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      Alkyl-lysophospholipid accumulates in lipid rafts and induces apoptosis via raft-dependent endocytosis and inhibition of phosphatidylcholine synthesis.

      The Journal of Biological Chemistry
      Animals, Apoptosis, Cell Line, Choline-Phosphate Cytidylyltransferase, metabolism, Clathrin, Cyclodextrins, Dose-Response Relationship, Drug, Filipin, Kinetics, Lysophosphatidylcholines, Lysophospholipids, chemistry, Membrane Microdomains, Mice, Phosphatidylcholines, biosynthesis, Protein Binding, Receptors, Transferrin, Spectrometry, Fluorescence, Time Factors, beta-Cyclodextrins

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          The synthetic alkyl-lysophospholipid (ALP), 1-O-octadecyl-2-O-methyl-rac-glycero-3-phosphocholine, is an antitumor agent that acts on cell membranes and can induce apoptosis. We investigated how ALP is taken up by cells, how it affects de novo biosynthesis of phosphatidylcholine (PC), and how critical this is to initiate apoptosis. We compared an ALP-sensitive mouse lymphoma cell line, S49, with an ALP-resistant variant, S49(AR). ALP inhibited PC synthesis at the CTP:phosphocholine cytidylyltransferase (CT) step in S49 cells, but not in S49(AR) cells. Exogenous lysophosphatidylcholine, providing cells with an alternative way (acylation) to generate PC, rescued cells from ALP-induced apoptosis, indicating that continuous rapid PC turnover is essential for cell survival. Apoptosis induced by other stimuli that do not target PC synthesis remained unaffected by lysophosphatidylcholine. Using monensin, low temperature and albumin back-extraction, we demonstrated that ALP is internalized by endocytosis, a process defective in S49(AR) cells. This defect neither involved clathrin-coated pit- nor fluid-phase endocytosis, but depended on lipid rafts, because disruption of these microdomains with methyl-beta-cyclodextrin or filipin (sequestering cholesterol) or bacterial sphingomyelinase reduced uptake of ALP. Furthermore, ALP was found accumulated in isolated rafts and disruption of rafts also prevented the inhibition of PC synthesis and apoptosis induction in S49 cells. In summary, ALP is internalized by raft-dependent endocytosis to inhibit PC synthesis, which triggers apoptosis.

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