Backgrounds: Tanshinone IIA (TIIA), a phenanthrenequinone derivative extracted from Salvia miltiorrhizaBUNGE, has been reported to be a natural anti-cancer agent in a variety of tumor cells. However, the effect ofTIIA on gastric cancer cells remains unknown. In the present study, we investigated the influence of TIIA on themalignant phenotype of SGC7901 gastric cancer cells.
Methods: Cells cultured in vitro were treated with TIIA (0,1, 5, 10 μg/ml) and after incubation for different periods, cell proliferation was measured by MTT method andcell apoptosis and cell cycling were assessed by flow cytometry (FCM). The sensitivity of SGC7901 gastric cancercells to anticancer chemotherapy was investigated with the MTT method, while cell migration and invasion wereexamined by wound-healing and transwell assays, respectively.
Results: TIIA (1, 5, 10 μg/ml) exerted powerfulinhibitory effects on cell proliferation (P < 0.05, and P < 0.01), and this effect was time- and dose-dependent.FCM results showed that TIIA induced apoptosis of SGC7901 cells, reduced the number of cells in S phase andincreased those in G0/G1 phase. TIIA also significantly increased the sensitivity of SGC7901 gastric cancer cellsto ADR and Fu. Moreover, wound-healing and transwell assays showed that TIIA markedly decreased migratoryand invasive abilities of SGC7901 cells.
Conclusions: TIIA can reverse the malignant phenotype of SGC7901gastric cancer cells, indicating that it may be a promising therapeutic agent.