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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2013 Sep 13;439(1):1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2013.08.050. Epub 2013 Aug 22.

Picropodophyllin inhibits tumor growth of human nasopharyngeal carcinoma in a mouse model.

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  • 1Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan 430060, PR China; Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan 430071, PR China.


Insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF-1R) is a cell membrane receptor with tyrosine kinase activity and plays important roles in cell transformation, tumor growth, tumor invasion, and metastasis. Picropodophyllin (PPP) is a selective IGF-1R inhibitor and shows promising antitumor effects for several human cancers. However, its antitumor effects in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) remain unclear. The purpose of this study is to investigate the antitumor activity of PPP in NPC using in vitro cell culture and in vivo animal model. We found that PPP dose-dependently decreased the IGF-induced phosphorylation and activity of IGF-1R and consequently reduced the phosphorylation of Akt, one downstream target of IGF-1R. In addition, PPP inhibited NPC cell proliferation in vitro. The half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of PPP for NPC cell line CNE-2 was ≤1 μM at 24h after treatment and ≤0.5 μM at 48 h after treatment, respectively. Moreover, administration of PPP by intraperitoneal injection significantly suppressed the tumor growth of xenografted NPC in nude mice. Taken together, these results suggest targeting IGF-1R by PPP may represent a new strategy for treatment of NPCs with positive IGF-1R expression.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Akt; Insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor; Nasopharyngeal carcinoma; Nude mouse; Picropodophyllin

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