Induction of EGF-dependent apoptosis by vacuolar-type H+-ATPase inhibitors in A431 cells overexpressing the EGF receptor

Yuya Yoshimoto, Masaya Imoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Citations (Scopus)


The stimulation of human tumor cells overexpressing epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) with EGF enhances tumor development and malignancy. Therefore, compounds that modulate the EGF-mediated signal inducing apoptosis in EGFR-overexpressing cells would represent a new class of antitumor drug and might be useful in the treatment of a subset of human tumors. In the course of screening for compounds that induce apoptosis in EGFR-overexpressing human epidermal carcinoma A431 cells from secondary metabolites of microorganisms, we found that vacuolar-type H+-ATPase (V-ATPase) inhibitors, such as concanamycin B and destruxin E, induced apoptosis only when the cells were stimulated with EGF. The EGF-dependent apoptosis by V-ATPase inhibitors was not observed in other types of human tumor cells which do not overexpress EGFR. The apoptosis in A431 cells was inhibited by anti-FasL antibody which neutralized the cytotoxic effect of FasL, indicating that the Fas/FasL system was involved. The expression of cell surface FasL was upregulated by stimulation with EGF and increased further by V-ATPase inhibitors. Moreover, EGF inhibited cytotoxic Fas antibody-induced apoptosis, whereas V-ATPase inhibitors disrupted the protective effect of EGF on apoptosis in A431 cells. Taken together, these results suggested that V-ATPase inhibitors induced EGF-dependent apoptosis in A431 cells, possibly through both the enhancement of EGF-induced cell surface expression of FasL and the disruption of an EGF-induced survival signal.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)118-127
Number of pages10
JournalExperimental Cell Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Jan 1


  • A431
  • Apoptosis
  • Concanamycin B
  • Destruxin E
  • Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)
  • Fas ligand (FasL)
  • Vacuolar-type H-ATPase (V-ATPase)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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