Mechanistic study of triazole based aminodiol derivatives in leukemic cells—crosstalk between mitochondrial stress-involved apoptosis and autophagy

She Hung Chan, Wohn Jenn Leu, Sharada Prasanna Swain, Jui Ling Hsu, Duen Ren Hou, Jih Hwa Guh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Various derivatives that mimic ceramide structures by introducing a triazole to connect the aminodiol moiety and long alkyl chain have been synthesized and screened for their anti-leukemia activity. SPS8 stood out among the derivatives, showing cytotoxic selectivity between leukemic cell lines and human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (about ten times). DAPI nuclear staining and H&E staining revealed DNA fragmentation under the action of SPS8. SPS8 induced an increase in intracellular Ca2+ levels and mitochondrial stress in HL-60 cells identified by the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) examination, and altered expressions of Bcl-2 family proteins. SPS8 also induced autophagy through the detection of Atg5, beclin-1, and LC3 II protein expression, as well as TEM examination. Chloroquine, an autophagy inhibitor, promoted SPS8-induced apoptosis, suggesting the cytoprotective role of autophagy in hindering SPS8 from apoptosis. Furthermore, SPS8 was shown to alter the expressions of a variety of genes using a microarray analysis and volcano plot filtering. A further cellular signaling pathways analysis suggested that SPS8 induced several cellular processes in HL-60, including the sterol biosynthesis process and cholesterol biosynthesis process, and inhibited some cellular pathways, in which STAT3 was the most critical nuclear factor. Further identification revealed that SPS8 inhibited the phosphorylation of STAT3, representing the loss of cytoprotective activity. In conclusion, the data suggest that SPS8 induces both apoptosis and autophagy in leukemic cells, in which autophagy plays a cytoprotective role in impeding apoptosis. Moreover, the inhibition of STAT3 phosphorylation may support SPS8-induced anti-leukemic activity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2470
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Volume21
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2020

Keywords

  • Autophagy
  • Leukemic cells
  • Mitochondrial damage
  • STAT3
  • Triazole based aminodiol derivative

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