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Int J Oncol 2013 Nov;43(5):1481-6

Iron metabolism disturbances in the MCF-7 human breast cancer cells with acquired resistance to doxorubicin and cisplatin.

Chekhun VF, Lukyanova NY, Burlaka CA, Bezdenezhnykh NA, Shpyleva SI, Tryndyak VP, Beland FA, Pogribny IP


The development of resistance of cancer cells to therapeutic agents is the major obstacle in the succesful treatment of breast cancer and the main cause of breast cancer recurrence. The results of several studies have demonstrated an important role of altered cellular iron metabolism in the progression of breast cancer and suggested that iron metabolism may be involved in the acquisition of a cancer cell drug-resistant phenotype. In the present study, we show that human MCF-7 breast cancer cells with an acquired resistance to the chemotherapeutic drugs doxorubicin (MCF-7/DOX) and cisplatin (MCF-7/CDDP) exhibited substantial alterations in the intracellular iron content and levels of iron-regulatory proteins involved in the cellular uptake, storage and export of iron, especially in profoundly increased levels of ferritin light chain (FTL) protein. The increased levels of FTL in breast cancer indicate that FTL may be used as a diagnostic and prognostic marker for breast cancer. Additionally, we demonstrate that targeted downregulation of FTL protein by the microRNA miR-133a increases sensitivity of MCF-7/DOX and MCF-7/CDDP cells to doxorubicin and cisplatin. These results suggest that correction of iron metabolism abnormalities may substantially improve the efficiency of breast cancer treatment.

Category: Journal Article
PubMed ID: #23969999 DOI: 10.3892/ijo.2013.2063
Includes FDA Authors from Scientific Area(s): Toxicological Research
Entry Created: 2013-10-27