A cell-autonomous oncosuppressive role of human RNASET2 affecting ECM-mediated oncogenic signaling

Francesca Roggiani, Cristina Riva, Francesco Raspagliesi, Giovanni Porta, Roberto Valli, Roberto Taramelli, Francesco Acquati, Delia Mezzanzanica, Antonella Tomassetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


RNASET2 is an extracellular ribonuclease endowed with a marked antitumorigenic role in several carcinomas, independent from its catalytic activity. Besides its antitumorigenic role by the recruitment to the tumor mass of immune cells from the monocyte/macrophage lineage, RNASET2 is induced by cellular stress and involved in actin cytoskeleton remodeling affecting cell interactions with the extracellular matrix (ECM). Here, we aimed to investigate the effects of RNASET2 expression modulation on cell phenotype and behavior in epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) cellular models. In silico analysis on two publicly available datasets of gene expression from EOC patients (n = 392) indicated that increased RNASET2 transcript levels are associated with longer overall survival. In EOC biopsies (n = 101), analyzed by immunohistochemistry, RNASET2 was found heterogeneously expressed among tumors with different clinical–pathological characteristics and, in some cases, its expression localized to tumor-associated ECM. By characterizing in vitro two models of EOC cells in which RNASET2 was silenced or overexpressed, we report that RNASET2 expression negatively affects growth capability by conferring a peculiar cell phenotype upon the interaction of EOC cells with the ECM, resulting in decreased src activation. Altogether, these data suggest that drugs targeting activated src might represent a therapeutic approach for RNASET2-expressing EOCs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number255
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019


  • Epithelial ovarian cancer
  • Extracellular matrix
  • Src family kinases
  • Src kinase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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