Cancer recurrence due to tumor cell quiescence after therapy and long-term remission is associated with cancer-related death. Previous studies have used cell models that are unable to return to a proliferative state; thus, the transition between quiescent and proliferative states is not well understood. Here, we report monolayer cancer cell models wherein the human non-small cell lung carcinoma cell line H2228 and pancreatic cancer cell line AsPC-1 can be reversibly induced to a quiescent state under hypoxic and serum-starved (HSS) conditions. Transcriptome and metabolome dual-omics profiles of these cells were compared with those of the human lung adenocarcinoma cell line A549, which was unable to enter a quiescent state under HSS conditions. The quiescence-inducible cells had substantially lower intracellular pyruvate and ATP levels in the quiescent state than in the proliferative state, and their response to sudden demand for energy was dramatically reduced. Furthermore, in quiescence-inducible cells, the transition between quiescent and proliferative states of these cells was regulated by the balance between the proliferation-promoting Ras and Rap1 signaling and the suppressive AGE/RAGE signaling. These cell models elucidate the transition between quiescent and proliferative states, allowing the development of drug-screening systems for quiescent tumor cells.
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