Send to

Choose Destination
Oncogene. 2009 Feb 12;28(6):781-91. doi: 10.1038/onc.2008.436. Epub 2008 Dec 8.

Salermide, a Sirtuin inhibitor with a strong cancer-specific proapoptotic effect.

Author information

Cancer Epigenetics Laboratory, Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO), Madrid, Spain.

Erratum in

  • Oncogene. 2009 Feb 26;28(8):1168. Inhof, A [corrected to Imhof, A].


Sirtuin 1 (Sirt1) and Sirtuin 2 (Sirt2) belong to the family of NAD+ (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide-positive)-dependent class III histone deacetylases and are involved in regulating lifespan. As cancer is a disease of ageing, targeting Sirtuins is emerging as a promising antitumour strategy. Here we present Salermide (N-{3-[(2-hydroxy-naphthalen-1-ylmethylene)-amino]-phenyl}-2-phenyl-propionamide), a reverse amide with a strong in vitro inhibitory effect on Sirt1 and Sirt2. Salermide was well tolerated by mice at concentrations up to 100 muM and prompted tumour-specific cell death in a wide range of human cancer cell lines. The antitumour activity of Salermide was primarily because of a massive induction of apoptosis. This was independent of global tubulin and K16H4 acetylation, which ruled out a putative Sirt2-mediated apoptotic pathway and suggested an in vivo mechanism of action through Sirt1. Consistently with this, RNA interference-mediated knockdown of Sirt1, but not Sirt2, induced apoptosis in cancer cells. Although p53 has been reported to be a target of Sirt1, genetic p53 knockdowns showed that the Sirt1-dependent proapoptotic effect of Salermide is p53-independent. We were finally able to ascribe the apoptotic effect of Salermide to the reactivation of proapoptotic genes epigenetically repressed exclusively in cancer cells by Sirt1. Taken together, our results underline Salermide's promise as an anticancer drug and provide evidence for the molecular mechanism through which Sirt1 is involved in human tumorigenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group
Loading ...
Support Center