The combination of Biochanin A and SB590885 potentiates the inhibition of tumour progression in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Cancer Cell Int. 2020 ;20:371. Epub 2020 Aug 5. PMID: 32774165
Background: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most aggressive and frequently diagnosed malignancy of the liver. Despite aggressive therapy, life expectancy of many patients in these cases is extended by only a few months. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has a particularly poor prognosis and would greatly benefit from more effective therapies.
Methods: The CCK-8 assay and colony formation assays were used to test the cell proliferation and viability. The effects of combination Biochanin A and SB590885 on apoptosis and cell cycle arrest of HCC cells were analysed by flow cytometry. The expression of ERK MAPK and PI3K/AKT/mTOR signalling as well as apoptosis and cell cycle-related proteins in HCC cells were tested by western blotting. The HCC cell xenograft model was established to test the tumor proliferation. Serum and plasma were tested for liver and kidney safety markers (ALP, ALT, AST, total bilirubin, creatinine, urea nitrogen) by using SpectraMax i3X.
Results: The combination of natural product Biochanin A with the BRAF inhibitor SB590885 synergistically suppressed proliferation, and promoted cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in vitro. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the combination of Biochanin A and SB590885 led to increased impairment of proliferation and HCC tumour inhibition through disrupting of the ERK MAPK and the PI3K/AKT pathways in vitro. The volumes tumors and the weights of tumours were significantly reduced by the combination treatment compared to the control or single treatments in vivo. In addition, we found that there was no significant hepatorenal toxicity with the drug combination, as indicated by the hepatorenal toxicity test.
Conclusion: The results identify an effective combination therapy for the most aggressive form of HCC and provide the possibility of therapeutic improvement for patients with advanced HCC.