MnSOD overexpression confers cisplatin resistance in lung adenocarcinoma via the NF-κB/Snail/Bcl-2 pathway

Po Ming Chen, Ya Wen Cheng, Tzu Chin Wu, Chih Yi Chen, Huei Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


Manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) has been shown to be associated with doxorubicin resistance in gastric cancer cells, but the underlying mechanism of MnSOD in drug resistance remains unclear. A recent study indicated that NF-κB activation by MnSOD promoted tumor malignancy in lung adenocarcinoma. Therefore, we hypothesized that MnSOD-mediated NF-κB activation might confer cisplatin resistance in lung adenocarcinoma via the NF-κB/Bcl-2/Snail pathway. Here, the inhibition concentration of cisplatin with 50% cell viability (IC50) was positively correlated with MnSOD expression and its activity in a panel of lung adenocarcinoma cells. The IC50 value was markedly increased and decreased by MnSOD overexpression and knockdown, respectively, in lung cancer cells. Mechanistically, an increase in Bcl-2 by MnSOD-mediated NF-κB activation confers greater cisplatin resistance than cIAP2, Bcl-xL, Mcl-1, and Snail. MnSOD-mediated cisplatin resistance can be overcome by a Bcl-2 antagonist (ABT-199) or IKKβ inhibitor (curcumin) in cells and xenograft tumors. MnSOD expression was positively correlated with nuclear p65 protein and Bcl-2 mRNA expression in tumors from patients with lung adenocarcinomas. A retrospective study indicated that it was more common for MnSOD-positive, nuclear p65-positive, or high Bcl-2 mRNA tumors to have an unfavorable response to cisplatin-based chemotherapy than their counterparts. Therefore, we suggest that ABT-199 or curcumin may be potentially useful to improve tumor regression and chemotherapeutic response in patients with MnSOD/Bcl-2-positive tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-137
Number of pages11
JournalFree Radical Biology and Medicine
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2015


  • Cisplatin
  • Free radicals
  • IKKβ/NF-κb
  • Lung adenocarcinoma
  • MnSOD

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology (medical)


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