Identification of dinactin, a macrolide antibiotic, as a natural product-based small molecule targeting Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway in cancer c…

A new interesting article has been published in Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 2019 May 25. doi: 10.1007/s00280-019-03870-x. and titled:

Identification of dinactin, a macrolide antibiotic, as a natural product-based small molecule targeting Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway in cancer c…

Authors of this article are:

Hussain A, Dar MS,, Bano N, Hossain MM, Basit R, Bhat AQ, Aga MA, Ali S, Hassan QP, Dar MJ.

A summary of the article is shown below:

PURPOSE: Despite the fact that hyper-activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway has been seen in many cancers, including liver, colorectal and lung carcinoma, no small molecule inhibitors are available that specifically target this pathway. In this study, we analyzed the impact of dinactin (DA), an antibiotic ionophore produced by Streptomyces species, as an effective small molecule targeting Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway in cancer cells.METHODS: We performed MTT assays to investigate cell viability and proliferation after exposure to small molecules. Protein expression analysis was carried out by western blotting. Top-Flash reporter assays were used to score for β-catenin signaling and cell cycle analysis was carried out by flow cytometry.RESULTS: In the first set of experiments, DA was seen to selectively inhibit the proliferation of HCT-116 and HepG2 cancer cells, unlike HEK-293 cells (a low tumorigenic cell line), in apoptosis-independent manner. Further, DA was seen to block the G1/S progression and decrease the expression of cyclin D1 in cancer cells. Since cyclin D1 is the downstream target gene of Wnt/β-catenin signaling, we examined the impact of DA on TCF-dependent β-catenin activity using Top-Flash reporter assay. Interestingly, DA significantly decreased Top-Flash activity at lower nano-molar concentrations when compared with salinomycin in HCT-116 and HepG2 cells.CONCLUSION: We report the identification of dinactin as a natural product-based small molecule that effectively blocks the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway in cancer cells at nano-molar concentration. We anticipate that DA could be developed as a novel drug for anti-cancer therapy and for the management of neuropathic pain.

Check out the article’s website on Pubmed for more information:



This article is a good source of information and a good way to become familiar with topics such as: Anti-cancer agents; Antibiotic; Apoptosis; HCT-116 and HepG2 cells; Ionophore; Wnt/β-catenin signaling.