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Pyrvinium Pamoate Inhibits Cell Proliferation Through ROS-mediated AKT-dependent Signaling Pathway In Colorectal Cancer

Wenqian Zheng, Jinhui Hu, Yiming Lv, Bingjun Bai, Lina Shan, Kangke Chen, Sheng Dai, Hongbo Zhu

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AbstractThe use of the anthelmintic drug pyrvinium pamoate (PP) in cancer therapy has been extensively investigated in the last decade. PP has been shown to have an inhibitory effect in colorectal cancer (CRC), but the underlying mechanism remains elusive. We aimed to investigate the antitumor activity and mechanisms of PP in CRC. In the present study, we used CCK-8 assays, colony formation assays, and western blotting to reveal that PP effectively suppressed CRC cell proliferation and the AKT-dependent signaling pathway in a concentration-dependent and time-dependent manner. Flow cytometric analysis and fluorescence microscopy demonstrated that PP increased intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation. We found that the inhibitory effect of PP on cell proliferation and AKT protein expression induced by PP could be partially reversed by N-acetyl-l-cysteine (NAC), an ROS scavenger. In addition, the results also demonstrated that PP inhibited cell migration by modulating epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT)-related proteins, including E-cadherin and vimentin. In conclusion, our data suggested that PP effectively inhibited cell proliferation through the ROS-mediated AKT-dependent signaling pathway in CRC, further providing evidence for the use of PP as an antitumor agent.