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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Effects of magnolol on UVB-induced skin cancer development in mice and its possible mechanism of action

Chandeshwari Chilampalli1, Ruth Guillermo1, Xiaoying Zhang2, Radhey S Kaushik34, Alan Young4, David Zeman4, Michael B Hildreth3, Hesham Fahmy1 and Chandradhar Dwivedi1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007, USA

2 ACEA Bio Ltd., Hangzhou, P.R. China

3 Department of Biology and Microbiology, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007, USA

4 Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007, USA

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BMC Cancer 2011, 11:456  doi:10.1186/1471-2407-11-456

Published: 20 October 2011

Abstract

Background

Magnolol, a plant lignan isolated from the bark and seed cones of Magnolia officinalis, has been shown to have chemopreventive effects on chemically-induced skin cancer development. The objectives of this investigation are to study the anticarcinogenic effects of magnolol on UVB-induced skin tumor development in SKH-1 mice, a model relevant to humans, and determine the possible role of apoptosis and cell cycle arrest involved in the skin tumor development.

Methods

UVB-induced skin carcinogenesis model in SKH-1 mice was used for determining the preventive effects of magnolol on skin cancer development. Western blottings and flow cytometric analysis were used to study the effects of magnolol on apoptosis and cell cycle.

Results

Magnolol pretreated groups (30, 60 μ g) before UVB treatments (30 mJ/cm2, 5 days/week) resulted in 27-55% reduction in tumor multiplicity as compared to control group in SKH-1 mice. Magnolol pretreatment increased the cleavage of caspase-8 and poly-(-ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), increased the expression of p21, a cell cycle inhibitor, and decreased the expression of proteins involved in the G2/M phase of cell cycle in skin samples from SKH-1 mice.

Treatment of A431 cells with magnolol decreased cell viability and cell proliferation in a concentration dependent manner. Magnolol induced G2/M phase cell cycle arrest in A431 cells at 12 h with a decreased expression of cell cycle proteins such as cyclin B1, cyclin A, CDK4, Cdc2 and simultaneous increase in the expression of Cip/p21, a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor. Magnolol induced apoptosis in vivo and in vitro with an increased cleavage of caspase-8 and PARP. Phospho-signal transducers and activators of transcription 3 (Tyr705), B-Raf, p-MEK, and p-AKT were down-regulated, whereas phosphorylation of ERK was induced by magnolol in A431 cells.

Conclusions

Magnolol pretreatments prevent UVB-induced skin cancer development by enhancing apoptosis, causing cell cycle arrest at G2/M phase, and affecting various signaling pathways. Magnolol could be a potentially safe and potent anticarcinogenic agent against skin cancer.