Gain of HIF-1α under normoxia in cancer mediates immune adaptation through the AKT/ERK and VEGFA axes

Young Ho Lee, Hyun Cheol Bae, Kyung Hee Noh, Kwon Ho Song, Sang Kyu Ye, Chih Ping Mao, Kyung-Mi Lee, T. C. Wu, Tae Woo Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: Adaptation to host immune surveillance is now recognized as a hallmark of cancer onset and progression, and represents an early, indispensable event in cancer evolution. This process of evolution is first instigated by an immune selection pressure imposed by natural host surveillance mechanisms and may then be propagated by vaccination or other types of immunotherapy. Experimental Design: We developed a system to simulate cancer evolution in a live host and to dissect the mechanisms responsible for adaptation to immune selection. Here, we show that the oxygen-sensitive a subunit of hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1a) plays a central role in cancer immune adaptation under conditions of normal oxygen tension. Results: We found that tumor cells gain HIF-1a in the course of immune selection under normoxia and that HIF- 1a renders tumor cells resistant to lysis by tumor-specifi c cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) in culture and in mice. The effects of HIF-1α on immune adaptation were mediated through VEGFA-dependent activation of the AKT and ERK signaling pathways, which induced an antiapoptotic gene expression network in tumor cells. Conclusions: Our study therefore establishes a link between immune selection, overexpression of HIF-1a, and cancer immune adaptation under normoxia, providing new opportunities for molecular intervention in patients with cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1438-1446
Number of pages9
JournalClinical Cancer Research
Volume21
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Mar 15

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Neoplasms
Oxygen
Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1
MAP Kinase Signaling System
Gene Regulatory Networks
Cytotoxic T-Lymphocytes
Immunotherapy
Vaccination
Research Design
Gene Expression
Pressure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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Gain of HIF-1α under normoxia in cancer mediates immune adaptation through the AKT/ERK and VEGFA axes. / Lee, Young Ho; Bae, Hyun Cheol; Noh, Kyung Hee; Song, Kwon Ho; Ye, Sang Kyu; Mao, Chih Ping; Lee, Kyung-Mi; Wu, T. C.; Kim, Tae Woo.

In: Clinical Cancer Research, Vol. 21, No. 6, 15.03.2015, p. 1438-1446.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lee, Young Ho ; Bae, Hyun Cheol ; Noh, Kyung Hee ; Song, Kwon Ho ; Ye, Sang Kyu ; Mao, Chih Ping ; Lee, Kyung-Mi ; Wu, T. C. ; Kim, Tae Woo. / Gain of HIF-1α under normoxia in cancer mediates immune adaptation through the AKT/ERK and VEGFA axes. In: Clinical Cancer Research. 2015 ; Vol. 21, No. 6. pp. 1438-1446.
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