Resistance of cholangiocarcinoma cells to parthenolide-induced apoptosis by the excretory–secretory products of Clonorchis sinensis
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- Kim, Y.J., Choi, M., Hong, S. et al. Parasitol Res (2009) 104: 1011. doi:10.1007/s00436-008-1283-y
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Infection by Clonorchis sinensis, the Chinese or oriental liver fluke, is a significant risk factor for the development of cholangiocarcinoma, a human epithelial carcinoma of the intrahepatic bile duct. Parthenolide is a sesquiterpene lactone that has strong anticancer properties and is also known to induce apoptosis in cholangiocarcinoma cells. Many investigators have reported that excretory–secretory (ES) products of C. sinensis as well as Opisthorchis viverrini promote the development of cholangiocarcinomas. However, the intrinsic mechanism is not clearly understood. Therefore, we investigated the biological roles of the ES products in a cholangiocarcinoma cell line, HuCCT1. The ES products of C. sinensis increased proliferation of HuCCT1 cells and augmented the expression of cyclooxygenase (COX)-2. To determine whether cells treated with ES products would respond differently to parthenolide, HuCCT1 cells were treated with parthenolide alone or parthenolide after pretreatment with ES products. Cells pretreated with ES products were resistant to parthenolide-induced apoptosis. Because parthenolide has been reported to be a COX-2 inhibitor, we hypothesize that COX-2 might be a key factor that promotes resistance of cholangiocarcinoma cancer cells to parthenolide-induced apoptosis. These results suggest that chemotherapy treatment regimens in cholangiocarcinoma patients with C. sinensis infection should be modulated to account for ES products excreted by the liver fluke.