Cisplatin-induced apoptosis in epithelial ovarian cancer cells is in part a consequence of suppressed Xiap expression and upregulation of the Fas/FasL system. Changes in the expression of these 'cell death' and 'cell survival' genes lead to activation of caspase-3, and cleavage of MDM2 and FAK. Failure of cancer cells to maintain a balance in the expression of these genes in favor of apoptotic cell death may be an important factor of chemoresistance. Xiap may be a novel target for gene therapy of human ovarian epithelial cancer and, dependent on P53 status, expression of Xiap antisense alone or in combination with wild-type P53 sense may offer a new approach for the treatment of the chemoresistant cancer.
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