Journal Article MK-8776, a novel Chk1 inhibitor, exhibits an improved radiosensitizing effect compared to UCN-01 by exacerbating radiation-induced aberrant mitosis.

Suzuki, Motofumi  ,  Yamamori, Tohru  ,  Bo, Tomoki  ,  Sakai, Yuri  ,  Inanami, Osamu

10 ( 4 )  , pp.491 - 500 , 2017-05-24 , Elsevier
Checkpoint kinase 1 (Chk1) is an evolutionarily conserved serine/threonine kinase that plays an important role in G2/M checkpoint signaling. Here, we evaluate the radiosensitizing effects of a novel selective Chk1 inhibitor MK-8776, comparing its efficacy with a first-generation Chk1 inhibitor UCN-01, and attempt to elucidate the mechanism of radiosensitization. In a clonogenic survival assay, MK-8776 demonstrated a more pronounced radiosensitizing effect than UCN-01, with lower cytotoxicity. Importantly, radiosensitization by MK-8776 can be achieved at doses as low as 2.5 Gy, which is a clinically applicable irradiation dose. MK-8776, but not UCN-01, exacerbated mitotic catastrophe (MC) and centrosome abnormalities, without affecting repair kinetics of DNA double strand breaks. Furthermore, live-cell imaging revealed that MK-8776 significantly abrogated the radiation-induced G2/M checkpoint, prolonged the mitotic phase, and enhanced aberrant mitosis. This suggests that Chk1 inhibition by MK-8776 activates a spindle assembly checkpoint and increases mitotic defects in irradiated EMT6 cells. In conclusion, we have shown that, at minimally toxic concentrations, MK-8776 enhances radiation-induced cell death through the enhancement of aberrant mitosis and MC, without affecting DNA damage repair.

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