Duocarmycin SA Reduces Proliferation and Increases Apoptosis in Acute Myeloid Leukemia Cells In Vitro

William A. Chen, Terry G. Williams, Leena So, Natalie Drew, Jie Fang, Pedro Ochoa, Nhi Nguyen, Yasmeen Jawhar, Jide Otiji, Penelope J. Duerksen-Hughes, Mark E. Reeves, Carlos A. Casiano, Hongjian Jin, Sinisa Dovat, Jun Yang, Kristopher E. Boyle, Olivia L. Francis-Boyle

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Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a hematological malignancy that is characterized by an expansion of immature myeloid precursors. Despite therapeutic advances, the prognosis of AML patients remains poor and there is a need for the evaluation of promising therapeutic candidates to treat the disease. The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of duocarmycin Stable A (DSA) in AML cells in vitro. We hypothesized that DSA would induce DNA damage in the form of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) and exert cytotoxic effects on AML cells within the picomolar range. Human AML cell lines Molm-14 and HL-60 were used to perform 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazolyl-2)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT), DNA DSBs, cell cycle, 5-ethynyl-2-deoxyuridine (EdU), colony formation unit (CFU), Annexin V, RNA sequencing and other assays described in this study. Our results showed that DSA induced DNA DSBs, induced cell cycle arrest at the G2M phase, reduced proliferation and increased apoptosis in AML cells. Additionally, RNA sequencing results showed that DSA regulates genes that are associated with cellular processes such as DNA repair, G2M checkpoint and apoptosis. These results suggest that DSA is efficacious in AML cells and is therefore a promising potential therapeutic candidate that can be further evaluated for the treatment of AML.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4342
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry

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