Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide and current therapies fail to treat this disease in majority of cases. Antrodia camphorata is a medicinal mushroom being widely used as food dietary supplement for cancer prevention. The sesquiterpene lactone antrocin is the most potent among >100 secondary metabolites isolated from A. camphorata. However, the molecular mechanisms of antrocin-mediated anticancer effects remain unclear. In this study, we found that antrocin inhibited cell proliferation in two non-small-cell lung cancer cells, namely H441 (wild-type epidermal growth factor receptor, IC50 = 0.75 μM) and H1975 (gefitnib-resistant mutant T790M, IC50 = 0.83 μM). Antrocin dose dependently suppressed colony formation and induced apoptosis as evidenced by activated caspase-3 and increased Bax/Bcl2 ratio. Gene profiling studies indicated that antrocin downregulated Janus kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription (JAK/STAT) signaling pathway. We further demonstrated that antrocin suppressed both constitutively activated and interleukin 6-induced STAT3 phosphorylation and its subsequent nuclear translocation. Such inhibition is found to be achieved through the suppression of JAK2 and interaction between STAT3 and extracellular signal-regulated kinase. Additionally, antrocin increased microRNA let-7c expression and suppressed STAT signaling. The combination of antrocin and JAK2/STAT3 gene silencing significantly increased apoptosis in H441 cells. Such dual interruption of JAK2 and STAT3 pathways also induced downregulation of antiapoptotic protein mcl-1 and increased caspase-3 expression. In vivo intraperitoneal administration of antrocin significantly suppressed the growth of lung cancer tumor xenografts. Our results indicate that antrocin may be a potential therapeutic agent for human lung cancer cells through constitutive inhibition of JAK2/STAT3 pathway.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research