Basic & clinical pharmacology & toxicology

Diphenyl ditelluride-induced cell cycle arrest and apoptosis: a relation with topoisomerase I inhibition.

PMID 25168415


The diphenyl ditelluride (DPDT) is a prototype for the development of new biologically active molecules. In previous studies, DPDT showed an elevated cytotoxicity in Chinese hamster fibroblast (V79) cells but the mechanisms for reduction of cell viability still remain unknown. DPDT showed mutagenic properties by induction of frameshift mutations in bacterium Salmonella typhimurium and yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This organotelluride also induced DNA strand breaks in V79 cells. In this work, we investigated the mechanism of DPDT cytotoxicity by evaluating the effects of this compound on cell cycle progression, apoptosis induction and topoisomerase I inhibition. Significant decrease of V79 cell viability after DPDT treatment was revealed by MTT assay. Morphological analysis showed induction of apoptosis and necrosis by DPDT in V79 cells. An increase of caspase 3/7 activity confirmed apoptosis induction. The cell cycle analysis showed an increase in the percentage of V79 cells in S phase and sub-G1 phase. The yeast strain deficient in topoisomerase I (Topo I) showed higher tolerance to DPDT compared with the isogenic wild-type strain, suggesting that the interaction with this enzyme could be involved in DPDT toxicity. The sensitivity to DPDT found in top3∆ strain indicates that yeast topoisomerase 3 (Top3p) could participate in the repair of DNA lesions induced by the DPDT. We also demonstrated that DPDT inhibits human DNA topoisomerase I (Topo I) activity by DNA relaxation assay. Therefore, our results suggest that the DPDT-induced cell cycle arrest and reduction in cell viability could be attributed to interaction with topoisomerase I enzyme.