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1.  [6]-Shogaol inhibits growth and induces apoptosis of non-small cell lung cancer cells by directly regulating Akt1/2 
Carcinogenesis  2013;35(3):683-691.
Summary
[6]-Shogaol, a component of ginger root, suppressed non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell growth mediated by EGFR signaling. It directly binds to Akt to suppress its kinase activity resulting in increased cancer cell death both ex vivo and in vivo.
Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the leading cause of cancer mortality worldwide. Despite progress in developing chemotherapeutics for the treatment of NSCLC, primary and secondary resistance limits therapeutic success. NSCLC cells exhibit multiple mutations in the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), which cause aberrant activation of diverse cell signaling pathways. Therefore, suppression of the inappropriate amplification of EGFR downstream signaling cascades is considered to be a rational therapeutic and preventive strategy for the management of NSCLC. Our initial molecular target–oriented virtual screening revealed that the ginger components, including [6]-shogaol, [6]-paradol and [6]-gingerol, seem to be potential candidates for the prevention and treatment of NSCLC. Among the compounds, [6]-shogaol showed the greatest inhibitory effects on the NSCLC cell proliferation and anchorage-independent growth. [6]-Shogaol induced cell cycle arrest (G1 or G2/M) and apoptosis. Furthermore, [6]-shogaol inhibited Akt kinase activity, a downstream mediator of EGFR signaling, by binding with an allosteric site of Akt. In NCI-H1650 lung cancer cells, [6]-shogaol reduced the constitutive phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription-3 (STAT3) and decreased the expression of cyclin D1/3, which are target proteins in the Akt signaling pathway. The induction of apoptosis in NCI-H1650 cells by [6]-shogaol corresponded with the cleavage of caspase-3 and caspase-7. Moreover, intraperitoneal administration of [6]-shogaol inhibited the growth of NCI-H1650 cells as tumor xenografts in nude mice. [6]-Shogaol suppressed the expression of Ki-67, cyclin D1 and phosphorylated Akt and STAT3 and increased terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling-positivity in xenograft tumors. The current study clearly indicates that [6]-shogaol can be exploited for the prevention and/or treatment of NSCLC.
doi:10.1093/carcin/bgt365
PMCID: PMC3941745  PMID: 24282290
2.  Direct targeting of MEK1/2 and RSK2 by silybin induces cell cycle arrest and inhibits melanoma cell growth 
Abnormal functioning of multiple gene products underlies the neoplastic transformation of cells. Thus, chemopreventive and/or chemotherapeutic agents with multigene targets hold promise in the development of effective anticancer drugs. Silybin, a component of milk thistle, is a natural anticancer agent. In the present study, we investigated the effect of silybin on melanoma cell growth and elucidated its molecular targets. Our study revealed that silybin attenuated the growth of melanoma xenograft tumors in nude mice. Silybin inhibited the kinase activity of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK)-1/2 and ribosomal S6 kinase (RSK)-2 in melanoma cells. The direct binding of silybin with MEK1/2 and RSK2 was explored using a computational docking model. Treatment of melanoma cells with silybin attenuated the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)-1/2 and RSK2, which are regulated by the upstream kinases MEK1/2. The blockade of MEK1/2-ERK1/2-RSK2 signaling by silybin resulted in a reduced activation of nuclear factor-kappaB, activator protein-1 and signal transducer and activator of transcription-3, which are transcriptional regulators of a variety of proliferative genes in melanomas. Silybin, by blocking the activation of these transcription factors, induced cell cycle arrest at the G1 phase and inhibited melanoma cell growth in vitro and in vivo. Taken together, silybin suppresses melanoma growth by directly targeting MEK- and RSK-mediated signaling pathways.
doi:10.1158/1940-6207.CAPR-12-0425
PMCID: PMC3644346  PMID: 23447564
Silybin; BRAF/MEK/ERK/RSK signaling pathway; melanoma
3.  Over-expression of extracellular superoxide dismutase in mouse synovial tissue attenuates the inflammatory arthritis 
Experimental & Molecular Medicine  2012;44(9):529-535.
Oxidative stress such as reactive oxygen species (ROS) within the inflamed joint have been indicated as being involved as inflammatory mediators in the induction of arthritis. Correlations between extracellular-superoxide dismutase (EC-SOD) and inflammatory arthritis have been shown in several animal models of RA. However, there is a question whether the over-expression of EC-SOD on arthritic joint also could suppress the progression of disease or not. In the present study, the effect on the synovial tissue of experimental arthritis was investigated using EC-SOD over-expressing transgenic mice. The over-expression of EC-SOD in joint tissue was confirmed by RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry. The degree of the inflammation in EC-SOD transgenic mice was suppressed in the collagen-induced arthritis model. In a cytokine assay, the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as, IL-1β, TNFα, and matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) was decreased in fibroblast-like synoviocyte (FLS) but not in peripheral blood. Histological examination also showed repressed cartilage destruction and bone in EC-SOD transgenic mice. In conclusion, these data suggest that the over-expression of EC-SOD in FLS contributes to the activation of FLS and protection from joint destruction by depressing the production of the pro-inflammatory cytokines and MMPs. These results provide EC-SOD transgenic mice with a useful animal model for inflammatory arthritis research.
doi:10.3858/emm.2012.44.9.060
PMCID: PMC3465746  PMID: 22718219
arthritis, experimental; reactive oxygen species; rheumatoid arthritis; superoxide dismutase; synovial membrane

Results 1-3 (3)