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Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2019 Nov 15;2019:6073019. doi: 10.1155/2019/6073019. eCollection 2019.

Targeting Ovarian Cancer Cell Cytotoxic Drug Resistance Phenotype with Xanthium strumarium L. Extract.

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Laboratoire d'Oncologie Moléculaire, Département de Chimie, Centre de Recherche BIOMED, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Departamento de Genética Toxicológica, Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo de Medicamentos (CIDEM), Avenida 26, No. 1605 e/Puentes Grandes y Boyeros, La Habana, Cuba.


Emerging drugs aim at targeting the genomic integrity and replication machinery in ovarian cancer. While the antiproliferative activity of Xanthium strumarium L. extract (XFC), a traditional herbal medicine, is believed to alter the mitotic apparatus of Chinese hamster ovary epithelial cells, its capacity to target and overcome the chemoresistance phenotype in ovarian cancer is unknown. Among the cancer cell lines tested, we found that the best proliferation inhibitory effect for XFC was against ovarian cancer cells and ranged from 30 to 35 μg/mL. XFC efficiently targeted both the cytotoxic drug chemoresistance phenotype of SKOV-3 cells and of the chemosensitive ES-2 cells. Early apoptosis and late apoptosis were effectively induced by XFC extract in ES-2 cells, whereas late apoptosis and necrosis events were triggered in SKOV-3 cells. Cell cycling regulation was trapped by XFC extract in the G2/M phase in both the ES-2 and SKOV-3 cell models. This effect was, in part, attributable to increased dose-dependent tubulin polymerization, which was increased in SKOV-3 cells. Whereas XFC extract triggered poly (ADP-Ribose) polymerase (PARP) cleavage in both ES-2 and SKOV-3 cells, it only lowered Nrf2 in ES-2 cells and phosphorylated Akt levels in SKOV-3 cells. Interestingly, cell cycling regulators Cdk4, Cyclin D3, and p27 were all decreased in SKOV-3 cells. XFC extracts were effective in inhibiting in vitro migration in both ovarian cancer cell models. Our data support the potential anticancer targeting of chemoresistant human ovarian cancer cells phenotype by XFC extract.

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