Hyperthermia on mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can sensitize tumor cells to undergo cell death

Ho Park, Jung Ah Cho, Suel Kee Kim, Jong Hoon Kim, Sang Hoon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Hyperthermia, the procedure of raising the temperature of tumor-loaded tissue to 40°-43°C, has been applied to various established cancer treatments. Although the mechanism of hyperthermia in cancer treatment is well-known, there are few or no studies regarding the effect of hyperthermia on the tumor-supportive stroma. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) display the potential for differentiation into various tissues. MSCs are also reported to play a role as potential precursors for tumor stroma in providing a favorable environment for tumor progression. Here, we investigated the effects of hyperthermia-treated MSCs on the viability and growth of cancer cells. Culture supernatants from non-shocked or heat-shocked MSCs (NS-MSCs or HS-MSCs) were added to MCF7 cells. Morphological analysis and cell proliferation assay showed the reduced viability and growth of MCF7 cells by addition of culture medium conditioned by HS-MSCs. Additionally, exposure to the conditioned medium by HS-MSCs induced cell cycle arrest at G2/M phase, increased MHC class I, Fas receptor, and TNF-R expressions, and decreased MDR1 expression in the MCF7 cells. In particular, the conditioned medium of HS-MSCs accelerated the inhibition of tumor cell growth by several chemotherapeutic drugs. These data present new aspects of hyperthermia in cancer treatment, suggesting that hyperthermia can enable tumor stroma provide a sensitizing environment for tumor cells to undergo cell death.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)638-648
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Hyperthermia
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Cancer therapy
  • Hyperthermia
  • Mesenchymal stem cells
  • Tumor stroma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cancer Research


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