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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2014, Article ID 906804, 10 pages
Research Article

Piperlongumine Induces Apoptosis and Synergizes with Cisplatin or Paclitaxel in Human Ovarian Cancer Cells

1Department of Gynecology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical College, Shangcai Village South, Ouhai District, Wenzhou, Zhejiang 325000, China
2Department of Gynecology, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun-Yat Sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510632, China
3Department of Cell Biology and Institute of Biomedicine, College of Life Science and Technology, Jinan University, Room 708, The 2nd Engineer and Scientific Building, 601 Huangpu RoadWest, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510632, China

Received 14 February 2014; Revised 1 April 2014; Accepted 3 April 2014; Published 8 May 2014

Academic Editor: Si Jin

Copyright © 2014 Li-Hua Gong 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.


Piperlongumine (PL), a natural alkaloid from Piper longum L., possesses the highly selective and effective anticancer property. However, the effect of PL on ovarian cancer cells is still unknown. In this study, we firstly demonstrate that PL selectively inhibited cell growth of human ovarian cancer cells. Furthermore, PL notably induced cell apoptosis, G2/M phase arrest, and accumulation of the intracellular reactive oxidative species (ROS) in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Pretreatment with antioxidant N-acety-L-cysteine could totally reverse the PL-induced ROS accumulation and cell apoptosis. In addition, low dose of PL/cisplatin or paclitaxel combination therapies had a synergistic antigrowth effect on human ovarian cancer cells. Collectively, our study provides new therapeutic potential of PL on human ovarian cancer.