Berberine-induced apoptosis of human leukemia HL-60 cells is associated with down-regulation of nucleophosmin/B23 and telomerase activity

Hsing L. Wu, Chen Y. Hsu, Wen H. Liu, Yat Ming Yung

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103 Citations (Scopus)


The steady-state level of nucleophosmin/B23 mRNA decreased during berberine-induced (25μg/ml, 24 to 96 hr) apoptosis of human leukemia HL-60 cells. A decline in telomerase activity was also observed in HL-60 cells treated with berberine. A stable clone of nucleophosmin/B23 overexpressed in HL-60 cells was selected and found to be less responsive to berberine- induced apoptosis. About 35% to 63% of control vector-transfected cells (pCR3) exhibited morphological characteristics of apoptosis, while about 8% to 45% of nucleophosmin/B23-over-expressed cells (pCR3-B23) became apoptotic after incubation with 15μg/ml berberine for 48 to 96 hr. DNA extracted from pCR3 cells contained more fragmented DNA than pCR3-B23 cells during treatment with 15μg/ml berberine for 24 to 48 hr. Our results indicate that berberine- induced apoptosis is associated with down-regulation of nucleophosmin/B23 and telomerase activity. We also suggest that nucleophosmin/B23 may play an important role in the control of the cellular response to apoptosis induction.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)923-929
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jun 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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