Depsipeptide inhibits migration of primary and metastatic uveal melanoma cell lines in vitro: A potential strategy for uveal melanoma

Dino D. Klisovic, Marko I. Klisovic, David Effron, Shujun Liu, Guido Marcucci, Steven E. Katz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Uveal melanoma (UM) is a highly malignant primary intraocular tumour in adults that has a high mortality rate due to haematogenous dissemination. The migration of UM cells through the basement membrane requires the presence of proteolytic enzymes, such as matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). The expression of MMP-2, MMP-9 and membrane type-1/MMP (MT-1/MMP) in UM cells is a known risk factor for metastatic disease. We tested the effect of depsipeptide (DP) on UM cell migration and the level and activity of MMP-2, MMP-9, MT-1/MMP and tissue inhibitors of matrix metalloproteinases 1 and 2 (TIMP-1 and TIMP-2). Three primary and two metastatic (liver metastasis) UM cell lines were treated with DP (0, 1, 5 and 10 nmol/l) for 24 h. Migration of UM cells was studied in modified Boyden migration chambers for 24 h and only viable cells on both sides of the membrane were counted. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) were used to quantify the level of MMP-2, MMP-9, MT-1/MMP, TIMP-1 and TIMP-2 after the cells had been exposed to DP (0,1, 5 and 10 nmol/l) for 24 h. In addition, the activities of MMP-2, MMP-9 and MT-1/MMP were determined after DP treatment. A dose-dependent decrease in the migration of viable UM cells was observed for primary and metastatic cell lines (30-50% inhibition). We detected a dose-dependent: (1) decrease in the protein level of MMP-2, MMP-9 and MT-1/MMP; (2) decrease in the activity of MMP-2, MMP-9 and MT-1/MMP; and (3) increase in the protein level of TIMP-1 and TIMP-2. It can be concluded that DP is a potent inhibitor of primary and metastatic UM cell migration in vitro. Our data suggest that this inhibition is mediated by the downregulation of MMPs and the upregulation of TIMPs. DP may be a valuable adjunctive treatment modality for primary and metastatic UM in humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-153
Number of pages7
JournalMelanoma research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Depsipeptide
  • Histone deacetylase inhibitor
  • Matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)
  • Tissue inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase (TIMP)
  • Uveal melanoma


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