Activation of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor Contributes to the Survival of T Lymphoma Cells by Affecting Cellular Metabolism

Yang C, Jo SH, Csernus B, Hyjek E, Liu Y, Chadburn A, Wang YL
Source: Am J Pathol
Publication Date: (2007)
Issue: 170(2): 722-32
Research Area:
Immunotherapy / Hematology
Cells used in publication:
Karpas 299
Species: human
Tissue Origin: blood
Nucleofectorâ„¢ I/II/2b
Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARgamma) is a metabolic regulator involved in maintaining glucose and fatty acid homeostasis. Besides its metabolic functions, the receptor has also been implicated in tumorigenesis. Ligands of PPARgamma induce apoptosis in several types of tumor cells, leading to the proposal that these ligands may be used as antineoplastic agents. However, apoptosis induction requires high doses of ligands, suggesting the effect may not be receptor-dependent. In this report, we show that PPARgamma is expressed in human primary T-cell lymphoma tissues and activation of PPARgamma with low doses of ligands protects lymphoma cells from serum starvation-induced apoptosis. The prosurvival effect of PPARgamma was linked to its actions on cellular metabolic activities. In serum-deprived cells, PPARgamma attenuated the decline in ATP, reduced mitochondrial hyperpolarization, and limited the amount of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in favor of cell survival. Moreover, PPARgamma regulated ROS through coordinated transcriptional control of a set of proteins and enzymes involved in ROS metabolism. Our study identified cell survival promotion as a novel activity of PPARgamma. These findings highlight the need for further investigation into the role of PPARgamma in cancer before widespread use of its agonists as anticancer therapeutics.