Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.396, No.4, 908-914, 2010
Doxorubicin coupled to penetratin promotes apoptosis in CHO cells by a mechanism involving c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase
Doxorubicin (Dox) has demonstrated potent activity in treating malignant lymphomas but its therapeutic efficacy is hampered by induction of cardiotoxicity. This side effect is related to the ability of the drug to generate reactive oxygen species in cells. Previously, we demonstrated that coupling Dox to penetratin (Pen), a cell penetrating peptide, represent a valuable strategy to overcome drug resistance in CHO cells. In the present study, we evaluated the consequences of the conjugation of Dox to Pen in term of apoptosis induction. When tested on CHO cells, Dox-Pen generated a typical apoptotic phenotype but at lower dose that needed for unconjugated Dox. Cell death induction was associated with chromatin condensation, caspase activation. Bax oligomerisation and release of cytochrome c. By using reactive oxygen species and c-jun NH2-terminal kinase (JNK) inhibitors, we prevented Dox- and Dox-Pen-induced CHO cell death. The chimeric soluble DR5 receptor that inhibits TRAIL induced cell death does not prevent Dox or Dox-Pen-induced cytotoxicity. These observations indicate that conjugation of Dox to cell penetrating peptide does not impair the ability of the drug to trigger cell death through activation of the intrinsic pathway involving c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase but could exhibit less toxic side effects and could warrant its use in clinic. (c) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.