BackgroundThe upregulation of antioxidant mechanisms is a common occurrence in cancer cells, as they strive to maintain balanced redox state and prevent oxidative damage. This includes the upregulation of the cystine/glutamate antiporter xCT, which plays a crucial role in protecting cancer cells from oxidative stress. Consequently, targeting xCT has become an attractive strategy for cancer treatment. However, xCT is also expressed by several types of immune cells where it has a role in proliferation and effector functions. In light of these observations, a comprehensive understanding of the specific role of xCT in the initiation and progression of cancer, as well as its potential impact on the immune system within the tumor microenvironment and the anti-tumor response, require further investigation.MethodsWe generated xCTnull BALB/c mice to investigate the role of xCT in the immune system and xCTnull/Erbb2-transgenic BALB-neuT mice to study the role of xCT in a mammary cancer-prone model. We also used mammary cancer cells derived from BALB-neuT/xCTnull mice and xCTKO 4T1 cells to test the contribution of xCT to malignant properties in vitro and in vivo.ResultsxCT depletion in BALB-neuT/xCTnull mice does not alter autochthonous tumor initiation, but tumor cells isolated from these mice display proliferation and redox balance defects in vitro. Although xCT disruption sensitizes 4T1 cells to oxidative stress, it does not prevent transplantable tumor growth, but reduces cell migration in vitro and lung metastasis in vivo. This is accompanied by an altered immune cell recruitment in the pre-metastatic niche. Finally, systemic depletion of xCT in host mice does not affect transplantable tumor growth and metastasis nor impair the proper mounting of both humoral and cellular immune responses in vivo.ConclusionsxCT is dispensable for proper immune system function, thus supporting the safety of xCT targeting in oncology. Nevertheless, xCT is involved in several processes required for the metastatic seeding of mammary cancer cells, thus broadening the scope of xCT-targeting approaches.

Cystine/glutamate antiporter xCT deficiency reduces metastasis without impairing immune system function in breast cancer mouse models

Ruiu R.
First
;
Cossu C.;Iacoviello A.;Conti L.;Bolli E.;Ponzone L.;Magri J.;Calautti E.;Cavallo F.
Last
2023-01-01

Abstract

BackgroundThe upregulation of antioxidant mechanisms is a common occurrence in cancer cells, as they strive to maintain balanced redox state and prevent oxidative damage. This includes the upregulation of the cystine/glutamate antiporter xCT, which plays a crucial role in protecting cancer cells from oxidative stress. Consequently, targeting xCT has become an attractive strategy for cancer treatment. However, xCT is also expressed by several types of immune cells where it has a role in proliferation and effector functions. In light of these observations, a comprehensive understanding of the specific role of xCT in the initiation and progression of cancer, as well as its potential impact on the immune system within the tumor microenvironment and the anti-tumor response, require further investigation.MethodsWe generated xCTnull BALB/c mice to investigate the role of xCT in the immune system and xCTnull/Erbb2-transgenic BALB-neuT mice to study the role of xCT in a mammary cancer-prone model. We also used mammary cancer cells derived from BALB-neuT/xCTnull mice and xCTKO 4T1 cells to test the contribution of xCT to malignant properties in vitro and in vivo.ResultsxCT depletion in BALB-neuT/xCTnull mice does not alter autochthonous tumor initiation, but tumor cells isolated from these mice display proliferation and redox balance defects in vitro. Although xCT disruption sensitizes 4T1 cells to oxidative stress, it does not prevent transplantable tumor growth, but reduces cell migration in vitro and lung metastasis in vivo. This is accompanied by an altered immune cell recruitment in the pre-metastatic niche. Finally, systemic depletion of xCT in host mice does not affect transplantable tumor growth and metastasis nor impair the proper mounting of both humoral and cellular immune responses in vivo.ConclusionsxCT is dispensable for proper immune system function, thus supporting the safety of xCT targeting in oncology. Nevertheless, xCT is involved in several processes required for the metastatic seeding of mammary cancer cells, thus broadening the scope of xCT-targeting approaches.
2023
42
1
254
254
https://jeccr.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13046-023-02830-x
Breast cancer; Immune system; Metastasis; Metastatic niche; SLC7A11; xCT
Ruiu R.; Cossu C.; Iacoviello A.; Conti L.; Bolli E.; Ponzone L.; Magri J.; Rumandla A.; Calautti E.; Cavallo F.
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
Ruiu et al Journal of Experimental and Clinical Cancer Research 2023.pdf

Accesso aperto

Tipo di file: PDF EDITORIALE
Dimensione 5.33 MB
Formato Adobe PDF
5.33 MB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/1942492
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 0
  • Scopus 3
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 1
social impact