Effects of platycodin D (PD) on the proliferation, apoptosis and PI3K/Akt signaling pathway of human glioma U251 cells were investigated. Glioma U251 cells were treated with PD at final concentrations of 0, 16.3, 40.8, 81.6, 163.2 μM, and inhibition rate, early and late apoptotic rate, apoptotic index, expression of apoptosis-related proteins and phosphorylation of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway were evaluated. The results showed that compared with the control group, PD could increase the proliferation inhibition rate of U251 cells in a dose- and time -dependent manner; PD could also elevate the early and late apoptotic rate, apoptotic index and the level of pro-apoptotic proteins of glioma U251 cells, such as Bax and cleaved caspase-3, but lower the level of apoptosis inhibitory protein, such as Bcl-2; PD could increase the ratio of G0
phase U251 cells, and lower the proportion of Sphase U251 cells and the ratio of G2
/M phase U251 cells; PD could reduce the ratio of p-Akt/Akt. The results indicate that PD can inhibit the proliferation, induce the apoptosis and cause the cell cycle arrest in human glioma U251 cells, which may be related to the inhibition of PD on the activation of PI3K/Akt signaling pathway.
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