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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(8), 17147-17156; doi:10.3390/ijms140817147

Cucurbitacin E as Inducer of Cell Death and Apoptosis in Human Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma Cell Line SAS

1
Department of General Surgery, E-Da Hospital, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung 82445, Taiwan
2
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, E-Da Hospital, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung 82445, Taiwan
3
Graduate Institute of Medical Science, College of Health Sciences, Chang Jung Christian University, Tainan 71101, Taiwan
4
Innovative Research Center of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Chang Jung Christian University, Tainan 71101, Taiwan
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 May 2013 / Revised: 2 August 2013 / Accepted: 5 August 2013 / Published: 20 August 2013
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics)
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Abstract

Human oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is a common form of malignant cancer, for which radiotherapy or chemotherapy are the main treatment methods. Cucurbitacin E (CuE) is a natural compound previously shown to be an antifeedant as well as a potent chemopreventive agent against several types of cancer. The present study investigates anti-proliferation (using MTT assay, CuE demonstrated cytotoxic activity against SAS cell with IC50 values at 3.69 µM) and induced apoptosis of human oral squamous cell carcinoma SAS cells after 24 h treatment with CuE. Mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) and caspase activity were studied and our results indicate that CuE inhibits cell proliferation as well as the activation of apoptois in SAS cells. Both effects increased in proportion to the dosage of CuE and apoptosis was induced via mitochondria- and caspase-dependent pathways. CuE can induce cell death by a mechanism that is not dependent on apoptosis induction, and thus represents a promising anticancer agent for prevention and treatment of OSCC.
Keywords: cucurbitacin E; human oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC); apoptosis; caspase cucurbitacin E; human oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC); apoptosis; caspase
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Hung, C.-M.; Chang, C.-C.; Lin, C.-W.; Ko, S.-Y.; Hsu, Y.-C. Cucurbitacin E as Inducer of Cell Death and Apoptosis in Human Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma Cell Line SAS. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 17147-17156.

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