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The embryonic trunk neural crest microenvironment regulates the plasticity and invasion of human neuroblastoma via TrkB signaling

Kasemeier-Kulesa, Jennifer C., Spengler, Jennifer A., Muolo, Connor E., Morrison, Jason A., Woolley, Thomas, Schnell, Santiago and Kulesa, Paul M. 2021. The embryonic trunk neural crest microenvironment regulates the plasticity and invasion of human neuroblastoma via TrkB signaling. Developmental Biology 480 , pp. 78-90. 10.1016/j.ydbio.2021.08.007
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Abstract

Mistakes in trunk neural crest (NC) cell migration may lead to birth defects of the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) and neuroblastoma (NB) cancer. Receptor tyrosine kinase B (TrkB) and its ligand BDNF critically regulate NC cell migration during normal SNS development and elevated expression of TrkB is correlated with high-risk NB patients. However, in the absence of a model with in vivo interrogation of human NB cell and gene expression dynamics, the mechanistic role of TrkB in NB disease progression remains unclear. Here, we study the functional relationship between TrkB, cell invasion and plasticity of human NB cells by taking advantage of our validated in vivo chick embryo transplant model. We find that LAN5 (high TrkB) and SHSY5Y (moderate TrkB) human NB cells aggressively invade host embryos and populate typical NC targets, however loss of TrkB function significantly reduces cell invasion. In contrast, NB1643 (low TrkB) cells remain near the transplant site, but over-expression of TrkB leads to significant cell invasion. Invasive NB cells show enhanced expression of genes indicative of the most invasive host NC cells. In contrast, transplanted human NB cells down-regulate known NB tumor initiating and stem cell markers. Human NB cells that remain within the dorsal neural tube transplant also show enhanced expression of cell differentiation genes, resulting in an improved disease outcome as predicted by a computational algorithm. These in vivo data support TrkB as an important biomarker and target to control NB aggressiveness and identify the chick embryonic trunk neural crest microenvironment as a source of signals to drive NB to a less aggressive state, likely acting at the dorsal neural tube.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Mathematics
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH426 Genetics
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0012-1606
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 18 October 2021
Date of Acceptance: 13 August 2021
Last Modified: 22 Jan 2022 18:23
URI: http://orca.cardiff.ac.uk/id/eprint/143890

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