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The citrus flavonoid nobiletin inhibits proliferation and induces apoptosis in human pancreatic cancer cells in vitro


The cellular effects of nobiletin on human pancreatic cancer cells (PANC-1) and the mechanisms by which nobiletin inhibits the proliferation of these cells were investigated. A MTT assay and flow cytometry were used to examine cell proliferation and apoptosis, respectively. A Western blot assay was used to examine expression levels of the apoptotic proteins bax, bcl-2, and p53. NOB induced apoptosis in these cells via up-regulation of the proapoptotic protein bax and down-regulation of the antiapoptotic proteins bcl-2 and p53. The normal cell cycle of PANC-1 cells was arrested by NOB with a significant increase in the proportion of G0/G1 phase cells (p<0.05) and a significant decrease in the proportion of S phase cells (p<0.05). NOB can inhibit the proliferation of human pancreatic carcinoma cells by inducing apoptosis and arresting the cell cycle progression.

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Correspondence to Huating Dou.

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Zhang, Y., Dou, H., Li, H. et al. The citrus flavonoid nobiletin inhibits proliferation and induces apoptosis in human pancreatic cancer cells in vitro . Food Sci Biotechnol 23, 225–229 (2014).

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  • nobiletin
  • pancreatic cancer
  • cell proliferation
  • apoptosis
  • cell cycle