Browsing by Subject "CELL-SURVIVAL"

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  • Sanz, Dafne Jacome; Raivola, Juuli; Karvonen, Hanna; Arjama, Mariliina; Barker, Harlan; Murumägi, Astrid; Ungureanu, Daniela (2021)
    Simple Summary Ovarian cancer (OC) is known for its poor prognosis, due to the absence of reliable biomarkers and its late diagnosis, since the early-stage disease is almost asymptomatic. Lipid metabolism plays an important role in OC progression due to the development of omental metastasis in the abdominal cavity. The aim of our study was to assess the therapeutic role of various enzymes involved in lipid metabolism regulation or synthesis, in different subtypes of OC represented by cell lines as well as patient-derived cancer cell cultures (PDCs). We show that proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9), a cholesterol-regulating enzyme, plays a pro-survival role in OC and targeting its expression impairs cancer cell growth. We also tested a small library of metabolic and mTOR-targeting drugs to identify drug vulnerabilities specific to various subtypes of OC. Our results show that in OC cell lines and PDCs the second generation of mTOR inhibitors such as AZD8055, vistusertib, dactolisib and sapanisertib, have higher cytotoxic activity compared to the first generation mTOR inhibitors such as rapalogs. These results suggest that, in the era of precision medicine, it is possible to target the metabolic pathway in OC and identify subtype-specific drug vulnerabilities that could be advanced to the clinic. Background: Dysregulated lipid metabolism is emerging as a hallmark in several malignancies, including ovarian cancer (OC). Specifically, metastatic OC is highly dependent on lipid-rich omentum. We aimed to investigate the therapeutic value of targeting lipid metabolism in OC. For this purpose, we studied the role of PCSK9, a cholesterol-regulating enzyme, in OC cell survival and its downstream signaling. We also investigated the cytotoxic efficacy of a small library of metabolic (n = 11) and mTOR (n = 10) inhibitors using OC cell lines (n = 8) and ex vivo patient-derived cell cultures (PDCs, n = 5) to identify clinically suitable drug vulnerabilities. Targeting PCSK9 expression with siRNA or PCSK9 specific inhibitor (PF-06446846) impaired OC cell survival. In addition, overexpression of PCSK9 induced robust AKT phosphorylation along with increased expression of ERK1/2 and MEK1/2, suggesting a pro-survival role of PCSK9 in OC cells. Moreover, our drug testing revealed marked differences in cytotoxic responses to drugs targeting metabolic pathways of high-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) and low-grade serous ovarian cancer (LGSOC) PDCs. Our results show that targeting PCSK9 expression could impair OC cell survival, which warrants further investigation to address the dependency of this cancer on lipogenesis and omental metastasis. Moreover, the differences in metabolic gene expression and drug responses of OC PDCs indicate the existence of a metabolic heterogeneity within OC subtypes, which should be further explored for therapeutic improvements.
  • Karhu, S. Tuuli; Kinnunen, Sini M.; Tölli, Marja; Välimäki, Mika J.; Szabo, Zoltan; Talman, Virpi; Ruskoaho, Heikki (2020)
    Doxorubicin is a widely used anticancer drug that causes dose-related cardiotoxicity. The exact mechanisms of doxorubicin toxicity are still unclear, partly because most in vitro studies have evaluated the effects of short-term high-dose doxorubicin treatments. Here, we developed an in vitro model of long-term low-dose administration of doxorubicin utilizing human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CMs). Moreover, given that current strategies for prevention and management of doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity fail to prevent cancer patients developing heart failure, we also investigated whether the GATA4-targeted compound 3i-1000 has cardioprotective potential against doxorubicin toxicity both in vitro and in vivo. The final doxorubicin concentration used in the chronic toxicity model in vitro was chosen based on cell viability data evaluation. Exposure to doxorubicin at the concentrations of 1-3 mu M markedly reduced (60%) hiPSC-CM viability already within 48 h, while a 14-day treatment with 100 nM doxorubicin concentration induced only a modest 26% reduction in hiPCS-CM viability. Doxorubicin treatment also decreased DNA content in hiPSC-CMs. Interestingly, the compound 3i-1000 attenuated doxorubicin-induced increase in pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (proBNP) expression and caspase-3/7 activation in hiPSC-CMs. Moreover, treatment with 3i-1000 for 2 weeks (30 mg/kg/day, i.p.) inhibited doxorubicin cardiotoxicity by restoring left ventricular ejection fraction and fractional shortening in chronic in vivo rat model. In conclusion, the results demonstrate that long-term exposure of hiPSC-CMs can be utilized as an in vitro model of delayed doxorubicin-induced toxicity and provide in vitro and in vivo evidence that targeting GATA4 may be an effective strategy to counteract doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity.
  • Rantamäki, Tomi; Kemppainen, Susanna; Autio, Henri; Staven, Saara; Koivisto, Hennariikka; Kojima, Masami; Antila, Hanna; Miettinen, Pasi O.; Kärkkäinen, Elisa; Karpova, Nina; Vesa, Liisa; Lindemann, Lothar; Hoener, Marius C.; Tanila, Heikki; Castren, Eero (2013)