Naphtho[1,2-b]furan-4,5-dione induces apoptosis of oral squamous cell carcinoma: involvement of EGF receptor/PI3K/Akt signaling pathway

Ching-Ming Chien, Kuei-Li Lin, Jung-Chen Su, Pei-Wen Chuang, Chih-Hua Tseng, Yeh-Long Chen, Long-Sen Chang, Shinne-Ren Lin
European Journal of Pharmacology 2010 June 25, 636 (1): 52-8
Naphtho[1,2-b]furan-4,5-dione (NFD), prepared from 2-hydroxy-1,4-naphthoquinone and chloroacetaldehyde in an efficient one-pot reaction, exerts an anti-tumor effect. This study was performed to elucidate whether the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor and phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathways are involved in NFD-induced apoptosis of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). Immunoblot showed that NFD suppressed the phosphorylation of EGF receptor and activation of PI3K/Akt, downstream molecules of EGF receptor signaling pathway, in Ca9-22 cells. The levels of downstream targets of Akt, including phospho-glycogen synthase kinase-3beta (p-GSK-3beta), GSK-3beta, forkhead transcription factor (FKHR), and cyclin D1, were also reduced after NFD treatment. Moreover, inactivation of nuclear factor-kappaB (NF kappaB), modulation of I kappa K beta and I kappaB alpha, up-regulation of Bad, and down-regulation of anti-apoptotic proteins including phospho-Bad, Bcl-X(L), myeloid cell leukemia-1(Mcl-1), and XIAP were found in NFD-treated cells. In addition, NFD treatment disrupted mitochondrial membrane potential (Delta Psi m), resulted in release of cytochrome c, and activation of both caspases-9 and caspase-3. Taken together, these results indicate that NFD induces apoptosis in Ca9-22 cells via inactivation of the EGF receptor-mediated survival pathway.

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