Extracellular RNA transfer from non-malignant human cholangiocytes can promote cholangiocarcinoma growth

Yu Ota, Kenji Takahashi, Shin Otake, Yosui Tamaki, Mitsuyoshi Okada, Irene Yan, Kazunobu Aso, Satoshi Fujii, Tushar Patel, Masakazu Haneda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Extracellular vesicles (EV) within the cellular secretome are emerging as modulators of pathological processes involved in tumor growth through their ability to transfer donor-derived RNA into recipient cells. While the effects of tumor and stromal cell EVs within the tumor microenvironment have been studied, less is known about the contributions of normal, nontransformed cells. We examined the impact of EVs within the cellular secretome from nonmalignant cells on transformed cell growth and behavior in cholangiocarcinoma cells. These effects were enhanced in the presence of the pro-fibrogenic mediator TGF-β. We identified miR-195 as a TGF-β responsive miRNA in normal cells that can be transferred via EV to tumor cells and regulate cell growth, invasion, and migration. The effects of miR-195 involve modulation of the epithelial–mesenchymal transition through direct effects on the transcription factor Snail. These studies provide in vitro and in vivo evidence for the impact of normal cellular secretome on transformed cell growth, show the importance of EV RNA transfer, and identify mechanisms of EV-mediated transfer of miRNA as a contributor to tumor development, which may provide new therapeutic opportunities for targeting human cholangiocarcinoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3276-3292
Number of pages17
JournalFEBS Open Bio
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • epithelial-mesenchymal transition
  • extracellular vesicles
  • microRNA
  • secretome
  • tumor microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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