Aberrant TIMP-1 overexpression in tumor-associated fibroblasts drives tumor progression through CD63 in lung adenocarcinoma

Paula Duch, Natalia Díaz-Valdivia, Rafael Ikemori, Marta Gabasa, Evette S. Radisky, Marselina Arshakyan, Sabrina Gea-Sorlí, Anna Mateu-Bosch, Paloma Bragado, Josep Lluís Carrasco, Hidetoshi Mori, Josep Ramírez, Cristina Teixidó, Noemí Reguart, Cristina Fillat, Derek C. Radisky, Jordi Alcaraz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-1 (TIMP-1) is an important regulator of extracellular matrix turnover that has been traditionally regarded as a potential tumor suppressor owing to its inhibitory effects of matrix metalloproteinases. Intriguingly, this interpretation has been challenged by the consistent observation that increased expression of TIMP-1 is associated with poor prognosis in virtually all cancer types including lung cancer, supporting a tumor-promoting function. However, how TIMP-1 is dysregulated within the tumor microenvironment and how it drives tumor progression in lung cancer is poorly understood. We analyzed the expression of TIMP-1 and its cell surface receptor CD63 in two major lung cancer subtypes: lung adenocarcinoma (ADC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), and defined the tumor-promoting effects of their interaction. We found that TIMP-1 is aberrantly overexpressed in tumor-associated fibroblasts (TAFs) in ADC compared to SCC. Mechanistically, TIMP-1 overexpression was mediated by the selective hyperactivity of the pro-fibrotic TGF-β1/SMAD3 pathway in ADC-TAFs. Likewise, CD63 was upregulated in ADC compared to SCC cells. Genetic analyses revealed that TIMP-1 secreted by TGF-β1-activated ADC-TAFs is both necessary and sufficient to enhance growth and invasion of ADC cancer cells in culture, and that tumor cell expression of CD63 was required for these effects. Consistently, in vivo analyses revealed that ADC cells co-injected with fibroblasts with reduced SMAD3 or TIMP-1 expression into immunocompromised mice attenuated tumor aggressiveness compared to tumors bearing parental fibroblasts. We also found that high TIMP1 and CD63 mRNA levels combined define a stronger prognostic biomarker than TIMP1 alone. Our results identify an excessive stromal TIMP-1 within the tumor microenvironment selectively in lung ADC, and implicate it in a novel tumor-promoting TAF-carcinoma crosstalk, thereby pointing to TIMP-1/CD63 interaction as a novel therapeutic target in lung cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-225
Number of pages19
JournalMatrix Biology
Volume111
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2022

Keywords

  • Cancer-associated fibroblast
  • CD63
  • Fibrosis
  • SMAD3
  • TGF-β1
  • TIMP-1
  • Tumor microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology

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