Aim: To compare the impact of ErbB2 on cell invasion and proliferation in cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) cell lines.
Methods: Level of endogenous ErbB2 expression in three CCA cell lines, namely HuCCA-1, KKU-100 and KKU-M213, was determined by real-time reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction. Two ErbB2 inhibitory methods, a small molecule ErbB2 kinase inhibitor (AG825) and siRNA, were used to disrupt ErbB2 function in the cell lines. CCA cell invasion, motility and proliferation under ErbB2-disrupted conditions were detected using Transwell and 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assays. In addition, ErbB2 downstream effectors were investigated by Western blotting analysis.
Results: Suppression of ErbB2 activity, using a specific kinase inhibitor (AG825), reduced invasion, motility and proliferation of all three CCA cell lines. The ability of this drug to inhibit neoplastic properties (invasion, motility and proliferation) increased concomitantly with the level of ErbB2 expression. Similarly, knockdown of ErbB2 level by siRNA inhibited cell invasion and proliferation of KKU-M213, a high-ErbB2-expressing cell, better than those of the lower-ErbB2-expressing cells, HuCCA-1 and KKU-100. Thus, both inhibitory methods indicated that there is more ErbB2-dependency for malignancy of the high-ErbB2-expressing cell, KKU-M213, than for that of low-ErbB2-expressing ones. In addition, interrupting ErbB2 activity decreased phosphorylation of AKT and p70S6K, but not extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2, in the high-ErbB2-expressing CCA cell line.
Conclusion: Our data indicated that high ErbB2 expression enhances CCA invasion, motility and proliferation via the AKT/p70S6K pathway, which suggests the possibility of targeting these molecules for CCA therapy.