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Oncol Rep. 2013 Mar;29(3):1053-60. doi: 10.3892/or.2013.2230. Epub 2013 Jan 8.

Triptolide induces S phase arrest via the inhibition of cyclin E and CDC25A and triggers apoptosis via caspase- and mitochondrial-dependent signaling pathways in A375.S2 human melanoma cells.

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Department of Surgical Intensive Care Unit, Far Eastern Memorial Ηospital, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC.


Triptolide (TPL), a diterpene triepoxide compound, extracted from Tripterygium wilfordii Hook F. [a traditional Chinese medicinal herb (TCM)], has demonstrated great chemotherapeutic potential for the treatment of tumors. However, the anticancer mechanisms of action of TPL in human skin cancer remain to be further investigated. In this study, we used A375.S2 human melanoma skin cancer cells as a model to investigate the effect of TPL on cell death. A375.S2 cells were treated with various concentrations of TPL for different periods of time and investigated the effects on cell cycle distribution and apoptosis were investigated. The data showed that TPL induced cell morphological changes, decreased the percentage of viable cells, and induced S phase arrest and apoptosis in A375.S2 cells in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. Furthermore, we used flow cytometry analysis and the data showed that TPL promoted reactive oxygen species, NO and Ca2+ production, decreased the mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm) and increased the activity of caspase-3, -8 and -9 in the A375.S2 cells. Western blot analysis showed that TPL promoted the expression of p21 and p27 but inhibited that of cyclin A and CDC25A, leading to S phase arrest. Furthermore, the data also showed that TPL promoted the expression of Fas and FasL and increased the activity of caspase-3, -8 and -9, cytochrome c, Bax, apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF) and endonuclease G (Endo G); however, the expression of Bax was decreased, leading to apoptosis. Based on these observations, TPL induces apoptosis in A375.S2 cells through Fas-, caspase- and mitochondrial-mediated pathways.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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