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This article is part of the supplement: São Paulo Advanced School of Comparative Oncology: Abstracts

Open Access Poster presentation

Tetra-O-methyl nordihydroguaiaretic acid, an inhibitor of Sp1-mediated survivin transcription, induces apoptosis and acts synergistically with chemo-radiotherapy in glioblastoma cells

Angel M Castro-Gamero1*, Kleiton S Borges1, Daniel A Moreno1, Veridiana K Suazo2, Mayara M Fujinami2, Rosane PG Queiroz2, Harley F de Oliveira3, Carlos G Carlotti4, Carlos A Scrideli2 and Luiz G Tone12

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Genetics, School of Medicine, Ribeirão Preto, USP, Ribeirão Preto, Brazil

2 Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, Ribeirão Preto, USP, Ribeirão Preto, Brazil

3 Department of Clinical Medicine, School of Medicine, Ribeirão Preto, USP, Brazil

4 Department of Anatomy and Surgery, School of Medicine, Ribeirão Preto, USP, Brazil

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BMC Proceedings 2013, 7(Suppl 2):P8  doi:10.1186/1753-6561-7-S2-P8

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published:4 April 2013

© 2013 Castro-Gamero et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Glioblastoma (GBM), one of the most malignant human neoplasms, responds poorly to current treatment modalities, being temozolomide (TMZ) the mostly used drug for treatment. Tetra-O-methyl Nordihydroguaiaretic Acid (M4N) is a global transcriptional repressor of genes dependent of Sp1 transcription factors, such as Survivin and CDK1. We evaluated expression of Survivin and CDK1 in glioblastoma and analyzed the effects of M4N combined or not with temozolomide and radiation on cell lines and primary cultures of GBM.

Materials and methods

RT-PCR assays were performed to determinate survivin-spliced variants and CDK1 mRNA expression in glioblastoma tumor samples and cell lines. Cell proliferation was measured by XTT assay, and cell cycle and apoptosis were determined by flow cytometry. Drug combination analyzes using different schedules of administration (simultaneous and sequential) were made based in Chou-Talalay method on GBM cell lines and primary cultures. Gamma radiation for clonogenic survival used the doses of 2, 4, and 6 Gy.


All survivin-spliced variants and CDK1 gene were expressed in GBM samples (n=16) and cell lines (n=6), except the survivin-2B variant that was expressed exclusively in GBM cell lines. M4N decreased cell proliferation separately and synergistically with TMZ, besides enhancement of radiation effects, mainly when associated with TMZ. M4N also induced apoptotic cell death, decreased mitotic index and arrested the cell cycle in G2/M phase. M4N treatment down-regulated CDK1 gene and survivin and survivin-ΔEx3 variants, while the survivin-2B variant was up-regulated.


Our results suggest a potential clinical application of M4N in combination with TMZ in GB treatment.

Financial support

CAPES and FAPESP (process number 2009/50118-2).