Xu MD, Liu SL, Zheng BB, et al.The radiotherapy-sensitization effect of cantharidin: Mechanisms involving cell cycle regulation, enhanced DNA damage, and inhibited DNA damage repair.
Pancreatology. 2018; 18(7):822-832 [PubMed
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BACKGROUND: Cantharidin is an inhibitor of protein phosphatase 2 A (PP2A), and has been frequently used in clinical practice. In our previous study, we proved that cantharidin could arrest cell cycle in G2/M phase. Since cells at G2/M phase are sensitive to radiotherapy, in the present study, we investigated the radiotherapy-sesitization effect of cantharidin and the potential mechanisms involved.
METHODS: Cell growth was determined by MTT assay. Cell cycle was evaluated by flow cytometry. DNA damage was visualized by phospho-Histone H2A.X staining. Expression of mRNA was tested by microarray assay and real-time PCR. Clinical information and RNA-Seq expression data were derived from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) pancreatic cancer cohort. Survival analysis was obtained by Kaplan-Meier estimates.
RESULTS: Cantharidin strengthened the growth inhibition effect of irradiation. Cantharidin drove pancreatic cancer cells out of quiescent G0/G1 phase and arrested cell cycle in G2/M phase. As a result, cantharidin strengthened DNA damage which was induced by irradiation. Moreover, cantharidin repressed expressions of several genes participating in DNA damage repair, including UBE2T, RPA1, GTF2HH5, LIG1, POLD3, RMI2, XRCC1, PRKDC, FANC1, FAAP100, RAD50, RAD51D, RAD51B and DMC1, through JNK, ERK, PKC, p38 and/or NF-κB pathway dependent manners. Among these genes, worse overall survival for pancreatic cancer patients were associated with high mRNA expressions of POLD3, RMI2, PRKDC, FANC1, RAD50 and RAD51B, all of which could be down-regulated by cantharidin.
CONCLUSION: Cantharidin can sensitize pancreatic cancer cells to radiotherapy. Multiple mechanisms, including cell cycle regulation, enhanced DNA damage, and inhibited DNA damage repair, may be involved.
Bloom syndrome is a recessive human genetic disorder with features of genome instability, growth deficiency and predisposition to cancer. The only known causative gene is the BLM helicase that is a member of a protein complex along with topoisomerase III alpha, RMI1 and 2, which maintains replication fork stability and dissolves double Holliday junctions to prevent genome instability. Here we report the identification of a second gene, RMI2, that is deleted in affected siblings with Bloom-like features. Cells from homozygous individuals exhibit elevated rates of sister chromatid exchange, anaphase DNA bridges and micronuclei. Similar genome and chromosome instability phenotypes are observed in independently derived RMI2 knockout cells. In both patient and knockout cell lines reduced localisation of BLM to ultra fine DNA bridges and FANCD2 at foci linking bridges are observed. Overall, loss of RMI2 produces a partially active BLM complex with mild features of Bloom syndrome.
Bloom Syndrome is an autosomal recessive cancer-prone disorder caused by mutations in the BLM gene. BLM encodes a DNA helicase of the RECQ family, and associates with Topo IIIalpha and BLAP75/RMI1 (BLAP for BLM-associated polypeptide/RecQ-mediated genome instability) to form the BTB (BLM-Topo IIIalpha-BLAP75/RMI1) complex. This complex can resolve the double Holliday junction (dHJ), a DNA intermediate generated during homologous recombination, to yield noncrossover recombinants exclusively. This attribute of the BTB complex likely serves to prevent chromosomal aberrations and rearrangements. Here we report the isolation and characterization of a novel member of the BTB complex termed BLAP18/RMI2. BLAP18/RMI2 contains a putative OB-fold domain, and several lines of evidence suggest that it is essential for BTB complex function. First, the majority of BLAP18/RMI2 exists in complex with Topo IIIalpha and BLAP75/RMI1. Second, depletion of BLAP18/RMI2 results in the destabilization of the BTB complex. Third, BLAP18/RMI2-depleted cells show spontaneous chromosomal breaks and are sensitive to methyl methanesulfonate treatment. Fourth, BLAP18/RMI2 is required to target BLM to chromatin and for the assembly of BLM foci upon hydroxyurea treatment. Finally, BLAP18/RMI2 stimulates the dHJ resolution capability of the BTB complex. Together, these results establish BLAP18/RMI2 as an essential member of the BTB dHJ dissolvasome that is required for the maintenance of a stable genome.