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Diuron exposure and Akt overexpression promote glioma formation through DNA hypomethylation

Abstract : Background: Diuron is an environmental component listed as a likely human carcinogen. Several other studies report that diuron can be oncogenic for bladder, urothelial, skin, and mammary cells. No study mentions the putative effect of diuron on the glioma occurrence. Objectives: We here wanted to investigate the effects of diuron exposure on the glioma occurrence while wishing to incriminate a putative implication of DNA methylation modulation in this process. Methods: In in vivo model of glioma, diuron exposure was firstly compared or combined with oncogenic overexpressions already known to promote gliomagenesis. ELISA quantifying the 5-methylcytosine level on DNA was performed to examine the global DNA methylation level. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction and proximity ligation in situ assay were performed to identify the molecular causes of the diuron-induced changes of DNA methylation. The signatures diuron-induced changes of DNA methylation were analyzed in a cohort of 23 GBM patients. Results: Diuron exposure is not sufficient to promote glioma, such as the oncogenic overexpression of Akt or Ras. However, the combination of diuron exposure and Akt overexpression promotes glioma. We observed that the diuron/Akt-induced glioma is characterized by three phenotypic signatures characterizing cancer cells: a global DNA hypomethylation, a loss of sensitivity to cell death induction, and a gain of signals of immune escape. Our data associated these phenotypes with three aberrant DNA methylation signatures: the LLT1, PD-L1, and Bcl-w hypomethylations. Strikingly, we observed that these three concomitant hypomethylations were only observed in GBM patients having a potential exposure to diuron via their professional activity. Conclusions: As single player, diuron is not an oncogenic of glioma, but it can participate to the glioma formation in association with other events (also devoid of oncogenic property as single player) such as Akt overexpression.
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Josephine Briand, Arulraj Nadaradjane, Gwenola Bougras-Cartron, Christophe Olivier, François Vallette, et al.. Diuron exposure and Akt overexpression promote glioma formation through DNA hypomethylation. Clinical Epigenetics, BioMed Central, 2019, 14 (1), pp.159. ⟨10.1186/s13148-019-0759-1⟩. ⟨inserm-02480992⟩

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