Background. As a key step in enhancing cancer cell invasion and metastasis, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) plays an important role in colorectal cancer progression. EMT is triggered by a variety of signaling pathways, among which the transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) signaling pathway has been implicated as a primary inducer. Accumulating evidence demonstrates that MnTE-2-PyP (chemical name: Manganese(III) meso-tetrakis-(N-ethylpyridinium-2-yl), a superoxide dismutase (SOD) mimetic, inhibits TGF-β signaling; however, its ability to inhibit TGF-β-induced EMT in colorectal cancer has not yet been explored. Methods. To verify our hypothesis that MnTE-2-PyP attenuates TGF-β-induced EMT, human colorectal cancer cells were treated with TGF-β in the presence or absence of MnTE-2-PyP. Cells were analyzed by several techniques including western blotting, real-time quantitative PCR, transwell assay, and wound healing assay. Results. MnTE-2-PyP reverses cell phenotypes induced by TGF-β in colon cancer cells. MnTE-2-PyP treatment significantly reduced the expression of mesenchymal markers but maintained epithelial marker expression. Mechanistically, MnTE-2-PyP suppressed the phosphorylated Smad2/3 protein levels induced by TGF-β in SW480 cells, but MnTE-2-PyP failed to suppress TGF-β-induced Slug and Snail expression in colorectal cells. Furthermore, MnTE-2-PyP effectively suppressed TGF-β-mediated cell migration and invasion and the expression of matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2) and matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9) in colorectal cells. Conclusion. Taken together, we provide an in-depth mechanism by which MnTE-2-PyP inhibits colorectal cancer progression, supporting an important role for MnTE-2-PyP as an effective and innovative antitumor agent to enhance treatment outcomes in colorectal cancer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology