bims-istrec Biomed News
on Integrated stress response in cancer
Issue of 2021‒09‒19
three papers selected by
Vincenzo Ciminale’s Lab
Istituto Oncologico Veneto

  1. Chem Biol Interact. 2021 Sep 11. pii: S0009-2797(21)00289-1. [Epub ahead of print] 109651
      Selenium is an essential trace element for human, and has anti-tumor effects. In this study, we investigated the anti-tumor activity of sodium selenite (Na2SeO3) and explored its possible mechanisms involved in a breast cancer cell line. We found that Na2SeO3 could inhibit the cell viability of MCF7 cells, yet with minimal damage to human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). The results of Hoechst staining and Western Blot showed that Na2SeO3 induced apoptosis of MCF7 cells. Na2SeO3 activated endoplasmic reticulum stress (ERS), as evidenced by the up-regulation of ERS-related proteins, including ATF6, p-eIF2α, ATF4, and CHOP, and the down-regulation of PERK. ATF6, p-eIF2α and apoptosis were decreased by pre-treatment with an ERS inhibitor (4-PBA). Na2SeO3 activated oxidative stress (OS) through increasing ROS generation and decreasing mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) which induced apoptosis. Pre-treatment with an antioxidant (NAC) attenuated Na2SeO3-induced OS and cell apoptosis. Furthermore, ERS and OS had mutual effects. Pre-treatment with 4-PBA could act against the up-regulation of ROS and the down-regulation of MMP. Pre-treatment with NAC attenuated the expression of ATF6. At the same time, we found that treatment with Na2SeO3 promoted the phosphorylation of p38 and JNK, while inhibiting the phosphorylation of ERK. However, the up-regulation was inhibited after pre-treatment of NAC, and pre-treatment with 4-PBA inhibited the increase only of p38. Based on these results, our study provides a mechanistic understanding of how Na2SeO3 has antitumor effects against MCF7 cells through the OS and ERS pathway. OS and ERS interact with each other, and p38 is regulated by them.
    Keywords:  Apoptosis; Breast cancer; Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Oxidative stress; Sodium selenite; p38
  2. Cell Cycle. 2021 Sep 14. 1-12
      Cervical cancer causes considerable mortality in women worldwide. Saikosaponin-A, a triterpenoid glycoside isolated from Bupleurum falcatum, has been proven to exert anti-cancer property. In this study, we evaluated the possibility of saikosaponin-A on cervical cancer in vitro and in vivo. The results showed that saikosaponin-A induced cell death and altered cellular morphology dose-dependently. Saikosaponin-A significantly induced apoptosis in HeLa cells, confirmed by Hoechst 33,342 staining and flow cytometry. Sequentially, saikosaponin-A triggered the mitochondrial-mediated apoptosis demonstrated by deficiency of MMP, induction of Bax/Bcl-2 ratio, leakage of cytochrome c to cytoplasm, and activation of caspase-3. Moreover, ER stress also participated in the apoptosis induced by saikosaponin-A in HeLa cells as indicated by the upregulation of GPR78, CHOP and caspase-12 expression. Furthermore, HeLa cells showed increased expressions of p-PI3K and p-AKT in response to saikosaponin-A treatment. Additionally, saikosaponin-A could inhibit HeLa tumor growth in nude mice and induce apoptosis, reflected by the induction of TUNEL and the expression of cytochrome c, caspase-3 and CHOP confirmed by immunohistochemistry. These findings at least to a certain extent suggested that saikosaponin-A triggered apoptosis through both mitochondrial pathway and ER stress pathway and inhibiting PI3K/Akt signaling, thereby contributing to against cervical cancer. This work provides a new understanding of saikosaponin-A on therapeutic application in treatment of cancer, which has the potential to be a promising candidate therapeutic agent for cervical cancer patients.
    Keywords:  Saikosaponin-a; apoptosis; cervical cancer
  3. Curr Med Chem. 2021 Sep 10.
      The unique features of the tumor microenvironment (TME) govern the biological properties of many cancers, including hematological malignancies. TME factors can trigger invasion, and protect against drug cytotoxicity by inhibiting apoptosis and activating specific signaling pathways (e.g. NF-ΚB). TME remodeling is facilitated due to the high self-renewal ability of the bone marrow. Progressing tumor cells can alter some extracellular matrix (ECM) components which act as a barrier to drug penetration in the TME. The initial progression of the cell cycle is controlled by the MAPK pathway (Raf/MEK/ERK) and Hippo pathway, while the final phase is regulated by the PI3K/Akt /mTOR and WNT pathways. In this review we summarize the main signaling pathways involved in drug resistance (DR) and some mechanisms by which DR can occur in the bone marrow. The relationship between autophagy, endoplasmic reticulum stress, and cellular signaling pathways in DR and apoptosis are covered in relation to the TME.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; Drug resistance; Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Hematological malignancies; Tumor microenvironment