Theranostics 2015; 5(7):656-666. doi:10.7150/thno.10844

Research Paper

CYLD Regulates Noscapine Activity in Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia via a Microtubule-Dependent Mechanism

Yunfan Yang1*, Jie Ran1*, Lei Sun1*, Xiaodong Sun2*, Youguang Luo1, Bing Yan1, Tala1, Min Liu1, Dengwen Li1, Lei Zhang3, Gang Bao2✉, Jun Zhou1,2✉

1. State Key Laboratory of Medicinal Chemical Biology, College of Life Sciences, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071, China.
2. Department of Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology & Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30332, USA.
3. State Key Laboratory of Experimental Hematology, Institute of Hematology and Blood Disease Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College, Tianjin 300020, China.
*These authors contributed equally to this work.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) License. See for full terms and conditions.
Yang Y, Ran J, Sun L, Sun X, Luo Y, Yan B, Tala , Liu M, Li D, Zhang L, Bao G, Zhou J. CYLD Regulates Noscapine Activity in Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia via a Microtubule-Dependent Mechanism. Theranostics 2015; 5(7):656-666. doi:10.7150/thno.10844. Available from

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Noscapine is an orally administrable drug used worldwide for cough suppression and has recently been demonstrated to disrupt microtubule dynamics and possess anticancer activity. However, the molecular mechanisms regulating noscapine activity remain poorly defined. Here we demonstrate that cylindromatosis (CYLD), a microtubule-associated tumor suppressor protein, modulates the activity of noscapine both in cell lines and in primary cells of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Flow cytometry and immunofluorescence microscopy reveal that CYLD increases the ability of noscapine to induce mitotic arrest and apoptosis. Examination of cellular microtubules as well as in vitro assembled microtubules shows that CYLD enhances the effect of noscapine on microtubule polymerization. Microtubule cosedimentation and fluorescence titration assays further reveal that CYLD interacts with microtubule outer surface and promotes noscapine binding to microtubules. These findings thus demonstrate CYLD as a critical regulator of noscapine activity and have important implications for ALL treatment.

Keywords: leukemia, noscapine, microtubule, mitotic arrest, apoptosis.