Research Papers:

A peptide derived from apoptin inhibits glioma growth

Liqiu Zhang, Hengyu Zhao, Zhongqi Cui, Yueshan Lv, Wenjia Zhang, Xiaoyu Ma, Jianan Zhang, Banghao Sun, Danyang Zhou and Lijie Yuan _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:31119-31132. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.16094

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Liqiu Zhang2,*, Hengyu Zhao3,*, Zhongqi Cui1, Yueshan Lv4, Wenjia Zhang3, Xiaoyu Ma5, Jianan Zhang1, Banghao Sun1, Danyang Zhou1, Lijie Yuan1

1Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Daqing Campus, Harbin Medical University, Daqing, Heilongjiang, Daqing, P.R. China

2Teaching Experiment Center of Biotechnology, Harbin Medical University, Harbin, P.R. China

3Daqing Oilfield General Hospital, Daqing, P.R. China

4Department of Immunology, Daqing Campus, Harbin Medical University, Daqing, Heilongjiang, Daqing, P.R. China

5Beijing Sun Palace Community Health Center, China

*Co-first authors

Correspondence to:

Lijie Yuan, email: [email protected]

Keywords: HSP70, apoptin, glioma, structural transformation

Received: August 19, 2016     Accepted: March 02, 2017     Published: March 10, 2017


Glioblastoma (GBM) is associated with poor prognosis due to its resistance to surgery, irradiation, and conventional chemotherapy. Thus, efficient therapeutic approaches for the treatment of GBM are urgently needed. HSP70 is an antiapoptotic protein that participates in the inhibition of both mitochondrial and membrane receptor apoptosis pathways and is highly expressed in glioma tissues. Here, we investigated a derivative of apoptin; specifically, a chicken anemia viral protein with selective toxicity toward cancer cells that can inhibit hyperactive molecules, including HSP70. Our earlier studies demonstrated that apoptin directly binds to the promoter of HSP70 and inhibits HSP70 transcription, which contributes to HSP70 downregulation. This study provides the first demonstration of the therapeutic potential of an apoptin-derived peptide for the treatment of GBM by identifying the minimal region of the apoptin domain required for interaction with the heat-shock element (HSE). This apoptin-derived peptide (ADP) inhibits glioma cell proliferation and tumor growth as well as exhibits an increased ability to promote apoptosis in GBM cells compared with rapamycin and temozolomide. ADP treatment inhibited xenograft tumor growth and increased the overall health and survival of nude mice implanted with GBM cells. These effects were measured in tumors obtained from cell lines and were observed in both intracranial and subcutaneous xenografts. In conclusion, we provide the first demonstration that ADP has therapeutic potential for the treatment of human GBM. Specifically, this study suggests that ADP is a potent candidate for drug development based on its favorable toxicity and pharmacokinetic profiles as well as its time- and cost-saving benefits.

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