IL-22+CD4+ T cells promote colorectal cancer stemness via STAT3 transcription factor activation and induction of the methyltransferase DOT1L

Ilona Kryczek, Yanwei Lin, Nisha Nagarsheth, Dongjun Peng, Lili Zhao, Ende Zhao, Linda Vatan, Wojciech Szeliga, Yali Dou, Scott Owens, Witold Zgodzinski, Marek Majewski, Grzegorz Wallner, Jingyuan Fang, Emina Huang, Weiping Zou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Little is known about how the immune system impacts human colorectal cancer invasiveness and stemness. Here we detected interleukin-22 (IL-22) in patient colorectal cancer tissues that was produced predominantly by CD4+ Tcells. In a mouse model, migration of these cells into the colon cancer microenvironment required the chemokine receptor CCR6 and its ligand CCL20. IL-22 acted on cancer cells to promote activation of the transcription factorSTAT3 and expression of the histone 3 lysine 79(H3K79) methytransferase DOT1L. The DOT1L complex induced the core stem cell genes NANOG, SOX2, and Pou5F1, resulting in increased cancer stemness and tumorigenic potential. Furthermore, high DOT1L expression and H3K79me2 in colorectalcancer tissues was a predictor of poor patient survival. Thus, IL-22+ cells promote colon cancer stemness via regulation of stemness genes that negatively affects patient outcome. Efforts to target this network might be a strategy in treating colorectal cancer patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)772-784
Number of pages13
JournalImmunity
Volume40
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 15 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases

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