Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Blood. 2003 Aug 1;102(3):1028-34. Epub 2003 Apr 3.

Inhibition of NF-kappaB essentially contributes to arsenic-induced apoptosis.

Author information

  • 1Max-Delbrück-Center for Molecular Medicine, FG Dörken, Robert-Rössle-Str. 10, D-13125 Berlin, Germany.


Arsenic can induce apoptosis and is an efficient drug for the treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia. Currently, clinical studies are investigating arsenic as a therapeutic agent for a variety of malignancies. In this study, Hodgkin/Reed-Sternberg (HRS) cell lines served as model systems to characterize the role of nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB) in arsenic-induced apoptosis. Arsenic rapidly down-regulated constitutive IkappaB kinase (IKK) as well as NF-kappaB activity and induced apoptosis in HRS cell lines containing functional IkappaB proteins. In these cell lines, apoptosis was blocked by inhibition of caspase-8 and caspase-3-like activity. Furthermore, arsenic treatment down-regulated NF-kappaB target genes, including tumor necrosis factor-alphareceptor-associated factor 1 (TRAF1), c-IAP2, interleukin-13 (IL-13), and CCR7. In contrast, cell lines with mutated, functionally inactive IkappaB proteins or with a weak constitutive IKK/NF-kappaB activity showed no alteration of the NF-kappaB activity and were resistant to arsenic-induced apoptosis. A direct role of the NF-kappaB pathway in arsenic-induced apoptosis is shown by transient overexpression of NF-kappaB-p65 in L540Cy HRS cells, which protected the cells from arsenic-induced apoptosis. In addition, treatment of NOD/SCID mice with arsenic trioxide induced a dramatic reduction of xenotransplanted L540Cy Hodgkin tumors concomitant with NF-kappaB inhibition. We conclude that inhibition of NF-kappaB contributes to arsenic-induced apoptosis. Furthermore, pharmacologic inhibition of the IKK/NF-kappaB activity might be a powerful treatment option for Hodgkin lymphoma.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Support Center