Purpose: We examined the effects of a heat shock protein (hsp) inhibitor, N-formyl-3, 4-methylenedioxy-gamma-butyrolactam (KNK437), on the radiosensitivity of human glioblastoma cells (A-172).
Materials and methods: Effects of KNK437 on radiosensitivity and cell cycle regulation were examined using colony formation assays, flow cytometry analysis and Western blot analysis. KNK437 was added to the culture medium 1 h before X-ray irradiation at 50, 100 or 300 microM final concentration.
Results: KNK437 induced the resistance of A-172 cells and human squamous cell carcinoma cells (SAS) to X-rays. Flow cytometry analysis showed that KNK437 alone efficiently induced A-172 cells to enter G2/M phase. Though A-172 cells irradiated with X-rays at 6 Gy showed no clear change in the cell cycle, the irradiated cells were induced to enter G2/M phase when they had been pre-treated with KNK437. By Western blot analysis, p53, 14-3-3sigma and cell division cycle 2 (cdc2) proteins that function in G2 arrest were observed to be persistently accumulated or phosphorylated in KNK437-treated cells, regardless of X-ray irradiation.
Conclusions: These results show that KNK437 causes cells to be resistant to radiation, and that this might be correlated with maintenance of G2 arrest in the cell cycle regulation.