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Int J Oncol. 2012 Apr;40(4):1291-7. doi: 10.3892/ijo.2011.1303. Epub 2011 Dec 15.

RNAi-mediated knockdown of ERK1/2 inhibits cell proliferation and invasion and increases chemosensitivity to cisplatin in human osteosarcoma U2-OS cells in vitro.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedics, Second Affiliated Hospital, Shandong University, 247 Beiyuan Da Street, Jinan 250033, PR China.


Osteosarcoma is the most common primary malignancy of the bone. There have been some advances in surgical and chemotherapeutic strategies, but it is still a tumor with a high mortality rate in children and young adults. Mitogen-activated protein kinase/extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK) pathway plays an essential role in the development and progression of various tumors. ERK1/2 is a key component of this pathway and hyperactivated in different tumors including osteosarcoma. This study aimed to investigate whether downregulation of ERK1/2 by siRNA (small interfering RNA) could inhibit cell proliferation and invasion and increase chemosensitivity to cisplatin in human osteosarcoma U2-OS cells in vitro. Results showed that the downregulation of ERK1/2 expression by siRNA in human osteosarcoma cells significantly inhibited cell proliferation and invasion in vitro. Furthermore, ERK1/2 knockdown led to cell arrest in the G1/G0 phase of the cell cycle, and eventual apoptosis and chemosensitivity enhancement in tumor cells. Our data reveal that RNAi-mediated downregulation of ERK1/2 expression can lead to potent antitumor activity and chemosensitizing effects in human osteosarcoma.

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