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NVP-BEZ235, a dual PI3K/mTOR inhibitor synergistically potentiates the antitumor effects of cisplatin in bladder cancer cells

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The PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway is a prototypic survival pathway and constitutively activated in many malignant conditions. Moreover, activation of the PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway confers resistance to various cancer therapies and is often associated with a poor prognosis. In this study, we explored the antitumor effect of NVP-BEZ235, a dual PI3K/mTOR inhibitor in cisplatin-resistant human bladder cancer cells and its synergistic interaction with cisplatin. A human bladder cancer cell line with cisplatin resistance was exposed to escalating doses of NVP-BEZ235 alone or in combination with cisplatin and antitumor effects was determined by the CCK-8 assay. Based on a dose-response study, synergistic interaction between NVP-BEZ235 and cisplatin was evaluated by combination index (CI), three-dimensional model and clonogenic assay. The combination of NVP-BEZ235 and cisplatin caused significant synergistic antitumor effect in cisplatin-resistant bladder cancer cells over a wide dose range and reduced the IC50 of NVP-BEZ235 and cisplatin by 5.6- and 3.6-fold, respectively. Three-dimensional synergy analysis resulted in a synergy volume of 388.25 µM/ml2% indicating a strong synergistic effect of combination therapy. The combination therapy caused cell cycle arrest and caspase-dependent apoptosis. Although NVP-BEZ235 suppressed PI3K/mTOR signaling without any paradoxical induction of Akt activity, it caused MEK/ERK pathway activation. The present study demonstrated that the PI3K/mTOR dual inhibitor NVP-BEZ235 can synergistically potentiate the antitumor effects of cisplatin in cisplatin-resistant bladder cancer cells though the suppression of cell cycle progression and the survival pathway as well as induction of caspase-dependent apoptosis.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Urology, College of Medicine, Korea University, Guro Hospital, Seoul, Republic of Korea 2: Department of Urology, School of Medicine, Seoul National University, Bundang Hospital, Gyeonggido, Seoul, Republic of Korea 3: Department of Urology, College of Medicine, Korea University, Anam Hospital, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Publication date: January 1, 2014

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  • The International Journal of Oncology provides an international forum for the publication of the latest, cutting-edge research in the broad area of oncology and cancer treatment. The journal accepts original high quality works and reviews on all aspects of oncology research including carcinogenesis, metastasis, epidemiology, chemotherapy and viral oncology. Through fair and efficient peer review, the journal is dedicated to publishing top tier research in the field, offering authors rapid publication as well as high standards of copy-editing and production. The International Journal of Oncology is published on a monthly basis in both print and early online.
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