Autophagy plays a protective role against apoptosis induced by toxicarioside N via the Akt/mTOR pathway in human gastric cancer SGC-7901 cells
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Toxicarioside N (Tox N), a natural product extract from Antiaris toxicaria, has been reported to induce apoptosis in human gastric cancer cells. However, the mechanism and actual role of autophagy in Tox N-induced apoptosis of human gastric cancer cells remains poorly understood. In the current study, we demonstrated that Tox N could induce autophagy by inhibiting the Akt/mTOR signaling pathway in SGC-7901 cells. Moreover, we found that the inhibition of autophagy by 3-methyladenine, an autophagy inhibitor, enhanced Tox N-induced apoptotic cell death. However, the stimulation of autophagy by rapamycin, an autophagy activator, remarkably suppressed Tox N-induced apoptosis, suggesting that autophagy plays a protective role in Tox N-induced apoptosis. Thus, the results from this study suggested that Tox N combination with an autophagy inhibitor might be a promising strategy to enhance the anticancer activity of Tox N for the treatment of human gastric cancer.
KeywordsToxicarioside N Autophagy Apoptosis SGC-7901 cells Akt/mTOR
The authors acknowledge the financial support provided by The National Natural Science Foundation of China, Project Nos 81560484 and 81460557, Hainan province natural science foundation of China, Project No. 817147.
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Conflicts of interest
The authors declare no conflict of interest.
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