The potential role of Monocarboxylate transporters in ovarian cancer

UoM administered thesis: Phd

  • Authors:
  • Amy Boyers

Abstract

Cancer cells utilise glycolysis to produce lactate, even in the presence of sufficient levels of oxygen. Excess lactate is removed from cancer cells by MCT1 and MCT4, to prevent intracellular acidosis, apoptosis and to aid the continuous glycolytic flux. MCT1 and MCT4 are over-expressed in many types of human cancers, which correlates with reduced overall survival and increased treatment resistance.The potential role of MCT1 and MCT4 in two EOC cell lines (Skov3 and OV90) was investigated in this study. MCT1 was expressed at similar levels in Skov3 and OV90 cells. Therefore, stable cell lines over-expressing MCT1 were produced using both cell lines. MCT4 was expressed at high levels in Skov3 cells, but very low levels in OV90 cells. Therefore, a stable cell line with MCT4 silencing under the inducible control of doxycycline was produced using Skov3 cells, and a stable cell line to over-express MCT4 was produced using OV90 cells. The consequences of these genetic modifications on the metabolic phenotype, metastatic abilities and the sensitivity of cell lines to treatment with Carboplatin and Paclitaxel, were assessed in normoxia and 1 % hypoxia and 0.1 % hypoxia.Over-expressing MCT1 in Skov3 cells, had no effect on their metabolic phenotype or the sensitivity to treatment with Carboplatin and Paclitaxel. However, over-expressing MCT1 in Skov3 cells significantly enhanced their metastatic abilities, which correlated with reduced focal adhesion size. Silencing MCT4 in Skov3 cells, had no effect on the use of glycolysis, sensitivity to treatment with Carboplatin and Paclitaxel, or their metastatic abilities. However, following MCT4 silencing there was a significant increase in the levels of intracellular ROS. Over-expressing MCT1 in OV90 cells, had no effect on lactate levels or intracellular ROS. However, there was a significant reduction in both their glycolytic activity and mitochondrial mass. Furthermore, over-expressing MCT1 in OV90 cells, increased their resistance to treatment with Paclitaxel, which correlated with increased Pgp and LDHA expression. Over-expressing MCT4 in OV90 cells, caused an increase in the use of glycolysis and increased cell survival in hypoxia. There was also a significant enhancement in the metastatic abilities of these cells following the over- expression of MCT4, which correlated with reduced focal adhesion size. Furthermore, over-expressing MCT4 in OV90 cells, increased their resistance to treatment with Paclitaxel, which correlated with an increase in the expression of Pgp and LDHA.In summary, the findings of this study revealed that MCT1 and MCT4 play a significant role in the biological function of Skov3 and OV90 cells. High expression levels of MCT4 correlated with an increase in glycolysis and cell survival in hypoxia. Whereas high expression levels of MCT1 and MCT4 in correlated with an increase in the metastatic abilities, as well as with Paclitaxel resistance and increased Pgp expression.

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Original languageEnglish
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Award date1 Aug 2017