Histone deacetylase inhibition induces apoptosis and autophagy in human neuroblastoma cells

Cancer Lett. 2012 May 1;318(1):42-52. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2011.11.036. Epub 2011 Dec 17.


Neuroblastoma (NB) is the most common solid extracranial tumor in children. Here we showed that trichostatin A, a histone deacetylase inhibitor (HDACi), decreases cell viability in three NB cell lines of different phenotypes. The treatment leads to G2/M-phase arrest, apoptosis and autophagy. Autophagy induction accompanies apoptosis in the most proliferative, N-Myc overexpressing cells. In contrast, autophagy precedes apoptosis and acts as a protective mechanism in the less proliferative, non-N-Myc overexpressing cells. Therefore, the autophagy induction is a relevant event in the NB response to HDACis, and it should be considered in the design of new treatments for this malignancy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetylation / drug effects
  • Apoptosis / drug effects*
  • Autophagy / drug effects*
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cell Cycle / drug effects
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Histone Deacetylases / chemistry
  • Histone Deacetylases / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Hydroxamic Acids / pharmacology*
  • Neuroblastoma / pathology*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors
  • Hydroxamic Acids
  • RNA, Messenger
  • trichostatin A
  • Histone Deacetylases