A Metabolomics Study of BPTES Altered Metabolism in Human Breast Cancer Cell Lines Article

Nagana Gowda, GA, Barding, GA, Dai, J et al. (2018). A Metabolomics Study of BPTES Altered Metabolism in Human Breast Cancer Cell Lines . 5 10.3389/fmolb.2018.00049

cited authors

  • Nagana Gowda, GA; Barding, GA; Dai, J; Gu, H; Margineantu, DH; Hockenbery, DM; Raftery, D

fiu authors


  • The Warburg effect is a well-known phenomenon in cancer, but the glutamine addiction in which cancer cells utilize glutamine as an alternative source of energy is less well known. Recent efforts have focused on preventing cancer cell proliferation associated with glutamine addiction by targeting glutaminase using the inhibitor BPTES (bis-2-(5-phenylacetamido-1,3,4-thiadiazol-2-yl)ethyl sulfide). In the current study, an investigation of the BPTES induced changes in metabolism was made in two human breast cancer cell lines, MCF7 (an estrogen receptor dependent cell line) and MDA-MB231 (a triple negative cell line), relative to the non-cancerous cell line, MCF10A. NMR spectroscopy combined with a recently established smart-isotope tagging approach enabled quantitative analysis of 41 unique metabolites representing numerous metabolite classes including carbohydrates, amino acids, carboxylic acids and nucleotides. BPTES induced metabolism changes in the cancer cell lines were especially pronounced under hypoxic conditions with up to 1/3 of the metabolites altered significantly (p < 0.05) relative to untreated cells. The BPTES induced changes were more pronounced for MCF7 cells, with 14 metabolites altered significantly (p < 0.05) compared to seven for MDA-MB231. Analyses of the results indicate that BPTES affected numerous metabolic pathways including glycolysis, TCA cycle, nucleotide and amino acid metabolism in cancer. The distinct metabolic responses to BPTES treatment determined in the two breast cancer cell lines offer valuable metabolic information for the exploration of the therapeutic responses to breast cancer.

publication date

  • May 15, 2018

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


  • 5