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Chitosan Oligosaccharides Induce Apoptosis in Human Renal Carcinoma via Reactive-Oxygen-Species-Dependent Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress

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journal contribution
posted on 18.01.2019, 00:00 by Xingchen Zhai, Shoujun Yuan, Xin Yang, Pan Zou, Linna Li, Guoyou Li, Yong Shao, A. M. Abd El-Aty, Ahmet Hacımüftüoğlu, Jing Wang
In recent years, various studies have confirmed the role of natural products as effective cancer prevention and treatment drugs. The present study demonstrated that chitosan oligosaccharide (COS) from shells of shrimp and crab caused an inhibitory effect on the proliferation of human renal carcinoma in vitro and in vivo. First, the in vivo biodistribution of COS was investigated by the synthesis of cyanine-7-labeled COS (COS–Cy7) following tail vein injection. The kidney was found to be a major target organ. Then, the impacts on renal carcinoma cell proliferation, apoptosis, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production were observed in vitro, and an orthotopic xenograft tumor model was designed to evaluate the antitumor efficacy of COS in vivo. In renal carcinoma cells, COS induced G2/M phase arrest and apoptosis in a ROS-dependent fashion. COS significantly promoted mRNA expression of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor (Nrf2) and Nrf2 target genes, such as heme oxygenase 1, modifier subunit of glutamate cysteine ligase, and solute carrier family 7 member 11. Additionally, COS significantly upregulated the protein expression of glucose-regulated protein 78, protein RNA-like endoplasmic reticulum (ER) kinase, eukaryotic initiation factor 2α, activating transcription factor 4, C/EBP homologous protein, and cytochrome c, which justified the activation of the ER stress signaling pathway. In vivo, COS repressed tumor growth and induced apoptosis and ROS accumulation, consistent with the in vitro results. Taken together, COS repressed human renal carcinoma growth and induced apoptosis both in vitro and in vivo, mainly via ROS-dependent ER stress pathways.