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Molecules. 2013 Feb 26;18(3):2539-48. doi: 10.3390/molecules18032539.

Methyl Antcinate A suppresses the population of cancer stem-like cells in MCF7 human breast cancer cell line.

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School of Dentistry, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung 402, Taiwan.


Methyl antcinate A (MAA) is an ergostane-type triterpenoid extracted from the fruiting bodies of Antrodia camphorate that has been reported to be a cytotoxic agent towards some types of cancer cells, such as oral cancer and liver cancer. Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are a particular population within cancer cells which are responsible for tumor initiation, drug resistance and metastasis and targeting CSCs is an emerging area in cancer therapy. In this study, we examine the effect of MAA on cancer stem-like cells in the MCF7 human breast cancer cell line. Although MAA displayed very low cytotoxic effect towards MCF7 under normal culture conditions, it did show good inhibitory effects on the self-renewal capability which was examined by mammosphere culture including primary and secondary sphere. MAA also inhibited cell migration ability of MCF7 sphere cells. By western blot analysis, MAA was shown to suppress the expression of heat shock protein 27 and increase the expression of IkBα and p53. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that MAA has anti-CSC activity and is worthy of future development of potent anticancer agents.

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