Differential effects of the breast cancer resistance protein on the cellular accumulation and cytotoxicity of 9-aminocamptothecin and 9-nitrocamptothecin

Rajeev Rajendra, Murugesan K. Gounder, Ahamed Saleem, Jan H.M. Schellens, Douglas D. Ross, Susan E. Bates, Patrick Sinko, Eric H. Rubin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP)/MXR/ABCG2 is a new member of the family of ATP-dependent drug efflux proteins. Whereas overexpression of another member of this family, P-glycoprotein, minimally affects the cytotoxicity of camptothecins (CPTs), overexpression of wildtype as well as certain mutant BCRPs confers resistance to CPT analogues that are used clinically, including topotecan and irinotecan. Relatively little is known regarding the effects of BCRP on other CPT analogues. We now report studies of 9-aminocamptothecin (9-AC) and 9-nitrocamptothecin (9-NC) using mammalian cells stably transfected with constructs expressing a variety of efflux proteins, including wild-type BCRP and a mutant BCRP that contains a threonine rather than an arginine at position 482 (R482T). The results indicate that overexpression of either Pglycoprotein, multidrug resistance protein type 1, or multidrug resistance protein type 2 has little effect on the cytotoxicity of 9-NC or 9-AC. By contrast, overexpression of either wild-type or R482T BCRP confers resistance to 9-AC, but not to 9-NC. Furthermore, overexpresion of wild-type or mutant BCRP is associated with reduced intracellular accumulation of 9-AC, but not 9-NC. In addition, immunoblotting studies indicate that whereas increased BCRP expression is evident in cells selected for resistance to irinotecan, BCRP expression is not detectable in two different cell lines selected for resistance to 9-NC. Taken together, these findings suggest that wild-type as well as R482T BCRP mediates cellular efflux of 9-AC but not 9-NC. Furthermore, the results suggest that polar groups at the 9 or 10 position of the CPT A ring facilitate interaction with BCRP and have implications for the clinical development of new CPT analogues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3228-3233
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 15 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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