Assessing the correlation between molecular endpoints and cancer induction or prevention aims at validating the use of intermediate biomarkers. We previously developed murine models that are suitable to detect both the carcinogenicity of mainstream cigarette smoke (MCS) and the induction of molecular alterations. In this study, we used 931 Swiss mice in two parallel experiments and in a preliminary toxicity study. The chemopreventive agents included vorinostat, myo-inositol, bexarotene, pioglitazone and a combination of bexarotene and pioglitazone. Pulmonary micro-RNAs and proteins were evaluated by microarray analyses at 10 weeks of age in male and female mice, either unexposed or exposed to MCS since birth, and either untreated or receiving each one of the five chemopreventive regimens with the diet after weaning. At 4 months of age, the frequency of micronucleated normochromatic erythrocytes was evaluated. At 7 months, the lungs were subjected to standard histopathological analysis. The results showed that exposure to MCS significantly downregulated the expression of 79 of 694 lung micro-RNAs (11.4%) and upregulated 66 of 1164 proteins (5.7%). Administration of chemopreventive agents modulated the baseline micro-RNA and proteome profiles and reversed several MCS-induced alterations, with some intergender differences. The stronger protective effects were produced by the combination of bexarotene and pioglitazone, which also inhibited the MCS-induced clastogenic damage and the yield of malignant tumors. Pioglitazone alone increased the yield of lung adenomas. Thus, micro-RNAs, proteins, cytogenetic damage and lung tumors were closely related. The molecular biomarkers contributed to evaluate both protective and adverse effects of chemopreventive agents and highlighted the mechanisms involved.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research