J Cancer 2020; 11(13):3725-3735. doi:10.7150/jca.40983 This issue
1. Department of Zoology, University of the Punjab, Quaid-e-Azam Campus, Lahore-54590, Pakistan.
2. College of Basic Medical Sciences, Dalian Medical University, Dalian-116044, P.R. China
3. School of Medicine and Holistic Integrative Medicine, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, Nanjing 210023, P.R. China
Sesquiterpene lactones have been shown to be promising leads for anticancer drug development. Brevilin A (BLN-A), a sesquiterpene lactone compound of Centipeda minima has been shown to exhibit anticancer effects against various cancer cells. However, the anticancer mechanism and cellular targets of BLN-A remain elusive. Here in this study, BLN-A inhibits proliferation and induces cell morphological changes in A549 and NCI-H1650 non-small cell lung cancer cells in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, BLN-A increased ROS generation and bax/bcl-2 ratio while decreased intracellular glutathione (GSH), and mitochondrial membrane potential which resulted in induction of apoptosis as evident by annexin-V/FITC staining, caspase-3 activation and PARP cleavage. Supplementation of cells with NAC (ROS Scavenger) effectively protected the cells from BLN-A-induced apoptosis. Finally, BLN-A inhibited constitutive as well as IL-6- and EGF-induced STAT3 activation at Tyr705. Using molecular docking and SPR analyses, we found that BLN-A directly binds with STAT3 and thereby inhibits its activation. Knocking down of STAT3 by stable transfection with shRNA suppressed growth and augmented cytotoxicity of BLN-A, indicating the key role of STAT3 in BLN-A-mediated apoptosis. Cumulative findings suggest that BLN-A is a promising lead structure for developing it into a potent STAT3 inhibitor and therapeutic agent against NSCLC as well.
Keywords: Brevilin A, NSCLC, ROS, STAT3, SPR, apoptosis