Gemcitabine (GEM) is the first-line treatment for pancreatic adenocarcinoma (PAC) yet chemoresistance is common. Nitric oxide (NO) is the predominant species responsible for the cytotoxic action of macrophages against cancer cells yet localized delivery is difficult given the short half-life. We sought to study the effect of locally delivered NO on GEM mediated PAC cytotoxicity and the potential role of SMAD4 in this effect. We hypothesized that NO would enhance the cytotoxicity of GEM in a SMAD4 dependent manner. NO-Silica nanoparticles (NO-Si) were synthesized via a co-condensation of tetraethoxysilane with aminoalkoxysilane under high-pressure nitrous oxide. NO release was measured using chemiluminescence. A SMAD4 negative PAC cell line (SMAD4-) was made using retroviral knockdown of Panc1 PAC cells. Panc1 and SMAD4- cells were treated with gemcitabine (100 nm (hi) to 30 μm (lo)), 30 mg NOSi particles, or both (NOSi hi or NOSi lo ) and cell viability assessed. NoSi reduced cell viability by 25.99% in Panc1 and 24.38% in SMAD4-. When combined with gemcitabine, further reductions were seen in a dose dependent manner for both cell lines. We have demonstrated the in-vitro dose dependent cytotoxic effects of NOSi. When combined with GEM there is a synergistic effect resulting in improved cytotoxicity seen in both Panc1 and SMAD4- PAC cells with a differential pattern of cell death seen at high concentrations of NO. These findings suggest not only that NO is useful chemosensitizing agent but that SMAD4- may play a role in its synergism with GEM.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Financial Support The authors acknowledge financial support from the following source: Physical Sciences in Oncology - National Cancer Institute of Health grant (U54CA143837).
The authors acknowledge financial support from the following source: Physical Sciences in Oncology - National Cancer Institute of Health grant (U54CA143837).
- Nitric oxide
- Pancreatic adenocarcinoma