An Immunometabolic Shift Modulates Cytotoxic Lymphocyte Activation During Melanoma Progression in TRPA1 Channel Null Mice

Maria Fernanda Forni, Omar Alberto Domínguez-Amorocho, Leonardo Vinícius Monteiro de Assis, Gabriela Sarti Kinker, Maria Nathalia Moraes, Ana Maria de Lauro Castrucci, Niels Olsen Saraiva Câmara*

*Corresponding author for this work


Melanoma skin cancer is extremely aggressive with increasing incidence and mortality. Among the emerging therapeutic targets in the treatment of cancer, the family of transient receptor potential channels (TRPs) has been reported as a possible pharmacological target. Specifically, the ankyrin subfamily, representing TRPA1 channels, can act as a pro-inflammatory hub. These channels have already been implicated in the control of intracellular metabolism in several cell models, but little is known about their role in immune cells, and how it could affect tumor progression in a process known as immune surveillance. Here, we investigated the participation of the TRPA1 channel in the immune response against melanoma tumor progression in a mouse model. Using Trpa1+/+ and Trpa1-/- animals, we evaluated tumor progression using murine B16-F10 cells and assessed isolated CD8+ T cells for respiratory and cytotoxic functions. Tumor growth was significantly reduced in Trpa1-/- animals. We observed an increase in the frequency of circulating lymphocytes. Using a dataset of CD8+ T cells isolated from metastatic melanoma patients, we found that TRPA1 reduction correlates with several immunological pathways. Naïve CD8+ T cells from Trpa1+/+ and Trpa1-/- animals showed different mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis profiles. However, under CD3/CD28 costimulatory conditions, the absence of TRPA1 led to an even more extensive metabolic shift, probably linked to a greater in vitro killling ability of Trpa1-/- CD8+ T cells. Therefore, these data demonstrate an unprecedented role of TRPA1 channel in the metabolism control of the immune system cells during carcinogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number667715
JournalFrontiers in Oncology
Publication statusPublished - 10.05.2021

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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