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The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/1475-2867-12-35) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
NS designed the study. MJ, WC performed experiments and data analysis, NS and MJ drafted the manuscript. NS, KY revised the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.
Cisplatin resistance is a serious problem in cancer treatment. To overcome it, alternative approaches including virotherapy are being pursued. One of the candidates for anticancer virotherapy is the Newcastle disease virus (NDV). Even though NDV's oncolytic properties in various cancer cells have been widely reported, information regarding its effects on cisplatin resistant cancer cells is still limited. Therefore, we tested the oncolytic efficacy of a strain of NDV, designated as AF2240, in a cisplatin-resistant breast cancer cell line.
Cisplatin-resistant cell line (MCF7-CR) was developed from the MCF7 human breast adenocarcinoma cell line by performing a seven-cyclic exposure to cisplatin. Following NDV infection, fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) analysis and immunoblotting were used to measure cell viability and viral protein expression, respectively. Production of virus progeny was then assessed by using the plaque assay technique.
Infection of a mass population of the MCF7-CR with NDV resulted in 50% killing in the first 12 hours post-infection (hpi), comparable to the parental MCF7. From 12 hpi onwards, the remaining MCF7-CR became less susceptible to NDV killing. This reduced susceptibility led to increased viral protein synthesis and virus progeny production. The reduction was also associated with a prolonged cell survival via stabilization of the survivin protein.
Our findings showed for the first time, the involvement of survivin in the reduction of NDV-induced oncolysis in a subpopulation of cisplatin-resistant cells. This information will be important towards improving the efficacy of NDV as an anticancer agent in drug resistant cancers.