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Bisindolylmaleimide IX is a potent inducer of apoptosis in chronic lymphocytic leukaemic cells and activates cleavage of Mcl-1.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Leukemia
Publication Date
Volume
17
Issue
10
Pages
1981–1989
Identifiers
PMID: 14513048
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

New agents are required for the treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL). We show here that a protein kinase C inhibitor, bisindolylmaleimide IX, is a potent inducer of apoptosis in CLL cells, and investigate the mechanisms by which this is induced. Bisindolylmaleimide IX induced a conformational change and subcellular redistribution of Bax from the cytosol to the mitochondria, resulting in the release of the proapoptotic mediators cytochrome c, Smac and Omi/HtrA2 from the mitochondrial inner membrane space. This was followed by the activation of caspase-9 as the apical caspase and subsequent activation of effector caspases. CLL cells undergoing apoptosis showed a rapid caspase-mediated cleavage of Mcl-1, an antiapoptotic member of the Bcl-2 family implicated in CLL survival and poor prognosis. This cleavage was mediated primarily by caspase-3. Cleavage of Mcl-1 may provide a feed-forward amplification loop, resulting in the rapid induction of apoptosis. Bisindolylmaleimide IX or a related derivative may be of clinical use in the treatment of CLL.

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