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Cancer Lett. 2016 Sep 28;380(1):184-90. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2016.06.015. Epub 2016 Jun 23.

Qigesan inhibits migration and invasion of esophageal cancer cells via inducing connexin expression and enhancing gap junction function.

Author information

1
Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine, The Fourth Affiliated Hospital, Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang, Hebei 050011, China.
2
Graduate School, Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang, Hebei 050017, China.
3
Intensive Care Unit, Yiling Hospital of Hebei Medical University, Hebei 050091, China.
4
Department of Clinical Cancer Prevention, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA. Electronic address: qshen@mdanderson.org.
5
Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine, The Fourth Affiliated Hospital, Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang, Hebei 050011, China. Electronic address: lijingtiger@163.com.

Abstract

Qigesan (QGS), a well-known traditional Chinese medicinal formula, has long been used to treat patients with esophageal cancer. However, the anticancer mechanisms of action of QGS remain unknown. This study aims to determine whether QGS regulates gap junction (GJ) function and affects the invasiveness of esophageal cancer cells. Our results demonstrate that QGS markedly inhibits the migration and invasion of esophageal cancer cells in vitro. We further show that QGS enhances the function of GJ in esophageal cancer cells. We therefore hypothesized that enhanced connexin expression leads to enhanced GJ function and inhibition of metastasis. We found that QGS enhances expression of connexin 26 and connexin 43 in esophageal cancer cells. This study suggests that QGS increases GJ function via enhancing the expression of connexins, resulting in reduced esophageal cancer cell migration and invasion.

KEYWORDS:

Connexins; Esophageal cancer; Gap junction; Metastasis; Qigesan composite formula

PMID:
27345741
DOI:
10.1016/j.canlet.2016.06.015
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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