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Elevated serum glucocorticoid levels contribute to the progression of many diseases, including depression, Alzheimer’s disease, hypertension, and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. Here we show that the benzamide derivative N-[2-(4- cyclopropanecarbonyl-3-methyl-piperazin-1-yl)-1-(tert-butyl-1H-indol-3-yl-methyl)-2- oxo-ethyl]-4-nitrobenzamide (SP-10) inhibits dibutyryl cyclic AMP (dbcAMP)-induced corticosteroid synthesis in a dose-dependent manner in Y-1 adrenal cortical mouse tumor cells, without affecting basal steroid synthesis and reduced stress-induced corticosterone increases in rats without affecting the physiological levels of the steroid in blood. SP-10 did not affect cholesterol transport and metabolism by the mitochondria but was unexpectedly found to increase 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A, low density lipoprotein receptor, and scavenger receptor class B type I (SR-BI) expression. However, it also markedly reduced dbcAMP-induced NBD-cholesterol uptake, suggesting that this is a compensatory mechanism aimed at maintaining cholesterol levels. SP-10 also induced a OPEN ACCESS redistribution of filamentous (F-) and monomeric (G-) actin, leading to decreased actin levels in the submembrane cytoskeleton suggesting that SP-10-induced changes in actin distribution might prevent the formation of microvilli– cellular structures required for SRBI- mediated cholesterol uptake in adrenal cells.
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