Journal Article

Evidence that changes in Se-glutathione peroxidase levels affect the sensitivity of human tumour cell lines to n-3 fatty acids.

S A Schønberg, P K Rudra, R Nøding, F Skorpen, K S Bjerve and H E Krokan

in Carcinogenesis

Volume 18, issue 10, pages 1897-1904
Published in print October 1997 | ISSN: 0143-3334
Published online October 1997 | e-ISSN: 1460-2180 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/carcin/18.10.1897
Evidence that changes in Se-glutathione peroxidase levels affect the sensitivity of human tumour cell lines to n-3 fatty acids.

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The human lung adenocarcinoma cell line A-427 is significantly more sensitive to cytotoxic lipid peroxidation products of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) than the human lung adenocarcinoma cell line SK-LU-1, and the glioblastoma cell lines A-172 and U-87 MG. The cytotoxic effect as well as lipid peroxidation were abolished by vitamin E. The differential sensitivities of the cell lines were not correlated to the levels of lipid peroxidation products (measured as the end product malondialdehyde), indicating differences in sensitivities to products of lipid peroxidation. The high sensitivity of A-427 is apparently due to a low level of selenium-dependent glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px), because pretreatment with sodium selenite (250 nM) increased the GSH-Px activity 3- to 4-fold and protected the cells almost completely against the growth inhibitory effect of DHA. Furthermore, 2-phenyl-1,2-benzisoselenazol-3(2H)-one (ebselen) a seleno-organic GSH-Px mimic, suppressed the cytotoxic action of DHA to A-427 in a dose dependent manner. Northern analysis demonstrated that pretreatment with sodium selenite (250 nM) was accompanied by an increased level of GSH-Px mRNA (1.8-fold) in A-427 cells, while the level remained unchanged under the same conditions in DHA/EPA-resistant A-172 cells. In addition, the level of selenophosphate synthetase mRNA (SelD), a key intermediate in tRNA(Sec) formation, increased 1.2- to 1.7-fold in A-427 and A-172 cells after pretreatment with sodium selenite. These results indicate that upregulation of GSH-Px activity by sodium selenite in the EPA/DHA sensitive cell line A-427 may be due to an increase in mRNAs for GSH-Px and a precursor important for formation of tRNA(Sec) which is required for incorporation of selenocysteine in GSH-Px during translation. These results demonstrate an important role for GSH-Px in the cellular defence against cytotoxic lipid peroxidation products. Furthermore, measurement of GSH-Px activities in tumour cells may be one useful biochemical predictor for their sensitivities to polyunsaturated fatty acids.

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Subjects: Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics

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