GLUL gene knockdown and restricted glucose level show synergistic inhibitory effect on the luminal subtype breast cancer MCF7 cells’ proliferation and metastasis
Keywords:cancer metabolism, glutamine synthetase, glycolysis, luminal breast cancer, MCF7 cell line
The glutamine synthetase path is one of the most important metabolic pathways in luminal breast cancer cells, which plays a critical role in supplying glutamine as an intermediate in the biosynthesis of amino acids and nucleotides. On the other hand, glycolysis and its dominant substrate, glucose, are the most critical players in cancer metabolism. Accordingly, targeting these two critical paths might be more efficient in luminal-type breast cancer treatment. MCF7 cells were cultivated in media containing 4.5, 2, and 1 g/L glucose to study its effects on GLUL (Glutamate Ammonia Ligase) expression. Followingly, high and low glucose cell cultures were transfected with 220 pM of siGLUL and incubated for 48 h at 37 ºC. The cell cycle progression and apoptosis were monitored and assessed by flow cytometry. Expression of GLUL, known as glutamine synthetase, was evaluated in mRNA and protein levels by qRT-PCR and western blotting, respectively. To examine the migration and invasion capacity of studied cells exploited from wound healing assay and subsequent expression studies of glutathione-S-transferase Mu3 (GSTM3) and alfa-enolase (ENO1). Expression of GLUL significantly decreased in cells cultured at lower glucose levels compared to those at higher glucose levels. siRNA-mediated knockdown of GLUL expression in low glucose cultures significantly reduced growth, proliferation, migration, and invasion of the MCF7 cells and enhanced their apoptosis compared to the controls. Based on the results, GLUL suppression down-regulated GSTM3, a main detoxifying enzyme, and up-regulated Bax. According to the role of glycolysis as a ROS suppressor, decreased amounts of glucose could be associated with increased ROS; it can be considered an efficient involved mechanism in this study. Also, increased expression of Bax could be attributable to mTOR/AKT inhibition following GLUL repression. In conclusion, utilizing GLUL and glycolysis inhibitors might be a more effective strategy in luminal-type breast cancer therapy.
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Copyright (c) 2023 Arezu Karimpur Zahmatkesh, Mohammad Khalaj-Kondori, Mohammad Ali Hosseinpour Feizi, Behzad Baradaran
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