Cervical cancer is one of the most common carcinomas in the genital system. In the present study, we report that SBF-1, a synthetic steroidal glycoside, has a strong antigrowth activity against human cervical cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. SBF-1 suppressed the growth, migration and colony formation of HeLa cells. In addition, severe endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress was triggered by SBF-1, and 4-phenyl-butyric acid, a chemical chaperone, partially reversed SBF-1-induced cell death. To uncover the target protein of SBF-1, the compound was labeled with biotin. The biotin-labeled SBF-1 bound to sarco/ER Ca2+-ATPase 2 (SERCA2) and colocalized with SERCA2 in HeLa cells. Moreover, SBF-1 inhibited SERCA activity, depleted ER Ca2+ and increased cytosolic Ca2+ levels. 1,2-Bis(o-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N′,N′-tetraacetic acid, a chelator of Ca2+, partially blocked SBF-1-induced ER stress and growth inhibition. Importantly, knockdown of SERCA2 increased the sensitivity of HeLa cells to SBF-1-induced ER stress and cell death, whereas overexpression of SERCA2 decreased this sensitivity. Furthermore, SBF-1 induced growth suppression and apoptosis in HeLa xenografts, which is closely related to the induction of ER stress and inhibition of SERCA activity. Finally, SERCA2 expression was elevated in human cervical cancer tissues (n = 299) and lymph node metastasis (n = 8), as compared with normal cervix tissues (n= 23), with a positive correlation with clinical stages. In all, these results suggest that SBF-1 disrupts Ca2+ homeostasis and causes ER stress-associated cell death through directly binding to SERCA2 and inhibiting SERCA activity. Our findings also indicate that SERCA2 is a potential therapeutic target for human cervical cancer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Cell Biology
- Cancer Research