Identification and Development of Novel Compounds for the Treatment of Human Cancers
AuthorCarey, Steven Spencer
AdvisorHurley, Laurence H
Committee ChairHurley, Laurence H
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractAlthough some progress has been made in the treatment of cancer over the last sixty years, the majority of chemotherapeutics has fallen short. Because general chemotherapies that target DNA replication have only a limited efficacy and significant non-target side-effects, a new paradigm for cancer drug development has been adopted. Using a molecular targeted approach, new gene and protein targets have been identified and the development of chemotherapies that are specific to these targets has already begun. In this study, compounds that interact with two key cancer targets, the G-quadruplex of the c-Myc promoter and p-glycoprotein, have been investigated. By developing such compounds, improvements in treatment efficacy is anticipated with an aspiration for decreased mortality attributable to cancer.Formation of DNA secondary structures, such as the G-quadruplex, in the NHE III1 region of the c-Myc promoter has been shown to repress c-Myc transcription. Because c-Myc is an oncogene that is overexpressed in a variety of cancers, stabilization of the G-quadruplex by small molecules would be advantageous in cancer treatment. Using Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer, with Taq Polymerase Stop assays for confirmation, a group of compounds were identified that stabilize the c-Myc G-quadruplex structure. Using a colon cancer model, two compounds were shown to decrease c-Myc gene and protein expression. Also, exposure to the compounds for 48 hours results in an induction of caspase-3, indicative of apoptosis. Furthermore, surface plasmon resonance suggests that compound-induced stabilization of the c-Myc G-quadruplex can prevent sustained binding of the regulatory protein NM23-H2 by increasing its dissociation from the G-quadruplex. This may subsequently prevent unraveling of the G-quadruplex.Because resistance to chemotherapy reduces its effectiveness, development of multidrug resistance (MDR) modulators was also studied. Psorospermin is a topoisomerase II-directed DNA alkylating agent active against MDR cell lines. In a study examining the mechanism of psorospermin's P-glycoprotein modulation, Flow Cytometry demonstrated that doxorubicin-resistant multiple myeloma cells pre-treated with psorospermin enhanced intracellular retention of doxorubicin. Because neither transcription of mdr1 nor translation of P-glycoprotein was downregulated by psorospermin, resistance reversal is most likely due to a direct interaction between the side chain of psorospermin and P-glycoprotein, inhibiting drug efflux.
Degree ProgramCancer Biology