• Human neutrophils facilitate tumor cell transendothelial migration.

      Wu, Q D; Wang, J H; Condron, C; Bouchier-Hayes, D; Redmond, H P; Department of Surgery, Cork University Hospital, University College Cork, Wilton,, Cork, Ireland. (2012-02-03)
      Tumor cell extravasation plays a key role in tumor metastasis. However, the precise mechanisms by which tumor cells migrate through normal vascular endothelium remain unclear. In this study, using an in vitro transendothelial migration model, we show that human polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMN) assist the human breast tumor cell line MDA-MB-231 to cross the endothelial barrier. We found that tumor-conditioned medium (TCM) downregulated PMN cytocidal function, delayed PMN apoptosis, and concomitantly upregulated PMN adhesion molecule expression. These PMN treated with TCM attached to tumor cells and facilitated tumor cell migration through different endothelial monolayers. In contrast, MDA-MB-231 cells alone did not transmigrate. FACScan analysis revealed that these tumor cells expressed high levels of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) but did not express CD11a, CD11b, or CD18. Blockage of CD11b and CD18 on PMN and of ICAM-1 on MDA-MB-231 cells significantly attenuated TCM-treated, PMN-mediated tumor cell migration. These tumor cells still possessed the ability to proliferate after PMN-assisted transmigration. These results indicate that TCM-treated PMN may serve as a carrier to assist tumor cell transendothelial migration and suggest that tumor cells can exploit PMN and alter their function to facilitate their extravasation.