Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway may regulate the expression of angiogenic growth factors in hepatocellular carcinoma

April 2014
Oncology Letters;2014, Vol. 7 Issue 4, p1175
Academic Journal
The Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway plays a key role during hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) genesis and development. The present study aimed to investigate the effects of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway on the expression of angiogenic growth factors involved in HCC. The HCC HepG2 cell line was transfected with small interfering RNA (siRNA) against β-catenin. After 72 and 96h, protein was extracted and the expression levels of β-catenin, matrix metalloproteinase(MMP)-2, MMP-9, vascular endothelial growth factor(VEGF)A, VEGF-C and basic fibroblast growth factor(bFGF) were detected by western blot analysis. β-catenin protein expression was inhibited at both time points. Notably, MMP-2, MMP-9, VEGF-A, VEGF-C and bFGF protein expression levels decreased at 72h and then increased at 96 h after transfection. Our results demonstrated that in HCC cells, the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway may regulate the protein expression of the angiogenic factors, MMP-2, MMP-9, VEGF-A, VEGF-C and bFGF. These proteins were downstream of β-catenin signaling and were also regulated by other factors. In conclusion, the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway may contribute to the regulation of HCC angiogenesis, infiltration and metastasis through regulating the expression of these angiogenic factors.


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