological features of tumors. Cultured GC cell lines SGC-7901 and MGC-803 were randomly assigned into control group, scramble group, and ZEB1 siRNA group. Real-time PCR was employed to analyze ZEB1 expression, and MTT approach was used to measure cell proliferation. Cell apoptosis was evaluated by flow cytometry. Wound healing assay was used to detect its effect on cell migration. Expression of E-cadherin and Vimentin involved in epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) was measured by Western blot analysis, along with Wnt5a proteins.
RESULTS: GC tissues had upregulation of ZEB1 (P<0.05 compared to adjacent tissues), whose expression level was correlated with differentiation grade, lymph node metastasis, and tumor pathological stage (P<0.05). Transfection of ZEB1 siRNA into SGC-7901 or MGC-803 cells can suppress ZEB1 expression, inhibit tumor cell proliferation, enhance apoptosis, and inhibit cell migration. Transfected GC cells had higher E-cadherin expression and decreased Vimentin expression or Wnt5a expression (P<0.05 compared to the control group).
CONCLUSIONS: ZEB1 expression is increased in GC tumor tissues and is associated with pathological features. The downregulation of ZEB1 can facilitate cell apoptosis via mediating Wnt5a, further suppressing GC cell proliferation and migration, and reducing EMT occurrence.

Keywords: Apoptosis, Cell Proliferation, Epithelial-mesenchymal transition, Stomach Neoplasms



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