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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 409823, 9 pages
Research Article

Aqueous Extract of Paeonia suffruticosa Inhibits Migration and Metastasis of Renal Cell Carcinoma Cells via Suppressing VEGFR-3 Pathway

1Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10051, Taiwan
2School of Pharmacy, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10051, Taiwan
3Department of Pathology, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei 10002, Taiwan
4Graduate Institute of Integrated Medicine of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan
5Department of Medical Genetics and Medical Research, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan

Received 28 June 2011; Accepted 2 November 2011

Academic Editor: Lixing Lao

Copyright © 2012 Shih-Chin Wang 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.


Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) cells are characterized by strong drug resistance and high metastatic incidence. In this study, the effects of ten kinds of Chinese herbs on RCC cell migration and proliferation were examined. Aqueous extract of Paeonia suffruticosa (PS-A) exerted strong inhibitory effects on cancer cell migration, mobility, and invasion. The results of mouse xenograft experiments showed that the treatment of PS-A significantly suppressed tumor growth and pulmonary metastasis. We further found that PS-A markedly decreased expression of VEGF receptor-3 (VEGFR-3) and phosphorylation of FAK in RCC cells. Moreover, the activation of Rac-1, a modulator of cytoskeletal dynamics, was remarkably reduced by PS-A. Additionally, PS-A suppressed polymerization of actin filament as demonstrated by confocal microscopy analysis and decreased the ratio of F-actin to G-actin in RCC cells, suggesting that PS-A inhibits RCC cell migration through modulating VEGFR-3/FAK/Rac-1 pathway to disrupt actin filament polymerization. In conclusion, this research elucidates the effects and molecular mechanism for antimigration of PS-A on RCC cells and suggests PS-A to be a therapeutic or adjuvant strategy for the patients with aggressive RCC.