Effect of the FE2 + chelation by 2,2′-dipyridyl in the doxorubicin-induced lethality in breast tumor cell lines

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Breast cancer cells may exhibit changes in iron homeostasis, which results in increased labile iron pool (LIP) levels. Several studies highlight the crucial role of high LIP levels in the maintenance of tumor cell physiology. Iron chelators have been tested in anticancer therapy in combination with chemotherapeutic agents, to improve drug efficacy. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of 2,2′-dipyridyl (DIP), a Fe2 + chelator, in combination with doxorubicin (DOX) in breast tumor cells. The maximum concentration of DIP that did not significantly reduce the viability of MDA-MB-231 cells was 10 μM and for MCF-7 cells was 50 μM. We observed that MCF-7 had higher LIP levels than MDA-MB-231 cells. DIP alone increased ROS generation in MCF-7 cells, and DIP pretreatment reduced ROS generation induced by DOX treatment. In conclusion, the increase in MCF-7 cell viability induced by DIP pretreatment in DOX-treated cells seems to be related to an increase in the cellular antioxidant capacity and the iron chelator did not improve drug efficacy in the two breast tumor cell lines analyzed.

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