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Proteomics. 2011 Dec;11(23):4529-40. doi: 10.1002/pmic.201000730. Epub 2011 Oct 24.

Dose-dependent proteomic analysis of glioblastoma cancer stem cells upon treatment with γ-secretase inhibitor.

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  • 1Program of Bioinformatics, University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-0650, USA.


Notch signaling has been demonstrated to have a central role in glioblastoma (GBM) cancer stem cells (CSCs) and we have demonstrated recently that Notch pathway blockade by γ-secretase inhibitor (GSI) depletes GBM CSCs and prevents tumor propagation both in vitro and in vivo. In order to understand the proteome alterations involved in this transformation, a dose-dependent quantitative mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomic study has been performed based on the global proteome profiling and a target verification phase where both Immunoassay and a multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) assay are employed. The selection of putative protein candidates for confirmation poses a challenge due to the large number of identifications from the discovery phase. A multilevel filtering strategy together with literature mining is adopted to transmit the most confident candidates along the pipeline. Our results indicate that treating GBM CSCs with GSI induces a phenotype transformation towards non-tumorigenic cells with decreased proliferation and increased differentiation, as well as elevated apoptosis. Suppressed glucose metabolism and attenuated NFR2-mediated oxidative stress response are also suggested from our data, possibly due to their crosstalk with Notch Signaling. Overall, this quantitative proteomic-based dose-dependent work complements our current understanding of the altered signaling events occurring upon the treatment of GSI in GBM CSCs.

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