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. 2014 Jul 11;449(4):490-5.
doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2014.05.030. Epub 2014 May 15.

Knockdown of TWIST1 Enhances Arsenic Trioxide- And Ionizing Radiation-Induced Cell Death in Lung Cancer Cells by Promoting Mitochondrial Dysfunction

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Knockdown of TWIST1 Enhances Arsenic Trioxide- And Ionizing Radiation-Induced Cell Death in Lung Cancer Cells by Promoting Mitochondrial Dysfunction

Sung-Keum Seo et al. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. .

Abstract

TWIST1 is implicated in the process of epithelial mesenchymal transition, metastasis, stemness, and drug resistance in cancer cells, and therefore is a potential target for cancer therapy. In the present study, we found that knockdown of TWIST1 by small interfering RNA (siRNA) enhanced arsenic trioxide (ATO)- and ionizing radiation (IR)-induced cell death in non-small-cell lung cancer cells. Interestingly, intracellular reactive oxygen species levels were increased in cells treated with TWIST1 siRNA and further increased by co-treatment with ATO or IR. Pretreatment of lung cancer cells with the antioxidant N-acetyl-cysteine markedly suppressed the cell death induced by combined treatment with TWIST1 siRNA and ATO or IR. Moreover, treatment of cells with TWIST1 siRNA induced mitochondrial membrane depolarization and significantly increased mitochondrial fragmentation (fission) and upregulated the fission-related proteins FIS1 and DRP1. Collectively, our results demonstrate that siRNA-mediated TWIST1 knockdown induces mitochondrial dysfunction and enhances IR- and ATO-induced cell death in lung cancer cells.

Keywords: Arsenic trioxide; Irradiation; Mitochondria dysfunction; Reactive oxygen species; TWIST1.

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