G-protein coupled estrogen receptor 1 (GPER1) has been reported to play a significant role in mediating the rapid estrogen actions in a wide range of normal and cancer cells. G-1 was initially developed as a selective agonist for GPER. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the actions of G-1 are unknown and recent studies report inconsistent effects of G-1 on the growth of breast cancer cells. By employing high-resolution laser scanning confocal microscopy and time-lapse imaging technology, as well as biochemical analyses, in the present study, we provide convincing in vitro and in vivo evidence that G-1 is able to suppress the growth of breast cancer cells independent of the expression status of GPERs and classic estrogen receptors. Interestingly, we found that triple negative breast cancer cells (TNBC) are very sensitive to G-1 treatment. We found that G-1 arrested the cell cycle in the prophase of mitosis, leading to caspase activation and apoptosis of breast cancer cells. Our mechanistic studies indicated that G-1, similar to colchicine and 2-Methoxyestradiol, binds to colchicine binding site on tubulin, inhibiting tubulin polymerization and subsequent assembly of normal mitotic spindle apparatus during breast cancer cell mitosis. Therefore, G-1 is a novel microtubule targeting agent and could be a promising anti-microtubule drug for breast cancer treatment, especially for TNBC treatment.
- Received September 21, 2016.
- Revision received January 12, 2017.
- Accepted February 14, 2017.
- Copyright ©2017, American Association for Cancer Research.