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The oncometabolite 2-hydroxyglutarate produced by mutant IDH1 sensitizes cells to ferroptosis.


Ferroptosis is a non-apoptotic form of cell death characterized by the iron-dependent lipid peroxidation and is implicated in several human pathologies, such as tissue ischemia, neurodegeneration, and cancer. Ferroptosis appears to be high cell-context dependent and the regulation of ferroptosis by physiological or pathological conditions are unclear. Here, we report that tumor-derived IDH1 mutation sensitizes cells to ferroptosis. Deletion of the mutant IDH1 allele in IDH1 heterozygous tumor cells or pharmacological inhibition of mutant IDH1 to produce the oncometabolite D-2-hydroxyglutarate (D-2-HG) confers resistance to erastin-induced ferroptosis. Conversely, ectopic expression of mutant IDH1 or treatment of cells with cell-permeable D-2-HG promotes the accumulation of lipid reactive oxygen species (ROS) and subsequently ferroptosis. Mechanistically, mutant IDH1 reduces the protein level of the glutathione peroxidase 4 (GPX4), a key enzyme in removing lipid ROS and ferroptosis, and promotes depletion of glutathione. Our results uncover a new role of mutant IDH1 and 2-HG in ferroptosis.

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