Growth-inhibitory and chemosensitizing effects of the glutathione-S-transferase-π-activated nitric oxide donor PABA/NO in malignant gliomas

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Abstract

Glutathione-S-transferases (GSTs) are upregulated in malignant gliomas and contribute to their chemoresistance. The nitric oxide (NO) donor PABA/NO (O2-{2,4-dinitro-5-[4-(N-methylamino)benzoyloxy]phenyl} 1-(N,N-dimethylamino)diazen-1-ium-1,2-diolate) generates NO upon selective enzymatic activation by GST-π-inducing selective biological effects in tumors. Tumor cell killing and chemosensitization were observed in a variety of tumors after exposure to GST-activated NO donor drugs. In our project, cytotoxic and chemosensitizing effects of PABA/NO in combination with carboplatin (CPT) and temozolomide (TMZ) were studied in human U87 glioma cellsin vitroandin vivo. U87 glioma cells were exposed to PABA/NO alone or in combination with CPT or TMZ for 24 hr. Cell viability was assessed by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay after 24-hr incubation and 48 hr after drug removal. The antiproliferative effect of PABA/NO was assessed in an intracranial U87 glioma nude rat model comparing subcutaneous administration and intratumoral delivery by convection-enhanced delivery. PABA/NO monotherapy showed a strong dose-dependent growth-inhibitory effect in U87 glioma cellsin vitro, and a strong synergistic effect was observed after concomitant treatment with TMZ, but not with CPT. Systemic and intratumoral PABA/NO administration significantly reduced cell proliferation, but this did not result in prolonged survival in nude rats with intracranial U87 gliomas. PABA/NO has potent antiproliferative effects, sensitizes U87 glioma cells to TMZin vitroand shows somein vivoefficacy. Further studies are still required to consolidate the role of NO donor therapy in glioma treatment.

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