Naphtho[1,2-b]furan-4,5-dione disrupts Janus kinase-2 and induces apoptosis in breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cells

Kuei-Li Lin, Jung-Chen Su, Ching-Ming Chien, Chih-Hua Tseng, Yeh-Long Chen, Long-Sen Chang, Shinne-Ren Lin
Toxicology in Vitro: An International Journal Published in Association with BIBRA 2010, 24 (4): 1158-67
Naphtho[1,2-b]furan-4,5-dione (NFD), prepared from 2-hydroxy-1,4-naphthoquinone and chloroacetaldehyde in an efficient one-pot reaction, exhibits an anti-carcinogenic effect. NFD-induced apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 cells, as indicated by the accumulation of sub-G1 population, externalization of phosphatidylserine, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential (DeltaPsim) with subsequent release of cytochrome c, and activation of both capase-9 and caspase-3. This correlated with up-regulation in Bax and Bad, and down-regulation of various anti-apoptotic proteins, including Bcl-2, Bcl-X(L), Mcl-1, and survivin in NFD-treated cells. In the analysis of signal transduction pathway, NFD suppressed the phosphorylation of JAK2 in MDA-MB-231 cells without altering the expression of JAK2 protein. Activation of STAT3, Src, and PI3K/Akt were also inhibited by NFD. Moreover, the JAK2 inhibitor AG490 blocked JAK2, STAT3, Src, PI3K, and Akt activation, whereas both Src inhibitor PP2 and PI3K inhibitor wortmannin did not affect JAK2 activation. This suggests that STAT3, Src, and PI3K/Akt are downstream molecules of the JAK2 signaling pathway. AG490 treatment also mimics the cytotoxic effects of NFD. Taken together, these results indicate that NFD disrupts JAK2 pathway and induces apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 cells.

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