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Glutathione-S-transferase Pi1 (GSTP1) and multidrug resistance protein 1 (MRP1) are overexpressed in melanoma, a skin cancer notoriously resistant to all current modalities of cancer therapy. To investigate the involvement of these detoxifying enzymes in the drug resistance of melanoma, an inducible (Tet-On system) antisense (AS) RNA strategy was used to specifically inhibit GSTP1 expression in A375 cells, a human melanoma cell line expressing high levels of GSTP1 and MRP1. Stable transfectant clones were established and analysed for GSTP1 inhibition by AS RNA. The clone A375-ASPi1, presenting a specific 40% inhibition of GSTP1 expression in the presence of doxycycline, was selected. Lowering the GSTP1 level significantly increased (about 3.3-fold) the sensitivity of A375-ASPi1 cells to etoposide. Inhibitors of glutathione synthesis (BSO), GSTs (curcumin, ethacrynic acid), and also of MRPs (MK571, sulphinpyrazone) improved the sensitising effect of GSTP1 AS RNA. All these inhibitors had stronger sensitising effects in control cells expressing high GSTP1 level (A375-ASPi1 cells in the absence of doxycycline). In conclusion, GSTP1 can act in a combined fashion with MRP1 to protect melanoma cells from toxic effects of etoposide.


P Depeille, P Cuq, I Passagne, A Evrard, L Vian. Combined effects of GSTP1 and MRP1 in melanoma drug resistance. British journal of cancer. 2005 Jul 25;93(2):216-23

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PMID: 15999103

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