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Gao H.,Fudan University | Gao H.,Shanghai Cancer Institute | Li K.,Shanghai Cancer Institute | Tu H.,Shanghai Cancer Institute | And 10 more authors.
Clinical Cancer Research | Year: 2014

Purpose: The aim of our study is to elucidate whether T cells expressing GPC3-targeted chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) can efficiently eliminate GPC3-positive HCC cells and their potential in the treatment of HCC.Experimental Design: T cells expressing a first-generation and third-generation GPC3-targeted CAR were prepared using lentiviral vector transduction. The in vitro and in vivo cytotoxic activities of the genetically engineered CAR T cells were evaluated against various HCC cell lines.Results: GPC3-targeted CAR T cells could efficiently kill GPC3-positive HCC cells but not GPC3-negative cells in vitro. These cytotoxic activities seemed to be positively correlated with GPC3 expression levels in the target cells. In addition, T cells expressing the third-generation GPC3-targeted CAR could eradicate HCC xenografts with high level of GPC3 expression and efficiently suppress the growth of HCC xenografts with low GPC3 expression level in vivo. The survival of the mice bearing established orthotopic Huh-7 xenografts was significantly prolonged by the treatment with the third-generation GPC3-targeted CAR T cells.Conclusions: GPC3-targeted CAR T cells could potently eliminate GPC3-positive HCC cells, thereby providing a promising therapeutic intervention for GPC3-positive HCC. © 2014 AACR.

Wang F.-S.,Research Center for Biological Therapy | Wang F.-S.,Zhejiang University | Fan J.-G.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Zhang Z.,Research Center for Biological Therapy | And 2 more authors.
Hepatology | Year: 2014

Liver disease is a major cause of illness and death worldwide. In China alone, liver diseases, primarily viral hepatitis (predominantly hepatitis B virus [HBV]), nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and alcoholic liver disease, affect approximately 300 million people. The establishment of the Expanded Program on Immunization in 1992 has resulted in a substantial decline in the number of newly HBV-infected patients; however, the number of patients with alcoholic and nonalcoholic fatty liver diseases is rising at an alarming rate. Liver cancer, one of the most deadly cancers, is the second-most common cancer in China. Approximately 383,000 people die from liver cancer every year in China, which accounts for 51% of the deaths from liver cancer worldwide. Over the past 10 years, China has made some significant efforts to shed its "leader in liver diseases" title by investing large amounts of money in funding research, vaccines, and drug development for liver diseases and by recruiting many Western-trained hepatologists and scientists. Over the last two decades, hepatologists and scientists in China have made significant improvements in liver disease prevention, diagnosis, management, and therapy. They have been very active in liver disease research, as shown by the dramatic increase in the number of publications in Hepatology. Nevertheless, many challenges remain that must be tackled collaboratively. In this review, we discuss the epidemiology and characteristics of liver diseases and liver-related research in China. © 2014 by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.

Wang R.-Y.,International Co operation Laboratory on Signal Transduction | Chen L.,International Co operation Laboratory on Signal Transduction | Chen H.-Y.,International Co operation Laboratory on Signal Transduction | Hu L.,International Co operation Laboratory on Signal Transduction | And 21 more authors.
Gastroenterology | Year: 2013

Background & Aims Aberrant expression of MUC15 correlates with development of colorectal adenocarcinoma, and MUC15 has been reported to prevent trophoblast invasion of human placenta. However, little is known about the role of MUC15 in pathogenesis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Methods We analyzed HCC samples and matched nontumor liver tissues (controls) collected from 313 patients who underwent hepatectomy in Shanghai, China, from January 2006 through September 2009. Levels of messenger RNAs and proteins were determined by immunohistochemical, quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, and immunoblot analyses. Statistical analyses were used to associate levels of MUC15 with tumor features and patient outcomes. Results Levels of MUC15 messenger RNA and protein were reduced in a greater percentage of HCC samples than control tissues. Tumors with reduced levels of MUC15 were more likely to have aggressive characteristics (eg, high levels of α-fetoprotein, vascular invasion, lack of encapsulation, and poor differentiation) than those with low levels. Patients whose tumors had reduced levels of MUC15 had shorter overall survival times (24 months vs 46 months for patients with tumors with high levels of MUC15) and time to disease recurrence. Stable expression of MUC15 in HCC cell lines (SMMC-7721 and HCC-LM3) reduced their proliferation and invasive features in vitro, and ability to form metastatic tumors in mice. MUC15 reduced transcription of the matrix metalloproteinases 2 and 7 increased expression of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-2, which required phosphoinositide 3-kinase-v-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene homolog signaling. Physical interaction between MUC15 and epidermal growth factor receptor led to its relocation and degradation within early endosomes and was required for inactivation of phosphoinositide 3-kinase-v-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene homolog signaling. Conclusions Reduced levels of MUC15 in HCCs are associated with shorter survival times of patients and reduced time to disease recurrence. Expression of MUC15 in HCC cells reduces their aggressive behavior in vitro and in mice by inducing dimerization of epidermal growth factor receptor and decreasing phosphoinositide 3-kinase signaling via v-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene homolog. © 2013 by the AGA Institute.

Su B.,Eastern Hepatobiliary Surgery Institute Hospital | Su B.,Tongji University | Luo T.,Eastern Hepatobiliary Surgery Institute Hospital | Zhu J.,Eastern Hepatobiliary Surgery Institute Hospital | And 16 more authors.
Hepatology | Year: 2015

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a prototype of inflammation-associated cancer. Oncoprotein Gankyrin, which mostly increases in HCC, plays a critical role in HCC development and metastasis. However, the exact mechanism of Gankyrin up-regulation in HCC remains unclear. A Gankyrin luciferase reporter was developed to screen a potential regulator for Gankyrin from a list of proinflammatory cytokines, and interleukin (IL)-1β was found as one of its activators. In clinical premalignant and malignant liver disease samples, enhanced IL-1β/interleukin-1 receptor-associated kinase 1 (IRAK-1) signaling accompanied by increased Gankyrin was observed. Lower expression of Gankyrin and phospho-IRAK-1 are favorable prognostic markers for HCC. A similar correlation was observed in the diethylnitrosamine (DEN) model of rat hepatocarcinogenesis. The results from Gankyrin reporter activity, real-time polymerase chain reaction, or immunoblotting further confirmed the up-regulation of Gankyrin by IL-1β/IRAK-1 inflammatory signaling. Moreover, a series of Gankyrin's truncated reporters were constructed, and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) were performed to analyze the properties of Gankyrin promoter. Mechanistically, the core promoter of Gankyrin contains the binding site of nuclear factor Y (NF-Y) family members, which can recruit histone acetyltransferase coactivator E1A-binding protein p300 (p300) or CREB-binding protein (CBP) to promote Gankyrin transcription. Conversely, knockdown of NF-Y, p300, or CBP inhibits Gankyrin expression. IL-1β stimulation causes sequential phosphorylation of IRAK-1, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), and p300 and enhances recruitment of the p300/CBP/NF-Y complex to Gankyrin promoter. Inhibition of phospho-JNK impairs IL-1β/IRAK-1 signaling-mediated up-regulation of Gankyrin. Conclusion: The finding of IL-1β/IRAK-1 signaling promoting Gankyrin expression through JNK and NF-Y/p300/CBP complex provides a fresh view on inflammation-enhanced hepatocarcinogenesis. © 2014 by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.

Li L.,International Medical University | Li L.,National Center for Liver Cancer | Wang H.,International Medical University | Wang H.,National Center for Liver Cancer | Wang H.,Shanghai JiaoTong University
Cancer Letters | Year: 2015

Liver cancer is an extraordinarily heterogeneous malignant disease among the tumors that have so far been identified. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) arises most frequently in the setting of chronic liver inflammation and fibrosis, and takes a variety of course in individual patients to process to tumor. The risk factors such as HBV and/or HCV infections, aflatoxin infection, abuse alcohol intake, metabolic syndrome, obesity and diabetes are closely related to the environmental and genetic susceptibilities to HCC. The consequent resulting genomic instability, molecular and signal transduction network disorders and microenvironmental discrepancies are characterized by the extraordinary heterogeneity of liver cancer. The histology-based definition of the morphological heterogeneity of liver cancer has been modified and refined to treat patients with targeted therapies, but this still cannot solve all the problems. Lack of consistent outcome for anticancer agents and conventional therapies in liver cancer treatment calls for assessing the benefits of new molecularly targeted drugs and combined therapy, under the heterogeneity condition of tumor. The present review article will provide the complex mechanism and phenotype of liver cancer heterogeneity, and help us to execute precision medicine in a really personalized manner. © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

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