Tetracycline analogues (TCNAs) have been shown to inhibit matrix metalloproteinases and to induce apoptosis in several cancer cell types. In the present study, the cytotoxic effects of TCNAs doxycycline (DOXY), minocycline (MINO) and chemically modified tetracycline-3 (COL-3) were investigated in the human acute myeloid leukemia HL-60 cell line. Cells were incubated with TCNAs in final concentrations of 0.5-100 µg/ml for 24 h. Viability of the leukemic cells was inhibited in a concentration-dependent manner using resazurin assay. The estimated IC50s were 9.2 µg/ml for DOXY, 9.9 µg/ml for MINO and 1.3 µg/ml for COL-3. All three TCNAs induced potent cytotoxic effects and cell death. Apoptosis, which was assessed by morphological changes and annexin V positivity, was concentration- and time-dependent following incubation with any one of the drugs. TCNAs induced DNA double strand breaks soon after treatment commenced as detected by γH2AX and western blot. The loss of mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψm), caspase activation and cleavage of PARP and Bcl-2 were observed; however, the sequence of events differed among the drugs. Pancaspase inhibitor Z-VAD-FMK improved survival of TCNAs-treated cells and decreased TCNAs-induced apoptosis. In summary, we demonstrated that TCNAs had a cytotoxic effect on the HL-60 leukemic cell line. Apoptosis was induced via mitochondria-mediated and caspase-dependent pathways in HL-60 cells by all three TCNAs. COL-3 exerted the strongest anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic effects in concentrations that have been achieved in human plasma in reported clinical trials. These results indicate that there is a therapeutic potential of TCNAs in leukemia.
Song, H., Fares, M., Maguire, K. R., Sidén, Å., & Potácová, Z. (2014). Cytotoxic effects of tetracycline analogues (doxycycline, minocycline and COL-3) in acute Myeloid leukemia HL-60 cells. PLoS ONE, 9(12). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0114457