Research Papers:

Anti-cancer effects of curcumin on lung cancer through the inhibition of EZH2 and NOTCH1

Guo-Qing Wu _, Ke-Qun Chai, Xiu-Ming Zhu, Hua Jiang, Xiao Wang, Qian Xue, Ai-Hong Zheng, Hong-Ying Zhou, Yun Chen, Xiao-Chen Chen, Jian-Yong Xiao, Xu-Hua Ying, Fu-Wei Wang, Tao Rui, Yi-Ji Liao, Dan Xie, Li-Qin Lu and Dong-Sheng Huang

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:26535-26550. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.8532

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Guo-Qing Wu1,*, Ke-Qun Chai2,*, Xiu-Ming Zhu1,*, Hua Jiang1, Xiao Wang1, Qian Xue1, Ai-Hong Zheng1, Hong-Ying Zhou1, Yun Chen1, Xiao-Chen Chen1, Jian-Yong Xiao3, Xu-Hua Ying2, Fu-Wei Wang1, Tao Rui1, Yi-Ji Liao4, Dan Xie4, Li-Qin Lu1, Dong-Sheng Huang1

1Department of Oncology and Cancer Biotherapy Center, Zhejiang Provincial People’s Hospital, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310014, China

2Zhejiang Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Tongde Hospital of Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310012, China

3Department of Biochemistry, Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine, Guangzhou 510006, China

4State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, Cancer Center, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou 510060, Guangdong, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Guo-Qing Wu, e-mail: [email protected]

Dong-Sheng Huang, e-mail: [email protected]

Keywords: curcumin, enhancer of zeste homolog 2, NOTCH1, lung cancer, microRNA

Received: April 22, 2015     Accepted: March 08, 2016     Published: April 01, 2016


Curcumin is potentially therapeutic for malignant diseases. The mechanisms of this effect might involve a combination of antioxidant, immunomodulatory, proapoptotic, and antiangiogenic activities. However, the exact mechanisms are not fully understood. In the present study, we provided evidences that curcumin suppressed the expression of enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2) in lung cancer cells both transcriptionally and post-transcriptionally. Curcumin inhibited the expression of EZH2 through microRNA (miR)-let 7c and miR-101. Curcumin decreased the expression of NOTCH1 through the inhibition of EZH2. There was a reciprocal regulation between EZH2 and NOTCH1 in lung cancer cells. These observations suggest that curcumin inhibits lung cancer growth and metastasis at least partly through the inhibition of EZH2 and NOTCH1.

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