Cellular responses to the DNA damaging natural compound leinamycin

Parvathi Sinha, Yoon Joo Shin, Allison M. Hays, Kent Gates, Daekyu Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Leinamycin is a thiol dependent DNA alkylating agent which shows very potent activity against various human cancer cell lines (IC50 values in the low nanomolar range). This natural compound forms guanine adducts (N7) in DNA which are converted into abasic sites and simultaneously generates Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS), to produce DNA strand breaks in human cancer cells. Our present study shows that leinamycin induces a group of DNA repair and transcription factor genes involved in DNA repair in a MDA-MB-231 human breast cancer cell line, which can mediate chemoresistance to leinamycin. In addition, N-acetylcysteine decreases leinamycin-mediated ROS production while increasing leinamycin mediated apoptotic cell death, without affecting the induction of repair genes. These data indicate that ROS is not a crucial player in leinamycin induced DNA damage and that a precursor of glutathione, N-acetylcysteine, can potentiate leinamycin mediated cytotoxicity by increasing the activation of leinamycin into its DNA reactive form.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberS8-001
JournalJournal of Cancer Science and Therapy
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2013


  • DNA repair
  • Leinamycin
  • N-acetylcysteine
  • Reactive oxidative species

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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