Sirolimus induces apoptosis and reverses multidrug resistance in human osteosarcoma cells in vitro via increasing microRNA-34b expression


Aim:Multi-drug resistance poses a critical bottleneck in chemotherapy. Given the up-regulation of mTOR pathway in many chemoresistant cancers, we examined whether sirolimus (rapamycin), a first generation mTOR inhibitor, might induce human osteosarcoma (OS) cell apoptosis and increase the sensitivity of OS cells to anticancer drugs in vitro.Methods:Human OS cell line MG63/ADM was treated with sirolimus alone or in combination with doxorubicin (ADM), gemcitabine (GEM) or methotrexate (MTX). Cell proliferation and apoptosis were detected using CCK-8 assay and flow cytometry, respectively. MiRNAs in the cells were analyzed with miRNA microarray. The targets of miR-34b were determined based on TargetScan analysis and luciferase reporter assays. The expression of relevant mRNA and proteins was measured using qRT-PCR and Western blotting. MiR-34, PAK1 and ABCB1 levels in 40 tissue samples of OS patients were analyzed using qRT-PCR and in situ hybridization assays.Results:Sirolimus (1–100 nmol/L) dose-dependently suppressed the cell proliferation (IC50=23.97 nmol/L) and induced apoptosis. Sirolimus (10 nmol/L) significantly sensitized the cells to anticancer drugs, leading to decreased IC50 values of ADM, GEM and MTX (from 25.48, 621.41 and 21.72 μmol/L to 4.93, 73.92 and 6.77 μmol/L, respectively). Treatment of with sirolimus increased miR-34b levels by a factor of 7.5 in the cells. Upregulation of miR-34b also induced apoptosis and increased the sensitivity of the cells to the anticancer drugs, whereas transfection with miR-34b-AMO, an inhibitor of miR-34b, reversed the anti-proliferation effect of sirolimus. Two key regulators of cell cycle, apoptosis and multiple drug resistance, PAK1 and ABCB1, were demonstrated to be the direct targets of miR-34b. In 40 tissue samples of OS patients, significantly higher miR-34 ISH score and lower PAK5 and ABCB1 scores were detected in the chemo-sensitive group.Conclusion:Sirolimus increases the sensitivity of human OS cells to anticancer drugs in vitro by up-regulating miR-34b interacting with PAK1 and ABCB1. A low miR-34 level is an indicator of poor prognosis in OS patients.

DOI: 10.1038/aps.2015.153

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@article{Zhou2016SirolimusIA, title={Sirolimus induces apoptosis and reverses multidrug resistance in human osteosarcoma cells in vitro via increasing microRNA-34b expression}, author={Yan Zhou and Rui-hua Zhao and Kuo-Fu Tseng and Kun-peng Li and Zhi-gang Lu and Y. B. Liu and Kun Han and Zhi-Hua Gan and Shu-Chen Lin and Haiyan Hu and Da-liu Min}, journal={Acta Pharmacologica Sinica}, year={2016}, volume={37}, pages={519-529} }