Lithium Chloride Promotes Apoptosis in Human Leukemia NB4 Cells by Inhibiting Glycogen Synthase Kinase-3 Beta.

International journal of medical sciences

PubMedID: 26516309

Li L, Song H, Zhong L, Yang R, Yang XQ, Jiang KL, Liu BZ. Lithium Chloride Promotes Apoptosis in Human Leukemia NB4 Cells by Inhibiting Glycogen Synthase Kinase-3 Beta. Int J Med Sci. 2015;12(10):805-10.
Acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is a subtype of acute myeloid leukemia (AML). With the application of all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) and arsenic trioxide (ATO), APL becomes one of best prognosis of leukemia. However, ATRA and ATO are not effective against all APLs. Therefore, a new strategy for APL treatment is necessary. Here, we investigated whether lithium chloride (LiCl), a drug used for the treatment of mental illness, could promote apoptosis in human leukemia NB4 cells. We observed that treatment with LiCl significantly accelerated apoptosis in NB4 cells and led to cell cycle arrest at G2/M phase. Moreover, LiCl significantly increased the level of Ser9-phosphorylated glycogen synthase kinase 3ß(p-GSK-3ß), and decreased the level of Akt1 protein in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, LiCl inhibition of c-Myc also enhanced cell death with a concomitant increase in ß-catnin. Taken together, these findings demonstrated that LiCl promoted apoptosis in NB4 cells through the Akt signaling pathway and that G2/M phase arrest was induced by increase of p-GSK-3ß(S9).