Mechanisms of nordihydroguaiaretic acid-induced growth inhibition and apoptosis in human cancer cells.
Br J Cancer. 2002 Apr 8 ;86(7):1188-96. PMID: 11953870
Lipoxygenase metabolites of arachidonic acid can act as growth promoting factors for various cancer cell lines. Here we demonstrate that the 5-lipoxygenase inhibitor nordihydroguaiaretic acid potently inhibits anchorage-independent growth of human pancreatic and cervical cancer cells in soft agar and delays growth of pancreatic and cervical tumours established in athymic mice. Furthermore, nordihydroguaiaretic acid induces apoptosis of these cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. Potential mechanisms mediating these effects of nordihydroguaiaretic acid were examined. Nordihydroguaiaretic acid had no inhibitory effect on growth and survival signals such as tyrosine phosphorylation of the epidermal growth factor receptor or basal and growth factor-stimulated activities of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2, p70(s6k) and AKT but selectively inhibited expression of cyclin D1 in the cancer cells. In addition, treatment with nordihydroguaiaretic acid lead to a disruption of the filamentous actin cytoskeleton in human pancreatic and cervical cancer cells which was accompanied by the activation of Jun-NH(2)-terminal kinase and p38(mapk). Similar effects were obtained by treatment of the cancer cells with cytochalasin D. These results suggest that nordihydroguaiaretic acid induces anoikis-like apoptosis as a result of disruption of the actin cytoskeleton in association with the activation of stress activated protein kinases. In conclusion, nordihydroguaiaretic acid could constitute a lead compound in the development of novel therapeutic agents for various types of cancer.