Concentration-dependent effect of fumonisin B1 on apoptosis in oesophageal cancer cells

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The geographical distribution of oesophageal cancer is linked to the exposure of fumonisin B1 (FB1), a mycotoxin produced by fungi that contaminates staple food worldwide. Non-genotoxic carcinogens like FB1 disturb homeostasis through increased cell proliferation or suppression of apoptosis. This study investigated the involvement of FB1 (0–20 μM) in spindle-shaped N-cadherin (+) CD45 (−) osteoblastic (SNO) cell death. Cell viability and death were assessed using the MTS and Annexin V-Fluos assays, respectively. Caspase activities were determined luminometrically and the comet assay assessed DNA damage. Induction of oxoguanine glycosylase 1 (OGG1) was measured using quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction (qPCR), while cleaved poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 (PARP-1) and Bax were determined by western blotting. Cell viability and PARP-1 cleavage were not affected by 1.25 μM FB1, but phosphatidylserine externalization, Bax protein expression, caspase activity, comet tail length and OGG1 transcripts were increased. The reduced cell viability in 10 μM FB1-treated cells was accompanied by corresponding increases in externalized phosphatidylserine, Bax, caspase-3/7 activity and cleaved PARP-1. The OGG1 transcripts were not significantly increased, but comet tails were increased. Bax, caspase-3/7 activities and cleaved PARP-1 were inhibited at 20 μM FB1. In addition, the OGG1 transcript levels were decreased (p < 0.0001) along with comet lengths (p < 0.0001). This study showed that FB1-induced apoptosis in SNO cells may be caspase-dependent or caspase-independent; the pathway used depends on the exposure concentration.

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