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Archives of Pharmacal Research

, Volume 28, Issue 6, pp 685–690 | Cite as

G1 phase arrest of the cell cycle by a ginseng metabolite, compound K, in U937 human monocytic leukamia cells

  • Kyoung Ah Kang
  • Yeong Wan Kim
  • Seung Uk Kim
  • Sungwook Chae
  • Young Sang Koh
  • Hee Sun Kim
  • Min Kyung Choo
  • Dong Hyun Kim
  • Jin Won Hyun
Articles Drug Development

Abstract

We recently reported that the ginseng saponin metabolite, compound K (20-O-β-D-glucopyranosyl-20(S)-protopanaxadiol, IH901), inhibits the growth of U937 cells through caspase-dependent apoptosis pathway. In this study, we further characterized the effects of compound K on U937 cells and found that, in addition to apoptosis, compound K induced the arrest of the G1 phase. The compound K treated U937 cells showed increased p21 expression; an inhibitory protein of cyclin-cdk complex. The up-regulation of p21 was followed by the inactivation of cyclin D and the cdk4 protein, which act at the early G1 phase, and cyclin E, which acts at the late G1 phase. Furthermore, compound K induced the activation of JNK and the transcription factor AP-1, which is a downstream target of JNK. These findings suggest that the up-regulation of p21 and activation of JNK in the compound K treated cells contribute to the arrest of the G1 phase.

Key words

Compound K U937 cell Apoptosis G1 phase p21 AP-1 JNK 

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Copyright information

© The Pharmaceutical Society of Korea 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kyoung Ah Kang
    • 1
  • Yeong Wan Kim
    • 1
  • Seung Uk Kim
    • 1
  • Sungwook Chae
    • 1
  • Young Sang Koh
    • 2
  • Hee Sun Kim
    • 3
  • Min Kyung Choo
    • 4
  • Dong Hyun Kim
    • 4
  • Jin Won Hyun
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry, College of Medicine and Applied Radiological Science Research InstituteCheju National UniversityJeju-siKorea
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology, College of Medicine and Applied Radiological Science Research InstituteCheju National UniversityJeju-siKorea
  3. 3.Department of NeuroscienceEwha Womans University Medical SchoolSeoulKorea
  4. 4.Department of Microbial Chemistry, College of PharmacyKyung Hee UniversitySeoulKorea

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