The histone deacetylase inhibitor sodium butyrate in combination with brain-derived neurotrophic factor reduces the viability of DAOY human medulloblastoma cells

Childs Nerv Syst. 2011 Jun;27(6):897-901. doi: 10.1007/s00381-011-1439-4. Epub 2011 Apr 6.


Purpose: Histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACis) are a promising class of anticancer agents for the treatment of brain tumors. HDACis can increase the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in brain cells. We have previously shown that BDNF reduces the viability of medulloblastoma cells. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of the HDACi sodium butyrate (NaB) combined with human recombinant BDNF (hrBDNF), on the viability of human medulloblastoma cell lines.

Methods: DAOY and ONS76 medulloblastoma cells were treated with NaB, hrBDNF, or NaB combined with hrBDNF. Cell viability was measured with the MTT assay.

Results: NaB combined with hrBDNF significantly reduced the viability of DAOY medulloblastoma cells. In ONS76 cells, NaB alone reduced viability, but the effect was not potentiated by hrBDNF.

Conclusion: These findings provide early evidence for a rationale supporting further evaluation of HDACis and BDNF as a new combinatorial approach to inhibit the growth of medulloblastoma.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor / administration & dosage*
  • Butyrates / administration & dosage*
  • Butyrates / chemistry
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cerebellar Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Cerebellar Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / administration & dosage*
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / chemistry
  • Humans
  • Medulloblastoma / drug therapy
  • Medulloblastoma / pathology*


  • Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor
  • Butyrates
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors