Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) gamma is a nuclear hormone receptor involved in maintaining glucose and fatty acid homeostasis. Besides its metabolic functions, the receptor has also been implicated in tumorigenesis. Ligands of PPAR gamma induce apoptosis in several types of tumor cells including lymphomas, leading to the proposal that these ligands may be used as anti-cancer agents. However, apoptosis induction requires high doses of ligands, suggesting the effect may not be receptor-dependent. Previously, we reported that PPAR gamma is expressed in human primary T cell lymphoma tissues and activation of PPAR gamma with low doses of ligands protects lymphoma cells from serum starvation-induced apoptosis. The prosurvival effect of PPAR gamma is linked to its actions on mitochondria. In serum-deprived cells, PPAR gamma attenuates the decline in ATP, reduces mitochondrial hyperpolarization and limits the amount of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in favor of cell survival (
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