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Analytical Cellular Pathology
Volume 2019, Article ID 7697610, 6 pages
Research Article

TEEG Induced A549 Cell Autophagy by Regulating the PI3K/AKT/mTOR Signaling Pathway

1Department of Pharmacy, Medical College, Jianghan University, Hubei, Wuhan 430056, China
2Hubei Key Laboratory of Resources and Chemistry of Chinese Medicine, Hubei University of Chinese Medicine, Hubei, Wuhan 430065, China
3Department of Dermatology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine, Guangzhou, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Pengtao You; nc.ude.mctbh@uoytpt

Received 18 January 2019; Revised 20 March 2019; Accepted 7 April 2019; Published 30 April 2019

Guest Editor: Mingjun Shi

Copyright © 2019 Lu Shi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


TEEG (3β,16β,23-trihydroxy-13,28-epoxyurs-11-ene-3-O-β-D-glucopyranoside) is derived from the chloroform extract of the Chinese medicine formula Shenqi San (CE-SS). In the present study, we aimed to elucidate the anticancer effect and possible molecular mechanism underlying the action of TEEG against the human non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell line A549 in vitro. A549 cells were incubated with different concentrations of TEEG. Cell proliferation was assessed by MTT assay. Autophagy was evaluated by immunofluorescence staining. Autophagy-associated proteins were examined by Western blot analysis. TEEG markedly inhibited A549 cell proliferation in a concentration-dependent manner. Immunofluorescence staining showed that TEEG induced autophagy in A549 cells. The LC3-II : LC3-I conversion ratio and the expression of Beclin-1, Atg5, Atg7, and Atg12 increased with the concentration of TEEG. In addition, increased TEEG concentration enhanced the expression of Class III p-PI3K and reduced the expression of Class I p-PI3K, p-AKT, p-mTOR, and p-P70S6K. These results indicate that TEEG induces autophagy of A549 cells through regulation of the PI3K/AKT/mTOR signaling pathway.