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ACS Med Chem Lett. 2011 Aug 31;2(11):870-874.

Inhibition of DNA Synthesis by a Platinum-Acridine Hybrid Agent Leads to Potent Cell Kill in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.

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Department of Chemistry, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina 27109, United States.


The platinum-acridine anti-cancer agent [PtCl(en)(LH)](NO(3))(2) (1) (en = ethane-1,2-diamine, LH = N-(2-(acridin-9-ylamino)ethyl)-N-methylpropionimidamide, acridinium cation) and the clinical drug cisplatin were studied in chemoresistant non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines for their cytotoxic potency and cell-kill mechanisms. In the three cell lines tested (NCI-H460, NCI-H522, and NCI-H1435) compound 1 shows a pronounced cytotoxic enhancement of 40-200-fold compared to cisplatin at inhibitory concentrations reaching the low-nanomolar range. Based on changes in cell adhesion and cell morphology, monitored in real time by impedance measurements, compound 1 kills NCI-H460 cells significantly more efficiently than cisplatin at equitoxic concentrations. Flow cytometry analysis of NCI-H460 cells reveals a robust S-phase arrest of cells treated with compound 1, whereas cells treated with cisplatin progress to G2/M of the cell cycle. A pronounced inhibition of DNA replication in 75% of viable cells is observed in NCI-H460 cells treated with compound 1 at an IC(90) molar concentration for 48 h, based on the reduced incorporation of the fluorophore-clickable nucleoside analogue 5-ethynyl-2´-deoxyuridine (EdU) into newly synthesized DNA. The distinct cell-cycle perturbations and cell-kill potential of compound 1 are discussed in the light of the DNA interactions of this agent and its potential to overcome cisplatin resistance in NSCLC.

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