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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Increased sensitivity of multidrug-resistant myeloid leukemia cell lines to lovastatin.

Lovastatin, a competitive inhibitor of HMG-CoA reductase, reportedly inhibits proliferation and induces apoptosis of tumor cells with MDR-1 coded P-glycoprotein ( Pgp) expression. In this study we investigated the sensitivity to lovastatin of eight myeloid leukemia cell lines: K562, NOMO-1, NB4 and its retinoic acid (RA) resistant subline NB4/RA, and their multidrug-resistant (MDR) sublines: K562/ ADR, NOMO-1/ ADR, NB4/MDR and NB4/RA/MDR. MTT and apoptosis assays revealed that K562/ ADR, NOMO-1/ ADR and NB4/RA/MDR were more sensitive to lovastatin than their parental cell lines, while NB4/MDR showed the same level of sensitivity as parental NB4 cells, which already were very sensitive to lovastatin. Significant elevation of transcript levels of HMG-CoA reductase was observed by semiquantitative RT-PCR analysis in more than three lovastatin-sensitive MDR sublines, but not in NB4/MDR compared with the parental cell lines. HMG-CoA reductase mRNA levels were up-regulated more than two-fold by the exposure to lovastatin in all of the parental non- Pgp-expressing cell lines. In NB4/MDR, HMG-CoA reductase mRNA level was elevated to a similar extent as in parental NB4, whereas in three other MDR sublines which showed preferential sensitivity to lovastatin, their HMG-CoA reductase mRNA levels were not significantly elevated after 24- and 48-h treatment with lovastatin. These results indicate a connection between drug resistance and regulation of the mevalonate pathway, and further strengthen the clinical possibility that drug resistant leukemias would be susceptible to treatment with lovastatin.[1]


  1. Increased sensitivity of multidrug-resistant myeloid leukemia cell lines to lovastatin. Maksumova, L., Ohnishi, K., Muratkhodjaev, F., Zhang, W., Pan, L., Takeshita, A., Ohno, R. Leukemia (2000) [Pubmed]
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