Dihydroartemisinin Sensitizes Human Lung Adenocarcinoma A549 Cells to Arsenic Trioxide via Apoptosis.

Author(s) Chen, H.; Gu, S.; Dai, H.; Li, X.; Zhang, Z.
Journal Biol Trace Elem Res
Date Published 2017 Mar 06
Abstract

Recent studies have shown that arsenic trioxide (ATO) is an effective anti-cancer drug for treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia and other types of human cancer. However, we have found that lung cancer cells constantly develop a high level of resistance to ATO. In this study, we have explored a possibility of combination of dihydroartemisinin (DHA) and ATO treatments to reduce ATO resistance of lung cancer cells. We determined the combinatory effects of DHA and ATO on cytotoxicity of human lung adenocarcinoma (A549) cells. We showed that co-exposure to DHA and ATO of A549 cells synergistically increased the cytotoxicity and apoptotic cell death in the cells. We found that the synergistic effect of DHA and ATO in promoting apoptosis mainly resulted from increased cellular level of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and DNA damage. ATO alone only exerted moderate growth inhibitory effects on A549 cells. The results indicate that DHA can significantly sensitize ATO-induced cytotoxicity of A549 lung cancer cells through apoptosis mediated by ROS-induced DNA damage. Interestingly, we found that the combinatory treatment of DHA and ATO did not result in significant adverse effects in normal human bronchial epithelial (HBE) cells. Our results further provide evidence for the potential application of combinatory effects of DHA and ATO as a safe therapy for human lung cancer.

DOI 10.1007/s12011-017-0975-5
ISSN 1559-0720
Citation Chen H, Gu S, Dai H, Li X, Zhang Z. Dihydroartemisinin Sensitizes Human Lung Adenocarcinoma A549 Cells to Arsenic Trioxide via Apoptosis. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2017.

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