Objective: Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is known as a chemopreventive substance for cancers. Previously we reported that DHA induces apoptosis in HL-60 cells. The aim of this study was to clarify the role of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-kinase)/Akt signaling during DHA-induced apoptosis in HL-60 cells. Methods: The inhibitory effects of dibutyryl cAMP (db-cAMP) or LY294002 (a specific inhibitor of the PI3-kinase/Akt pathway) on DHA-induced apoptosis in HL-60 cells were evaluated by the appearance of apoptosis, and from the activities of caspases (3 and 8), the phospholylation of Akt, and cleavage of Bid using DNA indexes, emzymatic measurement of fragmented substrates, and Western blotting, respectively. Results: The pre-incubation of db-cAMP reduced the activation of caspasses (3 and 8) during the occurrence of DHA-induced apoptosis in HL-60. However, the inhibition of PI3-kinase/Akt signaling by LY294002 resulted in recovery of the caspases' activities, appearance of apoptotic cells, and cleavage of the Bid molecule when LY294002 was co-treated with db-cAMP before the occurrence of DHA-induced apoptosis in HL-60. It was also confirmed that LY294002 strongly inhibited phospholylation of Akt during db-cAMP induced-reduction of DHA-induced apoptosis in HL-60. Conclusion: We demonstrated that DHA-induced apoptosis was sensitive to the modulation of PI3-kinase activity by treatment with db-cAMP or LY294002. These results may provide new insights into the mechanisms of the anti-cancer activity of DHA.
- Docosahexaenoic acid
- HL-60 cells
- Phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase pathway
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health