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Duocarmycin SA is a member of a growing class of interesting lead compounds for chemotherapy, distinguished by the manner in which they bind to and react with DNA substrates. The first three-dimensional structure of a DNA adduct of an unnatural enantiomer from this family has been determined by (1)H NMR methods. Comparison to the previously determined structure of the natural enantiomer bound in the same DNA-binding site provides unique insights into the similarities and critical distinctions producing the respective alkylation products and site selectivities. The results also support the hypothesis that the duocarmycin SA alkylation reaction is catalyzed by the binding to DNA, and provide a deeper understanding of the structural basis for this unique mode of activation.
Copyright 2000 Academic Press.
We determined whether down-regulation of the epidermal growth factor-receptor (EGF-R) signaling pathway by oral administration of a novel EGF-R tyrosine kinase inhibitor (PKI166) alone or in combination with gemcitabine (administered i.p.) can inhibit growth and metastasis of human pancreatic carcinoma cells implanted into the pancreas of nude mice. Therapy beginning 7 days after orthotopic injection of L3.6pl human pancreatic cancer cells reduced the volume of pancreatic tumors by 59% in mice treated with gemcitabine only, by 45% in those treated with PKI166 only, and by 85% in those given both drugs. The combination therapy also significantly inhibited lymph node and liver metastasis, which led to a significant increase in overall survival. EGF-R activation was significantly blocked by therapy with PKI166 and was associated with significant reduction in tumor cell production of VEGF and IL-8, which in turn correlated with a significant decrease in microvessel density and an increase in apoptotic endothelial cells. Collectively, our results demonstrate that oral administration of an EGF-R tyrosine kinase inhibitor decreased growth and metastasis of human pancreatic cancer growing orthotopically in nude mice and increased survival. The therapeutic effects were mediated in part by inhibition of tumor-induced angiogenesis attributable to a decrease in production of proangiogenic molecules by tumor cells and increased apoptosis of tumor-associated endothelial cells.
Pharmacologic inhibition of the K(ATP) channel with sulfonylureas or the adenosine receptor with methylxanthines has been shown to attenuate ischemic preconditioning (IPC). Both classes of compounds are widely used clinically, and several reports have demonstrated adverse outcomes in patients taking sulfonylureas. Recently inhibition of the sodium/hydrogen exchanger isozyme-1 (NHE-1) has been shown to be equal to IPC at providing myocardial protection in dogs and may be an alternative to IPC in patients taking sulfonylureas or methylxanthines. However, no experiments have examined the pharmacologic overlap between IPC and NHE-1 inhibitor-mediated cardioprotection in dogs. With an in vivo canine infarct model in which the left anterior descending coronary artery was occluded for 60 min and reperfused for 3 h, neither the K(ATP) channel antagonist glibenclamide nor the adenosine-receptor antagonist PD 115199 attenuated NHE-1 inhibitor-mediated reduction in infarct size expressed as a percentage of the area at risk produced by EMD 85131 (Control, 24.2 +/- 3.6%; EMD 85131, 6.4 +/- 2.3%; PD 115199 + EMD 85131, 6.6 +/- 2.4%; glibenclamide + EMD 85131, 3.5 +/- 1.2%). NHE-1 inhibition and IPC do not overlap pharmacologically, and NHE-1 inhibition may be an alternative for cardioprotection in patients taking sulfonylureas or methylxanthines.
Vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) exist in either a contractile or a synthetic phenotype in vitro and in vivo. The molecular mechanisms regulating phenotypic modulation are unknown. Previous studies have suggested that the serine/threonine protein kinase mediator of nitric oxide (NO) and cyclic GMP (cGMP) signaling, the cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG) promotes modulation to the contractile phenotype in cultured rat aortic smooth muscle cells (RASMC). Because of the potential importance of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAP kinase) pathways in VSMC proliferation and phenotypic modulation, the effects of PKG expression in PKG-deficient and PKG-expressing adult RASMC on MAP kinases were examined. In PKG-expressing adult RASMC, 8-para-chlorophenylthio-cGMP activated extracellular signal- regulated kinases (ERK1/2) and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK). The major effect of PKG activation was increased activation by MAP kinase kinase (MEK). The cAMP analog, 8-Br-cAMP inhibited ERK1/2 activation in PKG-deficient and PKG-expressing RASMC but had no effect on JNK activity. The effects of PKG on ERK and JNK activity were additive with those of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), suggesting that PKG activates MEK through a pathway not used by PDGF. The stimulatory effects of cGMP on ERK and JNK activation were also observed in low-passaged, contractile RASMC still expressing endogenous PKG, suggesting that the effects of PKG expression were not artifacts of cell transfections. These results suggest that in contractile adult RASMC, NO-cGMP signaling increases MAP kinase activity. Increased activation of these MAP kinase pathways may be one mechanism by which cGMP and PKG activation mediate c-fos induction and increased proliferation of contractile adult RASMC.
The second messenger pathways linking receptor activation at the membrane to changes in the nucleus are just beginning to be unraveled in neurons. The work presented here attempts to identify in striatal neurons the pathways that mediate cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) phosphorylation and gene expression in response to NMDA receptor activation. We investigated the phosphorylation of the transcription factor CREB, the expression of the immediate early gene c-fos, and the induction of a transfected reporter gene under the transcriptional control of CREB after stimulation of ionotropic glutamate receptors. We found that neither AMPA/kainate receptors nor NMDA receptors were able to stimulate independently a second messenger pathway that led to CREB phosphorylation or c-fos gene expression. Instead, we saw a consecutive pathway from AMPA/kainate receptors to NMDA receptors and from NMDA receptors to L-type Ca(2+) channels. AMPA/kainate receptors were involved in relieving the Mg(2+) block of NMDA receptors, and NMDA receptors triggered the opening of L-type Ca(2+) channels. The second messenger pathway that activates CREB phosphorylation and c-fos gene expression is likely activated by Ca(2+) entry through L-type Ca(2+) channels. We conclude that in primary striatal neurons glutamate-mediated signal transduction is dependent on functional L-type Ca(2+) channels.
Prostaglandin H(2) has been demonstrated to rearrange to gamma-ketoaldehyde prostanoids termed levuglandins E(2) and D(2). As gamma-dicarbonyl molecules, the levuglandins react readily with amines. We sought to characterize the adducts formed by synthetic levuglandin E(2) and prostaglandin H(2)-derived levuglandins with lysine. Using liquid chromatography/electrospray mass spectrometry, we found that the reaction predominantly produces lysyl-levuglandin Schiff base adducts that readily dehydrate to form lysyl-anhydrolevuglandin Schiff base adducts. These adducts were characterized by examination of their mass spectra, by analysis of the products of their reaction with sodium cyanide, sodium borohydride, and methoxylamine and by the mass spectra derived from collision-induced dissociation in tandem mass spectrometry. The Schiff base adducts also are formed on peptide-bound lysyl residues. In addition, synthetic levuglandin E(2) and prostaglandin H(2)-derived levuglandins produced pyrrole-derived lactam and hydroxylactam adducts upon reaction with lysine as determined by tandem mass spectrometry. A marked time dependence in the formation of these adducts was observed: Schiff base adducts formed very rapidly and robustly, whereas the lactam and hydroxylactam adducts formed more slowly but accumulated throughout the time of the experiment. These findings provide a basis for investigating protein modification induced by oxygenation of arachidonic acid by the cyclooxygenases.
Administration of inhibitors of the Na+/H+ exchanger (NHE) have been shown to produce cardioprotective effects in a number of animal models of ischemia-reperfusion injury; however, controversy still exists as to the efficacy of these agents when administered just before reperfusion. To address this question, the efficacy of several doses of a new selective NHE-1 isoform inhibitor (IC50 for inhibition of 22Na uptake in NHE-1 expressing mouse fibroblast cells = 10.4 +/- 1.0 nM), EMD 85131 (2-methyl-5-methylsulfonyl-1-(1-pyrrollyl)-benzoyl-guanidine), was tested in a canine infarct model in which the left anterior descending coronary artery was occluded for 60 min followed by 3 hr of reperfusion. EMD 85131 (0.75 or 3.0 mg/kg) was infused for 15 min before left anterior descending occlusion or 15 min before reperfusion. Infarct size was determined by use of the triphenyltetrazolium chloride histochemical stain and was expressed as a percent of the area at risk. EMD 85131 (0.75 or 3.0 mg/kg) administered before left anterior descending occlusion produced a marked (*P < .05) and dose-related reduction in IS/AAR (24.3 +/- 3.6, control; 9.3 +/- 3.4%, EMD 0.75; 6.4 +/- 2.3%, EMD 3.0). These two doses of EMD also produced significant (*P < .05) reductions in infarct size/area at risk (12.2 +/- 2.1%, EMD 0.75; 13.0 +/- 2.9%, EMD 3.0) when administered 15 min before reperfusion. These results suggest that selective NHE-1 inhibitors are able to markedly reduce infarct size when given before or during ischemia and also suggest that these compounds may have clinical utility when administered after the initiation of an ischemic insult.
The three-dimensional solution structure of duocarmycin SA in complex with d-(G1ACTAATTGAC11).d-(G12TCATTAGTC22) has been determined by restrained molecular dynamics and relaxation matrix calculations using experimental NOE distance and torsion angle constraints derived from 1H NMR spectroscopy. The final input data consisted of a total of 858 distance and 189 dihedral angle constraints, an average of 46 constraints per residue. In the ensemble of 20 final structures, there were no distance constraint violations >0.06 A or torsion angle violations >0.8 degrees. The average pairwise root mean square deviation (RMSD) over all 20 structures for the binding site region is 0.57 A (average RMSD from the mean: 0.39 A). Although the DNA is very B-like, the sugar-phosphate backbone torsion angles beta, epsilon, and zeta are distorted from standard values in the binding site region. The structure reveals site-specific bonding of duocarmycin SA at the N3 position of adenine 19 in the AT-rich minor groove of the duplex and binding stabilization via hydrophobic interactions. Comparisons have been made to the structure of a closely related complex of duocarmycin A bound to an AT-rich DNA duplex. These results provide insights into critical aspects of the alkylation site selectivity and source of catalysis of the DNA alkylating agents, and the unusual stability of the resulting adducts.
Copyright 1997 Academic Press Limited.
The effects of cyclic GMP (cGMP) and activation of cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG) on the phosphorylation of the inositol 1,4, 5-trisphosphate (IP3) receptor were examined in intact rat aorta using the technique of back phosphorylation. Aorta treated with the nitric oxide donors, S-nitroso-N-acetylpenicillamine and sodium nitroprusside, or the selective PKG activator, 8-(4-para-chlorophenylthio)-cGMP (8-CPT-cGMP), demonstrated increased IP3 receptor phosphorylation in situ, which was both time- and concentration-dependent with a stoichiometry of 0.5 mol of phosphate/mol of receptor above control. Treatment of aorta with the adenyl cyclase activator, forskolin, also demonstrated increased phosphorylation of the IP3 receptor on the PKG site, although the selective cAMP-dependent protein kinase activator, 8-(4-para-chlorophenylthio)-cAMP (8-CPT-cAMP), did not increase the phosphorylation of the IP3 receptor. Moreover, the PKG selective inhibitor, KT 5823, inhibited both sodium nitroprusside and forskolin-induced IP3 receptor phosphorylation more potently than the selective cAMP-dependent protein kinase inhibitor, KT 5720, suggesting that PKG mediates the increase in IP3 receptor phosphorylation by both cyclic nucleotides in intact aorta. These results provide further support for the notion that PKG is activated by both cAMP and cGMP in intact vascular smooth muscle and that PKG performs a critical role in cyclic nucleotide-dependent relaxation of blood vessels.
The mechanism of oxidation of alkylpyrroles (1a-d) by molecular oxygen in the presence of nucleophiles is explored. Contrary to previous reports, oxidation of these pyrroles resulted in dimers with both the aromatic rings intact. In the presence of additional nucleophiles these pyrroles entered into substitution reactions. With 2-mercaptoethanol the site of substitution on 1a was the 3-position rather than the side chain. The first-order rate constant for this reaction in acetonitrile with excess oxygen was found to be (7.8 +/- 1.2) x 10(-7) s-1. The rate was unaffected by the presence of either BHT or catechol. Replacing hydrogens at all the potential sites of reaction by deuterium (as in 1aD) did not reduce the rate of substitution. However, the product suffered loss of deuterium from all sites. These observations support a mechanism involving the formation of a complex 20 between the pyrrole and triplet oxygen. Electron transfer from the pyrrole to oxygen in the rate-limiting step is followed by the generation of pyrrolylmethyl intermediate 23 that can react with available nucleophiles including unoxidized pyrroles.