Cell death & disease

Silencing NFBD1/MDC1 enhances the radiosensitivity of human nasopharyngeal cancer CNE1 cells and results in tumor growth inhibition.

PMID 26247734


NFBD1 functions in cell cycle checkpoint activation and DNA repair following ionizing radiation (IR). In this study, we defined the NFBD1 as a tractable molecular target to radiosensitize nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) cells. Silencing NFBD1 using lentivirus-mediated shRNA-sensitized NPC cells to radiation in a dose-dependent manner, increasing apoptotic cell death, decreasing clonogenic survival and delaying DNA damage repair. Furthermore, downregulation of NFBD1 inhibited the amplification of the IR-induced DNA damage signal, and failed to accumulate and retain DNA damage-response proteins at the DNA damage sites, which leaded to defective checkpoint activation following DNA damage. We also implicated the involvement of NFBD1 in IR-induced Rad51 and DNA-dependent protein kinase catalytic subunit foci formation. Xenografts models in nude mice showed that silencing NFBD1 significantly enhanced the antitumor activity of IR, leading to tumor growth inhibition of the combination therapy. Our studies suggested that a combination of gene therapy and radiation therapy may be an effective strategy for human NPC treatment.