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Conference abstract, 2012

M-OP-022 Mast cell apoptosis induced by siramesine, a sigma-2 receptor agonist

Spirkovski, Jane; Rabelo Melo, Fabio; Grujic, Mirjana; Calounova, Gabriela; Lundequist, Anders; Wernersson, Sara; Pejler, Gunnar


Mast cells (MCs) are well known for their detrimental effects in the context of allergic disorders. Strategies that limit MC function can therefore have a therapeutic value. Previous studies have shown that siramesine, a sigma-2 receptor agonist originally developed as an anti-depressant, can induce cell death in transformed cells through a mechanism involving lysosomal destabilization. Since MCs are remarkably rich in lysosome-like secretory granules we reasoned that MCs might be sensitive to siramesine. Here we show that murine and human MCs are highly sensitive to siramesine. Cell death was accompanied by secretory granule permeabilization, as shown by reduced acridine orange staining and leakage of granule proteases into the cytosol. Wild type siramesine-treated MCs underwent cell death with typical signs of apoptosis but MCs lacking serglycin, a proteoglycan crucial for promoting the storage of proteases within MC secretory granules, died predominantly by necrosis. A dissection of the underlying mechanism suggested that the necrotic phenotype of serglycin-/- cells was linked to defective Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 degradation. In vivo, siramesine treatment of mice caused a depletion of the MC populations of the peritoneum and skin. The present study shows for the first time that MCs are highly sensitive to apoptosis induced by siramesine and introduces the possibility of using siramesine as a therapeutic agent for treatment of MC-dependent disease.

Published in


EMBRN-COST International Mast Cell and Basophil Meeting