MEK inhibitor effective against proliferation in breast cancer cell
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The targeted small-molecule drug AZD6244 is an allosteric, ATP-noncompetitive inhibitor of MEK1/2 that has shown activity against several malignant tumors. Here, we report that AZD6244 repressed cell growth and induced apoptosis and G1-phase arrest in the breast cancer cell lines MDA-MB-231 and HCC1937. Using microRNA (miRNA) arrays and quantitative RT-PCR, we found that miR-203 was up-regulated after AZD6244 treatment. In accordance with bioinformatics and luciferase activity analyses, CUL1 was found to be the direct target of miR-203. Furthermore, miR-203 inhibition and CUL1 overexpression reversed the cytotoxicity of AZD6244 on the MDA-MB-231 and HCC1937 cells. Collectively, our data indicate that miR-203 mediates the AZD6244-induced cytotoxicity of breast cancer cells and that the MEK/ERK/miR-203/CUL1 signaling pathway may participate in this process.