2020 Volume 63 Issue 3 Pages 154-162
Background The 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA)-based photodynamic diagnosis is based on the accumulation of photosensitizing protoporphyrin IX in the tumor after ALA administration. However, the mechanisms connecting exogenous ALA and tumor fluorescence in pancreatic cancer remain unclear. We aimed to elucidate the mechanism underlying the ALA-induced fluorescent.
Methods Human pancreatic duct epithelial cells (hPDECs) and pancreatic cancer cell lines were used. The expressions of ALA-associated enzymes and membrane transporters in these cell lines were investigated. ALA-induced fluorescence was also investigated.
Results The expression of oligopeptide transporter-1 (PEPT-1), through which ALA is absorbed, was significantly higher in AsPC-1 cells and lower in MIA PaCa-2 cells than in hPDECs. AsPC-1 cells showed rapid and intense fluorescence after ALA administration, and that was attenuated by PEPT-1 inhibition. ALA-induced fluorescence was not sufficiently strong in MIA PaCa-2 cells to distinguish the cells from hPDECs.
Conclusion We revealed the association of PEPT-1 with ALA-induced fluorescence. Cancers expressing PEPT-1 could be easily distinguished by this technique from normal cells. These findings help develop novel diagnostic modalities for pancreatic cancer.