Senescence-associated tumor growth is promoted by 12-Lipoxygenase

Aging (Albany NY). 2022 Feb 14;14(3):1068-1086. doi: 10.18632/aging.203890. Epub 2022 Feb 14.


Radiation therapy is a commonly used treatment modality for cancer. Although effective in providing local tumor control, radiation causes oxidative stress, inflammation, immunomodulatory and mitogenic cytokine production, extracellular matrix production, and premature senescence in lung parenchyma. The senescence associated secretory phenotype (SASP) can promote inflammation and stimulate alterations in the surrounding tissue. Therefore, we hypothesized that radiation-induced senescent parenchymal cells in irradiated lung would enhance tumor growth. Using a murine syngeneic tumor model of melanoma and non-small cell lung cancer lung metastasis, we demonstrate that radiation causes a significant increase in markers of premature senescence in lung parenchyma within 4 to 8 weeks. Further, injection of B16F0 (melanoma) or Lewis Lung carcinoma (epidermoid lung cancer) cells at these time points after radiation results in an increase in the number and size of pulmonary tumor nodules relative to unirradiated mice. Treatment of irradiated mice with a senolytic agent (ABT-737) or agents that prevent senescence (rapamycin, INK-128) was sufficient to reduce radiation-induced lung parenchymal senescence and to mitigate radiation-enhanced tumor growth. These agents abrogated radiation-induced expression of 12-Lipoxygenase (12-LOX), a molecule implicated in several deleterious effects of senescence. Deficiency of 12-LOX prevented radiation-enhanced tumor growth. Together, these data demonstrate the pro-tumorigenic role of radiation-induced senescence, introduces the dual TORC inhibitor INK-128 as an effective agent for prevention of radiation-induced normal tissue senescence, and identifies senescence-associated 12-LOX activity as an important component of the pro-tumorigenic irradiated tissue microenvironment. These studies suggest that combining senotherapeutic agents with radiotherapy may decrease post-therapy tumor growth.

Keywords: Alox12; metastasis; radiation; senescence; senolytic.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arachidonate 12-Lipoxygenase / pharmacology
  • Carcinoma, Lewis Lung* / enzymology
  • Carcinoma, Lewis Lung* / pathology
  • Cell Growth Processes
  • Cellular Senescence
  • Lung Neoplasms* / enzymology
  • Lung Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Melanoma, Experimental* / enzymology
  • Melanoma, Experimental* / pathology
  • Mice
  • Tumor Microenvironment


  • Arachidonate 12-Lipoxygenase