Cancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology

, Volume 70, Issue 1, pp 207–212 | Cite as

The “survivin suppressants” NSC 80467 and YM155 induce a DNA damage response

  • Trevor G. Glaros
  • Luke H. Stockwin
  • Michael E. Mullendore
  • Brian Smith
  • Bethanie L. Morrison
  • Dianne L. Newton
Short Communication



To establish whether NSC80467, a novel fused naphthquinone imidazolium, has a similar spectrum of activity to the well-characterized “survivin suppressant” YM155 and to extend mechanistic studies for this structural class of agent.


NSC80467 and YM155 were analyzed in parallel using assays measuring viability, survivin suppression, inhibition of DNA/RNA/protein synthesis and the cellular response to DNA damage.


GI50 values generated for both compounds in the NCI-60 screen yielded a correlation coefficient of 0.748, suggesting significant concordance. Both agents were also shown to inhibit protein expression of survivin [BIRC5]. COMPARE analysis identified DNA damaging agents chromomycin A3 and bisantrene HCl and one DNA-directed inhibitor of transcription, actinomycin D, as correlating with the activity of NSC80467 and YM155. Furthermore, both agents were shown to preferentially inhibit DNA, over RNA and protein synthesis. Thus, the ability of NSC80467 and YM155 to induce a DNA damage response was examined further. Treatment of PC3 cells with either agent resulted in dose-dependent induction of γH2AX and pKAP1, two markers of DNA damage. The concentrations of agent required to stimulate γH2AX were considerably lower than those required to inhibit survivin, implicating DNA damage as an initiating event. The DNA damage response was then confirmed in a panel of cell lines treated with NSC80467 or YM155, suggesting that γH2AX and pKAP1 have potential as response biomarkers.


These data provide the first evidence that NSC80467 and YM155 are DNA damaging agents where suppression of survivin is a secondary event, likely a consequence of transcriptional repression.


YM155 NSC 80467 Survivin DNA damage γH2AX pKAP1 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Trevor G. Glaros
    • 1
  • Luke H. Stockwin
    • 1
  • Michael E. Mullendore
    • 1
  • Brian Smith
    • 1
  • Bethanie L. Morrison
    • 1
  • Dianne L. Newton
    • 1
  1. 1.Biological Testing BranchDevelopmental Therapeutics ProgramFrederickUSA

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