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The effects of N-acetyl cysteine on the MG132 proteasome inhibitor-treated lung cancer cells in relation to cell growth, reactive oxygen species and glutathione

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MG132 as a proteasome inhibitor has been shown to induce apoptotic cell death through formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Here, we investigated the effects of N-acetyl cysteine (NAC; a well-known antioxidant), L-buthionine sulfoximine (BSO; an inhibitor of GSH synthesis) or diethyldithiocarbamate (DDC; an inhibitor of Cu/Zn-SOD) on MG132-treated Calu-6 or A549 lung cancer cells in relation to cell growth, ROS and GSH levels. MG132 inhibited the growth of Calu-6 and A549 cells at 24 h. MG132 induced apoptosis in both cell lines, which was accompanied by the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP; ΔΨm). ROS levels including O2·− were increased in both MG132-treated lung cells. MG132 also induced GSH depletion in both lung cell types. Treatment with 10 µM BSO or 1 µM DDC affected ROS and GSH levels in MG132-treated Calu-6 cells. However, these changes did not influence cell growth and death in the cells. NAC prevented cell growth inhibition and death in MG132-treated lung cells, which was accompanied by decreased ROS, but not by decreased GSH depletion. In conclusion, the changes of ROS and GSH by MG132, NAC, BSO or DDC were partially related to cell growth and death in the lung cancer cell lines Calu-6 and A549.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Physiology, Medical School, Centers for Healthcare Technology Development Institutefor Medical Sciences, Chonbuk National University, JeonJu 561-180, Republic of Korea

Publication date: April 1, 2010

More about this publication?
  • The International Journal of Molecular Medicine is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of high quality studies related to the molecular mechanisms of human disease. The journal welcomes research on all aspects of molecular and clinical research, ranging from biochemistry to immunology, pathology, genetics, human genomics, microbiology, molecular pathogenesis, molecular cardiology, molecular surgery and molecular psychology.

    The International Journal of Molecular Medicine aims to provide an insight for researchers within the community in regard to developing molecular tools and identifying molecular targets for the diagnosis and treatment of a diverse number of human diseases.
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