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Int J Biol Sci 2018; 14(13):1845-1858. doi:10.7150/ijbs.27661

Research Paper

The HDAC Inhibitor Quisinostat (JNJ-26481585) Supresses Hepatocellular Carcinoma alone and Synergistically in Combination with Sorafenib by G0/G1 phase arrest and Apoptosis induction

Bin He1,2,3,4,6*, Longfei Dai1,2,3,4,6*, Xiaoqian Zhang5,6*, Diyu Chen1,2,3,4,6, Jingbang Wu1,2,3,4,6, Xiaode Feng1,2,3,4,6, Yanpeng Zhang1,2,3,4,6, Haiyang Xie1,2,3,4,6, Lin Zhou1,2,3,4,6, Jian Wu1,2,3,4,6✉, Shusen Zheng1,2,3,4,6✉

1. Division of Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Surgery, Department of Surgery, First Affiliated Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University
2. NHFPC Key Laboratory of Combined Multi-organ Transplantation
3. Key Laboratory of the diagnosis and treatment of organ Transplantation, CAMS
4. Key Laboratory of Organ Transplantation, Zhejiang Province
5. State Key Laboratory for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases,
6. Collaborative Innovation Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, The First Affiliated Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310003, China
*Bin He, Longfei Dai and Xiaoqian Zhang contributed equally to this study.

Abstract

The high activity of Histone deacetylases (HDACs) in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) usually positively correlates with poor prognosis of patients. Accordingly histone deacetylases inhibitors (HDACis) are considered to be potential agents treating patients with HCC. In our study, we evaluated effect of quisinostat alone and in combination with sorafenib in HCC cells via inducing G0/G1 phase arrest through PI3K/AKT/p21 pathway and apoptosis by JNK/c-Jun/caspase3 pathway in vitro and in vivo. The proliferation assay and flow cytometry were used to measure the viability, cell cycle and apoptosis. And Western blot assay was carried out to determine expression alternations of related proteins. Moreover HCCLM3 xenograft was further performed to detect antitumor effect of quisinostat in vivo. Here, we found that quisinostat impeded cell proliferation, and remarkably induced G0/G1 phase arrest and apoptosis in HCC cells in a dose-dependent manner. G0/G1 phase arrest was observed by alterations in PI3K/AKT/p21 proteins. Meanwhile the JNK, c-jun and caspase-3 were activated by quisinostat in a dose-dependent manner. Correspondingly quisinostat facilitated G0/G1 cycle arrest and apoptosis in HCC cells through PI3K/AKT/p21 pathways and JNK/c- jun/caspase3 pathways. Moreover, the potent tumor-suppressive effects facilitated by quisinostat, was significantly potentiated by combination with sorafenib in vitro and vivo. The combination treatment of quisinostat and sorafenib markedly suppressed cell proliferation and induced apoptosis in a synergistic manner. Moreover the therapy of quisinostat combined with sorafenib could apparently decrease tumor volume of a HCCLM3 xenograft model. Our study indicated that quisinostat, as a novel chemotherapy for HCC, exhibited excellent antitumor activity in vitro and vivo, which was even enhanced by the addition of sorafenib, implying combination of quisinostat with sorafenib a promising and alternative therapy for patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma.

Keywords: Histone deacetylases (HDACs), Histone deacetylases inhibitors (HDACis), Hepatocellular Carcinoma cells (HCC cells), quisinostat (JNJ-26481585), sorafenib, synergistic effect

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/). See http://ivyspring.com/terms for full terms and conditions.
How to cite this article:
He B, Dai L, Zhang X, Chen D, Wu J, Feng X, Zhang Y, Xie H, Zhou L, Wu J, Zheng S. The HDAC Inhibitor Quisinostat (JNJ-26481585) Supresses Hepatocellular Carcinoma alone and Synergistically in Combination with Sorafenib by G0/G1 phase arrest and Apoptosis induction. Int J Biol Sci 2018; 14(13):1845-1858. doi:10.7150/ijbs.27661. Available from http://www.ijbs.com/v14p1845.htm