Refereed journal article or data article (A1)

Saikosaponin A enhances Docetaxel efficacy by selectively inducing death of dormant prostate cancer cells through excessive autophagy

List of AuthorsFeng Jiling, Xi Zhichao, Jiang Xue, Li Yang, Nik Nabil Wan Najbah, Liu Mengfan, Song Zejia, Chen Xiaoqiong, Zhou Hua, Dong Qihan, Xu Hongxi


Publication year2023

JournalCancer Letters

Journal name in sourceCancer letters

Journal acronymCancer Lett

Volume number554





Self-archived copy’s web address

Quiescent cancer cells (QCCs), also known as dormant cancer cells, resist and survive chemo- and radiotherapy, resulting in treatment failure and later cancer recurrence when QCCs resume cell cycle progression. However, drugs selectively targeting QCCs are lacking. Saikosaponin A (SSA) derived from Bupleurum DC., is highly potent in eradicating multidrug-resistant prostate QCCs compared with proliferative prostate cancer cells. By further exacerbating the already increased autophagy through inactivation of Akt-mTOR signaling, SSA triggered cell death in QCCs. Contrarily, inhibition of autophagy or activation of Akt signaling pathway prevented SSA-induced cell death. The multicycle of Docetaxel treatments increased the proportion of QCCs, whereas administering SSA at intervals of Docetaxel treatments aggravated cell death in vitro and led to tumor growth arrest and cell death in vivo. In conclusion, SSA is posed as a novel QCCs-eradicating agent by aggravating autophagy in QCCs. In combination with the current therapy, SSA has potential to improve treatment effectiveness and to prevent cancer recurrence.

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Last updated on 2023-22-03 at 10:28