Monogalactosyl diacylglycerol, a replicative DNA polymerase inhibitor, from spinach enhances the anti-cell proliferation effect of gemcitabine in human pancreatic cancer cells.


BACKGROUND: Gemcitabine (GEM) is used to treat various carcinomas and represents an advance in pancreatic cancer treatment. In the screening for DNA polymerase (pol) inhibitors, a glycoglycerolipid, monogalactosyl diacylglycerol (MGDG), was isolated from spinach. METHODS: Phosphorylated GEM derivatives were chemically synthesized. In vitro pol assay was performed according to our established methods. Cell viability was measured using MTT assay. RESULTS: Phosphorylated GEMs inhibition of mammalian pol activities assessed, with the order of their effect ranked as: GEM-5'-triphosphate (GEM-TP)>GEM-5'-diphosphate>GEM-5'-monophosphate>GEM. GEM suppressed growth in the human pancreatic cancer cell lines BxPC-3, MIAPaCa2 and PANC-1 although phosphorylated GEMs showed no effect. MGDG suppressed growth in these cell lines based on its selective inhibition of replicative pol species. Kinetic analysis showed that GEM-TP was a competitive inhibitor of pol α activity with nucleotide substrates, and MGDG was a noncompetitive inhibitor with nucleotide substrates. GEM combined with MGDG treatments revealed synergistic effects on the inhibition of DNA replicative pols α and γ activities compared with GEM or MGDG alone. In cell growth suppression by GEM, pre-addition of MGDG significantly enhanced cell proliferation suppression, and the combination of these compounds was found to induce apoptosis. In contrast, GEM-treated cells followed by MGDG addition did not influence cell growth. CONCLUSIONS: GEM/MGDG enhanced the growth suppression of cells based on the inhibition of pol activities. GENERAL SIGNIFICANCE: Spinach MGDG has great potential for development as an anticancer food compound and could be an effective clinical anticancer chemotherapy in combination with GEM.




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