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    2,9-Bis[2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)ethoxy]-6-{4-[2-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)ethoxy] phenyl}-11H-indeno[1,2-c]quinoline-11-one (BPIQ), is a synthetic quinoline analog. A previous study showed the anti-cancer potential of BPIQ through modulating mitochondrial-mediated apoptosis. However, the effect of BPIQ on cell migration, an index of cancer metastasis, has not yet been examined. Furthermore, among signal pathways involved in stresses, the members of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) family are crucial for regulating the survival and migration of cells. In this study, the aim was to explore further the role of MAPK members, including JNK, p38 and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) in BPIQ-induced apoptosis and anti-migration of human non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells. Western Blot assay was performed for detecting the activation of MAPK members in NSCLC H1299 cells following BPIQ administration. Cellular proliferation was determined using a trypan blue exclusion assay. Cellular apoptosis was detected using flow cytometer-based Annexin V/propidium iodide dual staining. Cellular migration was determined using wound-healing assay and Boyden's chamber assay. Zymography assay was performed for examining MMP-2 and -9 activities. The assessment of MAPK inhibition was performed for further validating the role of JNK, p38, and ERK in BPIQ-induced growth inhibition, apoptosis, and migration of NSCLC cells. Western Blot assay showed that BPIQ treatment upregulates the phosphorylated levels of both MAPK proteins JNK and ERK. However, only ERK inhibitor rescues BPIQ-induced growth inhibition of NSCLC H1299 cells. The results of Annexin V assay further confirmed the pro-apoptotic role of ERK in BPIQ-induced cell death of H1299 cells. The results of wound healing and Boyden chamber assays showed that sub-IC50 (sub-lethal) concentrations of BPIQ cause a significant inhibition of migration in H1299 cells accompanied with downregulating the activity of MMP-2 and -9, the motility index of cancer cells. Inhibition of ERK significantly enhances BPIQ-induced anti-migration of H1299 cells. Our results suggest ERK may play dual roles in BPIQ-induced apoptosis and anti-migration, and it would be worthwhile further developing strategies for treating chemoresistant lung cancers through modulating ERK activity.


    Yao Fong, Chang-Yi Wu, Kuo-Feng Chang, Bing-Hung Chen, Wan-Ju Chou, Chih-Hua Tseng, Yen-Chun Chen, Hui-Min David Wang, Yeh-Long Chen, Chien-Chih Chiu. Dual roles of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) in quinoline compound BPIQ-induced apoptosis and anti-migration of human non-small cell lung cancer cells. Cancer cell international. 2017;17:37

    PMID: 28286419

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