• Open Access

c-Ski overexpression promotes tumor growth and angiogenesis through inhibition of transforming growth factor-β signaling in diffuse-type gastric carcinoma


To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: miyazono@m.u-tokyo.ac.jp


c-Ski, originally identified as a proto-oncogene product, is an important negative regulator of transforming growth factor (TGF)-β family signaling through interaction with Smad2, Smad3, and Smad4. High expression of c-Ski has been found in some cancers, including gastric cancer. We previously showed that disruption of TGF-β signaling by dominant-negative TGF-β type II receptor in a diffuse-type gastric carcinoma model accelerated tumor growth through induction of tumor angiogenesis by decreased expression of the anti-angiogenic factor thrombospondin (TSP)-1. Here, we examined the function of c-Ski in human diffuse-type gastric carcinoma OCUM-2MLN cells. Overexpression of c-Ski inhibited TGF-β signaling in OCUM-2MLN cells. Interestingly, c-Ski overexpression resulted in extensive acceleration of the growth of subcutaneous xenografts in BALB/c nu/nu female mice (6 weeks of age). Similar to tumors expressing dominant-negative TGF-β type II receptor, histochemical studies revealed less fibrosis and increased angiogenesis in xenografted tumors expressing c-Ski compared to control tumors. Induction of TSP-1 mRNA by TGF-β was attenuated by c-Ski in vitro, and expression of TSP-1 mRNA was decreased in tumors expressing c-Ski in vivo. These findings suggest that c-Ski overexpression promotes the growth of diffuse-type gastric carcinoma through induction of angiogenesis. (Cancer Sci 2009; 100: 1809–1816)