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Sequential treatment with AT-101 enhances cisplatin chemosensitivity in human non-small cell lung cancer cells through inhibition of apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1-activated IL-6/STAT3 signaling pathway

Authors Ren T, Shan J, Qing Y, Qian C, Li Q, Lu G, Li M, Li C, Peng Y, Luo H, Zhang S, Zhang W, Wang D, Zhou SF

Received 20 July 2014

Accepted for publication 2 September 2014

Published 12 December 2014 Volume 2014:8 Pages 2517—2529

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/DDDT.S71432

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Wei Duan

Tao Ren,1,2,* Jinlu Shan,1,* Yi Qing,1 Chengyuan Qian,1 Qing Li,1 Guoshou Lu,1 Mengxia Li,1 Chongyi Li,1 Yu Peng,1 Hao Luo,1 Shiheng Zhang,1 Weiwei Zhang,1 Dong Wang,1 Shu-Feng Zhou3

1Cancer Center, Daping Hospital and Research Institute of Surgery, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, People’s Republic of China; 2Oncology Department, The Affiliated Hospital, North Sichuan Medical College, Nanchong, People’s Republic of China; 3Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL, USA

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Abstract: AT-101, known as R-(–)-gossypol, is a potent anticancer agent, but its chemosensitizing effects remain elusive. The present study aimed to examine whether AT-101 could increase the sensitivity of non-small cell lung cancer A549 cells to cisplatin (CDDP) and the underlying mechanisms. We evaluated the efficacy of the sequential treatment with AT-101 and CDDP using both in vitro and in vivo models. Our results showed that as compared to AT-101 or CDDP monotherapy, or AT-101 plus CDDP concurrent treatment, the sequential treatment significantly inhibited cell proliferation and migration and induced tumor cell death. Moreover, the efficacy of the sequential treatment was also confirmed in a mouse A549 xenograft model. Our study revealed that AT-101 inhibited the reduced status of apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 (APE1) and attenuated APE1-mediated IL-6/STAT3 signaling activation by decreasing IL-6 protein expression; suppressing the STAT3–DNA binding; and reducing the expression of the downstream antiapoptotic proteins Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL. In conclusion, AT-101 enhances the sensitivity of A549 cells to CDDP in vitro and in vivo through the inhibition of APE1-mediated IL-6/STAT3 signaling activation, providing a rationale for the combined use of AT-101 and CDDP in non-small cell lung cancer chemotherapy.

Keywords: AT101, NSCLC, cisplatin, chemosensitivity, APE1, STAT3, nude mice, apoptosis

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