Combination of tumor necrosis factor alpha and interferon alpha induces apoptotic cell death through a c-myc-dependent pathway in p53 mutant H226br non-small-cell lung cancer cell line

Yasuo Yasuoka, Yoshio Naomoto, Tomoki Yamatsuji, Munenori Takaoka, Masashi Kimura, Hirokazu Uetsuka, Nagahide Matsubara, Toshiyoshi Fujiwara, Mehmet Gunduz, Noriaki Tanaka, Minoru Haisa

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We investigated the role of wild-type p53 and c-myc activity in apoptosis induced by a combination of natural human tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) and natural human interferon alpha (IFN-α). Studies were performed with two human non-small-cell lung cancer cell lines, H226b, which has wild-type p53, and H226br, which has a mutant p53. The combination of IFN-α and TNF-α significantly inhibited cell growth and induced apoptotic cell death of both H226b and H226br, compared with IFN-α or TNF-α alone. Treatment with one or both cytokines did not affect the expression level of p53 in both cell lines. These results suggest that the combination of IFN-α/TNF-α induces apoptotic cell death through a p53- independent pathway. The c-myc oncogene is known to be involved in apoptosis induced by TNF. Antisense c-myc oligonucleotides have been reported to modulate cell growth or apoptosis in several cell lines. Antisense oligodeoxynucleotides were added to the culture of H226br cells before the addition of IFN-α/TNF-α. Antisense c-myc inhibited IFN-α/TNF-α cytotoxicity and apoptotic cell death. In conclusion, this study provides support for the speculation that TNF-α/IFN-α induce apoptosis through a c-myc-dependent pathway rather than a p53-dependent pathway.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)214-222
Number of pages9
JournalExperimental Cell Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 10 2001



  • Antisense oligonucleotides
  • Apoptosis
  • TNF-α/IFN-α
  • p53

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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