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Cellular basis for differential sensitivity to cisplatin in human germ cell tumour and colon carcinoma cell lines.

By M. W. Sark, H. Timmer-Bosscha, C. Meijer, D. R. Uges, W. J. Sluiter, W. H. Peters, N. H. Mulder and E. G. de Vries


Cisplatin (CDDP) resistance mechanisms were studied in a model of three germ cell tumour and three colon carcinoma cell lines representing intrinsically CDDP-sensitive and -resistant tumours respectively. The CDDP sensitivity of the cell lines mimicked the clinical situation. The glutathione levels of the cell lines correlated with CDDP concentrations inhibiting cell survival by 50% (IC50); total cellular sulphydryl content (TSH) was unexpectedly inversely correlated with IC50. IC50 correlated neither with glutathione S-transferase (GST) nor with GST pi expression, topoisomerase I or II activity. Immediately after 4 h incubation with CDDP, platinum (Pt) accumulation and Pt bound to DNA were not correlated, but after another 24 h drug-free culture, Pt binding to DNA in germ cell tumour but not in colon carcinoma cell lines correlated with IC50. With the exception of in vitro sensitivity and TSH, none of the parameters studied discriminated between the two groups of cell lines. Correction of CDDP sensitivity parameters for phenotypical differences did not influence statistical correlations. Analysis of variance revealed a correlation between IC50 and the combination of glutathione, GST activity and Pt bound to DNA. But at other CDDP cytotoxicity levels sensitivity was also correlated with Pt accumulation, topoisomerase II activity and TSH in various combinations. This model of intrinsic CDDP resistance showed that multiple parameters ought to be studied to explain CDDP resistance, but did not elucidate the cause of the unique sensitivity of germ cell carcinoma, although the unexpected values of TSH deserve further attention

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Provided by: PubMed Central

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