Triptolide induces cell apoptosis in human stomach cancer cell via caspase 3-dependent cascade pathway

  • Shuai Liu
  • Jing Zhang
  • Xiao-Zhan Zhang
  • Hui-Hui Zhang
  • Xing-Wu Li
  • Shi-Jie Zhang
Keywords: Triptolide, Gastric cancer therapy, Apoptosis, Cytotoxicity, Caspase


Purpose: To evaluate the effect of triptolide on the induction of cell apoptosis in human gastric cancer BGC-823 cells.

Methods: The cytotoxicity of triptolide was evaluated by 3-(4, 5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5- diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. The effect of triptolide on cell proliferation was measured using lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) assay. Cell apoptosis was determined by Annexin V/propidium iodide (PI) double-staining assay.

Results: MTT results indicate that triptolide significantly decreased cancer cell numbers in dose- and time-dependent manners in MTT assay. Data from LDH assay showed that triptolide markedly induced cytotoxicity in gastric cancer cells. Triptolide also remarkably induced both early and late apoptotic process in BGC-823 cells. In addition, the compound down-regulated the expression of anti-apoptotic Bcell lymphoma-2 (bcl-2) and up-regulated the expression of pro-apoptotic BCL-2-associated X (bax) in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, the pro-apoptotic activity of triptolide was involved in the activation of caspase-3 pathway in BGC-823 cells.

Conclusion: Taken together, the findings strongly indicates that the pro-apoptotic activity of triptolide is regulated by caspase 3-dependent cascade pathway, and thus needs to be further developed for cancer therapy.

Keywords: Triptolide, Gastric cancer therapy, Apoptosis, Cytotoxicity, Caspase


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1596-9827
print ISSN: 1596-5996