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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 278652, 12 pages
Research Article

The Cytotoxicity Mechanism of 6-Shogaol-Treated HeLa Human Cervical Cancer Cells Revealed by Label-Free Shotgun Proteomics and Bioinformatics Analysis

State Key Laboratory of Natural Medicines, Department of Pharmacognosy, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009, China

Received 26 July 2012; Revised 24 September 2012; Accepted 1 October 2012

Academic Editor: Shrikant Anant

Copyright © 2012 Qun Liu 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.


Cervical cancer is one of the most common cancers among women in the world. 6-Shogaol is a natural compound isolated from the rhizome of ginger (Zingiber officinale). In this paper, we demonstrated that 6-shogaol induced apoptosis and G2/M phase arrest in human cervical cancer HeLa cells. Endoplasmic reticulum stress and mitochondrial pathway were involved in 6-shogaol-mediated apoptosis. Proteomic analysis based on label-free strategy by liquid chromatography chip quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry was subsequently proposed to identify, in a non-target-biased manner, the molecular changes in cellular proteins in response to 6-shogaol treatment. A total of 287 proteins were differentially expressed in response to 24 h treatment with 15 μM 6-shogaol in HeLa cells. Significantly changed proteins were subjected to functional pathway analysis by multiple analyzing software. Ingenuity pathway analysis (IPA) suggested that 14-3-3 signaling is a predominant canonical pathway involved in networks which may be significantly associated with the process of apoptosis and G2/M cell cycle arrest induced by 6-shogaol. In conclusion, this work developed an unbiased protein analysis strategy by shotgun proteomics and bioinformatics analysis. Data observed provide a comprehensive analysis of the 6-shogaol-treated HeLa cell proteome and reveal protein alterations that are associated with its anticancer mechanism.