Cisplatin abrogates the geldanamycin-induced heat shock response

Andrea K. McCollum, Kara B. Lukasiewicz, Cynthia J. TenEyck, Wilma L. Lingle, David O. Toft, Charles Erlichman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Benzoquinone ansamycin antibiotics such as geldanamycin (GA) bind to the NH2-terminal ATP-binding domain of heat shock protein (Hsp) 90 and inhibit its chaperone functions. Despite in vitro and in vivo studies indicating promising antitumor activity, derivatives of GA, including 17- allylaminogeldanamycin (17-AAG), have shown little clinical efficacy as single agents. Thus, combination studies of 17-AAG and several cancer chemotherapeutics, including cisplatin (CDDP), have begun. In colony-forming assays, the combination of CDDP and GA or 17-AAG was synergistic and caused increased apoptosis compared with each agent alone. One measurable response that results from treatment with Hsp90-targeted agents is the induction of a heat shock factor-1 (HSF-1) heat shock response. Treatment with GA + CDDP revealed that CDDP suppresses up-regulation of HSF-1 transcription, causing decreased levels of stress-inducible proteins such as Hsp27 and Hsp70. However, CDDP treatment did not prevent trimerization and nuclear localization of HSF-1 but inhibited DNA binding of HSF-1 as shown by chromatin immunoprecipitation. Melphalan, but not camptothecin, caused similar inhibition of GA-induced HSF-1-mediated Hsp70 up-regulation. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3- carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H-tetrazolium salt cell survival assays revealed that deletion of Hsp70 caused increased sensitivity to GA (Hsp70 +/+ IC50 = 63.7 ± 14.9 nmol/L and Hsp70 -/- IC50 = 4.3 ± 2.9 nmol/L), which confirmed that a stress response plays a critical role in decreasing GA sensitivity. Our results suggest that the synergy of GA + CDDP is due, in part, to CDDP-mediated abrogation of the heat shock response through inhibition of HSF-1 activity. Clinical modulation of the HSF-1-mediated heat shock response may enhance the efficacy of Hsp90-directed therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3256-3264
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular cancer therapeutics
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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