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Cisplatin as an Anti-Tumor Drug: Cellular Mechanisms of Activity, Drug Resistance and Induced Side Effects
Department of Neuropathology, Heinrich-Heine University, Düsseldorf, Germany
Weil Cornell Medical College in Qatar, Qatar Foundation-Education City, P.O. Box 24144, Doha, Qatar
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 January 2011; in revised form: 28 February 2011 / Accepted: 3 March 2011 / Published: 15 March 2011
Abstract: Platinum complexes are clinically used as adjuvant therapy of cancers aiming to induce tumor cell death. Depending on cell type and concentration, cisplatin induces cytotoxicity, e.g., by interference with transcription and/or DNA replication mechanisms. Additionally, cisplatin damages tumors via induction of apoptosis, mediated by the activation of various signal transduction pathways, including calcium signaling, death receptor signaling, and the activation of mitochondrial pathways. Unfortunately, neither cytotoxicity nor apoptosis are exclusively induced in cancer cells, thus, cisplatin might also lead to diverse side-effects such as neuro- and/or renal-toxicity or bone marrow-suppression. Moreover, the binding of cisplatin to proteins and enzymes may modulate its biochemical mechanism of action. While a combination-chemotherapy with cisplatin is a cornerstone for the treatment of multiple cancers, the challenge is that cancer cells could become cisplatin-resistant. Numerous mechanisms of cisplatin resistance were described including changes in cellular uptake, drug efflux, increased detoxification, inhibition of apoptosis and increased DNA repair. To minimize cisplatin resistance, combinatorial therapies were developed and have proven more effective to defeat cancers. Thus, understanding of the biochemical mechanisms triggered by cisplatin in tumor cells may lead to the design of more efficient platinum derivates (or other drugs) and might provide new therapeutic strategies and reduce side effects.
Keywords: cisplatin; cancer; intracellular mechanisms; ROS intracellular calcium; multi drug resistance; ROS; combinatorial therapy; toxicity; cell death; DNA damage and repair; apoptosis
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MDPI and ACS Style
Florea, A.-M.; Büsselberg, D. Cisplatin as an Anti-Tumor Drug: Cellular Mechanisms of Activity, Drug Resistance and Induced Side Effects. Cancers 2011, 3, 1351-1371.
Florea A-M, Büsselberg D. Cisplatin as an Anti-Tumor Drug: Cellular Mechanisms of Activity, Drug Resistance and Induced Side Effects. Cancers. 2011; 3(1):1351-1371.
Florea, Ana-Maria; Büsselberg, Dietrich. 2011. "Cisplatin as an Anti-Tumor Drug: Cellular Mechanisms of Activity, Drug Resistance and Induced Side Effects." Cancers 3, no. 1: 1351-1371.