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Clin Cancer Res. 2004 Aug 1;10(15):5253-63.

trans-3,4,5'-Trihydroxystibene inhibits hypoxia-inducible factor 1alpha and vascular endothelial growth factor expression in human ovarian cancer cells.

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Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Cell Biology, Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, West Virginia University, Morgantown, West Virginia 26506, USA.


trans-3,4,5'-Trihydroxystibene (resveratrol) is a natural product commonly found in the human diet and has been shown recently to have anticancer effects on various human cancer cells. However, the molecular basis for its anticancer action remains to be elucidated. In this study, we investigated the effect of resveratrol on hypoxia-inducible factor 1alpha (HIF-1alpha) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression in human ovarian cancer cells A2780/CP70 and OVCAR-3. We found that although resveratrol did not affect HIF-1alpha mRNA levels, it did dramatically inhibit both basal-level and growth factor-induced HIF-1alpha protein expression in the cells. Resveratrol also greatly inhibited VEGF expression. Mechanistically, we demonstrated that resveratrol inhibited HIF-1alpha and VEGF expression through multiple mechanisms. First, resveratrol inhibited AKT and mitogen-activated protein kinase activation, which played a partial role in the down-regulation of HIF-1alpha expression. Second, resveratrol inhibited insulin-like growth factor 1-induced HIF-1alpha expression through the inhibition of protein translational regulators, including M(r) 70,000 ribosomal protein S6 kinase 1, S6 ribosomal protein, eukaryotic initiation factor 4E-binding protein 1, and eukaryotic initiation factor 4E. Finally, we showed that resveratrol substantially induced HIF-1alpha protein degradation through the proteasome pathway. Our data suggested that resveratrol may inhibit human ovarian cancer progression and angiogenesis by inhibiting HIF-1alpha and VEGF expression and thus provide a novel potential mechanism for the anticancer action of resveratrol.

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