Research Papers:

Inhibition of STAT3/VEGF/CDK2 axis signaling is critically involved in the antiangiogenic and apoptotic effects of arsenic herbal mixture PROS in non-small lung cancer cells

Hyemin Lee, Hyo-Jung Lee, Ill Ju Bae, Jeong Jin Kim and Sung-Hoon Kim _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:101771-101783. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.21973

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Hyemin Lee1, Hyo-Jung Lee1, Ill Ju Bae2, Jeong Jin Kim2 and Sung-Hoon Kim1

1Cancer Molecular Targeted Herbal Research Center, College of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, 130-701, Republic of Korea

2Chunjisan Co. Ltd., 2804 Bangbae-dong, Seocho-gu Seoul 137-853, Republic of Korea

Correspondence to:

Sung-Hoon Kim, email: sungkim7@khu.ac.kr

Keywords: arsenic herbal mixture, non-small cell lung cancer, apoptosis, angiogenesis, STAT3

Received: April 19, 2017     Accepted: September 23, 2017     Published: October 19, 2017


Despite the antitumor effects of asrsenic trioxide (As2O3), tetraarsenic hexoxide (As4O6 or PR) and tetraarsenic tetrasulfide (As4S4) in several cancers, their adverse poisoning, toxicity and resistance are still hot issues for effective cancer therapy. Here, antitumor mechanism of arsenic herbal mixture PROS including PR and OS (Oldenlandia diffusa and Salvia miltiorrhiza extract) was elucidated in non-small cell lung cancer cells (NSCLCs), since PR alone showed resistant cytotoxicity in NSCLCs compared to other cancers. PROS exerted significant cytotoxicity, induced sub-G1 phase and S phase arrest, increased apoptotic bodies, and attenuated the expression of pro-PARP, Bcl-2, Cyclin E, Cyclin A, CDK2, E2F1, p-Src, p-STAT3, p-ERK, p-AKT, COX-2 and SOCS-1 in A549 and H460 cells along with disrupted binding of STAT3 with CDK2 or VEGF. Notably, PROS inhibited VEGF induced proliferation, migration and tube formation in HUVECs and suppressed angiogenesis in chorioallantoic membrane (CAM) assay via reduced phosphorylation of VEGFR2, Src and STAT3. Consistently, PROS reduced the growth of H460 cells implanted in BALB/c athymic nude mice via inhibition of STAT3, and VEGF and activation of caspase 3. Overall, these findings suggest that PROS exerts antiangiogenic and apoptotic effects via inhibition of STAT3/ VEGF/ CDK2 axis signaling as a potent anticancer agent for lung cancer treatment.

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