Activation of caspase-3 protease via a Bcl-2-insensitive pathway during the process of ginsenoside Rh2-induced apoptosis

Jeong Ae Park, Kwang Youl Lee, Young J. Oh, Kyu Won Kim, Seung Ki Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

122 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have demonstrated that ginsenoside Rh2 (G-Rh2), a ginseng saponin with a dammarane skeleton, induces apoptosis of human hepatoma SK-HEP-1 cells as evidenced by analyses of DNA fragmentation, flow cytometry and changes in cell morphology. Ac-YVAD-CMK or Ac-DEVD-CHO effectively prevented G-Rh2-induced DNA fragmentation, indicating the involvement of caspase-like proteases in the process of apoptosis. In addition, G-Rh2 induced the processing of caspase-3 to an active form, p17. In stable Bcl-2 transfectants, G-Rh2 also induced DNA fragmentation, while staurosporine-induced DNA fragmentation was totally blocked. As it did in wild-type cells, G-Rh2 induced the proteolytic activation of caspase-3 protease and subsequent cleavage of PARP in the bcl-2 transfectants. In summary, G-Rh2 contains an apoptotic inducing activity SK-HEP-1 cells which functions via Bcl-2-insensitive activation of caspase-3, followed by proteolytic cleavage of PARP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-81
Number of pages9
JournalCancer Letters
Volume121
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Dec 16

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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