Transforming growth factor beta 1 (TGFß1) is a pleiotropic cytokine in the skin that can function both as a tumor promoter and suppressor in chemically induced skin carcinogenesis, but the function in ultraviolet B (UVB) carcinogenesis is not well understood. Treatment of SKH1 hairless mice with the activin-like kinase 5 (ALK5) inhibitor SB431542 to block UVB-induced activation of cutaneous TGFß1 signaling suppressed skin tumor formation but did not alter tumor size or tumor cell proliferation. Tumors that arose in SB-treated mice after 30 weeks had significantly reduced percentage of IFNγ+ tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes compared with control mice. SB431542 blocked acute and chronic UVB-induced skin inflammation and T-cell activation in the skindraining lymph node (SDLN) and skin but did not alter UVBinduced epidermal proliferation. We tested the effect of SB431542 on migration of skin dendritic cell (DC) populations because DCs are critical mediators of T-cell activation and cutaneous inflammation. SB431542 blocked (i) UVB-induced Smad2 phosphorylation in dermal DC (dDC) and (ii) SDLN and ear explant migration of CD103+ CD207+ and CD207- skin DC subsets but did not affect basal or UV-induced migration of Langerhans cells. Mice expressing a dominant-negative TGFß type II receptor in CD11c+ cells had reduced basal and UVB-induced SDLN migration of CD103+ CD207+ and CD207- DC subsets and a reduced percentage of CD86high dDC following UVB irradiation. Together, these suggest that TGFß1 signaling has a tumor-promoting role in UVB-induced skin carcinogenesis and this is mediated in part through its role in UVB-induced migration of dDC and cutaneous inflammation.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
National Institutes of Health training grant in ‘Animal Models of Inflammation’ (T32 AI074551-01A to A.R.); Dermal Toxicology-Society of Toxicology research grant and College of Agricultural Sciences research grant (to A.R.); grants from the Pardee Foundation and National Institutes of Health (R01 CA117957 to A.B.G.).