Immunohistochemical characterization and functional identification of mammary gland telocytes in the self-assembly of reconstituted breast cancer tissue in vitro

Authors

  • Yongchao Mou,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
    2. Department of Life Science and Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China
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    • The first three authors contributed equally to this work.
  • Yan Wang,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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    • The first three authors contributed equally to this work.
  • Junjie Li,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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    • The first three authors contributed equally to this work.
  • Shuanghong Lü,

    1. Laboratory of Oncology, Affiliated Hospital of Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Cuimi Duan,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Zhiyan Du,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Guili Yang,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Weizhen Chen,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Siyang Zhao,

    1. Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Jin Zhou,

    Corresponding author
    • Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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  • Changyong Wang

    Corresponding author
    • Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Beijing, China
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Corresponding to: Changyong WANG, Jin ZHOU, Department of Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies,Institute of Basic Medical Sciences and Tissue Engineering Research Center, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, 27 Taiping Rd, Beijing 100850, China.

Tel.: +86-10-68166874

Fax: +86-10-68166874

E-mails: wcy2000@yahoo.com; wcy2000_te@yahoo.com; sisun819@hotmail.com

Abstract

Telocyte (TC) as a special stromal cell exists in mammary gland and might play an important role in the balance of epithelium-stroma of mammary gland. Considering that different types of breast interstitial cells influence the development and progression of breast cancer, TCs may have its distinct role in this process. We here studied the roles of TCs in the self-assembly of reconstituted breast cancer tissue. We co-cultured primary isolated TCs and other breast stromal cells with breast cancer EMT-6 cells in collagen/Matrigel scaffolds to reconstitute breast cancer tissue in vitro. Using histology methods, we investigated the immunohistochemical characteristics and potential functions of TCs in reconstituted breast cancer tissue. TCs in primary mammary gland stromal cells with long and thin overlapping cytoplasmic processes, expressed c-kit/CD117, CD34 and vimentin in reconstitute breast cancer tissue. The transmission electron microscopy showed that the telocyte-like cells closely communicated with breast cancer cells as well as other stromal cells, and might serve as a bridge that directly linked the adjacent cells through membrane-to-membrane contact. Compared with cancer tissue sheets of EMT-6 alone, PCNA proliferation index analysis and TUNEL assay showed that TCs and other breast stromal cells facilitated the formation of typical nest structure, promoted the proliferation of breast cancer cells, and inhibited their apoptosis. In conclusion, we successfully reconstituted breast cancer tissue in vitro, and it seems to be attractive that TCs had potential functions in self-assembly of EMT-6/stromal cells reconstituted breast cancer tissue.

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