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Open AccessArticle

A Role for H2O2 and TRPM2 in the Induction of Cell Death: Studies in KGN Cells

Biomedical Center Munich (BMC), Cell Biology, Anatomy III, Ludwig-Maximilian-University (LMU), D-82152 Planegg, Germany
Division of Neurobiology, Department Biology II, Ludwig-Maximilian-University (LMU), D-82152 Planegg, Germany
Institute of Pathology, Ludwig-Maximilian-University (LMU), D-80337 München, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Antioxidants 2019, 8(11), 518;
Received: 21 October 2019 / Accepted: 25 October 2019 / Published: 29 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Free Radical Research in Cancer)
Recent studies showed that KGN cells, derived from a human granulosa cell tumor (GCT), express NADPH oxidase 4 (NOX4), an important source of H2O2. Transient receptor potential melastatin 2 (TRPM2) channel is a Ca2+ permeable cation channel that can be activated by H2O2 and plays an important role in cellular functions. It is also able to promote susceptibility to cell death. We studied expression and functionality of TRPM2 in KGN cells and examined GCT tissue microarrays (TMAs) to explore in vivo relevance. We employed live cell, calcium and mitochondrial imaging, viability assays, fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS) analysis, Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. We confirmed that KGN cells produce H2O2 and found that they express functional TRPM2. H2O2 increased intracellular Ca2+ levels and N-(p-Amylcinnamoyl)anthranilic acid (ACA), a TRPM2 inhibitor, blocked this action. H2O2 caused mitochondrial fragmentation and apoptotic cell death, which could be attenuated by a scavenger (Trolox). Immunohistochemistry showed parallel expression of NOX4 and TRPM2 in all 73 tumor samples examined. The results suggest that GCTs can be endowed with a system that may convey susceptibility to cell death. If so, induction of oxidative stress may be beneficial in GCT therapy. Our results also imply a therapeutic potential for TRPM2 as a drug target in GCTs. View Full-Text
Keywords: ovary; calcium channel; Trolox; granulosa cell tumor; cell death; mitochondria ovary; calcium channel; Trolox; granulosa cell tumor; cell death; mitochondria
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Hack, C.T.; Buck, T.; Bagnjuk, K.; Eubler, K.; Kunz, L.; Mayr, D.; Mayerhofer, A. A Role for H2O2 and TRPM2 in the Induction of Cell Death: Studies in KGN Cells. Antioxidants 2019, 8, 518.

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