The mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) is a critical kinase in the regulation of gene translation and has been suggested as a potential target for radiosensitization. The goal of this study was to compare the radiosensitizing activities of the allosteric mTOR inhibitor rapamycin with that of the competitive mTOR inhibitor PP242. On the basis of immunoblot analyses, whereas rapamycin only partially inhibited mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1) activity and had no effect on mTOR complex 2 (mTORC2), PP242 inhibited the activity of both mTOR-containing complexes. Irradiation alone had no effect on mTORC1 or mTORC2 activity. Clonogenic survival was used to define the effects of the mTOR inhibitors on in vitro radiosensitivity. In the two tumor cell lines evaluated, PP242 treatment 1 hour before irradiation increased radiosensitivity, whereas rapamycin had no effect. Addition of PP242 after irradiation also enhanced the radiosensitivity of both tumor lines. To investigate the mechanism of radiosensitization, the induction and repair of DNA double-strand breaks were evaluated according γH2AX foci. PP242 exposure did not influence the initial level of γH2AX foci after irradiation but did significantly delay the dispersal of radiationinduced γH2AX foci. In contrast to the tumor cell lines, the radiosensitivity of a normal human fibroblast cell line was not influenced by PP242. Finally, PP242 administration to mice bearing U251 xenografts enhanced radiationinduced tumor growth delay. These results indicate that in a preclinical tumor model PP242 enhances tumor cell radiosensitivity both in vitro and in vivo and suggest that this effect involves an inhibition of DNA repair.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research