Author(s): Crowe ME, Lieven CJ, Thompson AF, Sheibani N,Levin LA. Borane-protected phosphines are redox-active radioprotective agents for endothelial cells. Redox Biol. 2015 Dec;6:73-79. doi: 10.1016/j.redox.2015.06.015. Epub 2015 Jun 26. PMID 26188467
Journal: Redox Biology, Volume 6, Dec 2015
Exposure to radiation can damage endothelial cells in the irradiated area via the production of reactive oxygen species. We synthesized phosphine-borane complexes that reduce disulfide bonds and had previously been shown to interfere with redox-mediated signaling of cell death. We hypothesized that this class of drugs could interfere with the downstream effects of oxidative stress after irradiation and rescue endothelial cells from radiation damage. Cultured bovine aortic endothelial cells were plated for clonogenic assay prior to exposure to varying doses of irradiation from a (137)Cs irradiator and treated with various concentrations of bis(3-propionic acid methyl ester)phenylphosphine borane complex (PB1) at different time points. The clone-forming ability of the irradiated cells was assessed seven days after irradiation. We compared the radioprotective effects of PB1 with the aminothiol radioprotectant WR1065 and known superoxide scavengers. PB1 significantly protected bovine aortic endothelial cells from radiation damage, particularly when treated both before and after radiation. The radioprotection with 1 µM PB1 corresponded to a dose-reduction factor of 1.24. Radioprotection by PB1 was comparable to the aminothiol WR1065, but was significantly less toxic and required much lower concentrations of drug (1 µM vs. 4 mM, respectively). Superoxide scavengers were not radioprotective in this paradigm, indicating the mechanisms for both loss of clonogenicity and PB1 radioprotection are independent of superoxide signaling. These data demonstrate that PB1 is an effective redox-active radioprotectant for endothelial cells in vitro, and is radioprotective at a concentration approximately 4 orders of magnitude lower than the aminothiol WR1065 with less toxicity.