Neoplastic extracellular matrix environment promotes cancer invasionin vitro

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The invasion of carcinoma cells is a crucial feature in carcinogenesis. The penetration efficiency not only depends on the cancer cells, but also on the composition of the tumor microenvironment. Our group has developed a 3D invasion assay based on human uterine leiomyoma tissue. Here we tested whether human, porcine, mouse or rat hearts as well as porcine tongue tissues could be similarly used to study carcinoma cell invasion in vitro. Three invasive human oral tongue squamous cell carcinoma (HSC-3, SCC-25 and SCC-15), melanoma (G-361) and ductal breast adenocarcinoma (MDA-MB-231) cell lines, and co-cultures of HSC-3 and carcinoma-associated or normal oral fibroblasts were assayed. Myoma tissue, both native and lyophilized, promoted invasion and growth of the cancer cells. However, the healthy heart or tongue matrices were unable to induce the invasion of any type of cancer cells tested. Moreover, when studied in more detail, small molecular weight fragments derived from heart tissue rinsing media inhibited HSC-3 horizontal migration. Proteome analysis of myoma rinsing media, on the other hand, revealed migration enhancing factors. These results highlight the important role of matrix composition for cancer invasion studies in vitro and further demonstrate the unique properties of human myoma organotypic model.

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