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Keywords:

  • bcl-2;
  • Apoptosis;
  • Arsenic trioxide;
  • Leukemia;
  • Antisense oligonucleotide

Abstract

Cell culture, tissue chemistry and flow cytometry were used to determine whether antisense bcl-2 oligodeoxynucleotides enhanced the sensitivity of leukemia cells to arsenic trioxide. A combination of arsenic trioxide with antisense bcl-2 oligodeoxynucleotides inhibited cell growth, induced apoptosis and induced bcl-2 protein expression in K562 and NB4 leukemic cells more significantly than either arsenic trioxide or the oligodeoxynucleotides on their own (P<0.01). Thus, bcl-2 antisense oligodeoxynucleotides increase the sensitivity of leukemic cells to arsenic trioxide. Combined use of the two agents could be a novel and attractive strategy in leukemia treatment.