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Effect of sex steroid hormones on tongue cancer cells in vitro

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  • Johanna Peltonen, University of Helsinki
  • ,
  • Katja Tuomainen, University of Helsinki
  • ,
  • Tobias Sallinen, University of Helsinki
  • ,
  • Islam Faress
  • Ilida Suleymanova, University of Helsinki
  • ,
  • Ahmed Al-Samadi, University of Helsinki
  • ,
  • Tuula Salo, University of Helsinki, University of Oulu
  • ,
  • Pirjo Åström, University of Oulu

Background: Tongue cancer is more common in men than in women. Yet the effects of sex steroid hormones on the behaviour of oral tongue squamous cell carcinoma (OTSCC) are not well known. Matrix metalloproteinase 8 (MMP8) is expressed in OTSCC and can degrade estrogen receptors (ERs). Materials and Methods: Western blot was used to examine the levels of ERβ in OTSCC cell lines (HSC-3 and SCC-25). We evaluated the effects of estradiol and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) on HSC-3 and SCC-25 cell migration, invasion and viability. The effect of estradiol on the invasion of MMP8-overexpressing (MMP8+) and empty vector HSC-3 cells was examined using 3D spheroid invasion assay. Results: Both HSC-3 and SCC-25 cells expressed ERβ. In scratch assay, estradiol, but not DHT, reduced the migration and invasion of HSC-3 and SCC-25 cells. MMP8+ HSC-3 cells showed weaker invasion than empty vector cells, in line with previous reports. However, MMP8 overexpression did not alter the effect of estradiol on HSC-3 cell invasion in spheroid assay. Conclusion: Estradiol inhibited the migration and invasion of OTSCC cells, whereas DHT had no effect. Our data suggest that MMP8 does not modulate the effect of estradiol in OTSCC cells. However, the sex difference in OTSCC incidence might partly be due to protective actions of estradiol in epithelial cell carcinogenesis.

TidsskriftAnticancer Research
Sider (fra-til)6029-6037
Antal sider9
StatusUdgivet - nov. 2020

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