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PloS one

Evodiamine synergizes with doxorubicin in the treatment of chemoresistant human breast cancer without inhibiting P-glycoprotein.


PMID 24830744

Abstract

Drug resistance is one of the main hurdles for the successful treatment of breast cancer. The synchronous targeting of apoptosis resistance and survival signal transduction pathways may be a promising approach to overcome drug resistance. In this study, we determined that evodiamine (EVO), a major constituent of the Chinese herbal medicine Evodiae Fructus, could induce apoptosis of doxorubicin (DOX)-sensitive MCF-7 and DOX-resistant MCF-7/ADR cells in a caspase-dependent manner, as confirmed by significant increases of cleaved poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), caspase-7/9, and caspase activities. Notably, the reversed phenomenon of apoptosis resistance by EVO might be attributed to its ability to inhibit the Ras/MEK/ERK pathway and the expression of inhibitors of apoptosis (IAPs). Furthermore, our results indicated that EVO enhanced the apoptotic action of DOX by inhibiting the Ras/MEK/ERK cascade and the expression of IAPs without inhibiting the expression and activity of P-glycoprotein (P-gp). Taken together, our data indicate that EVO, a natural product, may be useful applied alone or in combination with DOX for the treatment of resistant breast cancer.