Published online Dec 21, 2018. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v24.i47.5338
Peer-review started: August 14, 2018
First decision: August 31, 2018
Revised: September 7, 2018
Accepted: October 5, 2018
Article in press: October 5, 2018
Published online: December 21, 2018
To establish a permanent piwi like RNA-mediated gene silencing 1 (PIWIL1) gene knockout in AGP01 gastric cancer cell line using CRISPR-Cas9 system and analyze phenotypic modifications as well as gene expression alterations.
CRISPR-Cas9 system used was purchased from Dharmacon GE Life Sciences (Lafayette, CO, United States) and permanent knockout was performed according to manufacturer’s recommendations. Wound-healing assay was performed to investigate the effect of PIWIL1 knockout on migration capability of cells and Boyden chamber invasion assay was performed to investigate the effect on invasion capability. For the gene expression analysis, a one-color microarray-based gene expression analysis kit (Agilent Technologies, Santa Clara, CA, United States) was used according to the protocol provided by the manufacturer.
PIWIL1 gene knockout caused a significant decrease in AGP01 migration capacity as well as a significant decrease in cell invasiveness. Moreover, functional analysis based on grouping of all differentially expressed mRNAs identified a total of 35 genes (5 up-regulated and 30 down-regulated) encoding proteins involved in cellular invasion and migration. According to current literature, 9 of these 35 genes (DOCK2, ZNF503, PDE4D, ABL1, ABL2, LPAR1, SMAD2, WASF3 and DACH1) are possibly related to the mechanisms used by PIWIL1 to promote carcinogenic effects related to migration and invasion, since their functions are consistent with the changes observed (being up- or down-regulated after knockout).
Taken together, these data reinforce the idea that PIWIL1 plays a crucial role in the signaling pathway of gastric cancer, regulating several genes involved in migration and invasion processes; therefore, its use as a therapeutic target may generate promising results in the treatment of gastric cancer.
Core tip:Piwi like RNA-mediated gene silencing 1 (PIWIL1) gene emerged as an interesting target for gastric cancer, as it is expressed in cancer, stem and germ cells, but it is absent in normal somatic tissue. Our results propose that PIWIL1 plays a crucial role in the signaling pathway of gastric cancer, regulating several genes involved in migration and invasion processes; therefore, its use as a therapeutic target may generate promising results in the treatment of gastric cancer.