Planta Med 2005; 71(3): 275-277
DOI: 10.1055/s-2005-837830
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Activation of p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase during ent-11α-Hydroxy-16-kauren-15-one-Induced Apoptosis in Human Leukemia HL-60 Cells

Masuo Kondoh1 , Ikue Suzuki1 , Motoki Harada1 , Fumihiro Nagashima2 , Makiko Fujii1 , Yoshinori Asakawa2 , Yoshiteru Watanabe1
  • 1Department of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics, Showa Pharmaceutical University, Machida, Tokyo, Japan
  • 2Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Tokushima Bunri University, Yamashiro-cho, Tokushima, Japan
Further Information

Publication History

Received: May 30, 2004

Accepted: November 15, 2004

Publication Date:
15 March 2005 (online)


Kaurene-type diterpenes possess various biological activities including antitumor and anti-inflammatory effects. Indeed, we have found that an ent-kaurene diterpene, ent-11α-hydroxy-16-kauren-15-one (KD), induced apoptosis via caspase-8 activation in human promyelocytic leukemia HL-60 cells. However, the mechanism of caspase-8 activation by KD is not clear. In this study, we investigated the involvement of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK) in KD-induced apoptosis. p38MAPK was activated by treatment with KD parallel to DNA ladder formation. Pretreatment with SB203580, a specific inhibitor of p38MAPK, attenuated induction of apoptosis by KD and inhibited activation of caspase-8. Cleavage of Bid, a typical substrate of caspase-8, was also inhibited by treatment with SB203580, suggesting that activation of p38MAPK occurs upstream of caspase-8 during KD-induced apoptosis.



p38MAPK:p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase


Dr. Masuo Kondoh

Department of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics

Showa Pharmaceutical University


Tokyo 194-8543


Phone: +81-42-721-1556

Fax: +81-42-723-3585