Induction of the connexin 32 gene by epigallocatechin-3-gallate potentiates vinblastine-induced cytotoxicity in human renal carcinoma cells.
Chemotherapy. 2013 ;59(3):192-9. Epub 2013 Dec 3. PMID: 24335094
BACKGROUND/AIM: Enforced expression of the connexin (Cx) 32 gene, a member of the gap junction gene family and a tumor suppressor gene in human renal cell carcinoma (RCC), enhanced vinblastine (VBL)-induced cytotoxicity in RCC cells due to suppression of multidrug resistance 1 (MDR1) expression. Furthermore, in RCC the Cx32 gene is silenced by hypermethylation of CpG islands in a promoter region of the Cx gene. In this study, we investigated if the green tea polyphenol epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) could enhance susceptibility of RCC cells (Caki-1, a human metastatic RCC cell) to VBL.
METHODS: The effects of EGCG on Caki-1 cells were estimated by WST-1 (cell viability), real-time RT-PCR (mRNA level) and immunoblotting (protein level). We estimated the methylation status in the promoter region of the Cx32 gene in RCC cells by methylation-specific PCR. Each protein function was inhibited by small interfering RNA (siRNA) and specific inhibitors.
RESULTS: The EGCG treatment elicited significant upregulation of Cx32 in Caki-1 cells, and the induction of the Cx led to the suppression of MDR1 mRNA expression through inactivation of Src and subsequent activation of c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase (JNK). Chemical sensitivity to VBL in Caki-1 cells was increased by EGCG pretreatment, and this effect was abrogated by siRNA-mediated knockdown of Cx32.
CONCLUSION: This study suggests that the restoration of Cx32 by EGCG pretreatment improves chemical tolerance on VBL in Caki-1 cells via the inactivation of Src and the activation of JNK.