Opposite effects of cell differentiation and apoptosis on Ap3A/Ap4A ratio in human cell cultures

FEBS Lett. 1997 Sep 29;415(2):160-2. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(97)01086-7.


The biological role of diadenosine oligophosphates (DAOP) remains obscure in spite of numerous attempts to solve this enigma. It is known that Ap3A contrary to Ap4A accumulates in human cultured cells treated with interferons (IFNs) alpha or gamma. Since IFNs are considered as antiproliferative regulators, we assumed that different cell status may be associated with varying intracellular levels of DAOP. Promyelocytic human cell line HL60 induced by phorbol ester (TPA) to differentiate to macrophage-like cells in culture exhibits a profound loss of proliferative potential. Here we have shown a 4-5-fold increase in Ap3A concentration in HL60 cells induced by TPA, similar to the effect of IFN, while the Ap4A concentration remained unchanged. On the contrary, in cells undergoing apoptosis induced by VP16, a topoisomerase II inhibitor, the Ap3A concentration considerably decreased, while the Ap4A concentration increased. These findings combined with earlier results suggest an involvement of the Ap3A/Ap4A ratio in signal transduction pathways controlling the cell status.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Apoptosis*
  • Cell Differentiation*
  • Chromatography, Thin Layer
  • Dinucleoside Phosphates / analysis
  • Dinucleoside Phosphates / metabolism*
  • Electrophoresis, Agar Gel
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • HL-60 Cells
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Interferons / pharmacology
  • Podophyllotoxin / pharmacology
  • Signal Transduction
  • Tetradecanoylphorbol Acetate / pharmacology
  • Topoisomerase II Inhibitors


  • Dinucleoside Phosphates
  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Topoisomerase II Inhibitors
  • diadenosine tetraphosphate
  • diadenosine triphosphate
  • Interferons
  • Podophyllotoxin
  • Tetradecanoylphorbol Acetate