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The complex formed by two members of the S100 calcium-binding protein family, S100A8/A9, exerts apoptosis-inducing activity in various cells of different origins. Here, we present evidence that the underlying molecular mechanisms involve both programmed cell death I (PCD I, apoptosis) and PCD II (autophagy)-like death. Treatment of cells with S100A8/A9 caused the increase of Beclin-1 expression as well as Atg12-Atg5 formation. S100A8/A9-induced cell death was partially inhibited by the specific PI3-kinase class III inhibitor, 3-methyladenine (3-MA), and by the vacuole H(+)-ATPase inhibitor, bafilomycin-A1 (Baf-A1). S100A8/A9 provoked the translocation of BNIP3, a BH3 only pro-apoptotic Bcl2 family member, to mitochondria. Consistent with this finding, DeltaTM-BNIP3 overexpression partially inhibited S100A8/A9-induced cell death, decreased reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation, and partially protected against the decrease in mitochondrial transmembrane potential in S100A8/A9-treated cells. In addition, either DeltaTM-BNIP3 overexpression or N-acetyl-L-cysteine co-treatment decreased lysosomal activation in cells treated with S100A8/A9. Our data indicate that S100A8/A9-promoted cell death occurs through the cross-talk of mitochondria and lysosomes via ROS and the process involves BNIP3.