Synergistic Antiproliferative Effects of Combined γ -Tocotrienol and PPAR γ Antagonist Treatment Are Mediated through PPAR γ -Independent Mechanisms in Breast Cancer Cells

PPAR Res. 2014;2014:439146. doi: 10.1155/2014/439146. Epub 2014 Mar 4.


Previous findings showed that the anticancer effects of combined γ -tocotrienol and peroxisome proliferator activated receptor γ (PPAR γ ) antagonist treatment caused a large reduction in PPAR γ expression. However, other studies suggest that the antiproliferative effects of γ -tocotrienol and/or PPAR γ antagonists are mediated, at least in part, through PPAR γ -independent mechanism(s). Studies were conducted to characterize the role of PPAR γ in mediating the effects of combined treatment of γ -tocotrienol with PPAR γ agonists or antagonists on the growth of PPAR γ negative +SA mammary cells and PPAR γ -positive and PPAR γ -silenced MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells. Combined treatment of γ -tocotrienol with PPAR γ antagonist decreased, while combined treatment of γ -tocotrienol with PPAR γ agonist increased, growth of all cancer cells. However, treatment with high doses of 15d-PGJ2, an endogenous natural ligand for PPAR γ , had no effect on cancer cell growth. Western blot and qRT-PCR studies showed that the growth inhibitory effects of combined γ -tocotrienol and PPAR γ antagonist treatment decreased cyclooxygenase (COX-2), prostaglandin synthase (PGDS), and prostaglandin D2 (PGD2) synthesis. In conclusion, the anticancer effects of combined γ -tocotrienol and PPAR γ antagonists treatment in PPAR γ negative/silenced breast cancer cells are mediated through PPAR γ -independent mechanisms that are associated with a downregulation in COX-2, PGDS, and PGD2 synthesis.