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“Metabolic Reprogramming” in Ovarian Cancer Cells Resistant to Cisplatin

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The way cancer cells escape cisplatin-induced apoptosis has not been completely elucidated yet. We questioned the relevance of “metabolic reprogramming” in cisplatin-resistance by studying mitochondrial function and metabolism in human ovarian carcinoma cell lines, cisplatin-sensitive (2008) and -resistant (C13). C13 cells, in comparison to 2008 cells, showed lower apoptotic response to cisplatin exposure, lower basal oxygen consumption (4.2±0.2 vs 6.5±0.7 fmol/cell/min, p< 0.005) and a lower basal transmembrane mitochondrial potential (ΔΨm) (18.7±1.5 vs 32.2±1 MFI p<0.001). Moreover, C13 cells showed a lower sensitivity to rotenone and oligomycin, two mitochondrial respiratory chain inhibitors. To further investigate the impact of mitochondria on cisplatin-resistance, 2008 and C13 cells were depleted of their mitochondrial DNA (rho0-clones). The cytotoxicity of cisplatin was lower in 2008-rho0clones than in 2008 cells (IC50 of 3.56 μM and 0.72 μM, respectively) but similar between C13-rho0 and C13 cells (IC50 of 5.49 μM and 6.49 μM, respectively). The time-course of cell viability in glucose-free galactose medium indicated that C13 cells are more strictly dependent on glucose than 2008 cells. 1H-NMR spectroscopy showed a higher basal content of intracellular glutathione (GSH) and mobile lipids (MLs) in C13 cells as compared to 2008 cells, with higher lipid accumulation mainly within cytoplasmic droplets of the C13 cells. These findings allow us to propose a “metabolic remodelling” of ovarian carcinoma cells to a lipogenic phenotype, which includes alteration of mitochondrial function, as an advantageous mechanism to escape cisplatin-induced apoptosis. This hypothesis is of interest to exploit new pharmacological targets to improve the clinical impact of platinum drugs.

Keywords: 1H-NMR mobile lipids; 2008 cells; C13 cells; Cisplatin; Galactose; Mean fluorescence intensity; Warburg's effect; annexin V; chemotherapy; cisplatin; cisplatin-resistance; cytometer; cytometry assay; fatty acid synthase; fetal bovine serum; galactose; glu-tathione; glucose-free; glutathione; glycolysis; green fluorescence; half maximal inhibitory concentration; mitochondria; mitochondrial DNA; mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation; mobile lipids; oligomycin; oxidative phosphorylation; oxidoreductase; penicillin:streptomycin; phosphorylation pathway; propidium; propidium iodide; rho0 cells; rhodamine-123; spectroscopy; triglycerides

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2011

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  • Current Cancer Drug Targets aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments on the medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, molecular biology, genomics and biochemistry of contemporary molecular drug targets involved in cancer, e.g. disease specific proteins, receptors, enzymes, genes.
    Each issue of the journal contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of current topics on drug targets involved in cancer.
    As the discovery, identification, characterization and validation of novel human drug targets for anti-cancer drug discovery continues to grow; this journal has become essential reading for all pharmaceutical scientists involved in drug discovery and development.

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