Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry

, Volume 187, Issue 1–2, pp 191–199 | Cite as

The compound 14-keto-stypodiol diacetate from the algae Stypopodium flabelliforme inhibits microtubules and cell proliferation in DU-145 human prostatic cells

  • María S. Depix
  • Jorge Martínez
  • Francisco Santibañez
  • Juana Rovirosa
  • Aurelio San Martín
  • Ricardo B. Maccioni


We investigated the effects of the drug 14-keto-stypodiol diacetate (SDA) extracted from the seaweed product Stypopodium flabelliforme, in inhibiting the cell growth and tumor invasive behavior of DU-145 human prostate cells. In addition, the molecular action of the drug on microtubule assembly was analyzed. The effects of this diterpenoid drug in cell proliferation of DU-145 tumor cells in culture revealed that SDA at concentrations of 5 μM decreased cell growth by 14%, while at 45 μM a 61% decrease was found, as compared with control cells incubated with the solvent but in the absence of the drug. To study their effects on the cell cycle, DU-145 cells were incubated with increasing concentrations of SDA and the distribution of cell-cycle stages was analyzed by flow cytometry. Interestingly, the data showed that 14-keto-stypodiol diacetate dramatically increased the proportion of cells in the G2/M phases, and decreased the number of cells at the S phase of mitosis, as compared with appropriate controls. Studies on their action on the in vitro assembly of microtubules using purified brain tubulin, showed that SDA delayed the lag period associated to nucleation events during assembly, and decreased significantly the extent of polymerization. The studies suggest that this novel derivative from a marine natural product induces mitotic arrest of tumor cells, an effect that could be associated to alterations in the normal microtubule assembly process. On the other hand, a salient feature of this compound is that it affected protease secretion and the in vitro invasive capacity, both properties of cells from metastases. The secretion of plasminogen activator (u-PA) and the capacity of DU-145 cells to migrate through a Matrigel-coated membrane were significantly inhibited in the presence of micromolar concentrations of SDA. These results provide new keys to analyze the functional relationships between protease secretion, invasive behavior of tumor cells and the microtubule network.

Stypopodium flabelliforme 14-keto-stypodiol diacetate DU-145 cell line microtubule assembly cell proliferation plasminogen activator (u-PA) tumor invasiveness 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • María S. Depix
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jorge Martínez
    • 3
  • Francisco Santibañez
    • 3
  • Juana Rovirosa
    • 4
  • Aurelio San Martín
    • 4
  • Ricardo B. Maccioni
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular BiologyUniversity of Chile, Las Palmeras, ÑuñoaSantiagoChile
  2. 2.International Center for Cancer and Developmental Biology (ICC), Las Palmeras, ÑuñoaSantiagoChile
  3. 3.Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology (INTA)University of Chile, Las Palmeras, ÑuñoaSantiagoChile
  4. 4.Department of Chemistry, Faculty of SciencesUniversity of Chile, Las Palmeras, ÑuñoaSantiagoChile

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