Potentiation of metalloenediyne cytotoxicity by hyperthermia

Stefan M. Routt, Ju Zhu, Jeffrey M. Zaleski, Joseph R. Dynlacht

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations


Purpose: Enediynes are potent inducers of DNA damage, but their clinical usefulness has been limited. Here we report the thermal enhancement of cytotoxicity of two novel metalloenediyne compounds at concentrations that are either not or minimally cytotoxic at 37°C, and present evidence regarding possible mechanisms for enhanced cytotoxicity. Materials and methods: HeLa cells were exposed to (Z)-N,N′-bis[1-pyridyl-2-yl-meth-(E)-ylidene]octa-4-ene- 2,6-diyne-1,8-diamine (PyED) (which becomes metallated in culture medium) or ((Z)-N,N′-bis[quinolin-2-yl-meth-(E)-ylidene]octa-4-ene-2,6-diyne-1, 8-diamine)zinc(II) chloride (QuinED · ZnCl2) at 37°C or 42.5°C for 1 h, and clonogenic survival was compared after treatment at each temperature. Analyses of cell cycle progression and mode of death were performed after treatments. Results: Treatment with PyED or QuinED · ZnCl2 resulted in a significant decrease in cell survival when cells were treated with drug at 42.5°C compared to 37°C. Enhanced cytotoxicity was attributed to increased apoptosis. However, perturbation of the cell cycle may also play a role. Cells which were only heated or exposed to PyED at 37°C experienced significant G2/M blocks that were eliminated when PyED and heat were administered simultaneously, suggesting that combined treatments override cell cycle arrests normally observed with each agent individually. Conversely, cells heated during treatment with QuinED · ZnCl 2 displayed an increased G2/M arrest compared to treatment at 37°C. Conclusions: With improvements in site-specific heat delivery to tumours, systemic administration of non-toxic metalloenediynes coupled with localised hyperthermia may improve selective enediyne activation/targeting. Therefore PyED and QuinED · ZnCl 2, which show significantly enhanced cytotoxicity at elevated temperatures, may represent viable candidates for thermochemotherapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)435-444
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Hyperthermia
Issue number5
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011


  • Apoptosis
  • Cell cycle arrest
  • Enediyne
  • Hyperthermia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Physiology
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Physiology (medical)

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