In studies of cell adhesion, migration, growth, differentiation, and apoptosis, synthetic peptides containing the RGD (Arg-Gly-Asp) motif have been extensively used as the inhibitors of integrin-ligand interactions. The RGD motif is an integral-recognition motif found in many ligands, so that the RGD-containing peptides can be used to probe integrin functions in various biological systems. A linear RGD is a tripeptide consisting of a flexible structure that makes the motifbind to its receptor with inefficient chelating affinity. Therefore, we designed a cyclic-RGD peptide (Tpa-RGDWPC, cRGD) with rigid skeleton to closely bind with its receptor. The cRGD was obtained by solid-phase peptide synthesis method using Rink amide resin. We showed that the cRGD exerts more potency than linear RGD on inhibiting cell growth of MCF-7 breast carcinoma cells. This stimulated us to question how cRGD inhibits cell growth of MCF-7 cells. Moreover, understanding what molecular mechanism underlies the effect that RGD motif exerts on MCF-7 cells is also of considerable importance. We used proteomics and bioinformatics to survey the global changes in proteins after cRGD treatment in MCF-7 cells. The classification of these proteins is shown according to the different biological processes in which they are involved. Most of the proteins that appear to be strongly influenced by cRGD treatment are involved in metabolism, cell growth, responsive to external stimulus, cell communication, reproduction and cell death. This is the first report which monitors the protein expression profile of MCF-7 cells in response to treatment with RGD-containing peptides in a time-course analysis. The clustering data indicated temporal patterns of altered protein expression that can be categorized into early, intermediate and late response proteins. These patterns of protein expression may be important for predicting its response to cRGD. In summary, these results provide a molecular explanation for the properties of cRGD in breast cancer cells and present a valuable in-depth description of their possible impact on breast cancer therapy.
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