Protumoral effect of macrophage through Axl activation on mucoepidermoid carcinoma

Kuo Chou Chiu, Chien Hsing Lee, Shyun Yeu Liu, Chi Tai Yeh, Ren Yeong Huang, Da Yo Yuh, Jen Chan Cheng, Yu Ting Chou, Yi Shing Shieh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: This study aims to test the potential involvement of Axl signaling in the protumoral effect of tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) in mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC). Materials and Methods: We carried out co-cultured experiments by incubation of MEC cells (UT-MUC-1) and macrophages (THP-1) and examined Axl activation status. The expression of MMPs and behavior change were examined in UT-MUC-1 cells. The effect of Axl signaling on co-cultured cancer cells was further investigated by knockdown Axl expression and suppression by Axl-specific inhibitor R428. Results: Activation of Axl signaling and increased expression and activity of MMP-2 and MMP-9 along with increased invasion/migration ability in MEC cells were observed when co-cultured with TAMs. Upon knockdown of Axl in MEC or addition of R428 in the co-cultured system, these co-cultured effects were diminished. Conclusion: TAMs play a protumoral role in MEC via activation of the Axl signaling pathway, up-regulating MMPs expression, and increasing invasion/migration ability.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)538-544
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Oral Pathology and Medicine
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Axl
  • Matrix metalloproteinases
  • Mucoepidermoid carcinoma
  • Salivary gland
  • Tumor-associated macrophage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Oral Surgery
  • Periodontics
  • Medicine(all)


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