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Prolyl hydroxylase domain 3 influences the radiotherapy efficacy of pancreatic cancer cells by targeting hypoxia-inducible factor-1α

Authors Tang L, Wu J, Cai S, Huang Y, Zhang X, Fu W, Zhuang Q, Li J

Received 17 September 2018

Accepted for publication 8 November 2018

Published 29 November 2018 Volume 2018:11 Pages 8507—8515

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OTT.S187615

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Takuya Aoki


Li-rui Tang,1,* Jun-xin Wu,1,* Shao-li Cai,2 Yun-xia Huang,1 Xue-qing Zhang,1 Wan-kai Fu,1 Qing-yang Zhuang,1 Jin-luan Li1

1Department of Radiation Oncology, Fujian Medical University Cancer Hospital, Fujian Cancer Hospital, Fuzhou, China; 2Key Laboratories of Innate Immune Biology of Fujian Province, Biomedical Research Center of South China, Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Purpose: Pancreatic cancer is characterized by a hypoxic microenvironment and resistance to most currently available treatment modalities. Prolyl hydroxylase domain 3 (PHD3) is a rate-limiting enzyme that regulates the degradation of hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs) and is deregulated in pancreatic cancer cells. Whether such alteration of PHD3 expression contributes to the sustained growth and radioresistance of pancreatic cancer cells remains largely unknown.
Materials and methods: PHD3 was overexpressed in pancreatic cancer Mia-paca2 cells via lentiviral expression. Cell cycle progression and apoptosis were assayed by flow cytometry. HIF-1α, EGFR, and PHD3 protein expression was assessed by Western blotting. Cell survival was determined in a colony formation assay.
Results: PHD3 overexpression suppressed HIF-1α protein expression and EGFR phosphorylation and enhanced the 2 Gy irradiation-mediated reductions in HIF-1α and phosphorylated (p)-EGFR under either normoxic or hypoxic conditions. PHD3 overexpression inhibited the growth and colony formation of Mia-paca2 cells in response to irradiation under either normoxic or hypoxic conditions. PHD3 overexpression exacerbated irradiation-induced apoptosis, with a greater effect under hypoxia than normoxia. Cell cycle distribution analysis demonstrated that PHD3 overexpression resulted in further shortened S phase and lengthened G2/M phase in response to irradiation.
Conclusion: PHD3 expression may contribute to the radiotherapy efficacy of pancreatic cancer cells and serve as a novel biomarker for improving radiotherapy efficacy in pancreatic cancer.

Keywords: pancreatic cancer, PHD3, radiotherapy efficacy, HIF-1α, p-EGFR

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