Controlling metastatic lesions is an important part of improving cancer prognosis, in addition to controlling the primary lesion. There have been numerous histological studies on primary and metastatic lesions, but little basic research has been performed using cell lines from primary and metastatic lesions belonging to the same patient. In this study, we successfully established a cell line derived from lower gingival carcinoma (WK2) as well as a line derived from secondary cervical lymph node metastasis (WK3F) through primary cultures of tissue from a patient with oral squamous cell carcinoma. We then investigated the biological characteristics of the cancer cell lines from these primary and metastatic lesions and analyzed metastasis-related genes. Comparison of the biological characteristics in vitro showed that WK3F had higher cell proliferation ability and shorter cell doubling time than WK2. WK3F also had increased cell migratory ability and higher invasive and self-replication abilities. Heterotransplantation into nude mice resulted in high tumor formation rates in the tongue and high metastasis rates in the cervical lymph nodes. Changes in WK2 and WK3F gene expression were then comprehensively analyzed using micro-arrays. Genes with increased expression in WK3F compared to WK2 were extracted when the Z-score was ≥2.0 and the ratio was ≥5.0, while genes with reduced expression in WK3F compared to WK2 were extracted when the Z-score was ≤-2.0 and the ratio was ≤0.2; differences were found in 604 genes. From these, MAGEC1 (88.0-fold), MMP-7 (18.6-fold), SNAI1 (6.6-fold), MACC1 (6.2-fold), and HTRA1 (0.012-fold) were selected as metastasis-related candidate genes. The results suggest that these molecules could be important for clarifying the mechanisms that regulate metastasis and provide new therapeutic targets for inhibiting tumor invasion.
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