Moscatilin induces apoptosis and mitotic catastrophe in human esophageal cancer cells

Chien An Chen, Chien Chih Chen, Chien Chang Shen, Hen Hong Chang, Yu Jen Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

28 Scopus citations


Moscatilin, a bibenzyl derivative from the orchid Dendrobium loddigesii, has been shown to possess anticancer activity. We examined the effect of moscatilin on human esophageal cancer cells, including squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and adenocarcinoma (ADC) cells and its possible mechanisms. Moscatilin suppressed the growth of both the histological cell lines in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Morphological changes indicative of apoptosis and mitotic catastrophe were observed following moscatilin treatment. The population of cells in the sub-G1 phase and polyploidy phase significantly increased after treatment. Immunofluorescence revealed multipolar mitosis and subsequent multinucleation in moscatilin-treated cells, indicating the development of mitotic catastrophe. Western blot showed a marked increase in expressions of polo-like kinase 1 and cyclin B1 after exposure to moscatilin. In conclusion, moscatilin inhibits growth and induces apoptosis and mitotic catastrophe in human esophageal SCC- and ADC-derived cell lines, indicating that moscatilin has broad potential against esophageal cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)869-877
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Medicinal Food
Issue number10
StatePublished - 01 10 2013


  • esophageal cancer
  • moscatilin
  • polyploidization
  • sub-G1


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