Irisin, an exercise myokine, potently suppresses tumor proliferation, invasion, and growth in glioma

Chiun Wei Huang, Yu Hsuan Chang, Hsuan Hung Lee, Jing Yi Wu, Jia Xing Huang, Yi Hsiu Chung, Shih Ting Hsu, Lu Ping Chow, Kuo Chen Wei, Feng Ting Huang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

19 Scopus citations


Glioblastoma multiforme is the most common and aggressive glial tumor with poor prognosis. Importantly, effective treatment options for glioblastoma are unmet needs. Obesity and low physical activity have been linked with a high risk of cancer, and exercise is related to delayed cancer development and progression. Epidemiological studies have revealed a correlation between exercise and the survival rate of patients with glioblastoma. Nevertheless, the mechanisms by which exercise exerts its anticancer effects in glioblastoma remain unclear. Here, we found that irisin, an exercise-induced myokine, induced G2/M cell cycle arrest and increased p21 levels in glioblastoma cells, leading to the inhibition of cell proliferation. In addition, irisin inhibited glioblastoma cell invasion by upregulating TFPI-2 and even reversed the aggressive tumor phenotype promoted by co-cultivation with cancer-associated adipocytes. Furthermore, irisin retarded xenograft glioblastoma tumor growth, and radiolabeled irisin demonstrated specific tumor-targeting capability in vivo. Therefore, this study identified one potential molecular mechanism by which exercise prevents cancer progression via irisin. Intriguingly, irisin has the potential to be developed as a molecular imaging and therapeutic anticancer agent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9678-9693
Number of pages16
JournalFASEB Journal
Issue number7
StatePublished - 01 07 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology


  • TFPI-2
  • cell invasion
  • exercise
  • glioblastoma
  • irisin
  • tumor targeting


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