J Neurooncol. 2014 Feb 4. [Epub ahead of print]
Characterization of fenofibrate-mediated anti-proliferative pro-apoptotic effects on high-grade gliomas and anti-invasive effects on glioma stem cells.Edit
Department of Neurosurgery, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, 1 Gustave L. Levy Place, Box 1136, New York, NY, 10029, USA.
Glioblastoma is the most common, and at the same time, most aggressive type of high-grade glioma (HGG). The prognosis of glioblastoma patients treated with standard therapy including surgery, temozolomide and radiation therapy remains poor. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-α (PPARα) agonists are in widespread clinical use for the treatment of hyperlipidemia. Recent evidence has suggested a potential role in various cancers including glioblastoma. In this study, we characterized the effects of PPARα agonist, fenofibrate, directly on HGG cells and glioma stem cells (GSC). Fenofibrate exhibited dose-dependent p53-independent anti-proliferative effects on HGG starting at 25 μM and pro-apoptotic effects starting at 50 μM, suggesting that the anti-proliferative actions are present only at 25 μM. PPARα was expressed in all HGG cell lines. Inhibition of PPARα with specific inhibitor GW6471 did not affect either proliferation or apoptosis suggesting that these are PPARα-independent effects. Fenofibrate treatment of HGG cells robustly diminished the expression of key signaling pathways, including NF-κB and cyclin D1. Phosphorylation of Akt was also diminished, with no change in total Akt. Effects on apoptotic signaling molecules, Bax and Bcl-xL, had a trend towards pro-apoptotic effects. With respect to GSC, fenofibrate treatment at 25 μM significantly decreased invasion in association with a decrease in CD133 and Oct4 expression. Overall, results support consideration of fenofibrate as an anti-glioma agent and establish its potential as an adjunct treatment strategy for HGG. Translation to the clinical setting could be rapid given its current use as a clinical agent and its low toxicity profile.