Original Article


, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 71-80

First online:

Metabolic consequences of LDHA inhibition by epigallocatechin gallate and oxamate in MIA PaCa-2 pancreatic cancer cells

  • Qing-Yi LuAffiliated withDepartment of Medicine, University of California
  • , Lifeng ZhangAffiliated withDepartment of Medicine, University of California
  • , Jennifer K. YeeAffiliated withDepartment of Pediatrics, Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute
  • , Vay-Liang W. GoAffiliated withDepartment of Medicine, University of California
  • , Wai-Nang LeeAffiliated withDepartment of Pediatrics, Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute Email author 

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Lactate dehydrogenase A (LDHA) is the enzyme that converts pyruvate to lactate and oxidizes the reduced form of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide to NAD+. Several human cancers including the pancreas display elevated expression of LDHA. Because of its essential role in cancer metabolism, LDHA has been considered to be a potential target for cancer therapy. Recently, we have shown that a green tea extract significantly down-regulated LDHA in HPAF-II pancreatic cancer cells using global proteomics profiling. The present study is to investigate how EGCG, a major biological active constituent of green tea, targets the metabolism of human pancreatic adenocarcinoma MIA PaCa-2 cells. We compared the effect of EGCG to that of oxamate, an inhibitor of LDHA, on the multiple metabolic pathways as measured by extracellular lactate production, glucose consumption, as well as intracellular aspartate and glutamate production, fatty acid synthesis, acetyl-CoA, RNA ribose and deoxyribose. Specific metabolic pathways were studied using [1, 2-13C2]-d-glucose as the single precursor metabolic tracer. Isotope incorporations in metabolites were analyzed using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) and stable isotope-based dynamic metabolic profiling (SiDMAP). We found that the EGCG treatment of MIA PaCa-2 cells significantly reduced lactate production, anaerobic glycolysis, glucose consumption and glycolytic rate that are comparable to the inhibition of LDHA by oxamate treatment. Significant changes in intracellular glucose carbon re-distribution among major glucose-utilizing macromolecule biosynthesis pathways in response to EGCG and oxamate treatment were observed. The inhibition of LDHA by EGCG or oxamate impacts on various pathways of the cellular metabolic network and significantly modifies the cancer metabolic phenotype. These results suggest that phytochemical EGCG and LDHA inhibitor oxamate confer their anti-cancer activities by disrupting the balance of flux throughout the cellular metabolic network.


EGCG Oxamate Human pancreatic cancer MIA PaCa-2 cells Tracer based metabolomics