The effect of downregulation of Stathmin gene on biological behaviors of U373 and U87-MG glioblastoma cells
Abstract Background Stathmin as a critical protein involved in microtubule polymerization, is necessary for survival of cancer cells. However, extremely little is known about Stathmin in glioblastoma. So, this study was designed to elucidate the function of Stathmin gene in the tumorigenesis and progression of glioblastoma cells. Method The lentiviral interference vector pLV3-si-Stathmin targeting Stathmin gene and the control vector pLV3-NC were established for the co-transfection of 293T cells together with the helper plasmids. Viral titer was determined via limiting dilution assay. Then pLV3-si-Stathmin and pLV3-NC were stably co-transfected into U373 and U87-MG glioblastoma cells. Expression levels of Stathmin protein in each group were determined by using Western Blot, and the proliferation and migration ability of the cells with downregulated Stathmin were evaluated through CCK8 assay and transwell invasion assay, respectively. Cell cycles and cell apoptosis were detected with flow cytometry. Finally, the effect of Stathmin in tumor formation was determined in nude mice. Result DNA sequencing and viral titer assay indicated that the lentiviral interference vector was successfully established with a viral titer of 4 × 108 TU/ml. According to the results from Western Blotting, Stathmin protein expression level decreased significantly in the U373 and U87-MG cells after transfected with pLV3-si-Stathmin, respectively, compared with those transfected with pLV3-NC. In glioblastoma cells, the cell proliferation and migration were greatly inhibited after the downregulation of Stathmin protein. Flow cytometry showed that much more cells were arrested in G2/M phasein Stathmin downregulated group, compared with the non-transfection group and NC group. But Stathmin downregulation did not induce significant cell apoptosis. Tumor formation assay in nude mice showed that tumor formation was delayed after Stathmin downregulation, with a reduction in both tumor formation rate and tumor growth velocity. Conclusion Stathmin downregulation affected the biological behaviors of U373 and U87-MG glioblastoma cells, inhibiting the proliferation and migration of tumor cells. Stathmin gene may serve as a potential target in gene therapy for glioblastoma.