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Exp Ther Med. 2012 Oct;4(4):605-610. Epub 2012 Jul 20.

Stellera chamaejasme L. extract induces apoptosis of human lung cancer cells via activation of the death receptor-dependent pathway.

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  • 1Beijing Institute of Liver Diseases and ; Beijing YouAn Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100069;


Stellera chamaejasme L. has been widely used in the treatment of lung, liver and esophageal cancer in Chinese traditional medicine. In our previous study, we found that the extract of Stellera chamaejasme L. (ESC) inhibited the growth and induced the apoptosis of human lung cancer NCI-H157 cells. In the present study, we investigated the cellular effects of an ESC-2 extract isolated from ESC in the NCI-H157 human lung cancer cell line. We found that ESC-2 inhibited the growth of NCI-H157 cells, demonstrating ESC-2-induced morphological changes in cells and reduced cell viability in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Furthermore, we observed that ESC-2 resulted in apoptosis, activation of caspase-8 and caspase-3, and an increase in Fas expression, indicating that the NCI-H157 cell growth inhibitory activity of ESC-2 was due to death receptor-dependent pathway-mediated apoptosis, which may partly explain the anti-cancer activity of ESC-2.

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