University of Oulu

Peltonen, J., Tuomainen, K., Sallinen, T., Faress, I., Suleymanova, I., Al-Samadi, A., Salo, T., Åström, P. (2020) Effect of Sex Steroid Hormones on Tongue Cancer Cells In Vitro. Anticancer Research, 40(11), 6029-6037.

Effect of sex steroid hormones on tongue cancer cells in vitro

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Author: Peltonen, Johanna1,2; Tuomainen, Katja1,2; Sallinen, Tobias1;
Organizations: 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases, Clinicum, Faculty of Medicine, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
2Translational Immunology Research Program (TRIMM), University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
3Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, University of Århus, Århus, Denmark
4Cancer and Translational Medicine Research Unit, Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
5Department of Pathology, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
6Research Unit of Biomedicine, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.8 MB)
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Language: English
Published: International Institute of Anticancer Research, 2020
Publish Date: 2021-03-03


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.

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Series: Anticancer research
ISSN: 0250-7005
ISSN-E: 1791-7530
ISSN-L: 0250-7005
Volume: 40
Issue: 11
Pages: 6029 - 6037
DOI: 10.21873/anticanres.14624
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 3122 Cancers
Funding: The Authors are grateful to the funders of this study: The Sigrid Jusélius Foundation, the Cancer Society of Finland, the Oulu University Hospital MRC grant, the Helsinki University Central Hospital research funds, the Academy of Finland, the Jane and Aatos Erkko Foundation and the Minerva Foundation. We also thank the FIMM HTB unit for technical support.
Copyright information: © 2020, International Institute of Anticancer Research (Dr. George J. Delinasios), All rights reserved. Published in this repository with the kind permission of the publisher.