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J Agric Food Chem. 2013 Oct 23;61(42):10063-73. doi: 10.1021/jf402956m. Epub 2013 Oct 15.

Hispolon induces apoptosis through JNK1/2-mediated activation of a caspase-8, -9, and -3-dependent pathway in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cells and inhibits AML xenograft tumor growth in vivo.

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School of Medicine, ‡Institute of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, and §Institute of Medicine, Chung Shan Medical University , No. 110, Section 1, Chien-Kuo N Road, Taichung 40201, Taiwan.


Hispolon is an active phenolic compound of Phellinus igniarius, a mushroom that was recently shown to have antioxidant and anticancer activities in various solid tumors. Here, the molecular mechanisms by which hispolon exerts anticancer effects in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cells was investigated. The results showed that hispolon suppressed cell proliferation in the various AML cell lines. Furthermore, hispolon effectively induced apoptosis of HL-60 AML cells through caspases-8, -9, and -3 activations and PARP cleavage. Moreover, treatment of HL-60 cells with hispolon induced sustained activation of JNK1/2, and inhibition of JNK by JNK1/2 inhibitor or JNK1/2-specific siRNA significantly abolished the hispolon-induced activation of the caspase-8/-9/-3. In vivo, hispolon significantly reduced tumor growth in mice with HL-60 tumor xenografts. In hispolon-treated tumors, activation of caspase-3 and a decrease in Ki67-positive cells were observed. Our results indicated that hispolon may have the potential to serve as a therapeutic tool to treat AML.

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