Metformin and temozolomide, a synergic option to overcome resistance in glioblastoma multiforme models.
ABSTRACT: Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most aggressive primary brain tumor with poor survival. Cytoreduction in association with radiotherapy and temozolomide (TMZ) is the standard therapy, but response is heterogeneous and life expectancy is limited. The combined use of chemotherapeutic agents with drugs targeting cell metabolism is becoming an interesting therapeutic option for cancer treatment. Here, we found that metformin (MET) enhances TMZ effect on TMZ-sensitive cell line (U251) and overcomes TMZ-resistance in T98G GBM cell line. In particular, combined-treatment modulated apoptosis by increasing Bax/Bcl-2 ratio, and reduced Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) production. We also observed that MET associated with TMZ was able to reduce the expression of glioma stem cells (GSC) marker CD90 particularly in T98G cells but not that of CD133. In vivo experiments showed that combined treatment with TMZ and MET significantly slowed down growth of TMZ-resistant tumors but did not affect overall survival of TMZ-sensitive tumor bearing mice. In conclusion, our results showed that metformin is able to enhance TMZ effect in TMZ-resistant cell line suggesting its potential use in TMZ refractory GBM patients. However, the lack of effect on a GBM malignancy marker like CD133 requires further evaluation since it might influence response duration.
Project description:Hypoxia is a key driver of tumor adaptation promoting tumor progression and resistance to therapy. Hypoxia related pathways might represent attractive targets for the treatment of Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM), that up to date is characterized by a poor prognosis. Primary aim of this study was to investigate the role of hypoxia and hypoxia-related modifications in the effect of temozolomide (TMZ) given alone or in association with the antidiabetic agent Metformin (MET) or the PI3K/mTOR blocker, BEZ235. The study was conducted in the TMZ responsive U251 and resistant T98 GBM cells. Our results showed that during hypoxia, TMZ plus MET reduced viability of U251 cells affecting also CD133 and CD90 expressing cells. This effect was associated with a reduction of HIF-1? activity, VEGF release and AKT activation. In T98 TMZ-resistant cells, TMZ plus MET exerted similar effects on HIF-1?. However, in this cell line, TMZ plus MET failed to reduce CD133 positive cells and AKT phosphorylation. Nevertheless, the administration of the dual PI3K/mTOR inhibitor BEZ235 potentiated the effect of TMZ plus MET on cell viability, inducing a pro-apoptotic phenotype during hypoxic condition also in T98 cells, suggesting the block of the PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway as a complementary target to further overcome GBM resistance during hypoxia. In conclusion, we proposed TMZ plus MET as suitable treatment to revert TMZ-resistance also during hypoxia, an effect potentiated by the inhibition of PI3K/mTOR axis.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Despite aggressive treatment with radiation therapy and concurrent adjuvant temozolomide (TMZ), glioblastoma multiform (GBM) still has a dismal prognosis. We aimed to identify strategies to improve the therapeutic outcome of combined radiotherapy and TMZ in GBM by targeting pro-survival signaling from the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR).<h4>Methods</h4>Glioma cell lines U251, T98G were used. Colony formation, DNA damage repair, mode of cell death, invasion, migration and vasculogenic mimicry as well as protein expression were determined.<h4>Results</h4>U251 cells showing a low level of methyl guanine transferase (MGMT) were highly responsive to the radiosensitizing effect of TMZ compared to T98G cells having a high level of MGMT. Treatment with a dual inhibitor of Class I PI3K/mTOR, PI103; a HSP90 inhibitor, 17-DMAG; or a HDAC inhibitor, LBH589, further increased the cytotoxic effect of radiation therapy plus TMZ in U251 cells than in T98G cells. However, treatment with a mTOR inhibitor, rapamycin, did not discernibly potentiate the radiosensitizing effect of TMZ in either cell line. The mechanism of enhanced radiosensitizing effects of TMZ was multifactorial, involving impaired DNA damage repair, induction of autophagy or apoptosis, and reversion of EMT (epithelial-mesenchymal transition).<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our results suggest possible strategies for counteracting the pro-survival signaling from EGFR to improve the therapeutic outcome of combined radiotherapy and TMZ for high-grade gliomas.
Project description:<h4>Purpose</h4>Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a malignant high-grade glioma with a poor clinical outcome. Temozolomide (TMZ) is the first-line GBM chemotherapy; however, patients commonly develop resistance to its effects.<h4>Materials and methods</h4>We investigated the antitumor activity of CAT<sub>3</sub> in TMZ-resistant glioblastoma cell lines U251/TMZ and T98G. Orthotopic and subcutaneous mice tumor models were used to investigate the effects of various treatment regimes.<h4>Results</h4>We found that PF403, the active metabolite of CAT<sub>3</sub>, inhibited proliferation of both cell lines. PF403 repressed the Hedgehog signaling pathway in the U251/TMZ cell line, reduced O<sup>6</sup>-methylguanine DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) expression, and abolished the effects of the Shh pathway. Moreover, PF403 blocked the Hedgehog signaling pathway in T98G MGMT-expressing cells and downregulated the expression of MGMT. CAT<sub>3</sub> suppressed growth in the U251/TMZ orthotopic and T98G subcutaneous xenograft tumor models in vivo. We also demonstrated that inhibition of the Hedgehog pathway by PF403 counteracted TMZ resistance and enhanced the antitumor activity of TMZ in vitro and in vivo.<h4>Conclusion</h4>These results indicate that CAT<sub>3</sub> is a potential therapeutic agent for TMZ-resistant GBM.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a malignant primary brain tumor. The 5-year relative survival rate of patients with GBM remains <30% on average despite aggressive treatments, and secondary therapy fails in 90% of patients. In chemotherapeutic failure, detoxification proteins are crucial to the activity of chemotherapy drugs. Usually, glutathione S-transferase (GST) superfamily members act as detoxification enzymes by activating xenobiotic metabolites through conjugation with glutathione in healthy cells. However, some overexpressed GSTs not only increase GST activity but also trigger chemotherapy resistance and tumorigenesis-related signaling transductions. Whether GSTM3 is involved in GBM chemoresistance remains unclear. In the current study, we found that T98G, a GBM cell line with pre-existing temozolomide (TMZ) resistance, has high glycolysis and GSTM3 expression. GSTM3 knockdown in T98G decreased glycolysis ability through lactate dehydrogenase A activity reduction. Moreover, it increased TMZ toxicity and decreased invasion ability. Furthermore, we provide next-generation sequencing-based identification of significantly changed messenger RNAs of T98G cells with GSTM3 knockdown for further research. GSTM3 was downregulated in intrinsic TMZ-resistant T98G with a change in the expression levels of some essential glycolysis-related genes. Thus, GSTM3 was associated with glycolysis in chemotherapeutic resistance in T98G cells. Our findings provide new insight into the GSTM3 mechanism in recurring GBM.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most frequent and aggressive primary malignant brain tumor in adults. Current standard radiotherapy and adjuvant chemotherapy with the alkylating agent temozolomide (TMZ) yield poor clinical outcome. This is due to the stem-like properties of tumor cells and genetic abnormalities in GBM, which contribute to resistance to TMZ and progression. In this study, we used cold atmospheric plasma (CAP) to enhance the sensitivity to TMZ through inhibition of antioxidant signaling (linked to TMZ resistance). We demonstrate that CAP indeed enhances the cytotoxicity of TMZ by targeting the antioxidant specific glutathione (GSH)/glutathione peroxidase 4 (GPX4) signaling. We optimized the threshold concentration of TMZ on five different GBM cell lines (U251, LN18, LN229, U87-MG and T98G). We combined TMZ with CAP and tested it on both TMZ-sensitive (U251, LN18 and LN229) and TMZ-resistant (U87-MG and T98G) cell lines using two-dimensional cell cultures. Subsequently, we used a three-dimensional spheroid model for the U251 (TMZ-sensitive) and U87-MG and T98G (TMZ-resistant) cells. The sensitivity of TMZ was enhanced, i.e., higher cytotoxicity and spheroid shrinkage was obtained when TMZ and CAP were administered together. We attribute the anticancer properties to the release of intracellular reactive oxygen species, through inhibiting the GSH/GPX4 antioxidant machinery, which can lead to DNA damage. Overall, our findings suggest that the combination of CAP with TMZ is a promising combination therapy to enhance the efficacy of TMZ towards the treatment of GBM spheroids.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Temozolomide (TMZ) is the most commonly used chemotherapeutic agent used to treat glioblastoma (GBM), which causes significant DNA damage to highly proliferative cells. Our observations have added to accumulating evidence that TMZ induces stress-responsive cellular programs known to promote cell survival, including autophagy. As such, targeting these survival pathways may represent new vulnerabilities of GBM after treatment with TMZ. METHODS:Using the T98G human glioma cell line, we assessed the molecular signaling associated with TMZ treatment, the cellular consequences of using the pan-PI3K inhibitor PX-866, and performed clonogenic assays to determine the effect sequential treatment of TMZ and PX-866 had on colony formation. Additionally, we also use subcutaneous GBM patient derived xenograft (PDX) tumors to show relative LC3 protein expression and correlations between survival pathways and molecular markers which dictate clinical responsiveness to TMZ. RESULTS:Here, we report that TMZ can induce autophagic flux in T98G glioma cells. GBM patient-derived xenograft (PDX) tumors treated with TMZ also display an increase in the autophagosome marker LC3 II. Additionally, O6-methylguanine-DNA-methyltransferase (MGMT) expression correlates with PI3K/AKT activity, suggesting that patients with inherent resistance to TMZ (MGMT-high) would benefit from PI3K/AKT inhibitors in addition to TMZ. Accordingly, we have identified that the blood-brain barrier (BBB) penetrant pan-PI3K inhibitor, PX-866, is an early-stage inhibitor of autophagic flux, while maintaining its ability to inhibit PI3K/AKT signaling in glioma cells. Lastly, due to the induction of autophagic flux by TMZ, we provide evidence for sequential treatment of TMZ followed by PX-866, rather than combined co-treatment, as a means to shut down autophagy-induced survival in GBM cells and to enhance apoptosis. CONCLUSIONS:The understanding of how TMZ induces survival pathways, such as autophagy, may offer new therapeutic vulnerabilities and opportunities to use sequential inhibition of alternate pro-survival pathways that regulate autophagy. As such, identification of additional ways to inhibit TMZ-induced autophagy could enhance the efficacy of TMZ.
Project description:Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) recurrences after temozolomide (TMZ) treatment result from the expansion of drug-resistant and potentially invasive GBM cells. This process is facilitated by O6-Methylguanine-DNA Methyltransferase (MGMT), which counteracts alkylating TMZ activity. We traced the expansion of invasive cell lineages under persistent chemotherapeutic stress in MGMT<sup>low</sup> (U87) and MGMT<sup>high</sup> (T98G) GBM populations to look into the mechanisms of TMZ-induced microevolution of GBM invasiveness. TMZ treatment induced short-term, pro-invasive phenotypic shifts of U87 cells, in the absence of Snail-1 activation. They were illustrated by a transient induction of their motility and followed by the hypertrophy and the signs of senescence in scarce U87 sub-populations that survived long-term TMZ stress. In turn, MGMT<sup>high</sup> T98G cells reacted to the long-term TMZ treatment with the permanent induction of invasiveness. Ectopic Snail-1 down-regulation attenuated this effect, whereas its up-regulation augmented T98G invasiveness. MGMT<sup>low</sup> and MGMT<sup>high</sup> cells both reacted to the long-term TMZ stress with the induction of Cx43 expression. However, only in MGMT<sup>high</sup> T98G populations, Cx43 was directly involved in the induction of invasiveness, as manifested by the induction of T98G invasiveness after ectopic Cx43 up-regulation and by the opposite effect after Cx43 down-regulation. Collectively, Snail-1/Cx43-dependent signaling participates in the long-term TMZ-induced microevolution of the invasive GBM front. High MGMT activity remains a prerequisite for this process, even though MGMT-related GBM chemoresistance is not necessary for its initiation.
Project description:PURPOSE:The purpose of the study is to investigate the efficacy of combined treatment with temozolomide (TMZ) and metformin for glioblastoma (GBM) in vitro and in vivo. Materials and Methods:We investigated the efficacy of combined treatment with TMZ and metformin using cell viability and apoptosis assays. A GBM orthotopic mice model was established by inoculation of 5×105 U87 cells and treatedwith metformin, TMZ, and the combination for 4weeks. Western blotting and immunofluorescence of tumor specimens were analyzed to investigate AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) and AKT pathway. RESULTS:The combination of TMZ and metformin showed higher cytotoxicity than single agents in U87, U251, and A172 cell lines. A combination of high-dose metformin and TMZ showed the highest apoptotic activity. The combination of TMZ and metformin enhanced AMPK phosphorylation and inhibited mammalian target of rapamycin phosphorylation, AKT phosphorylation, and p53 expression. The median survival of each group was 43.6, 55.2, 53.2, 65.2, and 71.3 days for control, metformin treatment (2 mg/25 g/day or 10 mg/25 g/day), TMZ treatment (15 mg/kg/day), combination treatment with low-dose metformin and TMZ, and combination treatment with high-dose metformin and TMZ, respectively. Expression of fatty acid synthase (FASN) was significantly decreased in tumor specimens treated with metformin and TMZ. CONCLUSION:The combination of metformin and TMZ was superior to monotherapy using metformin or TMZ in terms of cell viability in vitro and survival in vivo. The combination of high-dose metformin and TMZ inhibited FASN expression in an orthotopic model. Inhibition of FASN might be a potential therapeutic target of GBM.
Project description:It has been reported that metformin acts synergistically with temozolomide (TMZ) to inhibit proliferation of glioma cells including glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). However, the molecular mechanism underlying how metformin exerts its anti-cancer effects remains elusive. We used a combined experimental and bioinformatics approach to identify genes and complex regulatory/signal transduction networks that are involved in restoring TMZ sensitivity of GBM cells after metformin treatment. First, we established TMZ resistant GBM cell lines and found that the resistant cells regained TMZ sensitivity after metformin treatment. We further identified that metformin down-regulates SOX2 expression in TMZ-resistant glioma cells, reduces neurosphere formation capacity of glioblastoma cells, and inhibits GBM xenograft growth in vivo. Finally, the global gene expression profiling data reveals that multiple pathways are involved in metformin treatment related gene expression changes, including fatty acid metabolism and RNA binding and splicing pathways. Our work provided insight of the mechanisms on potential synergistic effects of TMZ and metformin in the treatment of glioblastoma, which will in turn yield potentially translational value for clinical applications.
Project description:The interaction between high-mobility group box 1 protein (HMGB1) and receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE) is important for tumor cell growth. We investigated the tumor biological effects of HMGB1 and RAGE interaction. Previously, we identified an inhibitor of HMGB1/RAGE interaction, papaverine (a non-narcotic opium alkaloid), using a unique drug design system and drug repositioning approach. In the present study, we examined the anticancer effects of papaverine in human glioblastoma (GBM) temozolomide (TMZ; as a first-line anticancer medicine)-sensitive U87MG and TMZ-resistant T98G cells. HMGB1 supplementation in the culture medium promoted tumor cell growth in T98G cells, and this effect was canceled by papaverine. In addition, papaverine in T98G cells suppressed cancer cell migration. As an HMGB1/RAGE inhibitor, papaverine also significantly inhibited cell proliferation in U87MG and T98G cells. The effects of papaverine were evaluated in vivo in a U87MG xenograft mouse model by determining tumor growth delay. The results indicate that papaverine, a smooth muscle relaxant, is a potential anticancer drug that may be useful in GBM chemotherapy.