Apr 12, 2020

MEK reduces cancer-specific PpIX accumulation through the RSK-ABCB1 and HIF-1α-FECH axes

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Vipin Shankar ChelakkotKensuke Hirasawa


The efficacy of aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA)-based photodynamic diagnosis (5-ALA-PDD) and photodynamic therapy (5-ALA-PDT) is dependent on the 5-ALA-induced cancer-specific accumulation of protoporphyrin IX (PpIX). We previously reported that inhibition of oncogenic Ras/MEK increases PpIX accumulation in cancer cells by reducing PpIX efflux through ATP-binding cassette sub-family B member 1 (ABCB1) as well as PpIX conversion to heme by ferrochelatase (FECH). Here, we sought to identify the downstream pathways of Ras/MEK involved in the regulation of PpIX accumulation via ABCB1 and FECH. First, we demonstrated that Ras/MEK activation reduced PpIX accumulation in RasV12-transformed NIH3T3 cells and HRAS transgenic mice. Knockdown of p90 ribosomal S6 kinases (RSK) 2, 3, or 4 increased PpIX accumulation in the RasV12-transformed NIH3T3 cells. Further, treatment with an RSK inhibitor reduced ABCB1 expression and increased PpIX accumulation. Moreover, HIF-1 expression was reduced when the RasV12-transformed NIH3T3 cells were treated with a MEK inhibitor, demonstrating that HIF-1 is a downstream element of MEK. HIF-1 inhibition decreased the activity of FECH and increased PpIX accumulation. Finally, we demonstrated the involvement of R...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Human Cell Line
Cell Body of Neuron
Human Body Structure
Scanning Electron Microscopy
Population Group
Male Population Group
Count of Human Cells Procedure

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