High level MycN expression in non-MYCN amplified neuroblastoma is induced by the combination treatment nutlin-3 and doxorubicin and enhances chemosensitivity.
ABSTRACT MYCN gene amplification is a negative prognostic indicator in neuroblastoma and high level MycN expression in Stage IV neuroblastoma is generally a hallmark of poor patient outcome. However, high level expression of the MycN protein in neuroblastoma cells lacking MYCN amplification suppresses growth and drives apoptosis; this, in part, explains the absence of clinical observations of high level MycN in neuroblastoma lacking MYCN amplification. In the current study, we found that combination treatment with nutlin-3 and doxorubicin upregulated MycN expression in non-MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma cells at both the protein and mRNA levels. The induced expression of MycN in non-MYCN-amplified cells inhibited cell proliferation and increased apoptosis. MycN induction also upregulated p53, p21 and Bax protein levels, as well as mRNA levels for the positive neuroblastoma prognostic factors CD44 and EFNB3. Blocking MycN reversed these effects. These results were corroborated by findings using a MycN-inducible system in SHEP cells, another MYCN non-amplified neuroblastoma cell line. Our results indicate that doxorubicin/nutlin-3 combination treatment both induces expression of MycN in a non-MYCN-amplified background and sensitizes neuroblastoma cells to chemotherapy. These findings support the idea that induction of MycN in non-MYCN-amplified cells drives neuroblastoma cells toward apoptosis and suggest that combination nutlin-3/doxorubicin treatment may be clinically important.
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ABSTRACT: Neuroblastoma is the most common extra-cranial solid tumor of childhood. Despite significant advances, it currently still remains one of the most difficult childhood cancers to cure, with less than 40% of patients with high-risk disease being long-term survivors. MYCN is a proto-oncogene implicated to be directly involved in neuroblastoma development. Amplification of MYCN is associated with rapid tumor progression and poor prognosis. Novel therapeutic strategies which can improve the survival rates whilst reducing the toxicity in these patients are therefore required. Here we discuss genes regulated by MYCN in neuroblastoma, with particular reference to p53, SKP2, and DKK3 and strategies that may be employed to target them.Frontiers in Oncology 01/2012; 2:173.
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ABSTRACT: Chemotherapy to date has not been effective in the treatment of cholangiocarcinoma. However, gemcitabine, a novel nucleoside analog, has shown remarkable biological activity against cholangiocarcinoma in some clinical studies. Combinations of gemcitabine with other agents have also shown promising results, with a tolerable toxicity profile. Nutlin-3 is a small-molecule inhibitor that acts to inhibit murine double minute-2 (MDM2) binding to p53 or p73 and subsequently activates p53- or p73-dependent apoptosis signaling pathways. To investigate their effects in combination, a p53-mutant cholangiocarcinoma line HuCCT1 was treated with Nutlin-3 and/or gemcitabine in the current study. Cell proliferation assay, apoptosis assay, Western blot, coimmunoprecipitation, and small interfering RNA (siRNA) experiments were analyzed in HuCCT1 cells. Antitumoral effects of Nutlin-3 and/or gemcitabine targeting the p73/MDM2 pathways were evaluated. Nutlin-3 and gemcitabine can both inhibit the growth of HuCCT1 cells. Nutlin-3 induces apoptosis and potentiates the cytotoxic effect of gemcitabine through disrupting the binding of p73 with MDM2. Nutlin-3 leads to activation of caspases, increase levels of puma and bax, and decrease the expression of bcl-2. Blocking p73 function with a siRNA attenuates the apoptosis induced by gemcitabine, Nutlin-3, and gemcitabine/Nutlin-3 combination. Our data provide evidence that p73 might compensate for p53 function in gemcitabine-induced apoptosis of HuCCT1 cells. Nutlin-3 acts through the inhibition of p73-MDM2 with subsequent activation of the apoptotic pathway signaling, which leads to the increase in chemosensitivity to gemcitabine. In summary, our findings suggest that Nutlin-3 will be active in the treatment of p53-mutant cholangiocarcinoma, especially when in combination with gemcitabine.Tumor Biology 08/2010; 31(4):287-95. · 2.52 Impact Factor