Temozolomide (TMZ) resistance is frequent in patients with glioblastoma (GBM), a tumor characterized by a marked inflammatory microenvironment. Recently, we reported that cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is upregulated in TMZ-resistant GBM cells treated with high TMZ concentrations. Moreover, COX-2 activity inhibition significantly counteracted TMZ-resistance of GBM cells. Extracellular vesicles (EV) are considered crucial mediators in orchestrating GBM drug resistance by modulating the tumor microenvironment (TME) and affecting the surrounding recipient cell phenotype and behavior. This work aimed to verify whether TMZ, at low and clinically relevant doses (5-20 mu M), could induce COX-2 overexpression in GBM cells (T98G and U87MG) and explore if secreted EV shuttled COX-2 to recipient cells. The effect of COX-2 inhibitors (COXIB), Celecoxib (CXB), or NS398, alone or TMZ-combined, was also investigated. Our results indicated that TMZ at clinically relevant doses upregulated COX-2 in GBM cells. COXIB treatment significantly counteracted TMZ-induced COX-2 expression, confirming the crucial role of the COX-2/PGE2 system in TMZ-resistance. The COXIB specificity was verified on U251MG, COX-2 null GBM cells. Western blotting of GBM-EV cells showed the COX-2 presence, with the same intracellular trend, increasing in EV derived from TMZ-treated cells and decreasing in those derived from COXIB+TMZ-treated cells. We then evaluated the effect of EV secreted by TMZ-treated cells on U937 and U251MG, used as recipient cells. In human macrophage cell line U937, the internalization of EV derived by TMZ-T98G cells led to a shift versus a pro-tumor M2-like phenotype. On the other hand, EV from TMZ-T98G induced a significant decrease in TMZ sensitivity in U251MG cells. Overall, our results, in confirming the crucial role played by COX-2 in TMZ-resistance, provide the first evidence of the presence and effective functional transfer of this enzyme through EV derived from GBM cells, with multiple potential consequences at the level of TME.

Cyclooxygenase-2 Upregulated by Temozolomide in Glioblastoma Cells Is Shuttled In Extracellular Vesicles Modifying Recipient Cell Phenotype

Lombardi, Francesca;Augello, Francesca Rosaria;Artone, Serena;Giusti, Ilaria;Dolo, Vincenza;Cifone, Maria Grazia;Cinque, Benedetta
;
Palumbo, Paola
2022

Abstract

Temozolomide (TMZ) resistance is frequent in patients with glioblastoma (GBM), a tumor characterized by a marked inflammatory microenvironment. Recently, we reported that cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is upregulated in TMZ-resistant GBM cells treated with high TMZ concentrations. Moreover, COX-2 activity inhibition significantly counteracted TMZ-resistance of GBM cells. Extracellular vesicles (EV) are considered crucial mediators in orchestrating GBM drug resistance by modulating the tumor microenvironment (TME) and affecting the surrounding recipient cell phenotype and behavior. This work aimed to verify whether TMZ, at low and clinically relevant doses (5-20 mu M), could induce COX-2 overexpression in GBM cells (T98G and U87MG) and explore if secreted EV shuttled COX-2 to recipient cells. The effect of COX-2 inhibitors (COXIB), Celecoxib (CXB), or NS398, alone or TMZ-combined, was also investigated. Our results indicated that TMZ at clinically relevant doses upregulated COX-2 in GBM cells. COXIB treatment significantly counteracted TMZ-induced COX-2 expression, confirming the crucial role of the COX-2/PGE2 system in TMZ-resistance. The COXIB specificity was verified on U251MG, COX-2 null GBM cells. Western blotting of GBM-EV cells showed the COX-2 presence, with the same intracellular trend, increasing in EV derived from TMZ-treated cells and decreasing in those derived from COXIB+TMZ-treated cells. We then evaluated the effect of EV secreted by TMZ-treated cells on U937 and U251MG, used as recipient cells. In human macrophage cell line U937, the internalization of EV derived by TMZ-T98G cells led to a shift versus a pro-tumor M2-like phenotype. On the other hand, EV from TMZ-T98G induced a significant decrease in TMZ sensitivity in U251MG cells. Overall, our results, in confirming the crucial role played by COX-2 in TMZ-resistance, provide the first evidence of the presence and effective functional transfer of this enzyme through EV derived from GBM cells, with multiple potential consequences at the level of TME.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11697/191219
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