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See detailStromal fibroblasts shape the myeloid phenotype in normal colon and colorectal cancer and induce CD163 and CCL2 expression in macrophages
Stadler, Mira; Pudelko, Karoline; Biermeier, Alexander et al

in Cancer Letters (2021)

Colorectal cancer (CRC) accounts for about 10% of cancer deaths worldwide. Colon carcinogenesis is critically influenced by the tumor microenvironment. Cancer associated fibroblasts (CAFs) and tumor ... [more ▼]

Colorectal cancer (CRC) accounts for about 10% of cancer deaths worldwide. Colon carcinogenesis is critically influenced by the tumor microenvironment. Cancer associated fibroblasts (CAFs) and tumor associated macrophages (TAMs) represent the major components of the tumor microenvironment. TAMs promote tumor progression, angiogenesis and tissue remodeling. However, the impact of the molecular crosstalk of tumor cells (TCs) with CAFs and macrophages on monocyte recruitment and their phenotypic conversion is not known in detail so far. In a 3D human organotypic CRC model, we show that CAFs and normal colonic fibroblasts are critically involved in monocyte recruitment and for the establishment of a macrophage phenotype, characterized by high CD163 expression. This is in line with the steady recruitment and differentiation of monocytes to immunosuppressive macrophages in the normal colon. Cytokine profiling revealed that CAFs produce M-CSF, and IL6, IL8, HGF and CCL2 secretion was specifically induced by CAFs in co-cultures with macrophages. Moreover, macrophage/CAF/TCs co-cultures increased TC invasion. We demonstrate that CAFs and macrophages are the major producers of CCL2 and, upon co-culture, increase their CCL2 production twofold and 40-fold, respectively. CAFs and macrophages expressing high CCL2 were also found in vivo in CRC, strongly supporting our findings. CCL2, CCR2, CSF1R and CD163 expression in macrophages was dependent on active MCSFR signaling as shown by M-CSFR inhibition. These results indicate that colon fibroblasts and not TCs are the major cellular component, recruiting and dictating the fate of infiltrated monocytes towards a specific macrophage population, characterized by high CD163 expression and CCL2 production. [less ▲]

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See detailMapping the Metabolic Networks of Tumor Cells and Cancer-Associated Fibroblasts
Karta, Jessica UL; Bossicard, Ysaline UL; Kotzamanis, Konstantinos UL et al

in Cells (2021)

Metabolism is considered to be the core of all cellular activity. Thus, extensive studies of metabolic processes are ongoing in various fields of biology, including cancer research. Cancer cells are known ... [more ▼]

Metabolism is considered to be the core of all cellular activity. Thus, extensive studies of metabolic processes are ongoing in various fields of biology, including cancer research. Cancer cells are known to adapt their metabolism to sustain high proliferation rates and survive in unfavorable environments with low oxygen and nutrient concentrations. Hence, targeting cancer cell metabolism is a promising therapeutic strategy in cancer research. However, cancers consist not only of genetically altered tumor cells but are interwoven with endothelial cells, immune cells and fibroblasts, which together with the extracellular matrix (ECM) constitute the tumor microenvironment (TME). Cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs), which are linked to poor prognosis in different cancer types, are one important component of the TME. CAFs play a significant role in reprogramming the metabolic landscape of tumor cells, but how, and in what manner, this interaction takes place remains rather unclear. This review aims to highlight the metabolic landscape of tumor cells and CAFs, including their recently identified subtypes, in different tumor types. In addition, we discuss various in vitro and in vivo metabolic techniques as well as different in silico computational tools that can be used to identify and characterize CAF–tumor cell interactions. Finally, we provide our view on how mapping the complex metabolic networks of stromal-tumor metabolism will help in finding novel metabolic targets for cancer treatment. [less ▲]

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