Effect of adipocyte-secreted factors on EpCAM+/CD133+ hepatic stem cell population

Zeynep Firtina Karagonlar, Doǧukan Koç, Eren Şahin, Sanem Tercan Avci, Mustafa Yilmaz, Neşe Atabey, Esra Erdal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Recent epidemiological studies have associated obesity with a variety of cancer types including HCC. However, the tumor initiating role of obesity in hepatocarcinogenesis is still unknown. The objective of this paper is to investigate the effect of adipocyte-secreted factors on EpCAM+/CD133+ cancer stem cells and to identify which factors play a role in modulating hepatic cancer stem cell behavior. Our results demonstrated that adipocyte-secreted factors affect motility and drug resistance of EpCAM+/CD133+ cells. When incubated with adipocyte conditioned media, EpCAM+/CD133+ cells exhibited augmented motility and reduced sorafenib-induced apoptosis. Using array-based system, we identified secretion of several cytokines such as IL6, IL8 and MCP1 by cultured adipocytes and activation of c-Met, STAT3 and ERK1/2 signaling pathways in EpCAM+/CD133+ cells incubated with adipocyte conditioned media. Treating EpCAM+/CD133+ cancer stem cells with IL6 receptor blocking antibody or c-Met inhibitor SU11274 both reduced the increase in motility; however SU11274 had greater effect on relieving protection from sorafenib-induced apoptosis. These results indicate that adipocyte-secreted factors might regulate cancer stem cell behavior through several signaling molecules including c-Met, STAT3 and ERK1/2 and inhibition of these signaling pathways offer novel strategies in targeting the effect of adipose-derived cytokines in cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)482-490
Number of pages9
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jun 2016
Externally publishedYes

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© 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


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