bims-istrec Biomed News
on Integrated stress response in cancer
Issue of 2022‒04‒03
eight papers selected by
Vincenzo Ciminale’s Lab
Istituto Oncologico Veneto

  1. Cell Stress Chaperones. 2022 Mar 30.
      Compared with normal cells, tumor cells mainly obtain energy through aerobic glycolysis. Hexokinase 2 (HK2) plays a key role in the regulation of tumor cell aerobic glycolysis, and targeting HK2 has become a new strategy for cancer treatment. However, little is known about the role of HK2 in colon cancer and the regulation of its targeted inhibitors. In this study, we found that the expression of HK2 in colorectal cancer tissues was significantly higher than that in adjacent tissues, and the expression level of HK2 in metastatic colorectal cancer was further increased. Meanwhile, the expression level of HK2 was closely related to clinical TNM stage and outcome of colorectal cancer patients. We provide here evidence that HK2 inhibitor 3-Bromopyruvate acid (3-BP) can significantly inhibit the survival and proliferation of colon cancer cells, and induce apoptosis through mitochondrial apoptosis signaling pathway. In addition, we found that 3-BP can also induce endoplasmic reticulum stress in colon cancer cells, the mechanism may be through the increase of intracellular calcium concentration. In vitro and in vivo experiments showed that inhibition of endoplasmic reticulum stress could further increase the proliferation inhibition and apoptosis induced by 3-BP. Collectively, our results show that HK2 is highly expressed in colorectal cancer. 3-BP, an inhibitor of HK2, can induce apoptosis and endoplasmic reticulum stress in colon cancer cells. Endoplasmic reticulum stress plays a protective role in cell death induced by 3-BP. This result suggested that targeting HK2 and endoplasmic reticulum stress may be a valuable strategy in targeted and combination therapy of colon cancer.
    Keywords:  3-Bromopyruvate acid; Colon cancer; Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Hexokinase 2·apoptosis
  2. Int J Biol Sci. 2022 ;18(5): 2060-2074
      Although cisplatin is the most effective first-line drug in the management of advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), drug resistance remains a major clinical challenge. There is increasing evidence that icariside II (IS) exhibits antitumour activity in a variety of cancers. In the current study, we investigated the anticancer effects of icariside II combined with cisplatin and elucidated the underlying mechanism in NSCLC. Here, we showed that cotreatment with IS and cisplatin inhibited cell proliferation and induced cellular apoptosis. Using mRNA sequencing (mRNA-seq), we identified differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in which there was an enrichment in PERK-mediated unfolded protein response (UPR) signalling. The western blot results revealed that IS activated endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, including three branches of UPR signalling, PERK, IRE1 and ATF6, and the downstream PERK-eIF2α-ATF4-CHOP pathway, thus potentiating the apoptosis induced by cisplatin. In addition, the combination of IS with cisplatin significantly reduced xenograft tumour growth in C57BL/6 and BALB/c nude mice in vivo. Notably, the combination therapy displayed no evident toxicity. Taken together, IS enhances cisplatin-induced apoptosis partially by promoting ER stress signalling in NSCLC, suggesting that combination treatment with IS and cisplatin is a novel potential therapeutic strategy for NSCLC.
    Keywords:  apoptosis; cisplatin; endoplasmic reticulum stress; icariside II; lung cancer; unfolded protein response
  3. Anticancer Res. 2022 Apr;42(4): 1833-1844
      BACKGROUND/AIM: The anticancer potential of indomethacin and diclofenac has been reported against several types of cancer cells. In this study, we investigated the enhancement effect of a coumaric acid derivative found in some Piper plants, N-trans-p-coumaroyltyramine (TCT) on indomethacin and diclofenac cytotoxicity in breast cancer cells.MATERIALS AND METHODS: MCF-7 and mitoxantrone-resistant MCF-7 (MCF-7/MX) cancer cells were treated with indomethacin or diclofenac in the presence of TCT for 48 h. Cell viability, apoptosis, mitochondrial function and signaling proteins were assayed by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide, Hoechst 33342, tetramethyl-rhodamine-ethyl-ester and western blot analysis, respectively.
    RESULTS: Combination treatment resulted in significant reduction of cell viability and mitochondrial membrane potential, whereas the ratio of BCL2-associated X, apoptosis regulator to BCL2 apoptosis regulator, and apoptosis increased. The enhancing effect of TCT was related to reduced nuclear factor-erythroid factor 2-related factor 2/heme oxygenase-1 expression, and increased activation of the protein kinase RNA-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase/eukaryotic initiation factor 2 alpha/activating transcription factor 4/C/EBP homologous protein signaling pathways.
    CONCLUSION: TCT in combination with indomethacin or diclofenac promoted endoplasmic reticulum stress-dependent apoptosis in breast cancer cells.
    Keywords:  ER stress; N-Trans-p-coumaroyltyramine; NSAIDs; apoptosis; breast cancer cells; potentiation
  4. Phytomedicine. 2022 Feb 12. pii: S0944-7113(22)00063-0. [Epub ahead of print]100 153985
      BACKGROUND: Cancer is still an all-times issue due to a large and even increasing number of deaths. Impaired genes regulating cell proliferation and apoptosis are targets for the development of novel cancer treatments.HYPOTHESIS: Increased transcription of NADPH oxidase activator (NOXA), Bcl2-like11 (BIM), BH3-only proteins and p53 unregulated apoptosis modulator (PUMA) is caused by the imbalance between pro- and anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 proteins due to endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. The membranous network of ER is present in all eukaryotic cells. ER stress facilitates the interaction between Bax and PUMA, triggering the release of cytochrome C. As a main intracellular organelle, ER is responsible for translocation as well as post-translation modification and protein folding.
    RESULTS: Hesperetin is a cytoprotective flavonone, which acts against ER stress and protects from cell damage induced by reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS). Hesperetin inhibits lipid peroxidation induced by Fe2+ and l-ascorbic acid in rat brain homogenates.
    CONCLUSION: This review deals with the anticancer effects of hesperetin regarding the regulation of ER stress as a principal mechanism in the pathogenesis of tumors.
    Keywords:  Mode-of-action; Phytochemicals; Phytotherapy; Signal transduction
  5. J Oncol. 2022 ;2022 5860671
      Purpose: Esophageal cancer (EC) is a lethal digestive tumor worldwide with a dismal clinical outcome. Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress poses essential implications for a variety of tumor malignant behaviors. Here, we set up an ER stress-based risk classifier for assessing patient outcome and exploiting robust targets for medical decision-making of EC cases.Methods: 340 EC cases with transcriptome and survival data from two independent public datasets (TCGA and GEO) were recruited for this project. Cox regression analyses were employed to create a risk classifier based on ER stress-related genes (ERGs) which were strongly linked to EC cases' outcomes. Then, we detected and confirmed the predictive ability of our proposed classifier via a host of statistical methods, including survival analysis and ROC method. In addition, immune-associated algorithm was implemented to analyze the immune activity of EC samples.
    Results: Four EGRs (BCAP31, HSPD1, PDHA1, and UBE2D1) were selected to build an EGR-related classifier (ERC). This classifier could distinguish the patients into different risky subgroups. The remarkable differences in patient outcome between the two groups were observed, and similar results were also confirmed in GEO cohort. In terms of the immune analysis, the ERC could forecast the infiltration level of immunocytes, such as Tregs and NK cells.
    Conclusion: We created a four-ERG risk classifier which displays the powerful capability of survival evaluation for EC cases.
  6. Front Oncol. 2022 ;12 808174
      Daemonorops draco Blume (DD), also called dragon's blood, has been used as a traditional Korean medicine, especially for relieving pain caused by wound infection. Recently, it has been described that DD has antibacterial and analgesic effects. In this study, the underlying anticancer effect of DD associated with apoptosis was investigated in acute myeloid leukemia cell lines U937 and THP-1. DD exhibited cytotoxic effects and induced apoptosis in U937 and THP-1 cells. Moreover, DD treatment significantly reduced mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨ). The protein expression of cleaved poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase, cleaved caspase-3, p-H2A.X, CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein (CHOP), and activating transcription factor 4 was upregulated by DD treatment. Consistently, DD-treated cells had increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) level in a concentration-dependent manner via miR-216b activation in association with c-Jun inhibition. N-acetyl-L-cysteine pretreatment reversed the cytotoxic effect of DD treatment as well as prevented ROS accumulation. Collectively, the results of this study suggest that the anticancer effect of DD in AML was mediated by CHOP-dependent apoptosis along with ROS accumulation and included upregulation of miR-216b followed by a decrease in c-Jun.
    Keywords:  Daemonorops draco Blume; ER stress; acute myeloid leukemia; apoptosis; c-Jun; miR-216b; reactive oxygen species
  7. Cell Death Discov. 2022 Mar 28. 8(1): 133
      Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most aggressive malignant primary brain tumor of the central nervous system. Despite continuous progression in treatment options for GBM like surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, this disease still has a high rate of recurrence. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress pathway is associated with chemotherapeutic drug resistance. The UBA1 inhibitor TAK-243 can induce strong ER stress. However, the sensitivity of TAK-243 varies greatly in different tumor cells. This study evaluated the antitumor effects of the GRP78 inhibitor, HA15, combined with TAK-243 on GBM in the preclinical models. HA15 synergistically enhanced the sensitivity of GBM cells to TAK-243. When compared with TAK-243 monotherapy, HA15 combined with TAK-243 significantly inhibited GBM cell proliferation. It also induced G2/M-phase arrest in the cell cycle. In vivo studies showed that HA15 combined with TAK-243 significantly inhibited the growth of intracranial GBM and prolonged survival of the tumor-bearing mice. Mechanistically, HA15 and TAK-243 synergistically activated the PERK/ATF4 and IRE1α/XBP1 signaling axes, thereby eventually activating PARP and the Caspase families, which induced cell apoptosis. Our data provided a new strategy for improving the sensitivity of GBM to TAK-243 treatment and experimental basis for further clinical trials to evaluate this combination therapy.
  8. Exp Hematol Oncol. 2022 Mar 31. 11(1): 18
      BACKGROUND: IRE1 is an unfolded protein response (UPR) sensor with kinase and endonuclease activity. It plays a central role in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress response through unconventional splicing of XBP1 mRNA and regulated IRE1-dependent decay (RIDD). Multiple myeloma (MM) cells are known to exhibit an elevated level of baseline ER stress due to immunoglobulin production, however RIDD activity has not been well studied in this disease. In this study, we aimed to investigate the potential of RNA-sequencing in the identification of novel RIDD targets in MM cells and to analyze the role of these targets in MM cells.METHODS: In vitro IRE1-cleavage assay was combined with RNA sequencing. The expression level of RIDD targets in MM cell lines was measured by real-time RT-PCR and Western blot.
    RESULTS: Bioinformatic analysis revealed hundreds of putative IRE1 substrates in the in vitro assay, 32 of which were chosen for further validation. Looking into the secondary structure of IRE1 substrates, we found that the consensus sequences of IRF4, PRDM1, IKZF1, KLF13, NOTCH1, ATR, DICER, RICTOR, CDK12, FAM168B, and CENPF mRNAs were accompanied by a stem-loop structure essential for IRE1-mediated cleavage. In fact, we show that mRNA and protein levels corresponding to these targets were attenuated in an IRE1-dependent manner by treatment with ER-stress-inducing agents. In addition, a synergistic effect between IMiDs and ER-stress inducers was found.
    CONCLUSION: This study, using RNA sequencing, shows that IRE1 RNase has a broad range of mRNA substrates in myeloma cells and demonstrates for the first time that IRE1 is a key regulator of several proteins of importance in MM survival and proliferation.
    Keywords:  ER stress; IRE1; Multiple myeloma; RIDD; UPR