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Ginsenoside Rh2 induces apoptosisvia activation of caspase-1 and -3 and up-regulation of bax in human neuroblastoma

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In human neuroblastoma SK-N-BE(2) cells undergoing apoptotic death induced by ginsenoside Rh2, a dammarane glycoside that was isolated fromPanax ginseng C. A. Meyer, caspase1 and caspase-3 were activated. The expression of Bax was increased in the cells treated with ginsenoside Rh2, whereas Bcl-2 expression was not altered. Treatment with caspase-1 inhibitor, Ac-YVAD-CMK, or caspase-3 inhibitor, Z-DEVD-FMK, partially inhibited ginsenoside Rh2-induced cell death but almost suppressed the cleavage of the 116 kDa PARP into a 85 kDa fragment. When the levels of p53 were examined in this process, p53 accumulated rapidly in the cells treated early with ginsenoside Rh2. These results suggest that activation of caspase1 and -3 and the up-regulation of Bax are required in order for apoptotic death of SK-N-BE(2) cells to be induced by ginsenoside Rh2, and p53 plays an important role in the pathways to promote apoptosis.

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Correspondence to Young-Sook Kim or Sung-Ha Jin.

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Kim, Y., Jin, S. Ginsenoside Rh2 induces apoptosisvia activation of caspase-1 and -3 and up-regulation of bax in human neuroblastoma. Arch Pharm Res 27, 834 (2004). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02980175

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Key words

  • Ginsenoside Rh2
  • Apoptosis
  • Caspase-1
  • Caspase-3
  • Bax
  • Neuroblastoma