Identification and validation of p50 as the cellular target of eriocalyxin B.
ABSTRACT: As an ent-kaurene diterpenoid isolated from Isodon eriocalyx var. Laxiflora, Eriocalyxin B (EriB) possesses potent bioactivity of antitumor and anti-autoimmune inflammation, which has been suggested to work through inhibition of NF-kappaB (NF-?B) signaling. However, the direct target of EriB remains elusive. In this study, we showed that EriB induced apoptosis is associated with the inhibition of NF-?B signaling in SMMC-7721 hepatocellular carcinoma cells. With activity-based probe profiling, we identified p50 protein as the direct target of EriB. We showed that cysteine 62 is the critical residue of p50 for EriB binding through the ?, ?-unsaturated ketones. As the result, EriB selectively blocks the binding between p50 and the response elements, whereas having no effect on the dimerization or the nuclear translocation of p50 and p65. SiRNA mediated knockdown of p50 attenuated the apoptosis induced by EriB in SMMC-7721 cells. Taken together, our studies illustrated that EriB induces cancer cell apoptosis through interfering with the binding between NF-?B and the response elements by targeting the cysteine 62 of p50, which highlights its potential for the development of p50 targeted cancer therapeutic agents.
Project description:In this study, erianin was found to reduce the viability of cancer cells, inhibit their proliferation and migration, induce G2/M phase arrest, enhance cancer cell apoptosis, promote an increase in levels of intracellular reactive oxygen species and a decrease in mitochondrial membrane potential, and regulate the expression levels of anti- and pro-apoptosis-related proteins in HepG2 and SMMC-7721 cells. Erianin inhibited tumor growth in HepG2- and SMMC-7721-xenograft tumor nude mouse models, reduced the expression levels of anti-apoptosis proteins and enhanced the expression levels of pro-apoptosis proteins in tumor tissues. Erianin inhibited tumor growth in immunosuppressed BALB/c mice bearing heterotopic tumors. Among 111 types of cytokines detected in proteome profiling of tumor tissues, erianin substantially influenced levels of 38 types of cytokines in HepG2-xenografted tumors and of 15 types of cytokines in SMMC-7721-xenografted tumors, most of which are related to immune functions. Erianin strongly affected the serum levels of cytokines, and regulated the activation of nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-?B), and the expression levels of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) and its downstream proteins in spleen. The anti-liver cancer properties of erianin were found to be related mostly to its modulation of oxidative stress-mediated mitochondrial apoptosis and immune response.
Project description:6-Shogaol is an active compound isolated from Ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosc). In this work, we demonstrated that 6-shogaol induces apoptosis in human hepatocellular carcinoma cells in relation to caspase activation and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress signaling. Proteomic analysis revealed that ER stress was accompanied by 6-shogaol-induced apoptosis in hepatocellular carcinoma cells. 6-shogaol affected the ER stress signaling by regulating unfolded protein response (UPR) sensor PERK and its downstream target eIF2?. However, the effect on the other two UPR sensors IRE1 and ATF6 was not obvious. In prolonged ER stress, 6-shogaol inhibited the phosphorylation of eIF2? and triggered apoptosis in SMMC-7721 cells. Salubrinal, an activator of the PERK/eIF2? pathway, strikingly enhanced the phosphorylation of eIF2? in SMMC-7721 cells with no toxicity. However, combined treatment with 6-shogaol and salubrinal resulted in significantly increase of apoptosis and dephosphorylation of eIF2?. Overexpression of eIF2? prevented 6-shogaol-mediated apoptosis in SMMC-7721 cells, whereas inhibition of eIF2? by small interfering RNA markedly enhanced 6-shogaol-mediated cell death. Furthermore, 6-shogaol-mediated inhibition of tumor growth of mouse SMMC-7721 xenograft was associated with induction of apoptosis, activation of caspase-3, and inactivation of eIF2?. Altogether our results indicate that the PERK/eIF2? pathway plays an important role in 6-shogaol-mediated ER stress and apoptosis in SMMC-7721 cells in vitro and in vivo.
Project description:The correlation between nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-?B) and COMMD7 in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) development remained unclear. Here, our clinicopathological data showed that COMMD7 is overexpressed in HCC with a correlation to NF-?B. Using HepG2 and SMMC-7721 cells that aberrantly overexpressed COMMD7, we found that NF-?B directly binds with COMMD7 promoter and serves as an activator for COMMD7 transcription by luciferase reporter assay, chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP), and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA). In both HepG2 cells and SMMC-7721 cells, the silencing of COMMD7 significantly inhibited the cell proliferation, whereas NF-?B silencing inhibited the expression of COMMD7 and further inhibited cell proliferation. In addition, cell apoptosis was promoted by COMMD7 silencing, and further promoted by NF-?B silencing. Cell migration and invasion were also inhibited by COMMD7 silencing, and further inhibited by NF-?B silencing. Thus, COMMD7 is correlated with a novel NF-?B positive feedback loop in hepatocellular carcinoma. Developing strategies for the treatment of HCC should consider the correlation between NF-?B and COMMD7, so as to improve the specificity and sensitivity of therapy and to reduce toxicity.
Project description:UBC9, the only known E2-conjugating enzyme involved in SUMOylation, is a key regulator in fibrosis. However, the roles of UBC9 in liver fibrosis remain unclear. Therefore, in this study, we investigated the roles of UBC9 in HSC apoptosis and liver fibrogenesis. Our results showed that the UBC9 levels in activated LX-2 cells, HepG2 and SMMC-7721 were increased compared with LO2, and the expression of UBC9 in activated LX-2 cells, HepG2 and SMMC-7721 were no significant differences. The expression of UBC9 was effectively down-regulated by the UBC9-shRNA plasmid, and this effect was accompanied by the attenuated expression of the myofibroblast markers smooth muscle actin (?-SMA) and Collagen I. Downregulation of UBC9 also promotes activated HSCs apoptosis by up-regulating cell apoptosis-related proteins. Further, knockdown of UBC9 in activated HSCs inhibited cell viability and caused cell cycle arrest in the G2 phase. Moreover, knockdown of UBC9 suppressed the activation of NF-?B signaling pathways. In conclusion, these results demonstrated that down-regulation of UBC9 expression induced activated LX-2 cell apoptosis and promoted cells to return to a quiescent state by inhibiting the NF-?B signaling pathway. These results provide novel mechanistic insights for the anti-fibrotic effect of UBC9.
Project description:Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common form of primary liver cancer, and is also highly resistant to conventional chemotherapy treatments. In this study, we report that Longikaurin A (LK-A), an ent-kaurane diterpenoid isolated from the plant Isodon ternifolius, induced cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in human HCC cell lines. LK-A also suppressed tumor growth in SMMC-7721 xenograft models, without inducing any notable major organ-related toxicity. LK-A treatment led to reduced expression of the proto-oncogene S phase kinase-associated protein 2 (Skp2) in SMMC-7721 cells. Lower Skp2 levels correlated with increased expression of p21 and p-cdc2 (Try15), and a corresponding decrease in protein levels of Cyclin B1 and cdc2. Overexpression of Skp2 significantly inhibited LK-A-induced cell cycle arrest in SMMC-7721 cells, suggesting that LK-A may target Skp2 to arrest cells at the G2/M phase. LK-A also induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and apoptosis in SMMC-7721 cells. LK-A induced phosphorylation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), but not extracellular signal-regulated kinase and P38 MAP kinase. Treatment with, the JNK inhibitor SP600125 prevented LK-A-induced apoptosis in SMMC-7721 cells. Moreover, the antioxidant N-acetylcysteine prevented phosphorylation of both JNK and c-Jun. Taken together, these data indicate that LK-A induces cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in cancer cells by dampening Skp2 expression, and thereby activating the ROS/JNK/c-Jun signaling pathways. LK-A is therefore a potential lead compound for development of antitumor drugs targeting HCC.
Project description:Activated STAT3 plays an important role in oncogenesis by stimulating cell proliferation and resisting apoptosis. STAT3 therefore is an attractive target for cancer therapy. We have screened a traditional Chinese herb medicine compound library and found Eriocalyxin B (EB), a diterpenoid from Isodon eriocalyx, as a specific inhibitor of STAT3. EB selectively inhibited constitutive as well as IL-6-induced phosphorylation of STAT3 and induced apoptosis of STAT3-dependent tumor cells. EB did not affect the upstream protein tyrosine kinases or the phosphatase (PTPase) of STAT3, but rather interacted directly with STAT3. The effects of EB could be abolished by DTT or GSH, suggesting a thiol-mediated covalent linkage between EB and STAT3. Site mutagenesis of cysteine in and near the SH2 domain of STAT3 identified Cys712 to be the critical amino acid for the EB-induced inactivation of STAT3. Furthermore, LC/MS/MS analyses demonstrated that an ?, ?-unsaturated carbonyl of EB covalently interacted with the Cys712 of STAT3. Computational modeling analyses also supported a direct interaction between EB and the Cys712 of STAT3. These data strongly suggest that EB directly targets STAT3 through a covalent linkage to inhibit the phosphorylation and activation of STAT3 and induces apoptosis of STAT3-dependent tumor cells.
Project description:<b>Background:</b> The etiology and carcinogenesis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) are associated with various risk factors. Saponins extracted from <i>Dioscorea</i> zingiberensis C. H. Wright exhibit antitumor activity against HCC. This study aimed to investigate the effect and the underlying mechanism of <i>Dioscorea</i> Zingiberensis new saponin (ZnS) on HCC. <b>Methods:</b> Human HCC cell lines, Huh7 and SMMC-7721, were treated with different concentrations of ZnS. Cell apoptosis was determined <i>via</i> flow cytometry assay. Differentially expressed lncRNAs (DElncRNAs) in ZnS-treated SMMC-7721 cells were determined through RNA-sequence. The role of lncRNA TCONS-00026762 in HCC was investigated gain of function analysis, along with cell proliferation, apoptosis, and invasion in HCC cells. A subcutaneous xenograft of SMMC-7721 cell lines was established to study the effects of TCONS-00026762 <i>in vivo</i>. The expression of apoptosis-related proteins was detected <i>in vivo</i> and <i>in vitro via</i> western blotting. <b>Results:</b> ZnS inhibited the proliferation of HCC cell in a dose-dependent manner. ZnS could induce apoptosis in HCC cells. Illumina sequencing results showed that 493 DElncRNAs were identified in ZnS-treated SMMC-7721 cells. TCONS-00026762 expression was down-regulated in the ZnS-treated SMMC-7721 cells. TCONS-00026762 inhibited the effect of ZnS on the proliferation, apoptosis, and invasion of HCC cells. ZnS inhibited the tumor growth, while, TCONS-00026762 promoted tumor growth <i>in vivo</i>. Furthermore, ZnS and TCONS-00026762 regulated cell apoptotic pathways. <b>Conclusion:</b> ZnS significantly inhibits the viability, apoptosis, invasion, and tumorigenicity of HCC cells by regulating the expression of TCONS-00026,762. Our findings provide novel insights into the potential role of lncRNA in HCC therapy.
Project description:In this study, we investigated the role of microRNA-644a (miR-644a) in the growth and survival of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells. MiR-644a levels were lower in HCC tissues than in adjacent peri-cancerous tissues (n?=?135). MiR-644a expression was inversely correlated with heat shock factor 1 (HSF1) expression, tumour diameter and TNM stage. Moreover, HepG2 and SMMC-7721 cell lines showed lower miR-644a expression than normal L-O2 hepatocytes. MiR-644a overexpression in HepG2 and SMMC-7721 cells increased apoptosis by downregulating HSF1. Dual luciferase reporter assays confirmed the presence of a miR-644a binding site in the 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR) of HSF1. Xenograft tumours derived from SMMC-7721 cells transfected with a miR-664a mimic showed less growth than tumours derived from untransfected controls. Protein chip analysis revealed that miR-644a-overexpressing SMMC-7721 and HepG2 cells strongly expressed pro-apoptotic BH3-only proteins, such as BID, BAD, BIM, SMAC, Apaf-1 and cleaved caspases-3 and -9. These findings suggest miR-644a promotes apoptosis in HCC cells by inhibiting HSF1.
Project description:A series of new quinoxaline derivatives of dehydroabietic acid (DAA) were designed and synthesized as potential antitumor agents. Their structures were characterized by IR, ¹H-NMR, 13C-NMR, and MS spectra and elemental analyses. All the new compounds were screened for their in vitro antiproliferative activities against three human cancer cell lines (MCF-7, SMMC-7721 and HeLa) and noncancerous human hepatocyte cells (LO2). A cytotoxic assay manifested that compound 4b showed the most potent cytotoxic activity against the three cancer cell lines, with IC50 values of 1.78 ± 0.36, 0.72 ± 0.09 and 1.08 ± 0.12 ?M, respectively, and a substantially lower cytotoxicity to LO2 cells (IC50: 11.09 ± 0.57 ?M). Moreover, the cell cycle analysis suggested that compound 4b caused cell cycle arrest of SMMC-7721 cells at the G0/G1 phase. In a Hoechst 33258 staining assay, compound 4b caused considerable morphological changes of the nuclei of SMMC-7721 cells, correlated with cell apoptosis. In addition, an Annexin V-FITC/PI dual staining assay confirmed that compound 4b could induce the apoptosis of SMMC-7721 cells in a dose-dependent manner.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Cancer development is strictly correlated to composition and physical properties of the extracellular matrix. Particularly, a higher matrix stiffness has been demonstrated to promote tumor sustained growth. Our purpose was to explore the role of matrix stiffness in liver cancer development.<h4>Methods</h4>The matrix stiffness of tumor tissues was determined by atomic force microscopy (AFM) analysis. In vitro, we used a tunable Polyacrylamide (PA) hydrogels culture system for liver cancer cells culture. The expression level of integrin β1, phosphorylated FAK, ERK1/2, and NF-κB in SMMC-7721 cells was measured by western blotting analysis. We performed MTT, colony formation and transwell assay to examine the tumorigenic and metastatic potential of SMMC-7721 cells cultured on the tunable PA hydrogels. SMMC-7721 cancer xenografts were established to explore the anticancer effects of integrin inhibitors.<h4>Results</h4>Our study provided evidence that liver tumor tissues from metastatic patients possessed a higher matrix stiffness, when compared to the non-metastatic group. Liver cancer cells cultured on high stiffness PA hydrogels displayed enhanced tumorigenic potential and migrative properties. Mechanistically, activation of integrin β1/FAK/ ERK1/2/NF-κB signaling pathway was observed in SMMC-7721 cells cultured on high stiffness PA hydrogels. Inhibition of ERK1/2, FAK, and NF-κB signaling suppressed the pro-tumor effects induced by matrix stiffness. Combination of chemotherapy and integrin β1 inhibitor suppressed the tumor growth and prolonged survival time in hepatocellular cancer xenografts.<h4>Conclusion</h4>A higher matrix stiffness equipped tumor cells with enhanced stemness and proliferative characteristics, which was dependent on the activation of integrin β1/FAK/ERK1/2/NF-κB signaling pathway. Blockade of integrin signals efficiently improved the outcome of chemotherapy, which described an innovative approach for liver cancer treatment.