Activation of the Hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway by mutations within its components drives the growth of several cancers. However, the role of Hh pathway activation in lung cancers has been controversial. We demonstrate that the Hh signaling pathway is activated in lung stroma in a paracrine manner. Genetic deletion of Shh in autochthonous murine lung adenocarcinoma had no effect on survival. Early abrogation of the pathway by an anti-SHH/IHH antibody 5E1 led to significantly worse survival with increased tumor and metastatic burden. Loss of IHH by in vivo CRISPR led to more aggressive tumor growth suggesting that IHH, not SHH, activates the pathway in stroma to drive its tumor suppressive effects - a novel role for IHH in the lung. Tumors from mice treated with 5E1 had decreased blood vessel density and increased reactive oxygen species (ROS). Treatment of KP mice with 5E1 and N-acetylcysteine, as a ROS scavenger, decreased tumor ROS levels, inhibited tumor growth and prolonged mouse survival suggesting that increased ROS levels from stromal Hh pathway inhibition spurred lung tumor growth. Thus, IHH induces stromal Hh pathway activation to suppress tumor growth and metastases, in part, by limiting ROS production.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)