Surrounding cells affect the gene expression pattern of human beta-defensins in squamous cell carcinoma in vitro

Saori Kida-Takaoka, Tomoichiro Yamaai, Nobuyoshi Mizukawa, Jun Murakami, Seiji Iida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background/Aim: Defensins are basic peptides involved in non-immune bio-defense mechanisms in a normal epithelium. Human oral squamous cell carcinoma cells (OSCC) also produce human beta-defensins (HBDs), although their exact function is not clear. This study aimed to analyze the variation in gene expression levels of hBDs in co-cultures of OSCC with murine cells. Materials and Methods: Two OSCC cell lines (HSC-3, HSC-4) were cocultured with mouse embryonic fibroblasts, NIH/3T3 or a mouse chondrogenic cell line derived from teratocarcinoma, ATDC5, for 1.5 days. Expression patterns of the hBD genes were investigated by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Results: hBD1 expression increased when cocultured with NIH/3T3 but decreased when co-cultured with ATDC5. Expression of hBD2 and hBD4 tended to decrease. OSCC cells formed colonies when co-cultured with NIH/3T3 but were scattered when co-cultured with ATDC5. Conclusion: hBDs expression in OSCC is dependent on the type of co-cultured cells and differences in gene expression may be responsible for the morphological differences observed. OSCC may produce HBDs for purposes other than bio-defense by surrounding cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6443-6449
Number of pages7
JournalAnticancer research
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2014


  • Beta-defensins
  • Carcinoma
  • Co-culture techniques
  • Real-time polymerase chain reaction
  • Squamous cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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