B cell malignancies frequently colonize the bone marrow. The mechanisms responsible for this preferential homing are incompletely understood. Here we studied multiple myeloma (MM) as a model of a terminally differentiated B cell malignancy that selectively colonizes the bone marrow. We found that extracellular CyPA (eCyPA), secreted by bone marrow endothelial cells (BMECs), promoted the colonization and proliferation of MM cells in an in vivo scaffold system via binding to its receptor, CD147, on MM cells. The expression and secretion of eCyPA by BMECs was enhanced by BCL9, a Wnt–β-catenin transcriptional coactivator that is selectively expressed by these cells. eCyPA levels were higher in bone marrow serum than in peripheral blood in individuals with MM, and eCyPA-CD147 blockade suppressed MM colonization and tumor growth in the in vivo scaffold system. eCyPA also promoted the migration of chronic lymphocytic leukemia and lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma cells, two other B cell malignancies that colonize the bone marrow and express CD147. These findings suggest that eCyPA-CD147 signaling promotes the bone marrow homing of B cell malignancies and offer a compelling rationale for exploring this axis as a therapeutic target for these malignancies.
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R.D.C. is supported by a senior award from the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation, by the Doctors Cancer Foundation, and by grants 1R01 CA151391-01 and 1P01 CA155258-01 from the National Institutes of Health. Human bone marrow–derived endothelial cell lines BMEC-60 and BMEC-1 were kindly provided by Dr. van der Schoot (University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, the Netherlands) and Dr. Giuliani (University of Parma, Parma, Italy), respectively.
The authors declare no competing financial interests.
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Zhu, D., Wang, Z., Zhao, JJ. et al. The Cyclophilin A–CD147 complex promotes the proliferation and homing of multiple myeloma cells. Nat Med 21, 572–580 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1038/nm.3867
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