Resveratrol is a naturally occurring trihydroxyl-diphenylethylene compound that has been shown experimentally to have beneficial effects in the treatment of cancer and cardiovascular disease. Resveratrol induces programmed cell death (apoptosis) in these cells and activates important signal transducing proteins including extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERKs) 1 and 2 in cancer cells. Resveratrol also causes nuclear accumulation of the enzyme cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 and of the oncogene suppressor protein, p53. We have studied the molecular basis of the anticancer actions of resveratrol using human ovarian carcinoma (OVCAR-3) cells. Our findings include the following: (i) nuclear accumulation of COX-2 in resveratrol-treated cells is blocked by the ERK1/2 inhibitor, PD98059; (ii) an inhibitor of COX-2 activity, NS398, prevents accumulation of ERK1/2, COX-2, activated p53 and small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO-1) in the nucleus; (iii) apoptosis, quantitated by nucleosome enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and the nuclear abundance of the pro-apoptotic protein, BcL-xs, were inhibited by NS398. This finding implicates nuclear COX-2 in p53-mediated apoptosis induced by resveratrol. Sumoylation is important to stabilization of p53 and a COX-2-SUMO-1 interaction suggests sumoylation of COX-2 in resveratrol-treated cells and (iv) chromatin immunoprecipitation studies showed binding of induced nuclear COX-2 to the promoter region of PIG3 and Bax, pro-apoptotic gene targets of transcriptionally active p53. Nuclear accumulation of activated ERK1/2 and sumolyated COX-2 are essential to resveratrolinduced pSer-15-p53-mediated apoptosis in human ovarian cancer cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research