Xanthohumol inhibits STAT3 activation pathway leading to growth suppression and apoptosis induction in human cholangiocarcinoma cells.
Oncol Rep. 2016 Apr ;35(4):2065-72. Epub 2016 Jan 21. PMID: 26794001
STAT3 plays a significant role in the development of cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) associated with the liver fluke (Opisthorchis viverrini; Ov). Xanthohumol (XN), a prenylated flavonoid extracted from hops, has known anticancer activity and could potentially target STAT3. The present study determined the effect of XN on STAT3, as well as ascertained its usefulness against CCA. The CCA cell proliferation at 20µM and 50 µM of XN was shown to inhibited, while 20 µM partially inhibited IL-6-induced STAT3 activation. At 50 µM, the inhibition was complete. The reduction in STAT3 activity at 20 and 50 µM was associated with a significant reduction of CCA cell growth and apoptosis. We also found that the administration of 50 µM XN orally in drinking water to nude mice inoculated with CCA led to a reduction in tumor growth in comparison with controls. In addition, apoptosis of cancer cells increased although there was no visible toxicity. The present study shows that XN can inhibit STAT3 activation both in vivo and in vitro due to suppression of the Akt-NFκB signaling pathway. XN should be considered as a possible therapeutic agent against CCA.