Prohibitin (PHB) is localized to the mitochondria where it might have a role in the maintenance of mitochondrial function. The diverse function of PHB, together with the emerging evidence that its function can be modulated specifically in certain diseases, implies that PHB would be a potential target for new therapeutics.
We analyzed mitochondrial proteins and develop new anti-proliferative agents targeting multiple myeloma (MM) cells. Mitochondria were isolated from primary leukemia and MM cell lines (RPMI8226, ARH77, U266 and IM9) by density-gradient ultracentrifugation using swelling buffer and sucrose buffer. Dysregulated mitochondrial protein was identified using 2-DE and mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF/TOF technology).
Out of 38 remarkable deregulated mitochondrial proteins in MM cell lines, prohibitin (PHB) (gi4505773) was highly expressed in primary MM and leukemia cells, which was confirmed by Western blot, immunohistochemistry and immunofluorecenct study in the primary bone marrow cells and sections. Potent chemical substances that can alkylate PHB, two molecules of phenyl-chloroethyl urea family such as cyclohexylphenyl-chloroethyl urea (CCEU) and iodophenyl-chloroethyl urea (ICEU), were synthesized independently from the reaction with 2-ethylisocyanate and 4-cyclohexylaniline and 4-iodoaniline, respectively. They were characterized by 1H NMR and 13C NMR. Time and dose dependent manner of proliferation suppression when treated with CCEU and ICEU was observed in MM and leukemia cells. Moreover, notable morphological transformation of MM cells was observed when treated with 10 – 100 umol of CCEU and ICEU for 24 hours. The half of maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) was 25umol of most MM cell lines. Cell cycle analysis of CCEU-and-ICEU-treated- MM cells showed a remarkable increase of the sub-G1 phase. Immunoblotting experiment revealed the change of cytoplasmic and nucleoplasmic PHB. Expression of cleaved caspase3 and poly ADP-ribose polymerases were also observed to have increased in MM cell lines.
By analyzing mitochondrial protein in leukemia and MM cell, we discovered a new molecular marker, PHB, characteristically overexpressed in leukemia and MM cells and developed new anti-cancer agents such as CCEU and ICEU that target against PHB in MM cells.
No relevant conflicts of interest to declare.
Asterisk with author names denotes non-ASH members.