Interactions entre les cellules tumorales et stromales dans le microenvironnement du cancer de la vessie

Authors: Ringuette Goulet, Cassandra
Advisor: Bolduc, StéphanePouliot, Frédéric
Abstract: Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) are the most abundant cell type of the tumor microenvironment. In vivo, aggressive tumors correlate with an enrichment of CAFs and a denser extracellular matrix. Indeed, the dynamic and reciprocal interactions between tumor cells and CAFs promote tumor progression. However, the molecules involved in these interactions, as well as their effects on the fate of the tumor and the remodeling of the microenvironment are poorly known. However, better define and understand the molecular mechanisms of this interaction is crucial to develop new treatments. Thus, we studied interactions between tumor cells and stromal cells in the microenvironment of bladder cancer. Exosomes are a class of extracellular vesicles with of endocytic origin measuring 30 to 200 nm in diameter. They are secreted by all types of cells and constitute, among others, a means of intercellular communication by transporting proteins, lipids and RNA from one cell to another. Cancer cells secrete a large amount of exosomes and these exert a role in the modulation of the tumor microenvironment, notably by activating healthy fibroblasts in CAFs. The work presented in this thesis has demonstrated that the exosomes secreted by cancer cells are internalized by vesical fibroblasts and promote their proliferation. In addition, exosomes derived from cancer cells activate healthy fibroblasts in CAFs using the TGFβ that they transport. The neutralization of TGFβ by specific antibodies confirms these results. Once activated, CAFs increase the proliferation, migration and invasion of cancer cells via a sustained secretion of the IL-6 molecule. Moreover, the blocking the IL-6 signaling pathway reverses the effects observed in cancer cells. We have also demonstrated that CAFs decrease the sensitivity of cancer cells to mitomycin C. Finally, CAFs remodel the extracellular matrix of the tumor microenvironment notably by an increased secretion of tenascin C and EDA-fibronectin oncofetal proteins, as well as a LOX-1 and MMP increased activity. In addition, the extracellular matrix generated by CAFs promotes the epithelio-mesenchymal transition of healthy urothelial cells by inhibiting the epithelial marker E-cadherin in favor of the mesenchymal marker N-cadherin. Thus, a close and complex communication between the cancer cells and the CAFs increases tumor progression. By secreting soluble factors with a pro-tumor activity and extracellular matrix proteins, CAFs promote the proliferation, invasion and chemoresistance of cancer cells. Overall, our work supports the idea that the inhibition of the transdifferentiation of healthy fibroblasts into CAFs is a therapeutic target of choice in the development of novel anticancer drugs.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2019
Open Access Date: 15 October 2019
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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