Hedgehog inhibition upregulates TRK expression to antagonize tumor suppression in small cell lung cancer cells

Hideya Onishi, Katsuya Nakamura, Shuntaro Nagai, Kosuke Yanai, Akio Yamasaki, Makoto Kawamoto, Akira Imaizumi, Takashi Morisaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Background/Aim: Previously we have shown that tropomyosin-related kinase B (TRKB) and Hedgehog (Hh) signalling pathways induce malignant phenotypes in many cancer types. However, results from small cell lung cancer (SCLC) clinical trials using TRK and Hh inhibitors have been disappointing. One reason for this may be the existence of crosstalk between TRKB and Hh signalling pathways. In this study, we detected negative crosstalk between the TRKB and Hh-GLI1 signalling pathways. Materials and Methods: The human small cell lung carcinoma cell line, SBC-5, was used. Using small interfering RNA to inhibit TRKB and Hh signalling, whether TRKB and Hh signaling contribute to proliferation and invasiveness in SBC-5 cells were investigated. Results: TRKB expression in GLI1 siRNAtransfected SBC-5 cells was higher than that of control cells. GLI1-knockdown alone did not affect invasiveness of SBC-5 cells. However, combined knockdown of TRKB and GLI1 significantly decreased invasiveness. Moreover, combined TRKB and GLI1 knockdown inhibited proliferation and migration to a greater extent than when either was inhibited alone. Conclusion: These results suggest that Hh inhibition increases TrkB expression to counter tumor suppression in SBC-5 cells. The combined use of TRKB and Hh inhibitors may, therefore, be useful for the treatment of refractory SCLC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4987-4992
Number of pages6
JournalAnticancer research
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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