Complete elimination of colorectal tumor xenograft by combined manganese superoxide dismutase with tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand gene virotherapy

Yanhong Zhang, Jinfa Gu, Lili Zhao, Lingfeng He, Wenbin Qian, Jinhui Wang, Yigang Wang, Qijun Qian, Cheng Qian, Jian Wu, Xin Yuan Liu
Cancer Research 2006 April 15, 66 (8): 4291-8
Manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) is a latent tumor suppressor gene. To investigate the therapeutic effect of MnSOD and its mechanisms, a replication-competent recombinant adenovirus with E1B 55-kDa gene deletion (ZD55) was constructed, and human MnSOD and tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) genes were inserted to form ZD55-MnSOD and ZD55-TRAIL. ZD55-MnSOD exhibited an inhibition in tumor cell growth approximately 1,000-fold greater than Ad-MnSOD. ZD55-TRAIL was shown to induce the MnSOD expression in SW620 cells. Accordingly, by the combined use of ZD55-MnSOD with ZD55-TRAIL (i.e., "dual gene virotherapy"), all established colorectal tumor xenografts were completely eliminated in nude mice. The evidence exists that the MnSOD overexpression led to a slower tumor cell growth both in vitro and in vivo as a result of apoptosis caused by MnSOD and TRAIL overexpression after adenoviral transduction. Our results showed that the production of hydrogen peroxide derived from MnSOD dismutation activated caspase-8, which might down-regulate Bcl-2 expression and induce Bax translocation to mitochondria. Subsequently, Bax translocation enhanced the release of apoptosis-initiating factor and cytochrome c. Cytochrome c finally triggered apoptosis by activating caspase-9 and caspase-3 in apoptotic cascade. Bax-mediated apoptosis seems to be dependent on caspase-8 activation because the inhibition of caspase-8 prevented Bid processing and Bax translocation. In conclusion, our dual gene virotherapy completely eliminated colorectal tumor xenografts via enhanced apoptosis, and this novel strategy points toward a new direction of cancer treatment.

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