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Cancer Lett. 2006 Nov 18;243(2):274-80. Epub 2006 Jan 10.

Down-regulation of P-glycoprotein expression in MDR breast cancer cell MCF-7/ADR by honokiol.

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Cancer Institute, The Second Affiliated Hospital, The Medical School, Zhejiang University, 88 Jiefang Road, Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province 310009, People's Republic of China.


P-glycoprotein accounts for the most intrinsic and acquired cancer multidrug resistance. To inhibit the expression of P-glycoprotein is one of the effective ways to reverse cancer drug resistance. Honokiol, a naturally occurring compound, has been demonstrated to combat cancer through mechanisms including inhibition of angiogenesis and induction of apoptosis. Here, we show that honokiol down-regulated the expression of P-glycoprotein at mRNA and protein levels in MCF-7/ADR, a human breast MDR cancer cell line. The down-regulation of P-glycoprotein was accompanied with a partial recovery of the intracellular drug accumulation, and of the sensitivities toward adriamycin. This study reveals a novel function of honokiol as an anti-cancer agent.

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