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Matrine induces apoptosis in gastric carcinoma cells via alteration of Fas/FasL and activation of caspase-3

Department of Oncology, Second Affiliated Hospital, Medical School of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xiwu Road 157#, Xi'an 710004, Shaanxi province, PR China.
Journal of ethnopharmacology (Impact Factor: 2.94). 06/2009; 123(1):91-6. DOI: 10.1016/j.jep.2009.02.022
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Matrine, an alkaloid purified from the chinese herb Sophora flavescens Ait, is well known to possess activities including anti-inflammation, anti-fibrotic and anticancer. In this study, the mechanism of matrine inducing the apoptosis of gastric carcinoma cells was investigated.
Proliferation of SGC-7901 cells was examined by MTT assay. Cellular morphology was observed under transmission electron microscope. Flow cytometry (FCM) was used to observe the apoptosis of SGC-7901 cells by staining with annexinV-FITC/PI. The expression levels of Fas/FasL in SGC-7901 cells were monitored by FCM analysis using an indirect immunofluorescence method. Activity of caspase-3 enzyme was measured by spectrofluorometry.
MTT assay showed that matrine inhibited SGC-7901 cells proliferation in a dose-dependent and time-dependent manner. Apoptosis induction was demonstrated by morphological changes under electron microscope and FCM analysis. Fluorescence intensity levels of Fas and FasL were found to be equally up-regulated after matrine treatment, which were both correlated with apoptosis rate. The activity of caspase-3 enzyme increased in matrine groups, positively correlated with apoptosis rate.
Matrine could inhibit cell proliferation and induce apoptosis of SGC-7901 cells in vitro. The apoptosis induction appears to proceed by up-regulating Fas/FasL expression and activating caspase-3 enzyme.

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