1. Division of Anti-tumor Pharmacology, State Key Laboratory of Drug Research, Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 201203, China.
2. Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Oral Diseases, Nanjing Medical University
Department of oral and maxillofacial surgery, Affiliated Hospital of Stomatology, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China.
3. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China.
* Contributing equally to this article.
Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is a common malignant tumor with high metastatic potential. However, no good biomarker has been identified to refine which subtype is of high metastatic potential to make decisions regarding the elective and therapeutic management of lymphatic metastases. In this study, we investigated the role of the metabolic enzyme phosphoglycerate mutase 1 (PGAM1) in OSCC. PGAM1 expression was examined in tissue samples of 122 OSCC patients using immunohistochemistry, and the correlation between clinicopathological expression and PGAM1 expression was determined. Survival curves were generated using the Kaplan-Meier method, and multivariate analysis was performed by the Cox proportional hazards model. Moreover, PGAM1 was knocked down in the OSCC cell lines Cal27 and HN12, followed by determination of the change in cell migration and signaling pathways. PGAM1 expression is correlated with age, lymphatic metastasis and tumor recurrence and is closely associated with poor overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS). Intriguingly, PGAM1 is an independent risk factor for OS and DFS. After knocking down PGAM1 in Cal27 and HN12 cells, cell migration was remarkably decreased along with signaling pathway molecules, such as proto-oncogene c-SRC (SRC), Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and Paxillin. The effect on cell migration was abolished following pretreatment with an SRC inhibitor. This study suggested that PGAM1 is a poor prognostic biomarker of OSCC and may be used to select patients of high metastatic potential in the clinic, and PGAM1 promotes the migration of OSCC cells is associated with the SRC pathway.
Keywords: Oral cancer, Phosphoglycerate mutase 1, Migration, Prognosis, SRC