EGF Reverses Multi-drug Resistance via the p-ERK Pathway in HepG2/ADM and SMMC7721/ADM Hepatocellular Carcinoma Models

  • Yan, Feng ;
  • Bai, Li-Ping ;
  • Gao, Hua ;
  • Zhu, Chang-Ming ;
  • Lin, Li ;
  • Kang, Xiang-Peng
  • Published : 2014.03.30


Aim: To investigate signaling pathways for reversal of EGF-mediated multi-drug resistance (MDR) in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) models. Materials and Methods: HCC MDR cell strain HepG2/adriamycin (ADM) and SMMC7721/ADM models were established using a method of exposure to medium with ADM between low and high concentration with gradually increasing concentration. Drug sensitivity and reversal of multi-drug resistance by EGF were determined and the cell cycle distribution and apoptosis were analyzed by flow cytometry. Phosphorylation of ERK1, ERK2, ERK5 and expression of Bim were detected by Western blotting. Results: The results showed that HepG2/ADM and SMMC7721/ADM cells were resistant not only to ADM, but also to multiple anticancer drugs. When used alone, EGF had no anti-tumor activity in HepG2/ADM and SMMC7721/ADM cells in vitro, while it increased the cytotoxicity of ADM. EGF induced cell apoptosis and G0/G1 phase cell cycle arrest in HepG2/ADM And SMMC7721/ADM cells, while enhancing activity of p-ERKs and up-regulated expression of BimEL. Conclusions: EGF might enhance the chemosensitivity of HepG2/ADM and SMMC7721/ADM cells via up-regulating p-ERKs and BimEL protein.


Hepatocellular carcinoma;multi-drug resistance;EGF;ERK;BimEL


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