Induction of MRP1 and gamma-glutamylcysteine synthetase gene expression by interleukin 1beta is mediated by nitric oxide-related signalings in human colorectal cancer cells

J Cell Physiol. 2000 Nov;185(2):293-301. doi: 10.1002/1097-4652(200011)185:2<293::AID-JCP14>3.0.CO;2-C.


Treatment of human colorectal cancer cells HT29 with interleukin 1beta (IL-1beta) induces expression of the multidrug resistance protein (MRP1) gene encoding the ATP-dependent glutathione S-conjugate export (GS-X) pump and the gamma-glutamylcysteine synthetase (gamma-GCSh) gene encoding heavy (catalytic) subunit of gamma-glutamylcysteine synthetase, the rate-limiting enzyme for the biosynthesis of glutathione (GSH). The induction can be suppressed by N(G)-methyl-L-arginine, a specific inhibitor of nitric oxide synthase (NOS). These results suggest that IL-1beta-mediated MRP1 and gamma-GCSh induction involve nitric oxide (NO) -related signaling. Further supports to the involvement of NO in the induction of MRP1 and gamma-GCSh expression are made by the following observations. (i) Expression of MRP1 and gamma-GCSh genes were induced by treating the cells with NO donors, i.e., S-nitro-N-acetyl-D,L-penicillamide (SNAP) and S-nitroso-L-glutathione, in a concentration-dependent manner. (ii) Ectopic expression of inducible NOS (iNOS) activity by transfecting expressible recombinant iNOS cDNA encoding functional iNOS but not the nonfunctional version resulted in elevated expression of MRP1 and gamma-GCSh. We also demonstrated that HT-29 cells treated with either 1L-1beta or SNAP induced ceramide production, and addition of C2 or C6 ceramides into cultured HT-29 cells resulted in induction of gamma-GCSh but not MRP1 expression. Collectively, our results demonstrate that induction of MRP1 and gamma-GCSh by IL-1beta is regulated, at least in part, by an NO-related signaling, and induction of gamma-GCSh is by NO-related ceramide signaling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters / genetics*
  • Ceramides / genetics
  • Ceramides / physiology
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Glutamate-Cysteine Ligase / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-1 / pharmacology*
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Proteins
  • Nitric Oxide / physiology*
  • Nitric Oxide Donors / pharmacology
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase / metabolism
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • Transfection
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporters
  • Ceramides
  • Interleukin-1
  • Multidrug Resistance-Associated Proteins
  • Nitric Oxide Donors
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Nitric Oxide
  • NOS2 protein, human
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II
  • Glutamate-Cysteine Ligase