Background: Renal cancer is one of the most common malignancies. However, the mechanisms underlying its development are still ambiguous. B7-H3 has been described as an important tumor antigen in various human tumors. An abnormal high expression of B7-H3 molecules is often observed in tumor cells and tumor stromal cells in the tumor microenvironment. On the basis of the above findings, we hypothesized that cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) clustered in the renal cell microenvironment can survive for a long time with the anti-apoptotic effect of B7-H3, and then secrete cytokines to enhance the malignant behavior of renal cancer cells. Methods: The expression of B7-H3 protein in CAFs was detected in renal cancer tissues. Then, the CAFs cells were stably transfected with shRNA and their expression was silenced to determine the role of B7-H3 in CAFs. Western blot was used to detect the expression of apoptosis-related proteins, hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) protein and stromal cell-derived factor-1 (CXCL12) protein. CAF-NC cells and CAFs-shRNA cells were co-cultured with A498 cells to assess the biological function changes of A498. Results: A group of CAFs were found with B7-H3 expression in renal cancer. B7-H3 can stimulate CAFs to secrete HGF and Cxcl-12, and has strong anti-apoptotic effect on CAFs. We also found that CAFs-NC promotes the proliferation, invasion and migration of A498 cells in vitro and promotes the tumor formation of A498 in vivo. Conclusion: B7-H3+ CAFs promote the invasion and metastasis in renal cancer.

OncoTargets and therapy. 2019 May 24*** epublish ***

Shuai Zhang, Chenchao Zhou, Dongze Zhang, Ziyi Huang, Guangbo Zhang

Institute of Clinical Immunology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University., Department of Urology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou 216007, People’s Republic of China.