Scabraside D Derived from Sea Cucumber Induces Apoptosis and Inhibits Metastasis via iNOS and STAT-3 Expression in Human Cholangiocarcinoma Xenografts


Preclinic and Applied Animal Science, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand


Scabraside D, a sulfated triterpene glycoside, was extracted from the sea cucumber Holothuria scabra. It shows anti-proliferation in many of cancer cell lines, but the function and mechanisms of action of scabraside D in human cholangiocarcinoma (HuCCA) have not previously determined. In this study, we investigated the activity of scabraside D on HuCCA cell apoptosis, lymphangiogenesis and metastasis in a nude mouse model. Scabraside D induced signs of apoptosis, such as cell shrinkage, nuclear condensation, nuclear fragmentation and DNA fragmentation on TUNEL assays, while effectively decreasing expression of BCl-2 but increasing caspase-3 gene level expression. Immunohistochemistry revealed that scabraside D significantly reduced lymphatic vessel density (LVD). Moreover, scabraside D treatment significantly decreased VEGF-C, MMP-9 and uPA gene expression, which play important roles in the lymphangiogenesis and invasion of cancer cells in metastasis processes. Quantitative real-time PCR showed that scabraside D significantly decreased iNOS and STAT-3 gene expression. This study demonstrated that scabraside D plays a role in activation of HuCCA tumor apoptosis and inhibition of lymphangiogenesis, invasion and metastasis through decreasing BCl-2, MMP-9, uPA and VEGF-C and increasing caspase-3 expression by suppression of iNOS and STAT-3 expression. Therefore, scabraside D could be a promising candidate for cholangiocarcinoma treatment.