Tumor Biology

, Volume 37, Issue 8, pp 10539–10544 | Cite as

Autophagy regulates resistance of non-small cell lung cancer cells to paclitaxel

  • Kan Chen
  • Wenjun Shi
Original Article


Paclitaxel is a chemotherapeutic drug that is effective for treating non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, some NSCLCs are not sensitive to paclitaxel treatment with undetermined underlying molecular mechanisms. In this study, we found that paclitaxel dose-dependently activated Beclin-1 in 2 NSCLC cell lines, A549 and Calu-3. Inhibition of autophagy significantly increased the paclitaxel-induced NSCLC cell death in a cell counting kit-8 (CCK-8) assay. Moreover, microRNA (miR)-216b levels were significantly downregulated in paclitaxel-treated NSCLC cells. Bioinformatics study showed that miR-216b targeted the 3′-UTR of Beclin-1 mRNA to inhibit its translation, which was confirmed by luciferase reporter assay. Together, these data suggest that paclitaxel may decrease miR-216b levels in NSCLC cells, which subsequently upregulates Beclin-1 to increase NSCLC cell autophagy to antagonize paclitaxel-induced cell death. Strategies that increase miR-216b levels or inhibit cell autophagy may improve the outcome of paclitaxel treatment in NSCLC therapy.


Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) Paclitaxel Autophagy Beclin-1 miR-216b 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflicts of interest



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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Thoracic SurgeryShengjing Hospital of China Medical UniversityShenyangChina

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