Ursolic acid inhibits the growth of colon cancer-initiating cells by targeting STAT3.

Monday, 06/01/2014  |   Uncategorized  |  no comments

Ursolic-Acid

Wong et al., have previously reported Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription 3 (STAT3) to be constitutively activated in aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH)(+)/cluster of differentiation-133 (CD133)(+) colon cancer-initiating cells. In the present study they tested the efficacy of inhibiting STAT3 signaling in human colon cancer-initiating cells by ursolic acid (UA), which exists widely in fruits and herbs.

Their data demonstrated that UA inhibited STAT3 phosphorylation, and induced caspase-3 cleavage of ALDH(+)/CD133(+) colon cancer-initiating cells. UA also reduced cell viability and inhibited tumor sphere formation of colon cancer-initiating cells, more potently than two other natural compounds, resveratrol and capsaicin. UA also inhibited the activation of STAT3 induced by interleukin-6 in DLD-1 colon cancer cells. Furthermore, daily administration of UA suppressed HCT116 tumor growth in mice in vivo.

Their results suggest STAT3 to be a target for colon cancer prevention. UA, a dietary agent, might offer an effective approach for colorectal carcinoma prevention by inhibiting persistently activated STAT3 in cancer stem cells.

Source Wang W, Zhao C, Jou D, Lü J, Zhang C, Lin L, Lin J. Anticancer Res. 2013 Oct;33(10):4279-84.

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