Gene Summary

Gene:FH; fumarate hydratase
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is an enzymatic component of the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, or Krebs cycle, and catalyzes the formation of L-malate from fumarate. It exists in both a cytosolic form and an N-terminal extended form, differing only in the translation start site used. The N-terminal extended form is targeted to the mitochondrion, where the removal of the extension generates the same form as in the cytoplasm. It is similar to some thermostable class II fumarases and functions as a homotetramer. Mutations in this gene can cause fumarase deficiency and lead to progressive encephalopathy. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:fumarate hydratase, mitochondrial
Source:NCBIAccessed: 06 August, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 06 August 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 06 August, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Latest Publications: FH (cancer-related)

Cascón A, Comino-Méndez I, Currás-Freixes M, et al.
Whole-exome sequencing identifies MDH2 as a new familial paraganglioma gene.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015; 107(5) [PubMed] Related Publications
Disruption of the Krebs cycle is a hallmark of cancer. IDH1 and IDH2 mutations are found in many neoplasms, and germline alterations in SDH genes and FH predispose to pheochromocytoma/paraganglioma and other cancers. We describe a paraganglioma family carrying a germline mutation in MDH2, which encodes a Krebs cycle enzyme. Whole-exome sequencing was applied to tumor DNA obtained from a man age 55 years diagnosed with multiple malignant paragangliomas. Data were analyzed with the two-sided Student's t and Mann-Whitney U tests with Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons. Between six- and 14-fold lower levels of MDH2 expression were observed in MDH2-mutated tumors compared with control patients. Knockdown (KD) of MDH2 in HeLa cells by shRNA triggered the accumulation of both malate (mean ± SD: wild-type [WT] = 1±0.18; KD = 2.24±0.17, P = .043) and fumarate (WT = 1±0.06; KD = 2.6±0.25, P = .033), which was reversed by transient introduction of WT MDH2 cDNA. Segregation of the mutation with disease and absence of MDH2 in mutated tumors revealed MDH2 as a novel pheochromocytoma/paraganglioma susceptibility gene.

Faber AC, Farago AF, Costa C, et al.
Assessment of ABT-263 activity across a cancer cell line collection leads to a potent combination therapy for small-cell lung cancer.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015; 112(11):E1288-96 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/09/2015 Related Publications
BH3 mimetics such as ABT-263 induce apoptosis in a subset of cancer models. However, these drugs have shown limited clinical efficacy as single agents in small-cell lung cancer (SCLC) and other solid tumor malignancies, and rational combination strategies remain underexplored. To develop a novel therapeutic approach, we examined the efficacy of ABT-263 across >500 cancer cell lines, including 311 for which we had matched expression data for select genes. We found that high expression of the proapoptotic gene Bcl2-interacting mediator of cell death (BIM) predicts sensitivity to ABT-263. In particular, SCLC cell lines possessed greater BIM transcript levels than most other solid tumors and are among the most sensitive to ABT-263. However, a subset of relatively resistant SCLC cell lines has concomitant high expression of the antiapoptotic myeloid cell leukemia 1 (MCL-1). Whereas ABT-263 released BIM from complexes with BCL-2 and BCL-XL, high expression of MCL-1 sequestered BIM released from BCL-2 and BCL-XL, thereby abrogating apoptosis. We found that SCLCs were sensitized to ABT-263 via TORC1/2 inhibition, which led to reduced MCL-1 protein levels, thereby facilitating BIM-mediated apoptosis. AZD8055 and ABT-263 together induced marked apoptosis in vitro, as well as tumor regressions in multiple SCLC xenograft models. In a Tp53; Rb1 deletion genetically engineered mouse model of SCLC, the combination of ABT-263 and AZD8055 significantly repressed tumor growth and induced tumor regressions compared with either drug alone. Furthermore, in a SCLC patient-derived xenograft model that was resistant to ABT-263 alone, the addition of AZD8055 induced potent tumor regression. Therefore, addition of a TORC1/2 inhibitor offers a therapeutic strategy to markedly improve ABT-263 activity in SCLC.

Husby S, Ralfkiaer U, Garde C, et al.
miR-18b overexpression identifies mantle cell lymphoma patients with poor outcome and improves the MIPI-B prognosticator.
Blood. 2015; 125(17):2669-77 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recent studies show that mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) express aberrant microRNA (miRNA) profiles; however, the clinical effect of miRNA expression has not previously been examined and validated in large prospective homogenously treated cohorts. We performed genome-wide miRNA microarray profiling of 74 diagnostic MCL samples from the Nordic MCL2 trial (screening cohort). Prognostic miRNAs were validated in diagnostic MCL samples from 94 patients of the independent Nordic MCL3 trial (validation cohort). Three miRNAs (miR-18b, miR-92a, and miR-378d) were significantly differentially expressed in patients who died of MCL in both cohorts. MiR-18b was superior to miR-92a and miR-378d in predicting high risk. Thus, we generated a new biological MCL International Prognostic Index (MIPI-B)-miR prognosticator, combining expression levels of miR-18b with MIPI-B data. Compared to the MIPI-B, this prognosticator improved identification of high-risk patients with regard to cause-specific, overall, and progression-free survival. Transfection of 2 MCL cell lines with miR-18b decreased their proliferation rate without inducing apoptosis, suggesting that miR-18b may render MCL cells resistant to chemotherapy by decelerating cell proliferation. We conclude that overexpression of miR-18b identifies patients with poor prognosis in 2 large prospective MCL cohorts and adds prognostic information to the MIPI-B. MiR-18b may reduce the proliferation rate of MCL cells as a mechanism of chemoresistance.

Ferreira AF, de Oliveira GL, Tognon R, et al.
Apoptosis-related gene expression profile in chronic myeloid leukemia patients after imatinib mesylate and dasatinib therapy.
Acta Haematol. 2015; 133(4):354-64 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIMS: We investigated the effects of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) on the expression of apoptosis-related genes (BCL-2 and death receptor family members) in chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients.
METHODS: Peripheral blood mononuclear cells from 32 healthy subjects and 26 CML patients were evaluated before and after treatment with imatinib mesylate (IM) and dasatinib (DAS) by quantitative PCR.
RESULTS: Anti-apoptotic genes (c-FLIP and MCL-1) were overexpressed and the pro-apoptotic BIK was reduced in CML patients. Expression of BMF, A1, c-FLIP, MCL-1, CIAP-2 and CIAP-1 was modulated by DAS. In IM-resistant patients, expression of A1, c-FLIP, CIAP-1 and MCL-1 was upregulated, and BCL-2, CIAP-2, BAK, BAX, BIK and FASL expression was downregulated.
CONCLUSION: Taken together, our results point out that, in CML, DAS interferes with the apoptotic machinery regulation. In addition, the data suggest that apoptosis-related gene expression profiles are associated with primary resistance to IM.

Al-Kawaaz M, Mathew S, Liu Y, et al.
Cyclin D1-positive diffuse large B-cell lymphoma with IGH-CCND1 translocation and BCL6 rearrangement: a report of two cases.
Am J Clin Pathol. 2015; 143(2):288-99 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: To demonstrate and confirm the existence of cyclin D1-positive diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) with IGH-CCND1 rearrangement and discuss the rationale of differentiating this entity from blastoid and pleomorphic variants of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL).
METHODS: Two cyclin D1-positive lymphomas with morphologic features of DLBCL and IGH-CCND1 translocations were characterized with respect to clinical features, as well as morphologic, immunophenotypic, cytogenetic, and molecular findings.
RESULTS: The large tumor cells were CD20+, CD5-, CD10-, BCL6+, MUM1+, and cyclin D1+ in both cases. SOX11 was negative. Epstein-Barr virus-encoded RNA in situ hybridization demonstrated diffuse positivity in case 1. BCL6 and IGH-CCND1 rearrangements were identified by fluorescence in situ hybridization in both cases. Specifically, the diagnosis of a relapsed DLBCL with acquisition of IGH-CCND1 was rendered for case 1, molecularly confirmed by the detection of identical monoclonal IGH rearrangements between the initial diagnostic DLBCL and relapse lymphoma.
CONCLUSIONS: Our study demonstrates convincingly that IGH-CCND1 rearrangement leading to cyclin D1 overexpression can occur in DLBCL and pose a potential diagnostic pitfall, requiring thorough knowledge of the clinicopathologic findings to allow accurate discrimination from a blastoid or pleomorphic MCL. The coexistence of IGH-CCND1 and IGH-BCL6 rearrangements suggest that BCL6 and cyclin D1 may cooperate in the pathogenesis of DLBCL.

Jin Y, Lu J, Wen J, et al.
Regulation of growth of human bladder cancer by miR-192.
Tumour Biol. 2015; 36(5):3791-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
The regulation of microRNA-192 (miR-192) is impaired in many cancers. Here, we investigated the role of miR-192 in the proliferation, cell cycle progression, and apoptosis of bladder cancer cells. Human bladder cancer cells were transfected with human miR-192 precursor or non-specific control miRNA. The effect of miR-192 on cell proliferation was assessed by a MTT assay. The effects of miR-192 on cell cycle regulation and apoptosis were evaluated by flow cytometry. Western blot was used to analyze the protein levels of cyclin D1, p21, p27, Bcl-2, Bax, and Mcl-1. We found that overexpression of miR-192 significantly decreased the proliferation of bladder cancer cells by 22 and 54 % at 48 and 72 h, respectively. MiR-192-overexpressing cells exhibited a significant increase in G0/G1 phase and a significant decrease in S phase compared to the control miRNA-transfected cells. Moreover, overexpression of miR-192 significantly induced apoptotic death in bladder cancer cells, increased the levels of p21, p27, and Bax, and decreased the levels of cyclin D1, Bcl-2, and Mcl-1. Taken together, these data suggest that miR-192 may be a suppressor for bladder cancer cells by cell cycle regulation.

Musilova K, Mraz M
MicroRNAs in B-cell lymphomas: how a complex biology gets more complex.
Leukemia. 2015; 29(5):1004-17 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) represent important regulators of gene expression besides transcriptional control. miRNA regulation can be involved in the cell developmental fate decisions, but can also have more subtle roles in buffering stochastic fluctuations in gene expression. They participate in pathways fundamental to B-cell development like B-cell receptor (BCR) signalling, B-cell migration/adhesion, cell-cell interactions in immune niches, and the production and class-switching of immunoglobulins. miRNAs influence B-cell maturation, generation of pre-, marginal zone, follicular, B1, plasma and memory B cells. In this review, we discuss miRNAs with essential functions in malignant B-cell development (such as miR-150, miR-155, miR-21, miR-34a, miR-17-92 and miR-15-16). We also put these miRNAs in the context of normal B-cell differentiation, as this is intimately connected to neoplastic B-cell development. We review miRNAs' role in the most common B-cell malignancies, including chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL), diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), follicular lymphoma (FL) and mantle cell lymphoma (MCL). We focus on miR-contribution to the regulation of important signalling pathways (such as NF-κB, PI3K/AKT and TGF-β), BCR signalling and its modulators (such as PTEN, SHIP-1, ZAP-70, GAB1 and BTK), anti- and pro-apoptotic proteins (such as BCL2, MCL1, TCL1, BIM, p53 and SIRT1) and transcription factors (such as MYC, MYB, PU.1, FOXP1 and BCL6). We also discuss the association of miRNAs' expression levels with the patients' survival and response to therapy, summarizing their potential use as predictive and prognostic markers. Importantly, the targeting of miRNAs (like use of anti-miR-155 or miR-34a mimic) could provide a novel therapeutic approach as evidenced by tumour regression in xenograft mouse models and initial promising data from clinical trials.

Zhao Z, Han F, Yang S, et al.
Oxamate-mediated inhibition of lactate dehydrogenase induces protective autophagy in gastric cancer cells: involvement of the Akt-mTOR signaling pathway.
Cancer Lett. 2015; 358(1):17-26 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancer cells produce a substantial amount of energy through aerobic glycolysis even in the presence of adequate oxygen. Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), a key regulator of glycolysis, reversibly catalyzes the conversion of pyruvate to lactate. Recently, oxamate, an inhibitor of LDH, has been shown to be a promising anticancer agent. However, the detailed mechanism remains largely unclear. In this study, we demonstrate that oxamate inhibits the viability of human gastric cancer cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner. In addition, treatment with oxamate induces protective autophagy in gastric cancer cells. Moreover, autophagy inhibited by chloroquine or Beclin 1 small interfering RNA (siRNA) enhances oxamate-induced apoptosis and proliferation inhibition. Further study has shown that oxamate treatment significantly augments reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. Furthermore, cells pretreated with N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), a ROS inhibitor, display significantly reduced ROS production and attenuated oxamate-induced autophagy. Finally, functional studies reveal that the Akt-mTOR signaling pathway, a major negative regulator of autophagy, is inhibited by oxamate. Together, our results provide new insights regarding the biological and anti-proliferative activities of oxamate against gastric cancer, and may offer a promising therapeutic strategy for gastric cancer.

Dénes J, Swords F, Rattenberry E, et al.
Heterogeneous genetic background of the association of pheochromocytoma/paraganglioma and pituitary adenoma: results from a large patient cohort.
J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2015; 100(3):E531-41 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 17/09/2015 Related Publications
CONTEXT: Pituitary adenomas and pheochromocytomas/paragangliomas (pheo/PGL) can occur in the same patient or in the same family. Coexistence of the two diseases could be due to either a common pathogenic mechanism or a coincidence.
OBJECTIVE: The objective of the investigation was to study the possible coexistence of pituitary adenoma and pheo/PGL.
DESIGN: Thirty-nine cases of sporadic or familial pheo/PGL and pituitary adenomas were investigated. Known pheo/PGL genes (SDHA-D, SDHAF2, RET, VHL, TMEM127, MAX, FH) and pituitary adenoma genes (MEN1, AIP, CDKN1B) were sequenced using next generation or Sanger sequencing. Loss of heterozygosity study and pathological studies were performed on the available tumor samples.
SETTING: The study was conducted at university hospitals.
PATIENTS: Thirty-nine patients with sporadic of familial pituitary adenoma and pheo/PGL participated in the study.
OUTCOME: Outcomes included genetic screening and clinical characteristics.
RESULTS: Eleven germline mutations (five SDHB, one SDHC, one SDHD, two VHL, and two MEN1) and four variants of unknown significance (two SDHA, one SDHB, and one SDHAF2) were identified in the studied genes in our patient cohort. Tumor tissue analysis identified LOH at the SDHB locus in three pituitary adenomas and loss of heterozygosity at the MEN1 locus in two pheochromocytomas. All the pituitary adenomas of patients affected by SDHX alterations have a unique histological feature not previously described in this context.
CONCLUSIONS: Mutations in the genes known to cause pheo/PGL can rarely be associated with pituitary adenomas, whereas mutation in a gene predisposing to pituitary adenomas (MEN1) can be associated with pheo/PGL. Our findings suggest that genetic testing should be considered in all patients or families with the constellation of pheo/PGL and a pituitary adenoma.

Sourbier C, Ricketts CJ, Matsumoto S, et al.
Targeting ABL1-mediated oxidative stress adaptation in fumarate hydratase-deficient cancer.
Cancer Cell. 2014; 26(6):840-50 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
Patients with germline fumarate hydratase (FH) mutation are predisposed to develop aggressive kidney cancer with few treatment options and poor therapeutic outcomes. Activity of the proto-oncogene ABL1 is upregulated in FH-deficient kidney tumors and drives a metabolic and survival signaling network necessary to cope with impaired mitochondrial function and abnormal accumulation of intracellular fumarate. Excess fumarate indirectly stimulates ABL1 activity, while restoration of wild-type FH abrogates both ABL1 activation and the cytotoxicity caused by ABL1 inhibition or knockdown. ABL1 upregulates aerobic glycolysis via the mTOR/HIF1α pathway and neutralizes fumarate-induced proteotoxic stress by promoting nuclear localization of the antioxidant response transcription factor NRF2. Our findings identify ABL1 as a pharmacologically tractable therapeutic target in glycolytically dependent, oxidatively stressed tumors.

Modugno M, Banfi P, Gasparri F, et al.
Mcl-1 antagonism is a potential therapeutic strategy in a subset of solid cancers.
Exp Cell Res. 2015; 332(2):267-77 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancer cell survival is frequently dependent on the elevated levels of members of the Bcl-2 family of prosurvival proteins that bind to and inactivate BH3-domain pro-apoptotic cellular proteins. Small molecules that inhibit the protein-protein interactions between prosurvival and proapoptotic Bcl-2 family members (so-called "BH3 mimetics") have a potential therapeutic value, as indicated by clinical findings obtained with ABT-263 (navitoclax), a Bcl-2/Bcl-xL antagonist, and more recently with GDC-0199/ABT-199, a more selective antagonist of Bcl-2. Here, we report study results of the functional role of the prosurvival protein Mcl-1 against a panel of solid cancer cell lines representative of different tumor types. We observed silencing of Mcl-1 expression by small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) significantly reduced viability and induced apoptosis in almost 30% of cell lines tested, including lung and breast adenocarcinoma, as well as glioblastoma derived lines. Most importantly, we provide a mechanistic basis for this sensitivity by showing antagonism of Mcl-1 function with specific BH3 peptides against isolated mitochondria induces Bak oligomerization and cytochrome c release, therefore demonstrating that mitochondria from Mcl-1-sensitive cells depend on Mcl-1 for their integrity and that antagonizing Mcl-1 function is sufficient to induce apoptosis. Thus, our results lend further support for considering Mcl-1 as a therapeutic target in a number of solid cancers and support the rationale for development of small molecule BH3-mimetics antagonists of this protein.

El-Khattouti A, Sheehan NT, Monico J, et al.
CD133⁺ melanoma subpopulation acquired resistance to caffeic acid phenethyl ester-induced apoptosis is attributed to the elevated expression of ABCB5: significance for melanoma treatment.
Cancer Lett. 2015; 357(1):83-104 [PubMed] Related Publications
According to the cancer stem-like cell (CSC) hypothesis, neoplastic clones are maintained by a small fraction of cells with stem cell properties. Also, melanoma resistance to chemo- and radiotherapy is thought to be attributed to melanoma stem-like cells (MSCs). Caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) is a bioactive molecule, whose antitumor activity is approved in different tumor types. CAPE induced both apoptosis and E2F1 expression in CD133(-), but not in CD133(+) melanoma subpopulations. The resistance of CD133(+) melanoma subpopulation is attributed to the enhanced drug efflux mediated by ATP-binding cassette sub-family B member 5 (ABCB5), since the knockdown of ABCB5 was found to sensitize CD133(+) cells to CAPE. CAPE-induced apoptosis is mediated by E2F1 as evidenced by the abrogation of apoptosis induced in response to the knockdown of E2F1. The functional analysis of E2F1 in CD133(+) melanoma subpopulation demonstrated the ability of E2F1 gene transfer to trigger apoptosis of CD133(+) cells and to enhance the activation of apoptosis signal-regulating kinase (ASK1), c-Jun N-terminal kinase and p38, and the DNA-binding activities of the transcription factors AP-1 and p53. Also, the induction of E2F1 expression was found to enhance the expression of the pro-apoptotic proteins Bax, Noxa and Puma, and to suppress the anti-apoptotic protein Mcl-1. Using specific pharmacological inhibitors we could demonstrate that E2F1 overcomes the chemo-resistance of MSCs/CD133(+) cells by a mechanism mediated by both mitochondrial dysregulation and ER-stress-dependent pathways. In conclusion, our data addresses the mechanisms of CAPE/E2F1-induced apoptosis of chemo-resistant CD133(+) melanoma subpopulation.

Zhang R, Jin S, Rao W, et al.
OVA12, a novel tumor antigen, promotes cancer cell growth and inhibits 5-fluorouracil-induced apoptosis.
Cancer Lett. 2015; 357(1):141-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
To achieve a better understanding of mechanisms that underlie carcinogenesis and to identify novel target molecules for diagnosis and therapy of carcinoma, we previously identified 24 distinct gene clones by immunoscreening of a cDNA library derived from an ovarian cancer patient through SEREX analysis. Among these genes we focused on a novel gene termed OVA12 and which putatively encodes a 114-amino-acid protein. In the present study, we found that OVA12 was ubiquitously overexpressed in diverse human tumor cell lines. Interestingly, we noticed that overexpression of OVA12 promoted proliferation of cancer cells in vitro and accelerated tumor growth in nude mice as compared to controls. Conversely, specific downregulation of OVA12 inhibited tumor cell proliferation and tumor growth both in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, OVA12 inhibited 5-FU-induced apoptosis through specific upregulation of Mcl-1 and survivin. These results demonstrate that OVA12 is able to promote tumor growth, suggesting that this antigen might be a new potential target for development of cancer therapy.

Manchanda R, Loggenberg K, Sanderson S, et al.
Population testing for cancer predisposing BRCA1/BRCA2 mutations in the Ashkenazi-Jewish community: a randomized controlled trial.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015; 107(1):379 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Technological advances raise the possibility of systematic population-based genetic testing for cancer-predisposing mutations, but it is uncertain whether benefits outweigh disadvantages. We directly compared the psychological/quality-of-life consequences of such an approach to family history (FH)-based testing.
METHODS: In a randomized controlled trial of BRCA1/2 gene-mutation testing in the Ashkenazi Jewish (AJ) population, we compared testing all participants in the population screening (PS) arm with testing those fulfilling standard FH-based clinical criteria (FH arm). Following a targeted community campaign, AJ participants older than 18 years were recruited by self-referral after pretest genetic counseling. The effects of BRCA1/2 genetic testing on acceptability, psychological impact, and quality-of-life measures were assessed by random effects regression analysis. All statistical tests were two-sided.
RESULTS: One thousand, one hundred sixty-eight AJ individuals were counseled, 1042 consented, 1034 were randomly assigned (691 women, 343 men), and 1017 were eligible for analysis. Mean age was 54.3 (SD = 14.66) years. Thirteen BRCA1/2 carriers were identified in the PS arm, nine in the FH arm. Five more carriers were detected among FH-negative FH-arm participants following study completion. There were no statistically significant differences between the FH and PS arms at seven days or three months on measures of anxiety, depression, health anxiety, distress, uncertainty, and quality-of-life. Contrast tests indicated that overall anxiety (P = .0001) and uncertainty (P = .005) associated with genetic testing decreased; positive experience scores increased (P = .0001); quality-of-life and health anxiety did not change with time. Overall, 56% of carriers did not fulfill clinical criteria for genetic testing, and the BRCA1/2 prevalence was 2.45%.
CONCLUSION: Compared with FH-based testing, population-based genetic testing in Ashkenazi Jews doesn't adversely affect short-term psychological/quality-of-life outcomes and may detect 56% additional BRCA carriers.

Baumann U, Fernández-Sáiz V, Rudelius M, et al.
Disruption of the PRKCD-FBXO25-HAX-1 axis attenuates the apoptotic response and drives lymphomagenesis.
Nat Med. 2014; 20(12):1401-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
We searched for genetic alterations in human B cell lymphoma that affect the ubiquitin-proteasome system. This approach identified FBXO25 within a minimal common region of frequent deletion in mantle cell lymphoma (MCL). FBXO25 encodes an orphan F-box protein that determines the substrate specificity of the SCF (SKP1-CUL1-F-box)(FBXO25) ubiquitin ligase complex. An unbiased screen uncovered the prosurvival protein HCLS1-associated protein X-1 (HAX-1) as the bona fide substrate of FBXO25 that is targeted after apoptotic stresses. Protein kinase Cδ (PRKCD) initiates this process by phosphorylating FBXO25 and HAX-1, thereby spatially directing nuclear FBXO25 to mitochondrial HAX-1. Our analyses in primary human MCL identify monoallelic loss of FBXO25 and stabilizing HAX1 phosphodegron mutations. Accordingly, FBXO25 re-expression in FBXO25-deleted MCL cells promotes cell death, whereas expression of the HAX-1 phosphodegron mutant inhibits apoptosis. In addition, knockdown of FBXO25 significantly accelerated lymphoma development in Eμ-Myc mice and in a human MCL xenotransplant model. Together we identify a PRKCD-dependent proapoptotic mechanism controlling HAX-1 stability, and we propose that FBXO25 functions as a haploinsufficient tumor suppressor and that HAX1 is a proto-oncogene in MCL.

Palve V, Mallick S, Ghaisas G, et al.
Overexpression of Mcl-1L splice variant is associated with poor prognosis and chemoresistance in oral cancers.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(11):e111927 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Altered expression of Mcl-1, an anti-apoptotic member of the Bcl-2 family, has been linked to the progression and outcome of a variety of malignancies. We have previously reported the overexpression of Mcl-1 protein in human oral cancers. The present study aimed to evaluate the clinicopathological significance of the expression of three known Mcl-1 isoforms in oral tumors and the effect of targeting Mcl-1L isoform on chemosensitivity of oral cancer cells.
METHODS: The expression of Mcl-1 isoforms- Mcl-1L, Mcl-1S & Mcl-1ES was analyzed in 130 paired oral tumors and 9 oral cell lines using quantitative real-time PCR & protein by western blotting. The Mcl-1 mRNA levels were correlated with clinicopathological parameters and outcome of oral cancer patients. The effect of Mcl-1L shRNA or Obatoclax (a small molecule Mcl-1 inhibitor), in combination with Cisplatin on chemosensitivity of oral cancer cells was also assessed.
RESULTS: Anti-apoptotic Mcl-1L was predominantly expressed, over low or undetectable pro-apoptotic Mcl-1S and Mcl-1ES isoforms. The Mcl-1L transcripts were significantly overexpressed in all cancer cell lines and in 64% oral tumors versus adjacent normals (P<0.02). In oral cancer patients, high Mcl-1L expression was significantly associated with node positivity (P = 0.021), advanced tumor size (P = 0.013) and poor overall survival (P = 0.002). Multivariate analysis indicated Mcl-1L to be an independent prognostic factor for oral cancers (P = 0.037). Mcl-1L shRNA knockdown or its inhibition by Obatoclax in combination with Cisplatin synergistically reduced viability and growth of oral cancer cells than either treatment alone.
CONCLUSION: Our studies suggest that overexpression of Mcl-1L is associated with poor prognosis and chemoresistance in oral cancers. Mcl-1L is an independent prognostic factor and a potential therapeutic target in oral cancers.

Wu H, Schiff DS, Lin Y, et al.
Ionizing radiation sensitizes breast cancer cells to Bcl-2 inhibitor, ABT-737, through regulating Mcl-1.
Radiat Res. 2014; 182(6):618-25 [PubMed] Related Publications
Breast-conserving surgery followed by radiation therapy has become the standard of care for early stage breast cancer. However, there are some patients that develop a local failure. We have previously shown that Bcl-2 overexpression was associated with an increased risk of local recurrence in patients with early stage breast cancer. The purpose of this study was to explore an approach to overcome radiation resistance by targeting pro-survival Bcl-2 family proteins in breast cancer cells. The breast cancer cell lines MCF-7, ZR-75-1 and MDA-MB231 were used in this study. siRNAs were employed to silence myeloid cell leukemia 1 (Mcl-1). A small molecule inhibitor of Bcl-2, ABT-737, was used to target anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins. Apoptosis was identified by FITC Annexin V, PI staining and Western blot analysis. The sensitivity to ionizing radiation and ABT-737 were measured by clonogenic assays. The effect of radiation and ABT-737 was also tested in a MCF-7 xenograft mouse model. Our data demonstrate that the combination of ABT-737 and radiation-induced apoptosis had an inhibitory effect on breast cancer cell proliferation. However, treatment with ABT-737 resulted in elevated Mcl-1 in breast cancer cell lines. Targeting Mcl-1 by siRNA sensitized MCF-7 cells to ABT-737. We revealed that radiation blunted Mcl-1 elevation induced by ABT-737, and that radiation downregulated Mcl-1 by promoting its degradation. Our results indicate that radiation and ABT-737 exert a synergistic effect on breast cancer cell lines through downregulating Mcl-1 and activating the bak-apoptotic pathway. These results support the combination of radiation and pro-survival Bcl-2 family inhibitor as a potential novel therapeutic strategy in the local-regional management of breast cancer.

Lee YJ, Hwang IS, Lee YJ, et al.
Knockdown of Bcl-xL enhances growth-inhibiting and apoptosis-inducing effects of resveratrol and clofarabine in malignant mesothelioma H-2452 cells.
J Korean Med Sci. 2014; 29(11):1464-72 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
Mcl-1 and Bcl-xL, key anti-apoptotic proteins of the Bcl-2 family, have attracted attention as important molecules in the cell survival and drug resistance. In this study, we investigated whether inhibition of Bcl-xL influences cell growth and apoptosis against simultaneous treatment of resveratrol and clofarabine in the human malignant mesothelioma H-2452 cells. Resveratrol and clofarabine decreased Mcl-1 protein levels but had little effect on Bcl-xL levels. In the presence of two compounds, any detectable change in the Mcl-1 mRNA levels was not observed in RT-PCR analysis, whereas pretreatment with the proteasome inhibitor MG132 led to its accumulation to levels far above basal levels. The knockdown of Bcl-xL inhibited cell proliferation with cell accumulation at G2/M phase and the appearance of sub-G0/G1 peak in DNA flow cytometric assay. The suppression of cell growth was accompanied by an increase in the caspase-3/7 activity with the resultant cleavages of procaspase-3 and its substrate poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase, and increased percentage of apoptotic propensities in annexin V binding assay. Collectively, our data represent that the efficacy of resveratrol and clofarabine for apoptosis induction was substantially enhanced by Bcl-xL-lowering strategy in which the simultaneous targeting of Mcl-1 and Bcl-xL could be a more effective strategy for treating malignant mesothelioma.

Bernard S, Danglade D, Gardano L, et al.
Inhibitors of BCR signalling interrupt the survival signal mediated by the micro-environment in mantle cell lymphoma.
Int J Cancer. 2015; 136(12):2761-74 [PubMed] Related Publications
Several studies provide evidences for mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) cell survival relying on B-cell receptor (BCR)-mediated signalling pathways, whereas the nature of this activation is unknown. Significant progress in MCL treatment is achieved through therapies targeting BCR-associated kinases, i.e., Ibrutinib and Fostamatinib, inhibitors of BTK and SYK, respectively. Our study addresses survival signals emanating from the BCR or the tumour environment and how inhibiting BCR signalling effectors might impact these survival signals. We found that BTK was constitutively activated and that SYK phosphorylation was highly increased and sustained upon BCR activation of primary MCL cells. Moreover, MCL cells from leukaemic patients secreted high amount of IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8 and CCL5. Activation of the BCR induced (i) cell survival, (ii) STAT3 activation and (iii) increased autocrine secretion of IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, CCL5, IL-10, TNFα and VEGF. Specific inhibition of BTK by Ibrutinib or SYK by Fostamatinib (R406) reversed these protective effects and decreased both basal and BCR-induced autocrine cytokine secretions associated with STAT3 phosphorylation. Interestingly, targeting BTK and SYK prevented and inhibited BCR-induced MCL cell adhesion to human bone marrow stromal cells (HMSCs) in short- and long-term co-culture. We demonstrated that BCR-induced survival relies on autocrine secretion of IL-1β, TNFα and CCL5 that might facilitate adhesion of MCL cells to HMSC. Treatment with Ibrutinib or Fostamatinib blocked the chemotactic signal thus increasing apoptosis.

Woo SM, Min KJ, Seo BR, et al.
Cafestol overcomes ABT-737 resistance in Mcl-1-overexpressed renal carcinoma Caki cells through downregulation of Mcl-1 expression and upregulation of Bim expression.
Cell Death Dis. 2014; 5:e1514 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
Although ABT-737, a small-molecule Bcl-2/Bcl-xL inhibitor, has recently emerged as a novel cancer therapeutic agent, ABT-737-induced apoptosis is often blocked in several types of cancer cells with elevated expression of Mcl-1. Cafestol, one of the major compounds in coffee beans, has been reported to have anti-carcinogenic activity and tumor cell growth-inhibitory activity, and we examined whether cafestol could overcome resistance against ABT-737 in Mcl-1-overexpressed human renal carcinoma Caki cells. ABT-737 alone had no effect on apoptosis, but cafestol markedly enhanced ABT-737-mediated apoptosis in Mcl-1-overexpressed Caki cells, human glioma U251MG cells, and human breast carcinoma MDA-MB231 cells. By contrast, co-treatment with ABT-737 and cafestol did not induce apoptosis in normal human skin fibroblast. Furthermore, combined treatment with cafestol and ABT-737 markedly reduced tumor growth compared with either drug alone in xenograft models. We found that cafestol inhibited Mcl-1 protein expression, which is important for ABT-737 resistance, through promotion of protein degradation. Moreover, cafestol increased Bim expression, and siRNA-mediated suppression of Bim expression reduced the apoptosis induced by cafestol plus ABT-737. Taken together, cafestol may be effectively used to enhance ABT-737 sensitivity in cancer therapy via downregulation of Mcl-1 expression and upregulation of Bim expression.

Brodbeck T, Nehmann N, Bethge A, et al.
Perforin-dependent direct cytotoxicity in natural killer cells induces considerable knockdown of spontaneous lung metastases and computer modelling-proven tumor cell dormancy in a HT29 human colon cancer xenograft mouse model.
Mol Cancer. 2014; 13:244 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: For long, natural killer (NK) cells have been suspected to play a critical role in suppressing the development of spontaneous metastases in cancer patients. Despite a wide range of studies it remains unclear so far to what extent primary tumor growth together with formation of distant metastases and NK cell activity influence each other.
METHODS: To precisely investigate the role of NK cells with a perforin-deficiency in cancer growth and metastasis formation, human HT29 colon cancer cells were subcutaneously grafted into pore forming protein and recombination activating gene 2 double knock out (pfp/rag2) mice and in recombination activating gene 2 only knock out (rag2) mice both with black six background. Both mice lack B and T cell functions due to the absence of rag2.
RESULTS: Primary tumors developed in 16/16 in pfp/rag2 and 20/20 rag2 mice. At sacrifice primary tumor weight did not differ significantly. However, tumors grew faster in pfp/rag2 mice (50 days) than in pfp/rag2 mice (70 days). Circulating tumor cells (CTC) in murine blood were nearly three times higher in pfp/rag2 (68 cells/ml) than in rag2 mice (24 cells/ml). Lung metastases occurred frequently in pfp/rag2 mice (13/16) and infrequently in rag2 mice (5/20). The mean number of metastases was 789 in pfp/rag2 mice compared to 210 in rag2 mice. Lung metastases in pfp/rag2 mice consisted of 10-100 tumor cells while those in rag2 mice were generally disseminated tumor cells (DTCs).Computer modelling showed that perforin-dependent killing of NK cells decelerates the growth of the primary tumour and kills 80% of CTCs. Furthermore, perforin-mediated cytotoxicity hampers the proliferation of the malignant cells in host tissue forcing them to stay dormant for at least 30 days.
CONCLUSION: The results exactly quantified the effect of perforin-dependent direct cytotoxicity of NK cells on HT29 on primary tumor growth, number of CTCs in the blood and the number of metastases. The largest effects were seen in the number of mice developing spontaneous lung metastases and the mean number of lung metastases. Hence, perforin-mediated cytotoxicity used for direct killing by NK cells is more important than indirect killing by secretion of death-inducing ligands by NK cells.

Lu Z, Wang J, Zheng T, et al.
FTY720 inhibits proliferation and epithelial-mesenchymal transition in cholangiocarcinoma by inactivating STAT3 signaling.
BMC Cancer. 2014; 14:783 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Interleukin 6 (IL-6)-mediated signal transducers and activators of transcription 3 (STAT-3) phosphorylation (activation) is aberrantly sustained in cholangiocarcinoma cells resulting in enhanced myeloid cell leukemia 1 (Mcl-1) expression and resistance to apoptosis. FTY720, a new immunosuppressant, derived from ISP-1, has been studied for its putative anti-cancer properties. This study aimed to elucidate the mechanism by which FTY720 mediates antitumor effects in cholangiocarcinoma (CC) cells.
METHODS: Three CC cell lines were examined, QBC939, TFK-1, and HuCCT1. The therapeutic effects of FTY720 were evaluated in vitro and in vivo. Cell proliferation, apoptosis, cell cycle, invasive potential, and epithelial- mesenchy-mal transition (EMT) were examined.
RESULTS: FTY720 greatly inhibited CC cells proliferation and EMT in vitro and in vivo, and this effect was associated with dephosphorylation of STAT3tyr705. FTY720 induced apoptosis and G1 phase arrest in CC cells, and inhibited invasion of CC cells. Western blot analysis showed that FTY720 induced cleavage of caspases 3, 8 and 9, and of PARP, in a dose-dependent manner, consistent with a substantial decrease in p-STAT3, Bcl-xL, Bcl-2, survivin, cyclin D1, cyclin E, N-cadherin, vimentin, VEGF and TWIST1. In vivo studies showed that tumor growth and metastasis were significantly suppressed after FTY720 treatment.
CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that FTY720 induces a significant decrease in p-STAT3, which inhibits proliferation and EMT of CC cells, and then induces G1 phase arrest and apoptosis. We have characterized a novel immunosuppressant, which shows potential anti-tumor effects on CC via p-STAT3 inhibition. FTY720 merits further investigation and warrants clinical evaluation.

Wang G, Chen S, Edwards H, et al.
Combination of chloroquine and GX15-070 (obatoclax) results in synergistic cytotoxicity against pancreatic cancer cells.
Oncol Rep. 2014; 32(6):2789-94 [PubMed] Related Publications
Pancreatic cancer is an aggressive disease with a poor prognosis. Therefore, new treatment is urgently required. GX15-070 is a pan-Bcl-2 inhibitor which has shown promising antitumor activity in different malignancies. We previously demonstrated that clinically achievable concentrations of GX15-070 caused growth arrest in pancreatic cancer cell lines. However, they only induced minimal levels of apoptosis. We hypothesized that GX15-070 induced autophagy in pancreatic cancer cells which blocked apoptosis. In this study, we investigated the effects of GX15-070 on autophagy and the antitumor activities of the combination of GX15-070 and chloroquine (CQ), an autophagy inhibitor, in six pancreatic cancer cell lines. We found that GX15-070 treatment indeed induced autophagy in 5 of the 6 pancreatic cancer cell lines, reflected by the conversion of LC3B-I to LC3B-II and detection of autophagosomes by transmission electron microscopy. Furthermore, we found additive to synergistic antitumor interactions in all six cell lines by MTT assays. CQ significantly enhanced GX15-070-induced apoptosis in the cell line models, possibly due to downregulation of Bcl-2, Bcl-xL and Mcl-1 in the cells by the two agents. These results provide compelling evidence for the further development of the combination of GX15-070 and CQ in pancreatic cancer.

Dreyling M, Ferrero S, Vogt N, et al.
New paradigms in mantle cell lymphoma: is it time to risk-stratify treatment based on the proliferative signature?
Clin Cancer Res. 2014; 20(20):5194-206 [PubMed] Related Publications
The elucidation of crucial biologic pathways of cell survival and proliferation has led to the development of highly effective drugs, some of which have markedly improved mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) therapeutic opportunities in the past 10 years. Moreover, an undeniable clinical heterogeneity in treatment response and disease behavior has become apparent in this neoplasm. Thus, the need for biologic markers stratifying patients with MCL in risk classes deserving different treatment approaches has recently been fervently expressed. Among several newly discovered biomarkers, the dismal predictive value of a high proliferative signature has been broadly recognized in large studies of patients with MCL. Different techniques have been used to assess tumor cell proliferation, including mitotic index, immunostaining with Ki-67 antibody, and gene expression profiling. Ki-67 proliferative index, in particular, has been extensively investigated, and its negative impact on relapse incidence and overall survival has been validated in large prospective clinical trials. However, one important pitfall limiting its widespread use in clinical practice is the reported interobserver variability, due to the previous lack of a standardized approach for quantification among different laboratories. In the present review, we describe some of the major techniques to assess cell proliferation in MCL, focusing in particular on the Ki-67 index and its need for a standardized approach to be used in multicenter clinical trials. The value of MCL biologic prognostic scores (as MIPI-b) is discussed, along with our proposal on how to integrate these scores in the planning of future trials investigating a tailored therapeutic approach for patients with MCL. See all articles in this CCR Focus section, "Paradigm Shifts in Lymphoma."

Lu T, Laughton CA, Wang S, Bradshaw TD
In vitro antitumor mechanism of (E)-N-(2-methoxy-5-(((2,4,6-trimethoxystyryl)sulfonyl)methyl)pyridin-3-yl)methanesulfonamide.
Mol Pharmacol. 2015; 87(1):18-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
ON01910.Na [sodium (E)-2-(2-methoxy-5-((2,4,6-trimethoxystyrylsulfonyl)methyl)phenylamino)acetate; Rigosertib, Estybon], a styryl benzylsulfone, is a phase III stage anticancer agent. This non-ATP competitive kinase inhibitor has multitargeted activity, promoting mitotic arrest and apoptosis. Extensive phase I/II studies with ON01910.Na, conducted in patients with solid tumors and hematologic cancers, demonstrate excellent efficacy. However, issues remain affecting its development. These include incomplete understanding of antitumor mechanisms, low oral bioavailability, and unpredictable pharmacokinetics. We have identified a novel (E)-styrylsulfonyl methylpyridine [(E)-N-(2-methoxy-5-((2,4,6-trimethoxystyrylsulfonyl)methyl)pyridin-3-yl)methanesulfonamide (TL-77)] which has shown improved oral bioavailability compared with ON01910.Na. Here, we present detailed cellular mechanisms of TL-77 in comparison with ON01910.Na. TL-77 displays potent growth inhibitory activity in vitro (GI50 < 1μM against HCT-116 cells), demonstrating 3- to 10-fold greater potency against tumor cell lines when compared with normal cells. Cell-cycle analyses reveal that TL-77 causes significant G2/M arrest in cancer cells, followed by the onset of apoptosis. In cell-free conditions, TL-77 potently inhibits tubulin polymerization. Mitotically arrested cells display multipolar spindles and misalignment of chromosomes, indicating that TL-77 interferes with mitotic spindle assembly in cancer cells. These effects are accompanied by induction of DNA damage, inhibition of Cdc25C phosphorylation [indicative of Plk1 inhibition], and downstream inhibition of cyclin B1. However, kinase assays failed to confirm inhibition of Plk1. Nonsignificant effects on phosphoinositide 3-kinase/Akt signal transduction were observed after TL-77 treatment. Analysis of apoptotic signaling pathways reveals that TL-77 downregulates expression of B-cell lymphoma 2 family proteins (Bid, Bcl-xl, and Mcl-1) and stimulates caspase activation. Taken together, TL-77 represents a promising anticancer agent worthy of further evaluation.

Wagner V, Hose D, Seckinger A, et al.
Preclinical efficacy of sepantronium bromide (YM155) in multiple myeloma is conferred by down regulation of Mcl-1.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(21):10237-50 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 08/12/2015 Related Publications
The inhibitor-of-apoptosis family member survivin has been reported to inhibit apoptosis and regulate mitosis and cytokinesis. In multiple myeloma, survivin has been described to be involved in downstream sequelae of various therapeutic agents. We assessed 1093 samples from previously untreated patients, including two independent cohorts of 392 and 701 patients, respectively. Survivin expression was associated with cell proliferation, adverse prognostic markers, and inferior event-free and overall survival, supporting the evaluation of survivin as a therapeutic target in myeloma. The small molecule suppressant of survivin--YM155--is in clinical development for the treatment of solid tumors. YM155 potently inhibited proliferation and induced apoptosis in primary myeloma cells and cell lines. Gene expression and protein profiling revealed the critical roles of IL6/STAT3-signaling and the unfolded protein response in the efficacy of YM155. Both pathways converged to down regulate anti-apoptotic Mcl-1 in myeloma cells. Conversely, growth inhibition and apoptotic cell death by YM155 was rescued by ectopic expression of Mcl-1 but not survivin, identifying Mcl-1 as the pivotal downstream target of YM155 in multiple myeloma. Mcl-1 expression was likewise associated with adverse prognostic markers, and inferior survival. Our results strongly support the clinical evaluation of YM155 in patients with multiple myeloma.

Jelínková I, Šafaříková B, Vondálová Blanářová O, et al.
Platinum(IV) complex LA-12 exerts higher ability than cisplatin to enhance TRAIL-induced cancer cell apoptosis via stimulation of mitochondrial pathway.
Biochem Pharmacol. 2014; 92(3):415-24 [PubMed] Related Publications
In search for novel strategies in colon cancer treatment, we investigated the unique ability of platinum(IV) complex LA-12 to efficiently enhance the killing effects of tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis inducing ligand (TRAIL), and compared it with the sensitizing action of cisplatin. We provide the first evidence that LA-12 primes human colon cancer cells for TRAIL-induced cytotoxicity by p53-independent activation of the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway. The cooperative action of LA-12 and TRAIL was associated with stimulation of Bax/Bak activation, drop of mitochondrial membrane potential, caspase-9 activation, and a shift of the balance among Bcl-2 family proteins in favor of the pro-apoptotic members. In contrast to cisplatin, LA-12 was a potent inducer of ERK-mediated Noxa and BimL protein upregulation, and more effectively enhanced TRAIL-induced apoptosis in the absence of Bax. The cooperative action of LA-12 and TRAIL was augmented following the siRNA-mediated silencing of Mcl-1 in both Bax proficient/deficient cells. We newly demonstrated that LA-12 induced ERK-mediated c-Myc upregulation, and proved that c-Myc silencing inhibited the mitochondrial activation and apoptosis in colon cancer cells treated with LA-12 and TRAIL. The LA-12-mediated sensitization to TRAIL-induced apoptosis was demonstrated in several colon cancer cell lines, further underscoring the general relevance of our findings. The selective action of LA-12 was documented by preferential priming of cancer but not normal colon cancer cells to TRAIL killing effects. Our work highlights the promising potential of LA-12 over cisplatin to enhance the colon cancer cell sensitivity to TRAIL-induced apoptosis, and provides new mechanistic insights into their cooperative action.

Grazia G, Vegetti C, Benigni F, et al.
Synergistic anti-tumor activity and inhibition of angiogenesis by cotargeting of oncogenic and death receptor pathways in human melanoma.
Cell Death Dis. 2014; 5:e1434 [PubMed] Related Publications
Improving treatment of advanced melanoma may require the development of effective strategies to overcome resistance to different anti-tumor agents and to counteract relevant pro-tumoral mechanisms in the microenvironment. Here we provide preclinical evidence that these goals can be achieved in most melanomas, by co-targeting of oncogenic and death receptor pathways, and independently of their BRAF, NRAS, p53 and PTEN status. In 49 melanoma cell lines, we found independent susceptibility profiles for response to the MEK1/2 inhibitor AZD6244, the PI3K/mTOR inhibitor BEZ235 and the death receptor ligand TRAIL, supporting the rationale for their association. Drug interaction analysis indicated that a strong synergistic anti-tumor activity could be achieved by the three agents and the AZD6244-TRAIL association on 20/21 melanomas, including cell lines resistant to the inhibitors or to TRAIL. Mechanistically, synergy was explained by enhanced induction of caspase-dependent apoptosis, mitochondrial depolarization and modulation of key regulators of extrinsic and intrinsic cell death pathways, including c-FLIP, BIM, BAX, clusterin, Mcl-1 and several IAP family members. Moreover, silencing experiments confirmed the central role of Apollon downmodulation in promoting the apoptotic response of melanoma cells to the combinatorial treatments. In SCID mice, the AZD6244-TRAIL association induced significant growth inhibition of a tumor resistant to TRAIL and poorly responsive to AZD6244, with no detectable adverse events on body weight and tissue histology. Reduction in tumor volume was associated not only with promotion of tumor apoptosis but also with suppression of the pro-angiogenic molecules HIF1α, VEGFα, IL-8 and TGFβ1 and with inhibition of tumor angiogenesis. These results suggest that synergistic co-targeting of oncogenic and death receptor pathways can not only overcome melanoma resistance to different anti-tumor agents in vitro but can also promote pro-apoptotic effects and inhibition of tumor angiogenesis in vivo.

Kunami N, Katsuya H, Nogami R, et al.
Promise of combining a Bcl-2 family inhibitor with bortezomib or SAHA for adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma.
Anticancer Res. 2014; 34(10):5287-94 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) is an aggressive malignancy of peripheral T-lymphocytes and its prognosis still remains very poor.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The potential of combining the Bcl-2 homology 3 mimetic ABT-737, which blocks Bcl-2, Bcl-XL, and Bcl-w, with either the proteasome inhibitor bortezomib or histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA) to inhibit the growth of human T-lymphotropic virus type-I (HTLV-1) infected T-cell lines and its mechanism was further evaluated.
RESULTS: ABT-737 synergistically induced apoptosis when combined with either bortezomib or SAHA in HTLV-1 infected T-cell lines and fresh ATL cells. Bortezomib increased the expression of Noxa, which subsequently enhanced the formation of Mcl-1-Noxa complexes, resulting in the functional neutralization of Mcl-1, an inducer of resistance to ABT-737. On the other hand, SAHA reduced the expression of survivin, an anti-apoptotic molecule that confers drug resistance on ATL cells.
CONCLUSION: The combination of ABT-737 with bortezomib or SAHA is promising for the treatment of ATL.

Tian K, Wang L, Di R, et al.
Effect and mechanism of miRNA to osteosarcoma cell.
Pak J Pharm Sci. 2014; 27(5 Suppl):1657-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNA has proved to be low expression in many tumor cells. In addition, it was also proved that as a kind of cancer suppressor gene, miR-199a-3p in miRNA can affect the growth and invasion ability of tumor cells. This paper aims to discuss the effect of miRNA to osteosarcoma cell. It used synthetic mature miR-199a-3p sequence simulants to transfect osteosarcoma cell and took negative contrast sequence (NC mimics) transfection cell as negative contrast. After transfection, qRT-PCR was applied to detect the expression quantity of miR-199a-3p in every group. Western blot method was applied to detect the expression level of MCL-(1) protein and shear situation of PARP in groups of cells. Flow cytometry was used for detecting apoptosis rate of cells and the experimental result was made a statistical analysis. The result shows that in cells from experimental group of transfection miR-199a-3p sequence simulants, expression quantity of mi-R-199a-3p significantly increased while MCL⁻¹ protein expression decreased compared to control group. In addition, shear level of PARP protein and apoptosis rate of cells increased. The differences all had statistical significance (P<0.05). It was concluded that miR-199a-3p can effectively promote the apoptosis rate of osteosarcoma cells.

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