Antiproliferative effect of DNA polymerase α antisense oligodeoxynucleotides on breast cancer cells

Angela Alama, Raffaella Meazza, Federica Barbieri, Roberto Biassoni, Mauro Mazzei, Angelo Nicolin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Antisense oligonucleolides appear to offer considerable promise as sequence-specific inhibitors of gene expression. Different cellular targets for oligodeoxynucleotides with oncologic interest have been identified such as oncogenes, growth factors, and cell cycle-related genes. DNA polymerase α (polα) plays a relevant role in DNA synthesis and cell proliferation. Polα gene expression is constitutive throughout the cell cycle and its mRNA content and activity are related to the growth rate and neoplastic phenotype. The effects of a 18-mer polα antisense oligomer on the proliferation of the MDA-MB 231 breast cancer cell line have been investigated. After 48 h in culture with oligomers (10 μM), about 50% growth inhibition was observed in antisense-treated cells, as evaluated by 3-(4,5-dimethythiazol-2yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay and cell count. [3H]Thymidine incorporation exhibited a 90% inhibition of DNA synthesis associated to 64% accumulation of cells at the G1-S border of the cycle as by flow cytometry, at 24 h. Northern hybridization and SDS-PAGE of immunoprecipitated MDA-MB 231 cell lysates revealed a decreased expression of polα mRNA and a reduction of the 180-kDa polypeptide, respectively. Collectively, the data further confirm the relevance of polα in the replicative cycle, as well as strengthen the potentiality of the antisense strategy for the control of gene expression and cell growth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)318-322
Number of pages5
JournalExperimental Cell Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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