Mitochondrial targeting of α-tocopheryl succinate enhances its pro-apoptotic efficacy: a new paradigm for effective cancer therapy.
ABSTRACT Mitochondria are emerging as intriguing targets for anti-cancer agents. We tested here a novel approach, whereby the mitochondrially targeted delivery of anti-cancer drugs is enhanced by the addition of a triphenylphosphonium group (TPP(+)). A mitochondrially targeted analog of vitamin E succinate (MitoVES), modified by tagging the parental compound with TPP(+), induced considerably more robust apoptosis in cancer cells with a 1-2 log gain in anti-cancer activity compared to the unmodified counterpart, while maintaining selectivity for malignant cells. This is because MitoVES associates with mitochondria and causes fast generation of reactive oxygen species that then trigger mitochondria-dependent apoptosis, involving transcriptional modulation of the Bcl-2 family proteins. MitoVES proved superior in suppression of experimental tumors compared to the untargeted analog. We propose that mitochondrially targeted delivery of anti-cancer agents offers a new paradigm for increasing the efficacy of compounds with anti-cancer activity.
- SourceAvailable from: Jacob Goodwin[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: AIMS: A plausible strategy to reduce tumor progress is the inhibition of angiogenesis. Therefore, agents that efficiently suppress angiogenesis can be used for tumor suppression. We tested the antiangiogenic potential of a mitochondrially targeted analog of α-tocopheryl succinate (MitoVES), a compound with high propensity to induce apoptosis. RESULTS: MitoVES was found to efficiently kill proliferating endothelial cells (ECs) but not contact-arrested ECs or ECs deficient in mitochondrial DNA, and suppressed angiogenesis in vitro by inducing accumulation of reactive oxygen species and induction of apoptosis in proliferating/angiogenic ECs. Resistance of arrested ECs was ascribed, at least in part, to the lower mitochondrial inner transmembrane potential compared with the proliferating ECs, thus resulting in the lower level of mitochondrial uptake of MitoVES. Shorter-chain homologs of MitoVES were less efficient in angiogenesis inhibition, thus suggesting a molecular mechanism of its activity. Finally, MitoVES was found to suppress HER2-positive breast carcinomas in a transgenic mouse as well as inhibit tumor angiogenesis. The antiangiogenic efficacy of MitoVES was corroborated by its inhibitory activity on wound healing in vivo. INNOVATION AND CONCLUSION: We conclude that MitoVES, a mitochondrially targeted analog of α-tocopheryl succinate, is an efficient antiangiogenic agent of potential clinical relevance, exerting considerably higher activity than its untargeted counterpart. MitoVES may be helpful against cancer but may compromise wound healing.Antioxidants & Redox Signaling 09/2011; 15(12):2923-35. · 8.20 Impact Factor