Human non-small cell lung cancer (N-SCLC), a common malignancy generally unmanageable by conventional cytotoxic chemotherapy, represents a major world health burden. Suramin, a polyanionic drug which appears to interfere with growth-factor/receptor interaction, has recently been shown to be cytostatic for small cell lung cancer cells; it may also be effective for N-SCLC. As insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) is a known progression agent for N-SCLC, we have examined the effects of suramin on the 'IGF-I system' in a panel of human N-SCLC cell lines. Colorimetric and thymidine incorporation assays were used to assess cell chemosensitivity whereas a radio-receptor assay was employed to evaluate IGF-I/receptor binding. Suramin reversibly reduced, in a concentration- and time-dependent manner, the growth of each N-SCLC cell line examined either cultured in serum-containing or serum-free medium. Furthermore, suramin caused a concentration-related inhibition of labeled IGF-I peptide specific binding on all cell lines studied. Suramin caused a significant reduction in the Bmax values with only weak variations in the affinity constants (Kd). We hypothesize that suramin interference with IGF-I mitogenic activity is a pathway by which this drug produces its effect in vitro. These data indicate further studies on the mechanism of action and pharmacology of suramin in vivo are warranted.
- Growth factor
- Lung cancer
- Polyanionic drug
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience