Pennogenyl saponins from Paris quadrifolia L. induce extrinsic and intrinsic pathway of apoptosis in human cervical cancer HeLa cells

Academic Article


  • Pennogenyl saponins are the active compounds of large number of plant species and consequently many polyherbal formulations. Hence, great interest has been shown in their characterization and in the investigation of their pharmacological and biological properties, especially anticancer. This present study reports on the evaluation of cytotoxic effects and explanation of the molecular mechanisms of action of the two pennogenyl saponins (PS 1 and PS 2) isolated from Paris quadrifolia L. rhizomes on human cervical adenocarcinoma cell line HeLa. To determine the viability of the cells treated with the compounds we used real-time cell proliferation analysis and found that the pennogenyl saponins PS 1 and PS 2 strongly inhibited the tumor cells growth with IC50 values of 1.11 ± 0.04 μg/ml and 0.87 ± 0.05 μg/ml, respectively. The flow cytometry analysis indicated that the two compounds induced apoptosis in a dose-dependent manner and decreased mitochondrial membrane potential in HeLa cells in the early stage of apoptosis. Quantitative PCR and Western Blot analysis showed that the two saponins significantly increased mRNA expression of FADD and BID as well as induced caspase-8 via increased of procaspase-8 processing in the treated cells. The results of this study suggest that both the extrinsic death receptor and intrinsic mitochondrial pathways are involved in the programmed cell death. Copyright:
  • Published In

  • PLoS One  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Stefanowicz-Hajduk J; Bartoszewski R; Bartoszewska S; Kochan K; Adamska A; Kosiński I; Ochocka JR
  • Volume

  • 10
  • Issue

  • 8