Calcium blockers decrease the bortezomib resistance in mantle cell lymphoma via manipulation of tissue transglutaminase activities.

PMID 22294726


Although bortezomib is clinically approved for the treatment of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL), only limited effects of this treatment have been demonstrated. To improve survival for bortezomib-resistant patients, it is necessary to develop new therapeutic strategies. In the present study, we used biochemical and molecular methodologies to demonstrate that tissue transglutaminase (TG) activates downstream NF-κB signaling pathways. The signaling axis from TG to NF-κB could be a new therapeutic target to overcome bortezomib resistance in MCL. TG2 is a calcium-dependent protein cross-linking enzyme reported to be overexpressed in various cancer cells. We found that MCL cells expressed elevated levels of TG2 and that the modification of TG2 activities altered NF-κB expression and downstream signaling in MCL cells. When TG2 signaling was inhibited by calcium blockers, the combination of a calcium blocker (perillyl alcohol) with bortezomib suppressed NF-κB expression and improved the cytotoxicity of bortezomib in MCL cells. Our study is the first to show the expression of TG2 and the contribution of TG2 to NF-κB signaling in MCL. TG2 inhibition may be used as an alternative target anti-MCL therapy, and calcium blockers may be combined with bortezomib to overcome the bortezomib resistance in MCL.