Publications by authors named "Thankayyan R Santhoshkumar"

12 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Discovery of 3-(benzofuran-2-ylmethyl)-1H-indole derivatives as potential autophagy inducers in cervical cancer cells.

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2020 10 23;30(19):127431. Epub 2020 Jul 23.

Division of Organic Chemistry, CSIR-National Chemical Laboratory, Dr. Homi Bhabha Road, Pune 411 008, India; Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research (AcSIR), Anusandhan Bhawan, 2 Rafi Marg, New Delhi 110002, India. Electronic address:

In this manuscript we have documented the identification of a novel anticancer scaffold 3-(benzofuran-2-ylmethyl)-1H-indole. This scaffold has been designed by tweaking the known bisindolylmethane scaffold of natural products that display a wide range of biological activities. A series of 24 new conjugates have been synthesized and among them 5 derivatives exhibited IC values less than 40 µM against two cervical cancer cell lines SiHa and C33a. Further mechanistic studies of two compounds 3eb and 3ec revealed that the toxicity of these compounds was due to the effective induction of autophagy mediated cell death. The autophagy induction was confirmed by the progressive conversion of LC3I to LC3II and downregulation of p62 in cervical cancer cells.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bmcl.2020.127431DOI Listing
October 2020

Conformationally constrained peptides for drug delivery.

J Pept Sci 2020 Apr 3;26(4-5):e3244. Epub 2020 Mar 3.

Molecular Informatics and Design Laboratory, Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering, Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati, Guwahati, India.

Peptides have shown great potential in acting as template for developing versatile carrier platforms in nanomedicine, aimed at selective delivery of drugs to only pathological tissues saving its normal neighbors. Cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) are short oligomeric peptides capable of translocating across the cell membrane while simultaneously employing multiple mechanisms of entry. Most CPPs exist as disordered structures in solution and may adopt a helical conformation on interaction with cell membrane, vital to their penetrative capability. Herein, we report a series of cationic helical amphipathic peptides (CHAPs), which are topologically constrained to be helical. The peptides were tested against cervical and breast cancer cells for their cell penetration and drug delivery potential. The cellular uptake of CHAP peptides is independent of temperature and energy availability. The activity of the peptides is biocompatible in bovine serum. CHAPs delivered functional methotrexate (MTX) inside the cell as CHAP-MTX conjugates. CHAP-MTX conjugates were more toxic to cancer cells than MTX alone. However, the CHAP-MTX conjugates were less toxic to HEK-293 cells compared with the cancer cells suggesting higher affinity towards cancer cells.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/psc.3244DOI Listing
April 2020

Estrogen receptor-α regulation of microRNA-590 targets FAM171A1-a modifier of breast cancer invasiveness.

Oncogenesis 2019 Jan 9;8(1). Epub 2019 Jan 9.

Cancer Research Program, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, 695014, India.

The pathobiology and aggressiveness of the triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) are influenced by genes that are preferentially expressed in TNBC cells. However, the nature of such genes with the role in invasiveness of TNBC cells is not fully understood. Here, we identified FAM171A1, member (A1) of the family with sequence similarity 171, as an overexpressed candidate gene in TNBC cells and tumors as compared to estrogen receptor-alpha (ERα) positive breast cancer. We found that the expression of FAM171A1 correlates well with the loss of ERα as well as its newly identified target miR590-5p in TNBC but not in ERα-positive cells. In addition, we report that ERα regulates FAM171A1 expression through a mechanism which involves ERα stimulation of miR590-5p expression via binding to its promoter, and in-turn, miR590-5p suppression of FAM171A1 expression. Further, we found that the levels of FAM171A1 correlate well with cancer cell aggressiveness as depletion or overexpression of FAM171A1 confers reduced or increased ability of TNBC cells to form mammospheres, respectively in accordance with the previous report of increased mammosphere formation potential of metastatic cells. In brief, results presented here have demonstrated that ERα regulation of FAM171A1 expression via miR590-5p explains the molecular basis of the noticed reduced levels of FAM171A1 in ER-positive breast cancer cells and that FAM171A1 is a preferably TNBC- overexpressed gene. Further, the noted loss of ERα-miR590-5p axis may upregulate the expression of FAM171A1 and consequently, resulting aggressiveness of TNBC cells. These findings suggest that FAM171A1 might represent a potentially novel therapeutic target for TNBC tumors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41389-018-0113-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6328622PMC
January 2019

Streptomyces sp metabolite(s) promotes Bax mediated intrinsic apoptosis and autophagy involving inhibition of mTOR pathway in cervical cancer cell lines.

Sci Rep 2018 02 12;8(1):2810. Epub 2018 Feb 12.

Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB), Thycaud Post, Poojappura, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India.

In cervical cancer, the association between HPV infection and dysregulation of phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/protein kinase B (AKT)/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway (PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway) places mTOR as an attractive therapeutic target. The failure of current treatment modalities in advanced stages of this cancer and drawbacks of already available mTOR inhibitors demand for novel drug candidates. In the present study we identified the presence of a mTOR inhibitor in an active fraction of the ethyl acetate extract of Streptomyces sp OA293. The metabolites(s) in the active fraction completely inhibited mTORC1 and thereby suppressed activation of both of its downstream targets, 4E-BP1 and P70S6k, in cervical cancer cells. In addition, it also stalled Akt activation via inhibition of mTORC2. The mechanism of mTOR inhibition detailed in our study overcomes significant drawbacks of well known mTOR inhibitors such as rapamycin and rapalogs. The active fraction induced autophagy and Bax mediated apoptosis suggesting that mTOR inhibition resulted in programmed cell death of cancer cells. The molecular weight determination of the components in active fraction confirmed the absence of any previously known natural mTOR inhibitor. This is the first report of complete mTOR complex inhibition by a product derived from microbial source.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-21249-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5809390PMC
February 2018

Cardamonin inhibits colonic neoplasia through modulation of MicroRNA expression.

Sci Rep 2017 10 24;7(1):13945. Epub 2017 Oct 24.

Cancer Research Program, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala State, 695014, India.

Colorectal cancer is currently the third leading cause of cancer related deaths. There is considerable interest in using dietary intervention strategies to prevent chronic diseases including cancer. Cardamonin is a spice derived nutraceutical and herein, for the first time we evaluated the therapeutic benefits of cardamonin in Azoxymethane (AOM) induced mouse model of colorectal cancer. Mice were divided into 4 groups of which three groups were given six weekly injections of AOM. One group served as untreated control and remaining groups were treated with either vehicle or Cardamonin starting from the same day or 16 weeks after the first AOM injection. Cardamonin treatment inhibited the tumor incidence, tumor multiplicity, Ki-67 and β-catenin positive cells. The activation of NF-kB signaling was also abrogated after cardamonin treatment. To elucidate the mechanism of action a global microRNA profiling of colon samples was performed. Computational analysis revealed that there is a differential expression of miRNAs between these groups. Subsequently, we extend our findings to human colorectal cancer and found that cardamonin inhibited the growth, induces cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in human colorectal cancer cell lines. Taken together, our study provides a better understanding of chemopreventive potential of cardamonin in colorectal cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-14253-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5655681PMC
October 2017

DEPTOR promotes survival of cervical squamous cell carcinoma cells and its silencing induces apoptosis through downregulating PI3K/AKT and by up-regulating p38 MAP kinase.

Oncotarget 2016 Apr;7(17):24154-71

Cancer Research Program, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thiruvananthapuram-695014, Kerala, India.

DEPTOR is an endogenous inhibitor of mTOR complexes, de-regulated in cancers. The present study reveals a vital role for DEPTOR in survival of cervical squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). DEPTOR was found to be overexpressed in both cervical SCC cells and tissues and it's silencing in cervical SCC cells induced apoptosis, mainly by up-regulation of p38 MAPK and by inhibiting PI3K/AKT pathway via a feed-back inhibition from mTORC1-S6K. DEPTOR silencing resulted in reduced expression of the nitric oxide synthases iNOS and eNOS, as well as increased activation of ERK1/2 and p38 MAP kinases. Activation of AKT signaling by overexpression of constitutively active-AKT (CA-AKT) failed to overcome the apoptosis caused by DEPTOR silencing. Similarly pharmacological inhibition of ERK also failed to control apoptosis. However pharmacological inhibition of p38 MAPK rescued the cells from apoptosis, indicating the major role of p38 MAPK in cell death induced by DEPTOR silencing. DEPTOR was also found to regulate ERK1/2 in an AKT dependent manner. DEPTOR knockdown induced cell death in SiHa cells overexpressing the anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL, indicating strong survival role of DEPTOR in these cells. DEPTOR overexpression activated PI3K/AKT by relieving the negative feed-back inhibition from mTORC1-S6K. DEPTOR regulation was also observed to be independent of HPV E6/E7 oncoproteins, but it might be a molecular co-factor contributing to cervical carcinogenesis. In summary, DEPTOR is found to promote survival of cervical SCC cells and its reduction induced apoptosis via differential effects on PI3K/AKT and p38 MAPK and can be a potential target in cervical SCC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.8131DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5029691PMC
April 2016

Upregulation of DR5 receptor by the diaminothiazole DAT1 [4-amino-5-benzoyl-2-(4-methoxy phenyl amino) thiazole] triggers an independent extrinsic pathway of apoptosis in colon cancer cells with compromised pro and antiapoptotic proteins.

Apoptosis 2013 Jun;18(6):713-26

Division of Cancer Research, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Trivandrum 695014, India.

Mitochondria mediated signalling is the more common way of apoptosis induction exhibited by many chemotherapeutic agents in cancer cells. Death receptor mediated signalling for apoptosis in many cells also requires further amplification from the mitochondrial pathway activation through tBid. Thus the potential of most chemotherapeutic agents in tumours with intrinsic apoptosis resistance due to changes in molecules involved in the mitochondrial pathway is limited. Diaminothiazoles were shown earlier to bind to tubulin thereby exhibiting cytotoxicity towards different cancer cells. We observed that the lead diaminothiazole, DAT1 [4-amino-5-benzoyl-2-(4-methoxy phenyl amino) thiazole] could induce apoptosis in the colon cancer cell line HCT116 by both pathways. However, in contrast to many other chemotherapeutic agents, DAT1 triggered apoptosis where the intrinsic pathway was blocked by changing the pro and antiapoptotic proteins. An independent extrinsic pathway activation triggered by the upregulation of DR5 receptor accounted for that. The induction of DR5 occurred in the transcriptional level and the essential role of DR5 was confirmed by the fact that siRNA downregulation of DR5 significantly reduced DAT1 induced apoptosis. HCT116 cells were earlier shown to have a type II response for apoptosis induction where extrinsic pathway was connected to the intrinsic pathway via the mediator protein tBid. Our finding thus indicates that the signalling events in the manifestation of apoptosis depend not only on the cancer cell type, but also on the inducer. Our results also place diaminothiazoles in a promising position in the treatment of tumours with compromised apoptotic factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10495-013-0826-6DOI Listing
June 2013

Umbilical cord blood-derived mesenchymal stem cells consist of a unique population of progenitors co-expressing mesenchymal stem cell and neuronal markers capable of instantaneous neuronal differentiation.

Stem Cell Res Ther 2012 Dec 19;3(6):57. Epub 2012 Dec 19.

Introduction: Umbilical cord blood (UCB)-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are self-renewing multipotent progenitors with the potential to differentiate into multiple lineages of mesoderm, in addition to generating ectodermal and endodermal lineages by crossing the germline barrier. In the present study we have investigated the ability of UCB-MSCs to generate neurons, since we were able to observe varying degrees of neuronal differentiation from a few batches of UCB-MSCs with very simple neuronal induction protocols whereas other batches required extensive exposure to combination of growth factors in a stepwise protocol. Our hypothesis was therefore that the human UCB-MSCs would contain multiple types of progenitors with varying neurogenic potential and that the ratio of the progenitors with high and low neurogenic potentials varies in different batches of UCB.

Methods: In total we collected 45 UCB samples, nine of which generated MSCs that were further expanded and characterized using immunofluorescence, fluorescence-activated cell sorting and RT-PCR analysis. The neuronal differentiation potential of the UCB-MSCs was analyzed with exposure to combination of growth factors.

Results: We could identify two different populations of progenitors within the UCB-MSCs. One population represented progenitors with innate neurogenic potential that initially express pluripotent stem cell markers such as Oct4, Nanog, Sox2, ABCG2 and neuro-ectodermal marker nestin and are capable of expanding and differentiating into neurons with exposure to simple neuronal induction conditions. The remaining population of cells, typically expressing MSC markers, requires extensive exposure to a combination of growth factors to transdifferentiate into neurons. Interesting to note was that both of these cell populations were positive for CD29 and CD105, indicating their MSC lineage, but showed prominent difference in their neurogenic potential.

Conclusion: Our results suggest that the expanded UCB-derived MSCs harbor a small unique population of cells that express pluripotent stem cell markers along with MSC markers and possess an inherent neurogenic potential. These pluripotent progenitors later generate cells expressing neural progenitor markers and are responsible for the instantaneous neuronal differentiation; the ratio of these pluripotent marker expressing cells in a batch determines the innate neurogenic potential.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/scrt148DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3580487PMC
December 2012

Diaminothiazoles inhibit angiogenesis efficiently by suppressing Akt phosphorylation.

J Pharmacol Exp Ther 2012 Jun 13;341(3):718-24. Epub 2012 Mar 13.

Division of Cancer Research, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thiruvananthapuram 695014, India.

The prevention of neovessel formation or angiogenesis is a recent popular strategy for limiting and curing cancer. Diaminothiazoles are a class of compounds that have been reported to show promise in the treatment of cancer by inhibiting cancer cell proliferation and inducing apoptosis, because of their effects on microtubules and as inhibitors of cyclin-dependent kinases. Many microtubule-targeting agents are being studied for their antiangiogenic activity, and a few have shown promising activity in the treatment of cancer. Here, we report that diaminothiazoles can be highly effective as antiangiogenic agents, as observed in the chick membrane assay. The lead compound, 4-amino-5-benzoyl-2-(4-methoxyphenylamino)thiazole (DAT1), inhibits endothelial cell processes such as invasion, migration, and tubule formation, which require a functional cytoskeleton. DAT1 also decreases the expression of cell adhesion markers. The antiangiogenic activities of DAT1 occur at concentrations that are not cytotoxic to the normal endothelium. Analysis of intracellular signaling pathways shows that DAT1 inhibits Akt phosphorylation, which is actively involved in the angiogenic process. The antiangiogenic properties of diaminothiazoles, in addition to their promising antimitotic and cytotoxic properties in cancer cell lines, give them an extra advantage in the treatment of cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1124/jpet.112.192559DOI Listing
June 2012

Drug-induced senescence generates chemoresistant stemlike cells with low reactive oxygen species.

J Biol Chem 2011 Oct 30;286(43):37813-29. Epub 2011 Aug 30.

Cancer Research Program, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thycaud, Thiruvananthapuram 695014, Kerala, India.

Tumor recurrence after chemotherapy or radiation remains a major obstacle to successful cancer treatment. A subset of cancer cells, termed cancer stem cells, can elude conventional treatments and eventually regenerate a tumor that is more aggressive. Despite the large number of studies, molecular events that govern the emergence of aggressive therapy-resistant cells with stem cell properties after chemotherapy are poorly defined. The present study provides evidence for the rare escape of tumor cells from drug-induced cell death, after an intermediate stay in a non-cycling senescent stage followed by unstable multiplication characterized by spontaneous cell death. However, some cells appear to escape and generate stable colonies with an aggressive tumor stem cell-like phenotype. These cells displayed higher CD133 and Oct-4 expression. Notably, the drug-selected cells that contained low levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) also showed an increase in antioxidant enzymes. Consistent with this in vitro experimental data, we observed lower levels of ROS in breast tumors obtained after neoadjuvant chemotherapy compared with samples that did not receive preoperative chemotherapy. These latter tissues also expressed enhanced levels of ROS defenses with enhanced expression of superoxide dismutase. Higher levels of Oct-4 and CD133 were also observed in tumors obtained after neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Further studies provided evidence for the stabilization of Nrf2 due to reduced 26 S proteasome activity and increased p21 association as the driving signaling event that contributes to the transition from a high ROS quiescent state to a low ROS proliferating stage in drug-induced tumor stem cell enrichment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M110.200675DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3199523PMC
October 2011

Phosphorylation status of the NR2B subunit of NMDA receptor regulates its interaction with calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II.

J Neurochem 2009 Jul 21;110(1):92-105. Epub 2009 Apr 21.

Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thycaud, P. O., Thiruvananthapuram-695014, Kerala, India.

Ca(2+) influx through NMDA-type glutamate receptor at excitatory synapses causes activation of post-synaptic Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase type II (CaMKII) and its translocation to the NR2B subunit of NMDA receptor. The major binding site for CaMKII on NR2B undergoes phosphorylation at Ser1303, in vivo. Even though some regulatory effects of this phosphorylation are known, the mode of dephosphorylation of NR2B-Ser1303 is still unclear. We show that phosphorylation status at Ser1303 enables NR2B to distinguish between the Ca(2+)/calmodulin activated form and the autonomously active Thr286-autophosphorylated form of CaMKII. Green fluorescent protein-alpha-CaMKII co-expressed with NR2B sequence in human embryonic kidney 293 cells was used to study intracellular binding between the two proteins. Binding in vitro was studied by glutathione-S-transferase pull-down assay. Thr286-autophosphorylated alpha-CaMKII or the autophosphorylation mimicking mutant, T286D-alpha-CaMKII, binds NR2B sequence independent of Ca(2+)/calmodulin unlike native wild-type alpha-CaMKII. We show enhancement of this binding by Ca(2+)/calmodulin. Phosphorylation or a phosphorylation mimicking mutation on NR2B (NR2B-S1303D) abolishes the Ca(2+)/calmodulin-independent binding whereas it allows the Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent binding of alpha-CaMKII in vitro. Similarly, the autonomously active mutants, T286D-alpha-CaMKII and F293E/N294D-alpha-CaMKII, exhibited Ca(2+)-independent binding to non-phosphorylatable mutant of NR2B under intracellular conditions. We also show for the first time that phosphatases in the brain such as protein phosphatase 1 and protein phosphatase 2A dephosphorylate phospho-Ser1303 on NR2B.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1471-4159.2009.06108.xDOI Listing
July 2009

Biophysical evaluation of two red-shifted hypocrellin B derivatives as novel PDT agents.

J Photochem Photobiol B 2009 Jan 30;94(1):38-44. Epub 2008 Sep 30.

Centre For Excellence in Genomic Science, School of Biological Sciences, Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai, India.

Two novel cyclohexane-1,2-diamino and N,N dimethyl amino-propyl substituted hypocrellin B derivatives, abbreviated as CHA2HB and DMAHB, respectively were synthesized. These derivatives exhibited enhanced absorption in phototherapeutic window. Photodynamic action of these derivatives, investigated using optical and electron spin resonance methods, depended on both Type I and Type II mechanisms. Gel electrophoresis indicated 1O2/O2(.-) mediated DNA damage. CHA2HB displayed 20 fold increase in light dependent cytotoxicity on colon cancer cell line (HCT 116) than the well-known hypocrellin B (HB). The light induced, LD(50) values for CHA2HB and DMAHB were found to be 0.1 microM and 1.5 microM, respectively. The singlet oxygen generating efficiency followed the order HB>CHA(2)HB>DMAHB. But, the enhanced red absorption as well as the hydrophilicity renders the CHA2HB a better photodynamic therapeutic agent.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2008.09.007DOI Listing
January 2009
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