Liu N, Cui W, Jiang X, Zhang Z, Gnosa S, Ali Z, Jensen L, Jönsson JI, Blockhuys S, Lam EW, Zhao Z, Ping J, Xie N, Kopsida M, Wang X, Sun XF
Int. J. Radiat. Oncol. Biol. Phys. 104 (5) 1153-1164 [2019-08-01; online 2019-04-27]
To explore whether the Rho protein is involved in the radioresistance of colorectal cancer and investigate the underlying mechanisms. Rho GTPase expression was measured after radiation treatment in colon cancer cells. RhoB knockout cell lines were established using the CRISPR/Cas9 system. In vitro assays and zebrafish embryos were used for analyzing radiosensitivity and invasive ability. Mass cytometry was used to detect RhoB downstream signaling factors. RhoB and Forkhead box M1 (FOXM1) expression were detected by immunohistochemistry in rectal cancer patients who participated in a radiation therapy trial. RhoB expression was related to radiation resistance. Complete depletion of the RhoB protein increased radiosensitivity and impaired radiation-enhanced metastatic potential in vitro and in zebrafish models. Probing signaling using mass cytometry-based single-cell analysis showed that the Akt phosphorylation level was inhibited by RhoB depletion after radiation. FOXM1 was downregulated in RhoB knockout cells, and the inhibition of FOXM1 led to lower survival rates and attenuated migration and invasion abilities of the cells after radiation. In the patients who underwent radiation therapy, RhoB overexpression was related to high FOXM1, late Tumor, Node, Metastasis stage, high distant recurrence, and poor survival independent of other clinical factors. RhoB plays a critical role in radioresistance of colorectal cancer through Akt and FOXM1 pathways.