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, 11 (8), 915-23

Downregulation of Bcl-2, FLIP or IAPs (XIAP and Survivin) by siRNAs Sensitizes Resistant Melanoma Cells to Apo2L/TRAIL-induced Apoptosis

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Downregulation of Bcl-2, FLIP or IAPs (XIAP and Survivin) by siRNAs Sensitizes Resistant Melanoma Cells to Apo2L/TRAIL-induced Apoptosis

M Chawla-Sarkar et al. Cell Death Differ.

Abstract

Melanoma cells are relatively resistant to Apo2L/TRAIL (TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand). We postulated that resistance might result from higher expression of inhibitors of apoptosis including Bcl-2, FLIP (FLICE-like inhibitory protein) or IAPs such as XIAP (X-linked inhibitor of apoptosis) or survivin. Compared to scrambled or mismatch controls, targeting individual inhibitors with siRNA (si-Bcl-2, si-XIAP, si-FLIP or si-Surv), followed by Apo2L/TRAIL resulted in marked increase in apoptosis in melanoma cells. Compared to Bcl-2 or FLIP, siRNAs against XIAP and survivin were most potent in sensitizing melanoma cells. A similar substantial increase in apoptosis was seen in renal carcinoma cells (SKRC-45, Caki-2), following the inhibition of either XIAP or survivin by siRNAs. Apo2L/TRAIL treatment in IAP-targeted cells resulted in cleavage of Bid, activation of caspase-9 and cleavage of PARP (poly ADP-ribose polymerase). Thus, Apo2L/TRAIL resistance can be overcome by interfering with expression of inhibitors of apoptosis regulating both extrinsic (death receptor) or intrinsic (mitochondrial) pathways of apoptosis in melanoma cells.

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