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Cancer Lett. 2016 Jan 28;370(2):242-9. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2015.10.032. Epub 2015 Nov 3.

Alpha-fetoprotein is a biomarker of unfolded protein response and altered proteostasis in hepatocellular carcinoma cells exposed to sorafenib.

Author information

1
Service de Biochimie, Centre de Biologie Humaine (CBH), CHU Amiens Sud, Amiens, France.
2
Service de Biochimie, Centre de Biologie Humaine (CBH), CHU Amiens Sud, Amiens, France; EA4666, Université de Picardie Jules Verne (UPJV), Amiens, France.
3
Université de Lille, Lille, France; UMR8161 CNRS, Lille, France; Institut Pasteur de Lille, Lille, France.
4
EA4666, Université de Picardie Jules Verne (UPJV), Amiens, France.
5
EA4294, Université de Picardie Jules Verne (UPJV), Amiens, France.
6
Service de Biochimie, Centre de Biologie Humaine (CBH), CHU Amiens Sud, Amiens, France; EA4666, Université de Picardie Jules Verne (UPJV), Amiens, France. Electronic address: Galmiche.Antoine@chu-amiens.fr.

Abstract

Sorafenib is the treatment of reference for advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). A decrease in the serum levels of Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) is reported to be the biological parameter that is best associated with disease control by sorafenib. In order to provide a biological rationale for the variations of AFP, we analyzed the various steps of AFP production in human HCC cell lines exposed to sorafenib. Sorafenib dramatically reduced the levels of AFP produced by HCC cells independently of its effect on cell viability. The mRNA levels of AFP decreased upon sorafenib treatment, while the AFP protein remained localized in the Golgi apparatus. Sorafenib activated the Regulated Inositol-Requiring Enzyme-1α (IRE-1α) and the PKR-like ER Kinase (PERK)-dependent arms of the Unfolded Protein Response (UPR). The inhibition of IRE-1α partially restored the mRNA levels of AFP upon treatment with sorafenib. The inhibition of both pathways partially prevented the drop in the production of AFP induced by sorafenib. The findings provide new insights on the regulation of AFP, and identify it as a biomarker suitable for the exploration of HCC cell proteostasis in the context of therapeutic targeting.

KEYWORDS:

Alpha-fetoprotein; Hepatocellular carcinoma; Proteostasis; Sorafenib; Unfolded Protein Response (UPR)

PMID:
26546044
DOI:
10.1016/j.canlet.2015.10.032
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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