Wnt inhibitor screen reveals iron dependence of β-catenin signaling in cancers.
ABSTRACT Excessive signaling from the Wnt pathway is associated with numerous human cancers. Using a high throughput screen designed to detect inhibitors of Wnt/β-catenin signaling, we identified a series of acyl hydrazones that act downstream of the β-catenin destruction complex to inhibit both Wnt-induced and cancer-associated constitutive Wnt signaling via destabilization of β-catenin. We found that these acyl hydrazones bind iron in vitro and in intact cells and that chelating activity is required to abrogate Wnt signaling and block the growth of colorectal cancer cell lines with constitutive Wnt signaling. In addition, we found that multiple iron chelators, desferrioxamine, deferasirox, and ciclopirox olamine similarly blocked Wnt signaling and cell growth. Moreover, in patients with AML administered ciclopirox olamine, we observed decreased expression of the Wnt target gene AXIN2 in leukemic cells. The novel class of acyl hydrazones would thus be prime candidates for further development as chemotherapeutic agents. Taken together, our results reveal a critical requirement for iron in Wnt signaling and they show that iron chelation serves as an effective mechanism to inhibit Wnt signaling in humans.
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ABSTRACT: Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) is the predominant type of esophageal cancer in endemic Asian regions. In the present study, we investigated the clinical implication and role of transferrin receptor CD71 in ESCC. CD71 has a physiological role in cellular iron intake and is implicated in the carcinogenesis of various types of tumors. In our cohort, more than a 2-fold upregulation of the CD71 transcript was detected in 61.5% of patients using quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Immunohistochemical analysis also showed strong membranous and cytoplasmic localization of CD71 in paraffin-embedded tumors. Staining parallel tumor sections with the proliferative marker Ki-67 revealed that the pattern of Ki-67 staining was associated with CD71 expression. Analysis of clinicopathological data indicated that CD71 overexpression can be used as an indicator for advanced T4 stage (p=0.0307). These data suggested a strong link between CD71 and ESCC. Subsequent in vitro assays using short interfering RNA (siRNA) to suppress CD71 expression confirmed the tumorigenic properties of CD71 in ESCC; cell growth inhibition and cell cycle arrest at S phase were observed in CD71-suppressed cells. The underlying mechanism involved activation of the MEK/ERK pathway. In summary, the present study provides evidence showing the tumorigenic properties of CD71 in ESCC with clinical correlations and suggests targeting CD71 as a strategy for the treatment of ESCC.Oncology Reports 01/2014; · 2.19 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Two cytotoxic iron(II) complexes [Fe(L)(CH3CN)n](ClO4)2 (L=qpy for Fe-1 a, Py5-OH for Fe-2 a) were synthesized. Both complexes are stable against spontaneous demetalation and oxidation in buffer solutions. Cyclic voltammetry measurements revealed the higher stability of Fe-2 a (+0.82 V vs Fc) against FeII to FeIII oxidation than Fe-1 a (+0.57 V vs Fc). These two complexes display potent cytotoxicity at micromolar level against a panel of cancer cell lines (Fe-1 a=0.8–3.1 μM; Fe-2 a=0.6–3.4 μM), and induce apoptosis that involves caspase activation. Transcriptomic and Connectivity Map analyses revealed that the changes of gene expression induced by Fe-1 a and Fe-2 a are similar to that induced by ciclopirox, an antifungal compound whose mode of action involves formation of intracellular cytotoxic iron chelates. Both Fe-1 a and Fe-2 a caused cellular nuclear DNA damage, as revealed by Comet assay and H2 AX immunofluorescence experiments. The cytotoxicity is associated with production of reactive oxygen species (for Fe-1 a), cell cycle regulation, and stress kinase pathways. The relative contributions of these to the overall cytotoxic mechanism is significantly affected by the structure of penta-N-donor ligand.Chemistry - A European Journal 12/2014; 21(7). · 5.93 Impact Factor
- Leukemia Research 09/2014; · 2.69 Impact Factor