The Class I HDAC Inhibitor, MS-275, Prevents Oxaliplatin-Induced Chronic Neuropathy and Potentiates Its Antiproliferative Activity in Mice

Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Dec 22;23(1):98. doi: 10.3390/ijms23010098.


Oxaliplatin, the first-line chemotherapeutic agent against colorectal cancer (CRC), induces peripheral neuropathies, which can lead to dose limitation and treatment discontinuation. Downregulation of potassium channels, which involves histone deacetylase (HDAC) activity, has been identified as an important tuner of acute oxaliplatin-induced hypersensitivity. MS-275, a class I histone deacetylase inhibitor (HDACi), prevents acute oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy (OIPN). Moreover, MS-275 exerts anti-tumor activity in several types of cancers, including CRC. We thus hypothesized that MS-275 could exert both a preventive effect against OIPN and potentially a synergistic effect combined with oxaliplatin against CRC development. We first used RNAseq to assess transcriptional changes occurring in DRG neurons from mice treated by repeated injection of oxaliplatin. Moreover, we assessed the effects of MS-275 on chronic oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy development in vivo on APCMin/+ mice and on cancer progression when combined with oxaliplatin, both in vivo on APCMin/+ mice and in a mouse model of an orthotopic allograft of the CT26 cell line as well as in vitro in T84 and HT29 human CRC cell lines. We found 741 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between oxaliplatin- and vehicle-treated animals. While acute OIPN is known as a channelopathy involving HDAC activity, chronic OIPN exerts weak ion channel transcriptional changes and no HDAC expression changes in peripheral neurons from OIPN mice. However, MS-275 prevents the development of sensory neuropathic symptoms induced by repeated oxaliplatin administration in APCMin/+ mice. Moreover, combined with oxaliplatin, MS-275 also exerts synergistic antiproliferative and increased survival effects in CT26-bearing mice. Consistently, combined drug associations exert synergic apoptotic and cell death effects in both T84 and HT29 human CRC cell lines. Our results strongly suggest combining oxaliplatin and MS-275 administration in CRC patients in order to potentiate the antiproliferative action of chemotherapy, while preventing its neurotoxic effect.

Keywords: APCMin/+ mice; CT26 cells; HT29 cells; MS-275; T84 cells; colorectal cancer; histone deacetylase inhibitor; orthotopic model of colorectal cancer; oxaliplatin; peripheral neuropathy.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • Benzamides / pharmacology*
  • Cell Death / drug effects
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects*
  • Female
  • HT29 Cells
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Neurotoxicity Syndromes / drug therapy*
  • Oxaliplatin / pharmacology*
  • Pyridines / pharmacology*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Benzamides
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors
  • Pyridines
  • Oxaliplatin
  • entinostat