BL-038, a benzofuran derivative, induces cell apoptosis in human chondrosarcoma cells through reactive oxygen species/mitochondrial dysfunction and the Caspases dependent pathway

Ju Fang Liu, Chien Yu Chen, Hsien Te Chen, Chih Shiang Chang, Chih Hsin Tang

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Chondrosarcoma is a highly malignant cartilage-forming bone tumor that has the capacity to invade locally and cause distant metastasis. Moreover, chondrosarcoma is intrinsically resistant to conventional chemotherapy or radiotherapy. The novel benzofuran derivative, BL-038 (2-amino- 3-(2,6-dichlorophenyl)-6-(4-methoxyphenyl)benzofuran-4-yl acetate), has been evaluated for its anticancer effects in human chondrosarcoma cells. BL-038 caused cell apoptosis in two human chondrosarcoma cell lines, JJ012 and SW1353, but not in primary chondrocytes. Treatment of chondrosarcoma with BL-038 also induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. Furthermore, BL-038 decreased mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) and changed mitochondrial-related apoptosis, by downregulating the anti-apoptotic activity members (Bcl-2, Bcl-xL) and upregulating pro-apoptotic members (Bax, Bak) of the B-cell lymphoma 2 (Bcl-2) family of proteins, key regulators of the apoptotic machinery in cells. These results demonstrate that in human chondrosarcoma cells, the apoptotic and cytotoxic effects of BL-038 are mediated by the intrinsic mitochondria-mediated apoptotic pathway, which in turn causes the release of cytochrome c, the activation of caspase-9 and caspase-3, and the cleavage of poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), to elicit apoptosis response. Our results show that the benzofuran derivative BL-038 induces apoptosis in chondrosarcoma cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1491
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 7 2016



  • Apoptosis
  • Benzofuran derivative
  • Chondrosarcoma
  • ROS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry

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