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Mechanisms of epigenetic regulation and tumor clonal heterogeneity in human metastatic melanoma involving RECK gene

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Manoela Tiago dos Santos
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Doctoral Thesis
Press: São Paulo.
Institution: Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Conjunto das Químicas (IQ e FCF) (CQ/DBDCQ)
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Silvya Stuchi Maria Engler; Daniela Sanchez Bassères; Erico Tosoni Costa; Ana Cristina Victorino Krepischi
Advisor: Silvya Stuchi Maria Engler

Patients with melanoma often present extreme chemoresistance and poor prognosis, with survival rates of approximately six months; therefore, new therapeutic strategies are necessary. Melanoma cells accumulate genotypic changes that contribute to uncontrolled proliferation, evasion of senescence and cell death inhibition in multiple cellular pathways. In Chapter 1, we have explored the epigenetic control of the tumor suppressor RECK. This gene is widely expressed in normal tissues, with correlation of its expression with better prognosis. In tumors, RECK is inhibited, including melanoma. Here, RECK inhibition by promoter hypermethylation and chromatin remodeling by HDACs was not the only inhibiting factor in the melanoma cell lines analyzed. Even after removing the epigenetic marks associated to gene expression silencing, the protein expression could not be recovered in the cell lines used in this study. In Chapter 2, it has been isolated several tumor clonal subpopulations in order to modulate the intrinsic tumor heterogeneity. In this experimental model, we have characterized the presence of two tumor subclonal profiles: a more proliferative, invasive and sensitive to Vemurafenib; and other less proliferative, less sensitive to Vemurafenib and presenting more expression of RECK and factors associated to EMT. Our results together have showed the parental cell lines used here differed from each other in terms of cell viability, induction of apoptosis, and ERK phosphorylation after treatment with Vemurafenib. According to our model, the intrinsic resistance to Vemurafenib is present and reflects the heterogeneity of the initial tumor. With these results, we intend to contribute to the knowledge of the tumor clonal subpopulations composition in tumor heterogeneity, and contributes to the RECK function in melanoma biology. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 11/19045-9 - Methylation of RECK and ALX3 genes in human melanoma
Grantee:Manoela Tiago dos Santos
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate