The effect of alpha-phenyl-N-t-butylnitrone on ionizing radiation-induced apoptosis in U937 cells.Free Radic Res. 2005 Dec; 39(12):1325-33.FR
Ionizing radiation induces the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), which play an important causative role in apoptotic cell death. alpha-Phenyl-N-t-butylnitrone (PBN) is one of the most widely used spin-trapping compounds for investigating the existence of free radicals in biological systems. We investigated the effects of PBN on ionizing radiation-induced apoptosis in U937 cells. Upon exposure to 2 Gy of gamma-irradiation, there was a distinct difference between the control cells and the cells pre-treated with 2 mM PBN for 2 h in regard to apoptotic parameters, cellular redox status, mitochondria function and oxidative damage to cells. PBN effectively suppressed morphological evidence of apoptosis and DNA fragmentation in U937 cells exposed to ionizing radiation. The [GSSG]/[GSH+GSSG] ratio and the generation of intracellular ROS were higher and the [NADPH]/[NADP+ +NADPH] ratio was lower in control cells compared to PBN-treated cells. The ionizing radiation-induced mitochondrial damage reflected by the altered mitochondrial permeability transition, the increase in the accumulation of ROS, and the reduction of ATP production were significantly higher in control cells compared to PBN-treated cells. PBN pre-treated cells showed significant inhibition of apoptotic features such as activation of caspase-3, up-regulation of Bax and p53, and down-regulation of Bcl-2 compared to control cells upon exposure to ionizing radiation. This study indicates that PBN may play an important role in regulating the apoptosis induced by ionizing radiation presumably through scavenging of ROS.