One of the biggest challenges in managing head and neck cancers, especially salivary gland cancers, is the identification of secreted biomarkers of the disease that can be evaluated noninvasively. A relevant source of enriched tumor markers could potentially be found in the tumor secretome. Although numerous studies have evaluated secretomes from various cancers, the influence of the cancer secretome derived from salivary gland cancers on the behavior of normal cells has not yet been elucidated. Our data indicate that secretome derived from salivary gland cancer cells can influence the expression of two potential biomarkers of oral cancer-namely, bone sialoprotein (BSP) and dentin sialoprotein (DSP)-in normal salivary gland cells. Using routine immunohistochemistry, immunofluorescence, and immunoblotting techniques, we demonstrate an enrichment of BSP and DSP in human salivary gland (HSG) cancer tissue, unique localizations of BSP and DSP in HSG cancer cells, and enriched expression of BSP and DSP in normal salivary gland cells exposed to a cancer secretome. The secretome domain of the cancer microenvironment could alter signaling cascades responsible for normal cell proliferation, migration, and invasion, thus enhancing cancer cell survival and the potential for cancer progression. The cancer secretome may be critical in maintaining and stimulating "cancer-ness," thus potentially promoting specific hallmarks of metastasis.
Keywords: bone sialoprotein; cancer secretome; dentin sialoprotein; salivary gland.