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J Nat Prod. 2018 Feb 23;81(2):298-306. doi: 10.1021/acs.jnatprod.7b00722. Epub 2018 Feb 2.

ent-Jungermannenone C Triggers Reactive Oxygen Species-Dependent Cell Differentiation in Leukemia Cells.

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School of Life Sciences, Peking University , Beijing 100871, People's Republic of China.
Hongqiao International Institute of Medicine, Shanghai Tongren Hospital/Faculty of Basic Medicine, Chemical Biology Division of Shanghai Universities E-Institutes, Key Laboratory of Cell Differentiation and Apoptosis of the Chinese Ministry of Education, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine , Shanghai 200025, People's Republic of China.
Beijing National Laboratory for Molecular Sciences, State Key Laboratory of Natural and Biomimetic Drugs, Key Laboratory of Bioorganic Chemistry and Molecular Engineering of Ministry of Education, Department of Chemical Biology, College of Chemistry and Molecular Engineering, Synthetic and Functional Biomolecules Center, and Peking-Tsinghua Center for Life Sciences, Peking University , Beijing 100871, People's Republic of China.
Department of Chemical Biology, Max Planck Institute of Molecular Physiology , 44227 Dortmund, Germany.


Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a hematologic malignancy that is characterized by clonal proliferation of myeloid blasts. Despite the progress that has been made in the treatment of various malignant hematopoietic diseases, the effective treatment of AML remains very challenging. Differentiation therapy has emerged as a promising approach for leukemia treatment, and new and effective chemical agents to trigger the differentiation of AML cells, especially drug-resistant cells, are urgently required. Herein, the natural product jungermannenone C, a tetracyclic diterpenoid isolated from liverworts, is reported to induce cell differentiation in AML cells. Interestingly, the unnatural enantiomer of jungermannenone C (1) was found to be more potent than jungermannenone C in inducing cell differentiation. Furthermore, compound 1 targets peroxiredoxins I and II by selectively binding to the conserved cysteine residues and leads to cellular reactive oxygen species accumulation. Accordingly, ent-jungermannenone C (1) shows potential for further investigation as an effective differentiation therapy against AML.

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