[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: On the basis of encouraging preclinical findings, polyamine analogues have emerged as a novel class of experimental antitumor agents. The spermine derivative N1,N11-diethylnorspermine (DE-333, also known as DENSPM) is currently undergoing Phase I clinical trials against solid tumors. A series of systematically modified DE-333 analogues differing in intra-amine carbon distances and in N-alkyl terminal substituents (i.e., methyl, ethyl, and propyl) were evaluated in MALME-3M human melanoma cells, a cell line known to be cytotoxically affected by DE-333 and especially responsive to analogue induction of the polyamine catabolic enzyme spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase. Analogues accumulated to comparable intracellular concentrations and similarly affected cell growth with IC50 values in the 0.5-1.0 microM range. During prolonged incubations, diethyl and dipropyl analogues were cytotoxic, whereas two dimethyl analogues were cytostatic. Cell cycle analysis following treatment with the cytotoxic analogues revealed a prominent G1 block apparent as an accumulation of cells in G0/G1 and depletion of S-phase cells as well as a less restrictive G2 block. By contrast, cytostatic analogues incompletely arrested cells in G1, leaving a significant number of S-phase cells. Morphological and immunocytochemical analysis of detached cells revealed a far greater proportion of apoptotic cells with cytotoxic analogues than with cytostatic analogues. Although spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase activity was differentially induced by the analogues, there was no obvious correlation with cell cycle effects. Overall, these data indicate a previously unrecognized combined effect of polyamine analogues on cell cycle progression and apoptosis. On the basis of structure-function relationships, these activities may be manipulated to optimize therapeutic efficacy.
Cancer Research 01/1998; 57(24):5521-7. · 8.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The spermine analog N1,N11-diethylnorspermine (DE-333, also known as DENSPM or BENSPM) is regarded as the most potent known inducer of the polyamine catabolic enzyme, spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT), increasing activity by more than 200- to 1000-fold in certain cell types. The relative ability of a series of eight systematically modified DE-333 analogs to affect SSAT expression was examined in Malme-3M human melanoma cells, one of several cell lines known to be especially responsive to induction of this enzyme. In particular, we examined the relative contribution of induction of enzyme mRNA and prolongation of enzyme half-life to analog-mediated increases in enzyme activity. Induction of enzyme mRNA was most influenced by intra-amine carbon distances; relative effectiveness was found to be proportional to the number of three-carbon units. Stabilization of enzyme was most determined by the terminal N-alkyl substituent size; among methyl, ethyl and propyl groups, methyl was least effective. Thus, DE-333, which most potently induces SSAT mRNA and effectively stabilizes SSAT enzyme activity, produces the greatest increase in enzyme activity. Although other contributing mechanisms may be involved, the relative abilities of the various analogs to induce enzyme activity is at least partially attributable to their combined effects on enzyme mRNA and protein half-life. These data reveal the highly sensitive structure-activity relationships that underlie and control spermine analog induction of SSAT activity. Pending further definition of the relationship between SSAT induction and antitumor growth and toxicity in vivo, these relationships may be used to optimize therapeutic efficacy.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The key polyamine catabolizing enzyme spermidine-spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT) is among the few genes known to be inducible by the natural polyamines. Certain polyamine analogs markedly exaggerate this response and thus provide useful tools for studying the underlying regulatory mechanisms. As shown here, the analog which most potently induces SSAT activity, N1, N11-diethylnorspermine (DENSPM), increases SSAT mRNA in MALME-3M human melanoma cells to a maximum of > 20-fold and immunodetectable SSAT protein to > 300-fold. By comparison, the natural polyamine spermine is far less effective, increasing SSAT mRNA by approximately 3-fold and protein by approximately 7-fold. In particular, the difference in mRNA accumulation by spermine and the analog was shown to be due to differential effects on both gene transcription and mRNA stabilization. Although the analog DENSPM has been regarded as the most potent inducer of SSAT activity and mRNA, we now report that inhibitors of protein synthesis are capable of increasing SSAT mRNA to nearly comparable levels. Inhibitor-induced accumulation in SSAT mRNA was shown to involve increased gene transcription and mRNA stabilization. This suggests that, under basal conditions, SSAT gene expression is suppressed by a labile protein (or proteins). While induction of SSAT mRNA by inhibitors of protein synthesis only occurred at concentrations which blocked protein synthesis, that by DENSPM took place at concentrations which did not. The combination of either protein inhibitor with DENSPM or spermine produced an additive increase in SSAT mRNA. Taken together, these findings suggest the involvement of two separate but possibly converging pathways in the regulation of SSAT mRNA, one mediated by polyamines and their analogs and the other mediated by a labile repressor of SSAT gene transcription and/or mRNA stabilization. In addition to its apparent regulatory importance, induction of SSAT mRNA by inhibitors of protein synthesis represents a potentially useful system for studying the posttranscriptional regulation of this interesting gene.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) and spermidine/ spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT) are short-lived polyamine enzymes with rate-limiting roles in controlling polyamine biosynthesis and catabolism, respectively. We have found that treatment of MALME-3M human melanoma cells for 6 h with 10 micrograms/ml cycloheximide (CHX) increases ODC and SSAT mRNA 6-9-fold. When cells containing CHX-induced SSAT mRNA were washed and post-incubated for an additional 6 h in drug free media, enzyme activity increased only 2-fold above that in untreated cells despite the > 6-fold increase in accumulated mRNA. Inclusion of 10 microM spermine or spermidine in the post-incubation medium increased SSAT activity approximately 7-fold without further elevating SSAT mRNA levels. This indicates post-transcriptional regulation which, due to the similarity between polyamine-mediated increases in SSAT activity and available mRNA, probably occurs at the level of mRNA translation. In contrast to the SSAT response, polyamines markedly reduced ODC activity (but not mRNA) to one sixth that in cells not exposed to polyamines. The findings illustrate how via post-transcriptional mechanisms, shifts in intracellular polyamine pools can simultaneously and differentially regulate polyamine biosynthesis and catabolism. It is hypothesized that these post-transcriptional responses enable cells to rapidly and sensitively control intracellular spermidine and spermine pools.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The polyamine catabolizing enzyme, spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT), has been implicated as a critical determinant of polyamine pool maintenance. SSAT has recently been shown to be positively regulated in human cell lines by polyamines and their analogs at the level of mRNA accumulation. Mouse LA-4 lung adenoma cells treated with either spermine or the spermine analog, N1,N12-bis(ethyl)spermine, produced a 2.3 and 6.5-fold increase, respectively, in SSAT mRNA. Prior evidence for transcriptional control of the enzyme prompted investigation of SSAT gene structure and its regulatory elements. The mouse SSAT gene was isolated as a 3650 bp EcoRI fragment from a lambda-J1 Mus saxicola genomic library by hybridization with human SSAT cDNA. An additional 431 bp downstream from the 3' EcoRI site were sequenced from a BamHI fragment (total gene sequence, 4066 bp). The gene contains six exons and five introns. Sequence analysis of the 774 bp of the 5' non-coding region revealed the absence of TATAA or CCAAT sequence motifs and the presence of a number of binding motifs in the 5' region of the gene with consensus binding sequences for transcription factors SP1, AP1, E2F, AP2, PEA-3 and others. The deduced amino acid sequence of the coding region differs from that of the human SSAT cDNA by five amino acids. The 527 bp of the 3' non-coding region contains four possible polyadenylation signal sites of which only one displays a typical consensus sequence. A 940 bp SSAT cDNA was isolated from Mus domesticus (BALB-C) liver lambda gt11 cDNA library. It contains a 5' untranslated region 89 bp in length and a 3' untranslated region 376 bp in length. The amino acid sequence deduced from Mus domesticus differs from that of Mus saxicola by one amino acid, from the hamster cDNA, by four amino acids and from the human cDNA by six amino acids. Further elucidation of the structural features of the SSAT gene may reveal how it is positively regulated by polyamines and their analogs.
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 12/1993; 1216(2):255-64. · 4.66 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In MALME-3M human melanoma cells the polyamine analog N1,N12-bis(ethyl)spermine (BESPM) suppresses the key polyamine biosynthetic enzymes, ornithine and S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase, and increases the polyamine catabolizing enzyme, spermidine/spermine N1-acetyl-transferase (SSAT) by more than 200-fold. In the present study increases in SSAT activity in MALME-3M cells treated with 10 microM BESPM were found to be accompanied by a substantial (up to 45-fold) accumulation of SSAT mRNA. By Northern blot analysis three RNA transcripts were found to hybridize with the coding region of human SSAT cDNA: a minor high molecular weight (approximately 3.5 kilobases) species designated form A and two lower molecular weight species designated forms B and C (approximately 1.5 and approximately 1.3 kilobases, respectively). Form A increased uniformly during BESPM treatment and was most obvious in nuclear RNA preparations. On the basis of size similarity to the transcribing region of the gene and hybridization with the coding region of SSAT cDNA and its prevalence in nuclear mRNA preparations, form A is thought to represent precursor SSAT RNA. Form C is present in control cells and increases steadily during treatment, whereas form B increases transiently during early treatment (1-3 h). By RNase H digestion assay, form B was found to have a 200-base pair longer poly(A) tract and as such may represent a precursor to form C. Accumulation of SSAT mRNA was found to be a result of increased gene transcription and stabilization of SSAT mRNA. Nuclear run-on studies indicated a 2-4-fold increase in the transcription rate of the SSAT gene. As indicated by actinomycin D studies, the SSAT mRNA half-life increased with BESPM treatment from 17 to 64 h. The natural polyamine, spermine, also increased SSAT mRNA (5.5-fold at 24 h) and behaved similarly to BESPM in inducing the appearance of the same three transcript forms. The polyamine was much less effective than the analog at increasing enzyme activity. Lowering intracellular polyamine pools with inhibitors of biosynthesis decreased basal SSAT mRNA levels by at least 70% indicating, that the gene can be down-regulated as well as up-regulated by polyamines. These findings indicate that SSAT represents a unique example of gene expression being positively influenced at the RNA level by polyamines and their analogs.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 10/1993; 268(25):19118-25. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Through its role in polyamine acetylation and the back-conversion pathway, spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT) has the potential to control intracellular polyamine pools by facilitating their catabolism and/or excretion. The possibility that the enzyme is subject to regulation by intracellular polyamine pools was investigated in MALME-3 human melanoma cells. Increases in intracellular polyamine pools by treatment with 3 microM exogenous spermidine or spermine for 48 h caused SSAT activity to increase 111% and 226%, respectively, and SSAT-specific mRNA to rise 19% and 66%, respectively. Decreases in polyamine pools by treatment with inhibitors of polyamine biosynthesis caused SSAT activity to decrease by 46% and mRNA to fall by 89%. Both SSAT activity and mRNA were more sensitive to changes in spermine than spermidine. The identification of a positive regulatory relationship between SSAT and intracellular polyamine pools further implicates this enzyme in a proposed model for polyamine pool homeostasis.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The translation of human triosephosphate isomerase (TPI) mRNA normally terminates at codon 249 within exon 7, the final exon. Frameshift and nonsense mutations within the TPI gene that cause translation to terminate prematurely at or upstream of codon 189, within exon 6, result in a decreased level of TPI mRNA (I.O. Daar and L.E. Maquat, Mol. Cell. Biol. 8:802-813, 1988). For all mutations in this group, the decrease is to the same extent, i.e., to approximately 20% of the normal level. We show here that a second group of nonsense mutations that cause translation to terminate prematurely at or downstream of codon 208, in exon 6, did not affect TPI mRNA abundance. Deletion analysis demonstrated that the abundance of translationally active TPI mRNA is a function of both the distance and the polarity of the nonsense codon relative to the final intron in TPI pre-mRNA. Our results indicate that if translating ribosomes are unable to progress to at least a certain position within the penultimate exon relative to the final intron, then the level of the corresponding mRNA will be abnormally low. Studies inhibiting RNA synthesis with dactinomycin demonstrated that a block in translation does not affect the half-life of mature TPI mRNA. The simplest interpretation of our data is that the translation of TPI mRNA in the cytoplasm facilitates the splicing of TPI pre-mRNA or the transport of TPI mRNA across the nuclear envelope or both.
Molecular and Cellular Biology 11/1990; 10(10):5215-25. · 5.37 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Induction of the polyamine acetylating enzyme, spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT), is one of several biochemical effects associated with the antiproliferative action of polyamine analogs such as N1, N11 diethylnorspermine (DENSPM). Findings to date indicate that this complex and extremely potent gene response involves increased gene transcription, stabilization of mRNA, enhanced translation and protein stabilization. In this study, SSAT-directed antisense oligonucleotide analogs (AOs) were studied for their ability to prevent enzyme induction by DENSPM. Nine 18-mer fully phosphorothioate modified AOs targeting the start codon, exon 6, stop codon and polyadenylation regions of the human SSAT mRNA were synthesized and evaluated in MALME-3M human melanoma cells prior to and during a 6 hr treatment with 10 microM DENSPM. The most effective AOs were those targeting sequences in the stop codon region. Of these, AO-82 suppressed DENSPM induction of SSAT activity, enzyme protein and mRNA by 70-80%. The quantitative similarity of these effects suggests AO interference with mRNA stabilization, a property apparently mediated by sequences located in the stop codon region. Growth inhibition by DENSPM in the presence of the terminally phophorothioated analogs of AO-82 remained similar to that produced by DENSPM alone. While it is possible that SSAT induction may not be involved in analog-mediated antiproliferative activity, a more likely interpretation is that the approximately 50% suppression of the enzyme response achieved in growth studies is not sufficient to abrogate growth inhibition.
Anticancer research 16(5A):2517-23. · 1.71 Impact Factor