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Anticancer Drugs. 2013 Mar;24(3):278-90. doi: 10.1097/CAD.0b013e32835cbde7.

Preventing MEK1 activation influences the responses of human osteosarcoma cells to bone morphogenetic proteins 2 and 9.

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Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnological Engineering, Laboratory of Cell-Biomaterial Biohybrid Systems, University of Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Qu├ębec, J1K 2R1, Canada.


It was recently suggested that bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-2 may be useful for treating osteosarcoma cells. BMP-9, which has been patented to treat breast and prostate cancers, has a higher osteoinductive potential than BMP-2. Peptides derived from the knuckle epitope of BMPs (pBMPs) also induced osteogenic differentiation. However, the effect of BMP-9 and pBMPs on osteosarcoma cells is unclear. We analyzed the effects of BMP-2, BMP-9, pBMP-2, and pBMP-9 on the behavior of human MG-63 and SaOS-2 osteosarcoma cells. An inhibitor of MEK1 activation (PD98059) that prevents downstream extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) phosphorylation and a specific inhibitor of p38 were also used as mitogen activated protein kinase-targeting therapy is being investigated as a treatment modality for osteosarcoma. BMP-2 and BMP-9 (1.92 nmol/l) induced the phosphorylation of Smad1/5/8 in both osteosarcoma cells within 1 h but had different effects on mitogen activated protein kinase pathways. Whereas BMP-2 mainly activated ERK1/2, BMP-9 phosphorylated p38 within 1 h. pBMP-2 did not activate either the Smad or ERK/p38, whereas pBMP-9, like BMP-9, induced both Smad1/5/8 and p38 phosphorylation. p38 activation by BMP-9 or pBMP-9 was also enhanced by PD98059. However, BMP-2 or BMP-9 increased the amounts of distal-less homeobox 5 and Osterix mRNAs in SaOS-2 cells within 6 h, whereas pBMP-9 had no effect. PD98059 promoted the highest level of Osterix mRNA in SaOS-2 cells incubated with BMP-2 or BMP-9, whereas p38 inhibitor had no effect. Furthermore, PD98059 induced the lowest proliferation of MG-63 cells incubated with BMP-2, whereas p38 inhibitor did not affect the proliferation of either osteosarcoma cell line. Therefore a combination of BMP-2 or BMP-9 and an inhibitor of MEK1 may be a promising tool for regulating osteosarcoma cell behavior.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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