Overexpression of Aiolos promotes epithelial-mesenchymal transition and cancer stem cell-like properties in lung cancer cells

Jung Jyh Hung*, Ying Shiun Kao, Chi Hung Huang, Wen Hu Hsu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Aiolos/Ikaros family zinc finger 3 (IKZF3), a member of the Ikaros family of lymphocyte maturation-driving transcription factors, is highly expressed in hematopoietic malignancies. However, its role in epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and cancer stem cell (CSC)-like properties in lung cancer remains unknown. Human lung cancer cell lines H1299 with overexpressing Aiolos (H1299-Aiolos) and A549 with overexpressing Aiolos (A549-Aiolos) were generated by stable transfection. Cell migration and invasion assays were done to demonstrate their invasion and migration ability. Sphere formation assay was used to determine their tumor-initiating capability. Aiolos overexpression induced EMT and increased migration/invasiveness in H1299 and A549 cells. Aiolos overexpression also increased metastatic ability in vivo. Aiolos overexpression upregulated the expression of Twist and matrix metalloproteinase 16 (MMP16). By using knockdown of Twist or an inhibitor of phosphatidylinositol (PI) 3-kinase, EMT, migration/invasiveness ability, and MMP16 expression were reversed in H1299-Aiolos and A549-Aiolos cells. Overexpression of Aiolos upregulated the CSC-like properties in lung cancer cells, and were also reversed by an inhibitor of PI 3-kinase. For lung cancer cells, Aiolos overexpression promotes EMT and CSC-like properties through upregulating the PI 3-kinase/Akt pathway. The information is helpful for developing therapeutic strategies targeting Aiolos expression for lung cancer treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2991
JournalScientific reports
Volume9
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2019

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