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    Earlier diagnosis and treatment of intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (iCCA) are necessary to improve therapy, yet limited information is available about initiation and evolution of iCCA precursor lesions. Therefore, there is a need to identify mechanisms driving formation of precancerous lesions and their progression toward invasive tumors using experimental models that faithfully recapitulate human tumorigenesis. To this end, we generated a mouse model which combines cholangiocyte-specific expression of KrasG12D with 3,5-diethoxycarbonyl-1,4-dihydrocollidine (DDC) diet-induced inflammation to mimic iCCA development in patients with cholangitis. Histological and transcriptomic analyses of the mouse precursor lesions and iCCA were performed and compared with human analyses. The function of genes overexpressed during tumorigenesis was investigated in human cell lines. We found that mice expressing KrasG12D in cholangiocytes and fed a DDC diet developed cholangitis, ductular proliferations, intraductal papillary neoplasms of bile ducts (IPNBs), and, eventually, iCCAs. The histology of mouse and human IPNBs was similar, and mouse iCCAs displayed histological characteristics of human mucin-producing, large-duct-type iCCA. Signaling pathways activated in human iCCA were also activated in mice. The identification of transition zones between IPNB and iCCA on tissue sections, combined with RNA-sequencing analyses of the lesions supported that iCCAs derive from IPNBs. We further provide evidence that tensin-4 (TNS4), which is stimulated by KRASG12D and SRY-related HMG box transcription factor 17, promotes tumor progression. We developed a mouse model that faithfully recapitulates human iCCA tumorigenesis and identified a gene cascade which involves TNS4 and promotes tumor progression. © 2021 by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases.


    Mickaël Di-Luoffo, Sophie Pirenne, Thoueiba Saandi, Axelle Loriot, Claude Gérard, Nicolas Dauguet, Fátima Manzano-Núñez, Natália Alves Souza Carvalhais, Florence Lamoline, Sabine Cordi, Katarzyna Konobrocka, Vitaline De Greef, Mina Komuta, Georg Halder, Patrick Jacquemin, Frédéric P Lemaigre. A Mouse Model of Cholangiocarcinoma Uncovers a Role for Tensin-4 in Tumor Progression. Hepatology (Baltimore, Md.). 2021 Sep;74(3):1445-1460

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    PMID: 33768568

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