Irradiation-induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) related to invasive potential in endometrial carcinoma cells

Gynecol Oncol. 2007 Dec;107(3):500-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2007.08.058. Epub 2007 Oct 1.


Objective: Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a process whereby cells acquire molecular alterations that facilitate cell motility and invasion. In this study, we hypothesized that ionizing irradiation would cause endometrial carcinoma cells (HEC1A) to undergo an increase of motility related to EMT.

Methods: We investigated the effect of ionizing irradiation on HEC1A cell migration. Furthermore, we examined whether this enhanced invasiveness was associated with epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and Twist siRNA transfections effects in ionizing irradiation-induced HEC1A cell migratory capacity.

Results: Ionizing irradiation leads to HEC1A cell phenotypic changes with EMT: spindle-cell shape, loss of polarity, intercellular separation, and pseudopodia formation. Ionizing irradiation leads to a 2-fold increase in HEC1A cell migration. In immunofluorescence staining of HEC1A cell, the expression of Twist, an organizer of EMT, increased by ionizing irradiation. Additionally, the irradiation-induced HEC1A cell invasion was inhibited by Twist siRNA transfections.

Conclusions: This report suggested that the inhibitory effect of cell invasion through targeting Twist may represent a new approach for improving the therapeutic strategy.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Movement / genetics
  • Cell Movement / radiation effects*
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / genetics
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Epithelial Cells / pathology
  • Epithelial Cells / radiation effects
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mesoderm / pathology
  • Mesoderm / radiation effects
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics
  • RNA, Small Interfering / genetics
  • Transfection
  • Twist-Related Protein 1 / genetics


  • Nuclear Proteins
  • RNA, Small Interfering
  • TWIST1 protein, human
  • Twist-Related Protein 1