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Oncol Rep. 2017 Jan;37(1):533-539. doi: 10.3892/or.2016.5271. Epub 2016 Nov 23.

TRAIL overexpression co-regulated by Egr1 and HRE enhances radiosensitivity of hypoxic A549 cells depending on its apoptosis inducing role.

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Department of Radiotherapy, Second Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, Jilin 130041, P.R. China.
Key Laboratory of Radiobiology, Ministry of Health, School of Public Health, Jilin University, Changchun, Jilin 130021, P.R. China.


Ionizing radiation can upregulate the expression levels of TRAIL and enhance tumor cell apoptosis. While Early growth response 1 (Egr1) gene promoter has radiation inducible characteristics, the expression for exogenous gene controlled by Egr1 promoter could be enhanced by ionizing radiation, but its efficiency is limited by tissue hypoxia. Hypoxia response elements (HREs) are important hypoxic response regulatory sequences and sensitivity enhancers. Therefore, we chose TRAIL as the gene radiotherapy to observe whether it is regulated by Egr1 and HER and its effects on A549 cells and its mechanism. The pcDNA3.1-Egr1-TRAIL (pc-E-hsT) and pcDNA3.1-HRE/Egr1-TRAIL (pc-H/E-hsT) plasmids containing Egr1-hsTRAIL and HRE/Egr1-hsTRAIL were transfected into A549 cells, the cells were treated by hypoxia and radiation. The TRAIL mRNA in the cells and protein concentration in the culture supernatants were measured by RT-PCR and ELISA, respectively. Mean lethal dose D0 value was evaluated with colony forming assay. The cell apoptotic rates were analyzed by FCM and TUNEL assay. Expression of DR4, DR5 and cleaved caspase-3 proteins were analyzed by western blotting. It showed that TRAIL mRNA expression and TRAIL concentration all significantly increased under hypoxia and/or radiation. D0 value of pc-H/E‑hsT transfected cells under hypoxia was lowest, indicating more high radiosensitivity. Hypoxia could not cause the pc-E-hsT transfected cell apoptotic rate increase, but there were promoting effects in pc-H/E-hsT transfected cells. DR4 had not obvious change in pc-E-hsT and pc-H/E-hsT transfected cells under normoxic and hypoxic condition, otherwise, DR5 and cleaved caspase-3 increased mostly in pc-H/E-hsT transfected cells under hypoxic condition. TRAIL overexpression was co-regulated by Egr1 and HRE. TRAIL might promote hypoxic A549 cell radiosensitivity and induce apoptosis depending on DR5 to caspase-3 pathways.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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