Methyl 2-cyano-3,11-dioxo-18β-olean-1,12-dien-30-oate (CDODA-Me) is a synthetic derivative of glycyrrhetinic acid, a triterpenoid phytochemical found in licorice extracts. CDODA-Me inhibited growth of RKO and SW480 colon cancer cells and this was accompanied by decreased expression of Sp1, Sp3 and Sp4 protein and mRNA and several Sp-dependent genes including survivin, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and VEGF receptor 1 (VEGFR1 or Flt-1). CDODA-Me also induced apoptosis, arrested RKO and SW480 cells at G2/M, and inhibited tumor growth in athymic nude mice bearing RKO cells as xenografts. CDODA-Me decreased expression of microRNA-27a (miR-27a), and this was accompanied by increased expression of two miR-27a-regulated mRNAs, namely ZBTB10 (an Sp repressor) and Myt-1 which catalyzes phosphorylation of cdc2 to inhibit progression of cells through G2/M. Both CDODA-Me and antisense miR-27a induced comparable responses in RKO and SW480 cells, suggesting that the potent anticarcinogenic activity of CDODA-Me is due to repression of oncogenic miR-27a.
CDODA-Me; anticarcinogenicity; miR-27a; colon cancer; cell cycle
Methyl 2-cyano-3,11-dioxo-18β-olean-1,12-dien-30-oate (CDODA-Me) and the corresponding 2-trifluoromethyl analog (CF3DODA-Me) are derived synthetically from the triterpenoid glycyrrhetinic acid, a major component of licorice. CDODA-Me and CF3DODA-Me inhibited growth of highly invasive ARO, DRO, K-18 and HTh-74 thyroid cancer cells and this was due, in part, to decreased expression of specificity protein (Sp) transcription factors Sp1, Sp3 and Sp4 that are overexpressed in these cells. CDODA-Me and CF3DODA-Me also decreased expression of Sp-dependent genes, such as survivin and vascular endothelial growth factor, and induced apoptosis. In addition, pituitary tumor-transforming gene-1 (PTTG-1) protein and mRNA levels were also decreased in thyroid cancer cells treated with CDODA-Me or CF3DODA-Me and this was accompanied by decreased expression of PTTG-1-dependent c-Myc and fibroblast growth factor 2 genes. RNA interference studies against Sp1, Sp3 and Sp4 proteins showed that in thyroid cancer cells, PTTG-1 was an Sp-dependent gene. This study demonstrates for the first time that drugs, such as CDODA-Me and CF3DODA-Me, that decrease Sp protein expression also downregulate PTTG-1 in thyroid cancer cells and therefore have potential for clinical treatment of thyroid cancer and other endocrine neoplasias where PTTG-1 is a major pro-oncogenic factor.
PTTG-1; Sp proteins; thyroid cancer; anticancer agents
Androgen-insensitive DU145 and PC3 human prostate cancer cells express high levels of specificity protein (Sp) transcription factors Sp1, Sp3 and Sp4, and treatment of cells with methyl 2-cyano-3,11-dioxo-18β-olean-1,12-dien-30-oate (CDODA-Me) inhibited cell growth and downregulated Sp1, Sp3 and Sp4 expression. CDODA-Me (15 mg/kg/d) was a potent inhibitor of tumor growth in a mouse xenograft model (PC3 cells) and also decreased expression of Sp transcription factors in tumors. CDODA-Me-mediated downregulation of Sp1, Sp3 and Sp4 was due to induction of the transcriptional repressor ZBTB4 which competitively binds and displaces Sp transcription factors from GC-rich sites in Sp1, Sp3, Sp4 and Sp-regulated gene promoters. ZBTB4 levels are relatively low in DU145 and PC3 cells due to suppression by microRNA (miR) paralogs that are members of the miR-17-92 (miR-20a/17-5p) and miR-106b-25 (miR-106b/93) clusters. Examination of publically available prostate cancer patient array data showed an inverse relationship between ZBTB4 and miRs-20a/17-5p/106b/93 expression, and increased ZBTB4 in prostate cancer patients was a prognostic factor for increased survival. CDODA-Me induces ZBTB4 in prostate cancer cells through disruption of miR-ZBTB4 interactions and this results in downregulation of pro-oncogenic Sp transcription factors and Sp-regulated genes.
ZBTB4; CDODA-Me; Sp; miR-17-92; miR-106b
Derivatives of oleanolic acid, ursolic acid and glycyrrhetinic acid substituted with electron withdrawing groups at the 2-position in the A-ring which also contains a 1-en-3-one structure are potent inhibitors of cancer cell growth. In this study, we have compared the effects of several 2-substituted analogs of triterpenoid acid methyl esters derived from ursolic and glycyrrhetinic acid on proliferation of KU7 and 253JB-V bladder and Panc-1 and Panc-28 pancreatic cancer cells. The results show that the 2-cyano and 2-trifluoromethyl derivatives were the most active compounds. The glycyrrhetinic acid derivatives with the rearranged C-ring containing the 9(11)-en-12-one structure were generally more active than the corresponding 12-en-11-one isomers. However, differences in growth inhibitory IC50 values were highly variable and dependent on the 2- substitutent (CN vs. CF3) and cancer cell context.
glycyrrhetinate analogs; growth inhibition; bladder cancer; pancreatic cancer
Triterpenoids are used for medicinal purposes in many countries. Some, such as oleanolic and glycyrrhetinic acids, are known to be anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic. However, the biological activities of these naturally occurring molecules against their particular targets are weak, so the synthesis of new synthetic analogues with enhanced potency is needed. By combining modifications to both the A and C rings of 18βH-glycyrrhetinic acid, the novel synthetic derivative methyl 2-cyano-3,12-dioxo-18βH-olean-9(11),1(2)-dien-30-oate was obtained. This derivative displays high antiproliferative activity in cancer cells, including a cell line with a multidrug-resistance phenotype. It causes cell death by inducing the intrinsic caspase-dependent apoptotic pathway.
antitumor agents; apoptosis; biological activity; glycyrrhetinic acid derivatives; medicinal chemistry
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) is one of the most lethal human malignancy with dismal prognosis and few effective therapeutic options. Novel agents that are safe and effective are urgently needed. Oleanolic acid-derived synthetic triterpenoids are potent antitumorigenic agents, but their efficacy or the mechanism of action for pancreatic cancer has not been adequately investigated. In this study, we evaluated the antitumor activity and the mechanism of action of methyl-2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana-1,9(11)-dien-28-oate (CDDO-Me), a oleanane-derived synthetic triterpenoid for human pancreatic cancer cell lines. CDDO-Me inhibited the growth of both K-ras mutated (MiaPaca2, Panc1 and Capan2) and wild-type K-ras (BxPC3) pancreatic cancer cells at very low concentrations. The growth inhibitory activity of CDDO-Me was attributed to the induction of apoptosis characterized by increased annexin-V-FITC binding and cleavage of PARP-1 and procaspases-3, -8 and-9. In addition, CDDO-Me induced the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and release of cytochrome C. The antitumor activity of CDDO-Me was associated with the inhibition of prosurvival p-Akt, NF-κB and mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling proteins and the downstream targets of Akt and mTOR, such as p-Foxo3a (Akt) and p-S6K1, p-eIF-4E and p-4E-BP1 (mTOR). Silencing of Akt or mTOR with gene specific-siRNA sensitized the pancreatic cancer cells to CDDO-Me, demonstrating Akt and mTOR as molecular targets of CDDO-Me for its growth inhibitory and apoptosis-inducing activity.
pancreatic cancer; CDDO-Me; apoptosis; Akt/mTOR signaling pathway
Methyl-2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana-1,9(11)-dien-28-oate (CDDO-Me) is a synthetic derivative of oleanolic acid, a triterpene, with apoptosis-inducing activity in a wide range of cancer cells. Induction of apoptosis by CDDO-Me is associated with the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and inhibition of telomerase activity. In the present study, we investigated the role of ROS in inhibition of telomerase by CDDO-me. Treatment of MiaPaCa-2 and Panc-1 pancreatic cancer cell lines with CDDO-Me induced the production of hydrogen peroxide and superoxide anions and inhibited the telomerase activity. Pretreatment of cells with N-acetylcycsteine, a general purpose antioxidant or overexpression of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) or superoxide dismutase-1 (SOD-1) blocked the telomerase inhibitory activity of CDDO-Me. Furthermore, blocking ROS generation also prevented the inhibition of hTERT gene expression, hTERT protein production and expression of a number of hTERT–regulatory proteins by CDDO-Me (e.g., c-Myc, Sp1, NF-κB and p-Akt). Data also showed that Akt plays an important role in the activation of telomerase activity. Together, these data suggest that inhibition of telomerase activity by CDDO-Me is mediated through a ROS-dependent mechanism; however, more work is needed to fully understand the role of ROS in down-regulation of hTERT gene and hTERT-regulatory proteins by CDDO-Me.
pancreatic cancer; CDDO-Me; ROS; hTERT; telomerase activity
AIM: To study the possible actions and mechanisms of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ), a ligand-activated transcription factor, in pancreatic carcinogenesis, especially in angiogenesis.
METHODS: Expressions of PPARγ and retinoid acid receptor (RXRα) were examined by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) with immunocytochemical staining. Pancreatic carcinoma cells, PANC-1, were treated either with 9-cis-RA, a ligand of RXRα, or with 15-deoxy-Δ12,14 prostaglandin J2 (15d-PGJ2), a ligand of PPARγ, or both. Antiproliferative effect was evaluated by cell viability using methyltetrazolium (MTT) assay. A pancreatic carcinoma xenograft tumor model of nude mice was established by inoculating PANC-1 cells subcutaneously. Rosiglitazone, a specific ligand of PPARγ, was administered via water drinking in experimental group of nude mice. After 75 d, all mice were sacrificed. Expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) in tumor tissue was examined with immunohistochemical staining. Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) mRNA in PANC-1 cells, which were treated with 15d-PGJ2 or 9-cis-RA at various concentrations or different duration, was detected by semi-quantitative RT-PCR. Effects of Rosiglitazone on changes of microvascular density (MVD) and VEGF expression were investigated in xenograft tumor tissue. Neovasculature was detected with immunohistochemistry staining labeled with anti-IV collagen antibody, and indicated by MVD.
RESULTS: RT-PCR and immunocytochemical staining showed that PPARγ and RXRα were expressed in PANC-1 cells at both transcription level and translation level. MTT assay demonstrated that 15d-PGJ2, 9-cis-RA and their combination inhibited the growth of PANC-1 cells in a dose-dependent manner. 9-cis-RA had a combined inhibiting action with 15d-PGJ2 on the growth of pancreatic carcinoma. In vivo studies revealed that Rosiglitazone significantly suppressed the growth of pancreatic carcinoma as compared to control group (0.48 ± 0.23 cm3 vs 2.488 ± 0.59 cm3, P < 0.05), and the growth inhibition rate was 80.7%. Immunohistochemistry study showed that PCNA was down regulated in Rosiglitazone-treated group compared to the control group. 15d-PGJ2, 9-cis-RA and their combination inhibited the expression of VEGF mRNA in PANC-1 cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner. MVD was decreased more significantly in Rosiglitazone-treated mice (10.67 ± 3.07) than in the control group (31.44 ± 6.06) (P < 0.01). VEGF expression in xenograft tumor tissue was also markedly down-regulated in Rosiglitazone-treated mice.
CONCLUSION: Activation of PPARγ inhibits the growth of pancreatic carcinoma both in vitro and in vivo. Suppression of tumor angiogenesis by down-regulating the expression of VEGF may be one of the mechanisms by which PPARγ activation inhibits the growth of pancreatic carcinoma.
Pancreatic carcinoma; Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ; Angiogenesis; Vascular endothelial growth factor
Methyl-2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana-1,9(11)-dien-28-oate (CDDO-Me) is an synthetic oleanane triterpenoid with strong antiprolifertive and proapoptotic activities in cancer cells. However, the effect of CDDO-Me on human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) and its telomerase activity in prostate cancer cells has not been studied. We investigated the role of hTERT in mediating the anticancer activity of CDDO-Me in prostate cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. The inhibition of cell proliferation and induction of apoptosis by CDDO-Me in LNCaP and PC-3 prostate cancer cell lines was associated with the inhibition of hTERT gene expression, hTERT telomerase activity and a number of proteins that regulate hTERT transcriptionally and post-translationally. Furthermore, ablation of hTERT protein increased the sensitivity of cancer cells to CDDO-Me, whereas its overexpression rendered them resistant to CDDO-Me. In addition, inhibition of progression of preneoplastic lesions (i.e., low and high-grade prostate intraepithelial neoplasms, PINs) to adenocarcinoma of the prostate by CDDO-Me in TRAMP mice was associated with significant decrease in TERT and its regulatory proteins in the prostate gland. These data provide evidence that telomerase is a potential target of CDDO-Me for the prevention and treatment of prostate cancer.
CDDO-Me; hTERT; telomerase activity; apoptosis; prostate cancer
Methyl-2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana-1,9(11)-dien-28-oate (CDDO-Me) is a multifunctional oleanane synthetic triterpenoid with potent anti-inflammatory and antitumorigenic properties. The mechanisms of the antisurvival and apoptosis-inducing activities of CDDO-Me and related derivatives of oleanolic acid have been defined; however, to date, no study has been carried out on the effect of CDDOs on human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) gene or telomerase activity. Here we report for the first time that inhibition of cell proliferation and induction of apoptosis by CDDO-Me in pancreatic cancer cell lines is associated with the inhibition of hTERT gene expression, hTERT telomerase activity and a number of proteins that regulate hTERT expression and activity. Furthermore, abrogation or overexpression of hTERT protein altered the susceptibility of tumor cells to CDDO-Me. These findings suggest that telomerase (hTERT) is a relevant target of CDDO-Me in pancreatic cancer cells.
CDDO-Me; Apoptosis; hTERT; Telomerase; Pancreatic cancer
Pancreatic carcinoma is one common cancer with gradually increasing incidence during the past several decades. However, currently the candidate drugs to suppress pancreatic cancer remain lacking. This research was carried out to investigate if zerumbone, a natural cyclic sesquiterpene isolated from Zingiber zerumbet Smith, will produce the anticancer effects on pancreatic carcinoma cell lines. The results showed that zerumbone concentration, and time, dependently produced inhibitory actions on cell viability of PANC-1 cells. In addition, Hoechst 33342, AO/EB, TUNEL staining, and caspase-3 activity assay further showed that zerumbone induced apoptosis of PANC-1 cells. The expression of p53 protein was markedly upregulated, and the p21 level was also obviously elevated in zerumbone-treated PANC-1 cells. Moreover, ROS production was increased by about 149% in PANC-1 cells treated by zerumbone 30 μM. Zerumbone also produced the same antitumor activity in pancreatic carcinoma cell lines SW1990 and AsPC-1. In summary, we found that zerumbone was able to induce apoptosis of pancreatic carcinoma cell lines, indicating to be a promising treatment for pancreatic cancer.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug-activated gene-1 (NAG-1) is induced by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and possesses proapoptotic and antitumorigenic activities. Although tolfenamic acid (TA) induces apoptosis in head and neck cancer cells, the relationship between NAG-1 and TA has not been determined. This study investigated the induction of apoptosis in head and neck cancer cells treated by TA and the role of NAG-1 expression in this induction. TA reduced head and neck cancer cell viability in a dose-dependent manner and induced apoptosis. The induced apoptosis was coincident with the expression of NAG-1. Overexpression of NAG-1 enhanced the apoptotic effect of TA, whereas suppression of NAG-1 expression by small interfering RNA attenuated TA-induced apoptosis. TA significantly inhibited tumor formation as assessed by xenograft models, and this result accompanied the induction of apoptotic cells and NAG-1 expression in tumor tissue samples. Taken together, these results demonstrate that TA induces apoptosis via NAG-1 expression in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, providing an additional mechanistic explanation for the apoptotic activity of TA.
NR4A2 (Nurr 1) is an orphan nuclear receptor with no known endogenous ligands and is highly expressed in many cancer cell lines including Panc1 and Panc28 pancreatic cancer cells. Structure-dependent activation of NR4A2 by a series of 1,1-bis(3′-indolyl)-1-(aromatic)methane (C-DIM) analogs was determined in pancreatic cancer cells transfected with yeast GAL4-Nurr1 chimeras and a UASx5-luc reporter gene or constructs containing response elements that bind NR4A2. Among 23 different structural analogs, phenyl groups containing p-substituted trifluoromethyl, t-butyl, cyano, bromo, iodo and trifluoromethoxy groups were the most active compounds in transactivation assay. The p-bromophenyl analog (DIM-C-pPhBr) was used as a model for structure-activity studies among a series of ortho-, meta- and para-bromophenyl isomers and the corresponding indole 2- and N-methyl analogs. Results show that NR4A2 activation was maximal with the p-bromophenyl analog and methylation of the indole NH group abrogated activity. Moreover, using GAL4-Nurr1 (full length) or GAL-Nurr1-A/B and GAL4-Nurr1-(C-F) chimeras expressing N- and C-terminal domains of Nurr1, respectively, DIM-C-pPhBr activated all three constructs and these responses were differentially affected by kinase inhibitors. DIM-C-pPhBr also modulated expression of several Nurr1-regulated genes in pancreatic cancer cells including vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP), and the immunohistochemical and western blot analyses indicated that DIM-C-pPhBr activates nuclear NR4A2.
DIM analogs; NR4A2/Nurr1; structure-activity
Pancreatic cancer is an aggressive malignancy that is frequently diagnosed at an advanced stage with poor prognosis. Here, we report the chemotherapeutic effects of bioactive proanthocyanidins from grape seeds (GSPs) as assessed using In Vitro and In Vivo models. Treatment of human pancreatic cancer cells (Miapaca-2, PANC-1 and AsPC-1) with GSPs In Vitro reduced cell viability and increased G2/M phase arrest of the cell cycle leading to induction of apoptosis in a dose- and time-dependent manner. The GSPs-induced apoptosis of pancreatic cancer cells was associated with a decrease in the levels of Bcl-2 and Bcl-xl and an increase in the levels of Bax and activated caspase-3. Treatment of Miapaca-2 and PANC-1 cells with GSPs also decreased the levels of phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) and phosphorylation of Akt at ser473. siRNA knockdown of PI3K from pancreatic cancer cells also reduced the phosphorylation of Akt. Further, dietary administration of GSPs (0.5%, w/w) as a supplemented AIN76A control diet significantly inhibited the growth of Miapaca-2 pancreatic tumor xenografts grown subcutaneously in athymic nude mice, which was associated with: (i) inhibition of cell proliferation, (ii) induction of apoptosis of tumor cells, (iii) increased expression of Bax, reduced expression of anti-apoptotic proteins and activation of caspase-3-positive cells, and (iv) decreased expression of PI3K and p-Akt in tumor xenograft tissues. Together, these results suggest that GSPs may have a potential chemotherapeutic effect on pancreatic cancer cell growth.
Carcinogenesis is related to the loss of homeostatic control of cellular processes regulated by transcriptional circuits and epigenetic mechanisms. Among these, the activities of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) and DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) are crucial and intertwined. PPARγ is a key regulator of cell fate, linking nutrient sensing to transcription processes, and its expression oscillates with circadian rhythmicity. Aim of our study was to assess the periodicity of PPARγ and DNMTs in pancreatic cancer (PC). We investigated the time-related patterns of PPARG, DNMT1, and DNMT3B expression monitoring their mRNA levels by qRT-PCR at different time points over a 28-hour span in BxPC-3, CFPAC-1, PANC-1, and MIAPaCa-2 PC cells after synchronization with serum shock. PPARG and DNMT1 expression in PANC-1 cells and PPARG expression in MIAPaCa-2 cells were characterized by a 24 h period oscillation, and a borderline significant rhythm was observed for the PPARG, DNMT1, and DNMT3B expression profiles in the other cell lines. The time-qualified profiles of gene expression showed different shapes and phase relationships in the PC cell lines examined. In conclusion, PPARG and DNMTs expression is characterized by different time-qualified patterns in cell lines derived from human PC, and this heterogeneity could influence cell phenotype and human disease behaviour.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the efficacy and the mechanism of Hsp90 inhibition of Withaferin A (WA), a steroidal lactone occurring in Withania somnifera, in pancreatic cancer in vitro and in vivo. Withaferin A exhibited potent antiproliferative activity against pancreatic cancer cells in vitro (with IC50s of 1.24, 2.93 and 2.78 μM) in pancreatic cancer cell lines Panc-1, MiaPaca2 and BxPc3, respectively. Annexin V staining showed that WA induced significant apoptosis in Panc-1 cells in a dose dependent manner. Western blotting demonstrated that WA inhibited Hsp90 chaperone activity to induce degradation of Hsp90 client proteins (Akt, Cdk4 and glucocorticoid receptor), which was reversed by the proteasomal inhibitor, MG132. WA-Biotin pull-down assay of Hsp90 using Panc-1 cancer cell lysates and purified Hsp90 showed that WA-biotin binds to C-terminus of Hsp90, which was competitively blocked by unlabeled WA. Co-immunoprecipitation exhibited that WA (10 μM) disrupted Hsp90-Cdc37 complexes from 1–24 hour post treatment, while it neither blocked ATP binding to Hsp90, nor changed Hsp90-P23 association. WA (3, 6 mg/kg) inhibited tumor growth in pancreatic Panc-1 xenografts by 30% and 58%, respectively. These data demonstrate that Withaferin A binds Hsp90, inhibits Hsp90 chaperone activity through an ATP independent mechanism, results in Hsp90 client protein degradation, and exhibits in vivo anticancer activity against pancreatic cancer.
Withaferin A; Pancreatic cancer; Hsp90; Reactive cysteine; Client protein; Cdc37
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects and molecular mechanisms of everolimus on Panc-1 human pancreatic cancer cells. Panc-1 human pancreatic cancer cells were treated with everolimus (10 μg/ml) at selected time points (6, 12 and 24 h). Cell proliferation and apoptosis were evaluated by MTT and flow cytometric analyses. The glycolytic activity was determined by measuring the activity of the key enzyme lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and lactate production. The activity of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling was measured by western blotting. The expression of genes, including hexokinase 2 (HK2) and microRNA-143 (miR-143), was evaluated by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The administration of everolimus time-dependently inhibited proliferation and glycolysis and induced apoptosis in the Panc-1 human pancreatic cancer cells. As the time of treatment with everolimus increased, the mTOR signaling activity decreased, indicated by lower phosphorylation levels of S6 kinase; however, the phosphorylation levels of mTOR barely changed. Moreover, our data showed an everolimus-induced increase in miR-143 and decrease in HK2 in Panc-1 cells in a time-dependent manner. In conclusion, the current study indicates a novel role of everolimus in its antitumor effect as an inhibitor of glycolysis in Panc-1 human pancreatic cancer cells. Furthermore, our data highlights the significance of exploring the mechanisms of everolimus and miR-143 in malignant tumors.
everolimus; pancreatic cancer; Panc-1 cells; apoptosis; glycolysis
Studies have shown the existence of p21 induction in a p53-dependent and -independent pathway. Our previous study indicates that DOX-induced p65 is able to bind the p21 promoter to activate its transactivation in the cells.
Over-expression and knock-down experiments were performed in Human Pancreatic Carcinoma (PANC1) cells. Cell cycle and cell death related proteins were assessed by Western Blotting. Cytotoxicity assay was checked by CCK-8 kit. Cell growth was analyzed by flow cytometers.
Here we showed that over-expression of p65 decreased the cytotoxic effect of DOX on PANC1 cells, correlating with increased induction of cytoplasmic p21. We observed that pro-caspase-3 physically associated with cytoplasmic p21, which may be contribution to prevent p21 translocation into the nucleus. Our data also suggested that no clear elevation of nuclear p21 by p65 provides a survival advantage by progression cell cycle after treatment of DOX. Likewise, down-regulation of p65 expression enhanced the cytotoxic effect of DOX, due to a significant decrease of mRNA levels of anti-apoptotic genes, such as the cellular inhibitor of apoptosis-1 (c-IAP1), and the long isoform of B cell leukemia/lymphoma-2 (Bcl-2), leading to efficient induction of caspase-3 cleavage in the cells. More, we present evidence that over-expression of p53 or p53/p65 in the PANC1 cells were more sensitive to DOX treatment, correlated with activation of caspase-3 and clear elevation of nuclear p21 level. Our previous data suggested that expression of p21 increases Gefitinib-induced cell death by blocking the cell cycle at the G1 and G2 phases. The present findings here reinforced this idea by showing p21's ability of potentiality of DOX-induced cell death correlated with its inhibition of cell cycle progression after over-expression of p53 or p53/p65.
Our data suggested p65 could increase p53-mediated cell death in response to DOX in PANC1 cells. Thus, it is worth noting that in p53 null or defective tumors, targeting in down-regulation of p65 may well be useful, leading to the potentiality of chemotherapeutic drugs.
p21; p65; p53; caspase-3; DOX; PANC1
Despite rapid advances in chemotherapy and surgical resection strategies, pancreatic cancer remains the fourth leading cause of cancer related deaths in the United States with a 5-year survival rate of less than 5%. Therefore, novel therapeutic agents for the prevention and treatment of pancreatic cancer are urgently needed. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of pristimerin, a quinonemethide triterpenoid compound isolated from Celastraceae and Hippocrateaceae, on inhibition of cell proliferation and induction of apoptosis in three pancreatic cancer cells, BxPC-3, PANC-1 and AsPC-1, in both monotherapy and in combination with gemcitabine. Treatment with pristimerin decreased the cell proliferation of all three pancreatic cancer cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Treatment of pancreatic cancer cells with pristimerin also resulted in G1-phase arrest which was strongly associated with a marked decrease in the level of cyclins (D1 and E) and cyclin-dependent kinases (cdk2, cdk4 and cdk6 ) with concomitant induction of WAF1/p21 and KIP1/p27. Pristimerin treatment also resulted in apoptotic cell death, cleavage of caspase-3, modulation in the expressions of Bcl-2 family proteins, inhibition of the translocation and DNA-binding activity of NF-κB. In addition, pristimerin potentiated the growth inhibition and apoptosis inducing effects of gemcitabine in all three pancreatic cancer cells, at least in part, by inhibiting constitutive as well as gemcitabine-induced activation of NF-κB in both its DNA-binding activity and transcriptional activity. Taken together, these data provide the first evidence that pristimerin has strong potential for development as a novel agent against pancreatic cancer.
The C-28 methyl ester of the oleane triterpenoid 2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana-1,9-dien-28-oic acid (CDDO-Me) induces apoptosis of human cancer cells by disrupting redox balance and is in clinical trials. CDDO-Me contains α,β-unsaturated carbonyl groups that form reversible adducts with thiol nucleophiles. The present studies show that CDDO-Me blocks interleukin-6 (IL-6)–induced and constitutive activation of the Janus-activated kinase 1 (JAK1) in cells. In support of a direct mechanism, CDDO-Me forms adducts with JAK1 at Cys1077 in the kinase domain and inhibits JAK1 activity. In concert with these results, CDDO-Me blocked IL-6–induced and constitutive activation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3). Moreover, we show that CDDO-Me (a) binds directly to STAT3 by a mechanism dependent on the alkylation of Cys259 and (b) inhibits the formation of STAT3 dimers. These findings indicate that CDDO-Me inhibits activation of the JAK1→STAT3 pathway by forming adducts with both JAK1 and STAT3.
Pancreatic cancer stem-like cells are described by membrane expression of CD24, CD44 and ESA (epithelial-specific antigen) and their capacity to grow as spheres in a serum-free medium containing well-defined growth factors. The capacity of a panel of four pancreatic cancer cell lines (PANC-1, CFPAC-1, PancTu-1 and PSN-1) to form spheres was tested. All cell lines with the exception of PancTu-1 developed spheres. Phenotypically, the sphere-growing cells showed an increased in vitro invasion capability. Both gene and protein expressions of markers of metastases [CXCR4 (CXC chemokine receptor 4), OPN (osteopontin) and CD44v6] and components of active hedgehog pathway signalling were assessed. Spheres clearly demonstrated increased expression of the above-mentioned markers when compared with their adherent counterpart. With the aim of identifying a minimum set of markers able to separate cells that have the capacity to form spheres from those incapable of forming spheres, a PCA (principal component analysis) of the multidimensional dataset was performed. Although PCA of the ‘accepted’ stemness genes was unable to separate sphere-forming from sphere-incapable cell lines, the addition of the ‘aggressiveness’ marker CD44v6 allowed a clear differentiation. Moreover, inoculation of the spheres and the adherent cells in vivo confirmed the superior aggressiveness (proliferation and metastasis) of the spheres over the adherent cells. In conclusion, the present study suggests that the sphere-growing cell population is not only composed of cells displaying classical stem membrane markers but also needs CD44v6-positive cells to successfully form spheres. Our results also emphasize the potential therapeutic importance of pathways such as CXCR4 and hedgehog for pancreatic cancer treatment.
adherently growing cell; cancer marker; pancreatic cancer; principal component analysis (PCA); sphere-growing cell; AML, acute myelogenous leukaemia; CSM, cancer stem cell medium; CK-19, serum cytokeratin 19; CXCR4, CXC chemokine receptor 4; DM, differentiation medium; DMEM, Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium; DPBS, Dulbecco's PBS; EGF, epidermal growth factor; ESA, epithelial-specific antigen; FBS, fetal bovine serum; FGF, fibroblast growth factor; GEM, gemcitabine; Gli, glioma-associated oncogene homologue; HGF, hepatocyte growth factor; H/E, haematoxylin/eosin; Isl-1, insulin gene enhancer protein 1; MRI, magnetic resonance imaging; OPN, osteopontin; PCA, principal component analysis; PDX-1, pancreatic and duodenal homeobox-1; Ptch, patched homologue; QRT-PCR, quantitative real-time PCR; RPLP0, ribosomal protein, large, P0; SDF-1, stromal-derived factor-1α; Shh, sonic hedgehog
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)-activated gene (NAG-1), a divergent member of the transforming growth factor β superfamily, was previously identified as a gene induced by several anti-tumorigenic compounds, including NSAIDs and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) ligands in humans. In this study, canine NAG-1 was characterised from a canine genomic database. Gene induction by some NSAIDs and PPARγ ligands was demonstrated in canine osteosarcoma cell lines. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that canine NAG-1 is more homologous with the corresponding mouse and rat genes than with human NAG-1. Expression of canine NAG-1 was increased by treatment with piroxicam and SC-560 (NSAIDs) and the PPARγ ligand rosiglitazone. This study demonstrates that canine NAG-1 is up-regulated by some anti-tumorigenic compounds in osteosarcoma cell lines and may provide an important target of chemotherapy in canine cancer.
NAG-1; NSAID; PPARγ ligand; TGF-β; Canine osteosarcoma
High levels of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), which is produced by stromal, endothelial and cancer cells and has multiple complex effects on cancers, correlate with poor cancer prognosis. To more definitively study the role of endogenously produced PAI-1 in human pancreatic adenocarcinoma (PAC) PANC-1 cell line biology, we used anti-PAI-1 shRNA to create stable PAI-1 deficient cells (PD-PANC-1s). PD-PANC-1s exhibited a heterogeneous morphology. While the majority of cells exhibited a cuboidal shape similar to the parental PANC-1 or the vector-infected control cells, numerous large cells with long filopodia and a neuronal-like appearance were observed. Although both Vector-control cells and PD-PANC-1s expressed mRNAs that are characteristic of mesenchymal, neural and epithelial phenotypes, epithelial marker RNAs were up-regulated (e.g. E-cadherin, 32-fold) whereas mesenchymal marker RNAs were down-regulated (e.g. Thy1, 9-fold) in PD-PANC-1s, suggesting mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition. Neural markers exhibited both up- and down-regulation. Immunocytochemistry indicated that epithelial-like PD-PANC-1s expressed E-cadherin and β-catenin in significantly more cells, while neural-like cells exhibited robust expression of organized β-3-tubulin. PAI-1 and E-cadherin were rarely co-expressed in the same cells. Indeed, examination of PAI-1 and E-cadherin mRNAs expression in additional cell lines yielded clear inverse correlation. Indeed, infection of Colo357 PAC cells (that exhibit high expression of E-cadherin) with PAI-1-expressing adenovirus led to a marked decrease in E-cadherin expression and to enhanced migration of cells from clusters. Our results suggest that endogenous PAI-1 suppresses expression of E-cadherin and differentiation in PAC cells in vitro, supporting its negative impact on tumor prognosis.
Plasminogen activator inhibitor 1; E-cadherin; Differentiation; Human pancreatic adenocarcinoma
AIM: To determine the expression of toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) in pancreatic tumor and the effects of cytosine phosphate-guanosine oligodeoxynucleotides 2216 (CPG ODN2216) on biological behavior of pancreatic carcinoma cell line PANC-1 and explore their clinical significance.
METHODS: The immunohistochemistry and Western blot were used to determine the expression of TLR9 protein in pancreatic cancer tissues, and immunofluorescence staining was performed to detect the TLR9 protein expression in pancreatic carcinoma cell line PANC-1. To assess the effects of CPG ODN2216 on the invasive property of Panc-1 cells, in vitro cell adhesion, wound-healing scrape, and invasion and cell colony formation were evaluated.
RESULTS: TLR9 was highly expressed in pancreatic cancer tissues and PANC-1 cells. The percentage of positive cells expressing TLR9 protein in human pancreatic tissues, paracancerous tissues and normal tissues were 73.3%, 33.3% and 20.0%, respectively, and the protein expression level of TLR9 was gradually descending (P < 0.05). In vitro tests in wound-healing scrape, cell adhesion, colony formation and matrigel invasion showed that the adhesion and motility of PANC-1 cells in CPG ODN 2216 treatment group were significantly lower than in the control group (P < 0.05). The cell growth assay showed that the proliferative ability of PANC-1 cells in treatment group was significantly decreased and CPG ODN2216 had an inhibitive effect in the growth of Panc-1 cells in a dose and time-dependent manner (P < 0.05).
CONCLUSION: The gene of TLR9 is correlated with the invasive and metastatic potential of human pancreatic carcinoma, and CPG ODN2216 induces the inhibition of migration and invasion of Panc-1 cells.
Cytosine phosphate-guanosine oligodeoxynucleotides 2216; Pancreatic cancer; Toll-like receptor 9; Biological behavior
TGF-β-activated kinase-1 (TAK1), a mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase, functions in the activation of nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) and activator protein-1, which can suppress proapoptotic signaling pathways and thus promote resistance to chemotherapeutic drugs. However, it is not known if inhibition of TAK1 is effective in reducing chemoresistance to therapeutic drugs against pancreatic cancer.
NF-κB activity was measured by luciferase reporter assay in human pancreatic cancer cell lines AsPc-1, PANC-1, and MDAPanc-28, in which TAK1 expression was silenced by small hairpin RNA. TAK1 kinase activity was targeted in AsPc-1, PANC-1, MDAPanc-28, and Colo357FG cells with exposure to increasing doses of a selective small-molecule inhibitor, LYTAK1, for 24 hours. To test the effect of LYTAK1 in combination with chemotherapeutic agents, AsPc-1, PANC-1, MDAPanc-28 cells, and control cells were treated with increasing doses of oxaliplatin, SN-38, or gemcitabine in combination with LYTAK1. In vivo activity of oral LYTAK1 was evaluated in an orthotopic nude mouse model (n = 40, 5 per group) with luciferase-expressing AsPc-1 pancreatic cancer cells. The results of in vitro proliferation were analyzed for statistical significance of differences by nonlinear regression analysis; differences in mouse survival were determined using a log-rank test. All statistical tests were two-sided.
AsPc-1 and MDAPanc-28 TAK1 knockdown cells had a statistically significantly lower NF-κB activity than did their respective control cell lines (relative luciferase activity: AsPc-1, mean = 0.18, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.10 to 0.27; control, mean = 3.06, 95% CI = 2.31 to 3.80; MDAPanc-28, mean = 0.30, 95% CI = 0.13 to 0.46; control, mean = 4.53, 95% CI = 3.43 to 5.63; both P < .001). TAK1 inhibitor LYTAK1 had potent in vitro cytotoxic activity in AsPc-1, PANC-1, MDAPanc-28, and Colo357FG cells, with IC50 between 5 and 40 nM. LYTAK1 also potentiated the cytotoxicity of chemotherapeutic agents oxaliplatin, SN-38, and gemcitabine in AsPc-1, PANC-1, and MDAPanc-28 cells compared with control cells (P < .001). In nude mice, oral administration of LYTAK1 plus gemcitabine statistically significantly reduced tumor burden (gemcitabine vs gemcitabine plus LYTAK1, P = .03) and prolonged survival duration (median survival: gemcitabine, 82 days vs gemcitabine plus LYTAK1, 122 days; hazard ratio = 0.334, 95% CI = 0.027 to 0.826, P = .029).
The results of this study suggest that genetic silencing or inhibition of TAK1 kinase activity in vivo is a potential therapeutic approach to reversal of the intrinsic chemoresistance of pancreatic cancer.