4HPR-X radiation mechanisms of interactions in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells in vitro

Melita Maria Nasca, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death. However, poor survival using conventional therapies fuel the search for more rational interventions. The objective of this study was to design and implement a 4HPR-radiation interaction model in NSCLC, employing a traditional clinical modality (radiation), a relatively new, therapeutically unexplored agent (4HPR) and rationally combining them based on molecular mechanistic findings pertaining to their interactions. To test the hypothesis that 4HPR sensitizes cells to radiation-induced cell death via G2+M accumulation, we designed a working model consisting of H522 adenocarcinoma cells (p53, K-ras mutated) derived from an NSCLC patient; 4HPR at concentrations up to 10 μM; and X radiation up to 6 Gy generated by a patient-dedicated Phillips RT-250 X ray unit at 250 KV, 15 mA, 1.85 Gy/min. We found that 4HPR produced time- and dose-dependent morphological changes, growth inhibition, and DNA damage-inducing enhancement of reactive oxygen species. A transient G2+M accumulation of cells maximal at 24 h of continuous 4HPR exposure was used for irradiation time scheduling. Our data demonstrated enhanced cell death (both apoptotic and necrotic) in irradiated cells pre-treated with 4HPR versus those with either stressor alone. 4HPR's effect of increased NSCLC cells' radioresponse was confirmed by clonogenic assay. To explore these practical findings from a molecular mechanistic perspective, we further investigated and showed that levels of cyclin B1 and p34cdc2 kinase—both components of the mitosis promoting factor (MPF) regulating the G2/M transition—did not change following 4HPR treatment. Likewise, cdc25C phosphatase was not altered. However, enhanced p34cdc2 phosphorylation on its Thr14Tyr15 residues—indicative of its inactivation and increased expression of MPF negative regulators chk1 and wee1 kinases—were supportive of explaining 4HPR-treated cells' accumulation. Hence, p34cdc2 phosphorylation, chk1, and wee1 warrant further evaluation as potential molecular targets for 4HPR-X radiation combination. In summary, we (1) demonstrated that 4HPR not only induces cell death by itself, but also increases NSCLC cells' subsequent radioresponse, indicative of potential clinical applicability, and (2) for the first time, shed light on deciphering 4HPR-X radiation molecular mechanisms of interaction, including the finding of 4HPR's role as a p34cdc2 inactivator via Thr14Tyr15 phosphorylation.

Subject Area

Oncology|Molecular biology|Biomedical research

Recommended Citation

Nasca, Melita Maria, "4HPR-X radiation mechanisms of interactions in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells in vitro" (2002). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI3046065.