E2F1-dependent pathways are involved in amonafide analogue 7-d-induced DNA damage, G2/M arrest, and apoptosis in p53-deficient K562 cells.J Cell Biochem. 2012 Oct; 113(10):3165-77.JC
The E2F1 gene well known is its pivotal role in regulating the entry from G1 to S phase, while the salvage antitumoral pathway which implicates it, especially in the absence of p53, is not fully characterized. We therefore attempted to identify the up- and down-stream events involved in the activation of the E2F1-dependent pro-apoptotic pathway. For this purpose, a amonafide analogue, 7-d (2-(3-(2-(Dimethylamino)ethylamino)propyl)-6-(dodecylamino)-1H-benzo[de]isoquinoline-1,3(2H)-dione) was screened, which exhibited high antitumor activity against p53-deficient human Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML) K562 cells. Analysis of flow cytometry and western blots of K562 cells treated with 7-d revealed an appreciable G2/M cycle arrest and apoptosis in a dose and time-dependent manner via p53-independent pathway. A striking increase in "Comet tail" formation and γ-H2AX expression showed that DNA double strand breaks (DSB) were caused by 7-d treatment. ATM/ATR signaling was reported to connect E2F1 induction with apoptosis in response to DNA damage. Indeed, 7-d-induced G2/M arrest and apoptosis were antagonized by ATM/ATR signaling inhibitor, Caffeine, which suggested that ATM/ATR signaling was activated by 7-d treatment. Furthermore, the increased expression of E2F1, p73, and Apaf-1 and p73 dissociation from HDM2 was induced by 7-d treatment, however, knockout of E2F1 expression reversed p73, Apaf-1, and p21(Cip1/WAF1) expression, reactivated cell cycle progression, and inhibited 7-d-induced apoptosis. Altogether our results for the first time indicate that 7-d mediates its growth inhibitory effects on CML p53-deficient cells via the activation of an E2F1-dependent mitochondrial and cell cycle checkpoint signaling pathway which subsequently targets p73, Apaf-1, and p21(Cip1/WAF1).