Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a life-threatening disease that is known to exhibit a poor prognosis. Therefore, it is important to identify an effective drug therapy for the treatment of HCC. Dihydromyricetin (DHM) is a flavonoid compound, isolated from the classical Chinese herb Ampelopsis grossedentata, which exhibits multiple pharmacological activities, including anticancer effects. In this study, the anticancer effect of DHM was investigated in nine different types of HCC cell lines via cell proliferation and immunoassays, as well as apoptosis detection. Two immortalized normal human liver cell lines were utilized to determine hepatotoxicity. The results revealed that DHM significantly inhibited cell proliferation and induced cell apoptosis in the HCC cell lines. However, DHM exhibited no cytotoxicity to normal human hepatic cell lines. Furthermore, it was found that DHM induced cell apoptosis in a p53-dependent manner. DHM upregulated p53 expression, and the upregulation of p53 increased the levels of the cleaved caspase-3 protein, directly inducing cell apoptosis. These results indicate that DHM is a promising candidate for the treatment of HCC.
Liu, J., Shu, Y., Zhang, Q., Liu, B., Xia, J., Qiu, M., … Zhu, R. (2014). Dihydromyricetin induces apoptosis and inhibits proliferation in hepatocellular carcinoma cells. Oncology Letters, 8(4), 1645–1651. https://doi.org/10.3892/ol.2014.2330