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FASEB J. 2005 Mar;19(3):342-53.

Apigenin inhibits VEGF and HIF-1 expression via PI3K/AKT/p70S6K1 and HDM2/p53 pathways.

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The Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Cell Biology, West Virginia University, Morgantown, West Virginia 26506-9300, USA.


Apigenin is a nontoxic dietary flavonoid that has been shown to possess anti-tumor properties and therefore poses special interest for the development of a novel chemopreventive and/or chemotherapeutic agent for cancer. Ovarian cancer is one of the most common causes of cancer death among women. Here we demonstrate that apigenin inhibits expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in human ovarian cancer cells. VEGF plays an important role in tumor angiogenesis and growth. We found that apigenin inhibited VEGF expression at the transcriptional level through expression of hypoxia-inducible factor 1alpha (HIF-1alpha). Apigenin inhibited expression of HIF-1alpha and VEGF via the PI3K/AKT/p70S6K1 and HDM2/p53 pathways. Apigenin inhibited tube formation in vitro by endothelial cells. These findings reveal a novel role of apigenin in inhibiting HIF-1 and VEGF expression that is important for tumor angiogenesis and growth, identifying new signaling molecules that mediate this regulation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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