Research Papers:

Survivin inhibitor YM155 suppresses gastric cancer xenograft growth in mice without affecting normal tissues

Xiao Jiao Cheng, Jia Cheng Lin, Yan Fei Ding, Liming Zhu, Jing Ye and Shui Ping Tu _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:7096-7109. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.6898

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Xiao Jiao Cheng1, Jia Cheng Lin1, Yan Fei Ding2, Liming Zhu1, Jing Ye3 and Shui Ping Tu1

1 Department of Oncology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, China

2 Department of Gastroenterology, Ruijin Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, China

3 Pôle Sino-Français de Recherches en Sciences du Vivant et Génomique, Ruijin Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, China

Correspondence to:

Shui Ping Tu, email:

Keywords: YM155, survivin, gastric cancer, xancer stem cells, cancer therapy

Received: September 04, 2015 Accepted: December 31, 2015 Published: January 12, 2016


Survivin overexpression is associated with poor prognosis of human gastric cancer, and is a target for gastric cancer therapy. YM155 is originally identified as a specific inhibitor of survivin. In this study, we investigated the antitumor effect of YM155 on human gastric cancer. Our results showed that YM155 treatment significantly inhibited cell proliferation, reduced colony formation and induced apoptosis of gastric cancer cells in a dose-dependent manner. Accordingly, YM155 treatment significantly decreased survivin expression without affecting XIAP expression and increased the cleavage of apoptosis-associated proteins caspase 3, 7, 8, 9. YM155 significantly inhibited sphere formation of gastric cancer cells, suppressed expansion and growth of the formed spheres (cancer stem cell-like cells, CSCs) and downregulated the protein levels of β-catenin, c-Myc, Cyclin D1 and CD44 in gastric cancer cells. YM155 infusion at 5 mg/kg/day for 7 days markedly inhibited growth of gastric cancer xenograft in a nude mouse model. Immunohistochemistry staining and Western Blot showed that YM155 treatment inhibited expression of survivin and CD44, induced apoptosis and reduced CD44+ CSCs in xenograft tumor tissues in vivo. No obvious pathological changes were observed in organs (e.g. heart, liver, lung and kidney) in YM155-treated mice. Our results demonstrated that YM155 inhibits cell proliferation, induces cell apoptosis, reduces cancer stem cell expansion, and inhibits xenograft tumor growth in gastric cancer cells. Our results elucidate a new mechanism by which YM155 inhibits gastric cancer growth by inhibition of CSCs. YM155 may be a promising agent for gastric cancer treatment.

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