Stable siRNA-mediated silencing of antizyme inhibitor: regulation of ornithine decarboxylase activity.Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2005 Mar 04; 328(1):206-12.BB
Ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) is the rate-limiting enzyme involved in the biosynthesis of polyamines essential for cell growth and differentiation. Aberrant upregulation of ODC, however, is widely believed to be a contributing factor in tumorigenesis. Antizyme is a major regulator of ODC, inhibiting ODC activity through the formation of complexes and facilitating degradation of ODC by the 26S proteasome. Moreover, the antizyme inhibitor (AZI) serves as another factor in regulating ODC, by binding to antizyme and releasing ODC from ODC-antizyme complexes. In our previous report, we observed elevated AZI expression in tumor specimens. Therefore, to evaluate the role of AZI in regulating ODC activity in tumors, we successfully down-regulated AZI expression using RNA interference technology in A549 lung cancer cells expressing high levels of AZI. Two AZI siRNAs, which were capable to generate a hairpin dsRNA loop targeting AZI, could successively decrease the expression of AZI. Using biological assays, antizyme activity increased in AZI-siRNA-transfected cells, and ODC levels and activity were reduced as well. Moreover, silencing AZI expression decreased intracellular polyamine levels, reduced cell proliferation, and prolonged population doubling time. Our results directly demonstrate that downregulation of AZI regulates ODC activity, intracellular polyamine levels, and cell growth through regulating antizyme activity. This study also suggests that highly expressed AZI may be partly responsible for increased ODC activity and cellular transformation.