Bendamustine, a hybrid molecule of a purine analog and alkylator, induces cell death by the activation of apoptosis and the DNA damage response. The agent MK615 is produced from Japanese apricot and contains a number of cyclic triterpenes that exhibit antitumor activities. In the present study, the combined effects of bendamustine and MK615 on lymphoma cells were investigated. The combined compounds synergistically induced apoptosis in all lymphoid cell lines examined. MK615 inhibited the bendamustine‑induced phosphorylation of checkpoint kinase 1 and 2. As ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) and ataxia telangiectasia‑ and Rad3‑related (ATR) kinases are key mediators of the DNA damage response, the effects of the combination of bendamustine and ATM/ATR inhibitors (KU‑60019 and VE‑821) on lymphoma cells were investigated. KU‑60019 and/or VE‑821 potentiated bendamustine activity in all cell lines tested, but did not affect MK615 activity, suggesting that these inhibitors have the same underlying mechanism of action as that of MK615. The results of the present study suggest that it may be feasible to use ATM/ATR inhibitors in combination with bendamustine for treating malignant lymphoma.
ataxia telangiectasia mutated/ataxia telangiectasia‑ and Rad3‑related inhibitors
Japanese apricot extract
School of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine