Withaferin A(WFA) has anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, immune modulatory, cardioactive, antithrombotic and central nervous system effects, it could act as an anti-fibrotic compound against fibroproliferative diseases, including, but not limited to, cardiac interstitial fibrosis. WFA is a proteasomal inhibitor promotes healing after injury and exerts anabolic effect on osteoporotic bone. WFA is a potent breast cancer anti-metastatic agent and the anti-metastatic activity of WFA is, at least in part, mediated through its effects on vimentin and vimentin ser56 phosphorylation; it induces p53-dependent apoptosis by repression of HPV oncogenes and upregulation of tumor suppressor proteins in human cervical cancer cells, it can be exploited as a potent therapeutic agent for the treatment and prevention of cervical cancer without deleterious effects.
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Wherever possible, you should prepare and use solutions on the same day. However, if you need to make up stock solutions in advance, we recommend that you store the solution as aliquots in tightly sealed vials at -20C. Generally, these will be useable for up to two weeks. Before use, and prior to opening the vial we recommend that you allow your product to equilibrate to room temperature for at least 1 hour.
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Withaferin A sensitizes TRAIL-induced apoptosis through reactive oxygen species-mediated up-regulation of death receptor 5 and down-regulation of c-FLIP.[Pubmed: 19345731
Withaferin A (Wit A) has reportedly shown cytotoxicity in a variety of tumor cell lines.
METHODS AND RESULTS:
Here, we show that cotreatment with subtoxic doses of Wit A and tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) induces apoptosis in human renal cancer cells, Caki cells, but not in human normal mesangial cells. Moreover, the combined treatment with Wit A and TRAIL dramatically induces apoptosis in various cancer cell types, suggesting that this combined treatment might offer an attractive strategy for safely treating human cancers. Treatment of Caki cells with Wit A up-regulated death receptor 5 (DR5) in a C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP)-dependent manner. Interestingly, a Wit A-induced increase in ROS levels preceded the up-regulation of CHOP and DR5. The involvement of ROS in CHOP-mediated DR5 up-regulation was confirmed by the result that pretreatment with an antioxidant, NAC or catalase, inhibited Wit A-induced up-regulation of both CHOP and DR5. We also found that Wit A treatment down-regulated c-FLIP via NF-kappaB-mediated transcriptional control as well as ROS signaling pathways.
Taken together, our results show that DR5 up-regulation and c-FLIP down-regulation contribute to the sensitizing effect of Wit A on TRAIL-mediated apoptosis in cancer cells.
Carcinogenesis. 2011 Nov;32(11):1697-705.
Withaferin A induces p53-dependent apoptosis by repression of HPV oncogenes and upregulation of tumor suppressor proteins in human cervical cancer cells.[Pubmed: 21859835
Cervical cancer is caused by human papilloma virus (HPV) expressing E6 and E7 oncoproteins, which are known to inactivate tumor suppressor proteins p53 and pRb, respectively. Repression of HPV oncoproteins would therefore result in reactivation of tumor suppressor pathways and cause apoptosis in cancer cells.
Withaferin A (WA), the active component of the medicinal plant Withania Somnifera, has exhibited inhibitory effects against several different cancers.
METHODS AND RESULTS:
We examined the activity of WA on human cervical cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. WA potently inhibited proliferation of the cervical cancer cells, CaSki (IC(50) 0.45 ± 0.05 μM). Mechanistically, WA was found to (i) downregulate expression of HPV E6 and E7 oncoproteins, (ii) induce accumulation of p53, (iii) increase levels of p21(cip1/waf1) and its interaction with proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), (iv) cause G(2)/M cell cycle arrest, associated with modulation of cyclin B1, p34(cdc2) and PCNA levels, (v) decrease the levels of STAT3 and its phosphorylation at Tyr(705) and Ser(727) and (vi) alter expression levels of p53-mediated apoptotic markers-Bcl2, Bax, caspase-3 and cleaved PARP. In vivo, WA resulted in reduction of nearly 70% of the tumor volume in athymic nude mice with essentially similar trend in the modulation of molecular markers as in vitro. This is the first demonstration indicating that WA significantly downregulates expression of HPV E6/E7 oncogenes and restores the p53 pathway, resulting in apoptosis of cervical cancer cells.
Together, our data suggest that WA can be exploited as a potent therapeutic agent for the treatment and prevention of cervical cancer without deleterious effects.
Int J Cancer. 2011 Dec 1;129(11):2744-55.
Withaferin A inhibits breast cancer invasion and metastasis at sub-cytotoxic doses by inducing vimentin disassembly and serine 56 phosphorylation.[Pubmed: 21538350
Withaferin A (WFA) is purified from the plant Withania somnifera and inhibits the vimentin cytoskeleton. Vimentin overexpression in cancer correlates with metastatic disease, induction of epithelial to mesenchymal transition and reduced patient survival.
METHODS AND RESULTS:
As vimentin functions in cell motility, we wanted to test the hypothesis that WFA inhibits cancer metastasis by disrupting vimentin function. These data showed that WFA had weak cytotoxic and apoptotic activity at concentrations less than or equal to 500 nM, but retained potent anti-invasive activity at these low doses. Imaging of breast cancer cell lines revealed that WFA induces perinuclear vimentin accumulation followed by rapid vimentin depolymerization. A concomitant induction of vimentin ser56 phosphorylation was observed, which is consistent with vimentin disassembly. Structure activity relationships were established using a set of chemically modified WFA analogs and showed that the predicted vimentin-binding region of WFA is necessary to induce vimentin ser56 phosphorylation and for its anti-invasive activity. Pharmacokinetic studies in mice revealed that WFA reaches peak concentrations up to 2 μM in plasma with a half-life of 1.36 hr following a single 4 mg/kg dose. In a breast cancer metastasis mouse model, WFA showed dose-dependent inhibition of metastatic lung nodules and induced vimentin ser56 phosphorylation, with minimal toxicity to lung tissue.
Based upon these studies, we conclude that WFA is a potent breast cancer anti-metastatic agent and the anti-metastatic activity of WFA is, at least in part, mediated through its effects on vimentin and vimentin ser56 phosphorylation.
PLoS One. 2012;7(8):e42989.
Withaferin-A reduces type I collagen expression in vitro and inhibits development of myocardial fibrosis in vivo.[Pubmed: 22900077
Type I collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. Its excessive synthesis results in fibrosis of various organs. Fibrosis is a major medical problem without an existing cure. Excessive synthesis of type I collagen in fibrosis is primarily due to stabilization of collagen mRNAs. We recently reported that intermediate filaments composed of vimentin regulate collagen synthesis by stabilizing collagen mRNAs. Vimentin is a primary target of Withaferin A (WF-A).
METHODS AND RESULTS:
Therefore, we hypothesized that WF-A may reduce type I collagen production by disrupting vimentin filaments and decreasing the stability of collagen mRNAs. This study is to determine if WF-A exhibits anti-fibrotic properties in vitro and in vivo and to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of its action. In lung, skin and heart fibroblasts WF-A disrupted vimentin filaments at concentrations of 0.5-1.5 μM and reduced 3 fold the half-lives of collagen α1(I) and α2(I) mRNAs and protein expression. In addition, WF-A inhibited TGF-β1 induced phosphorylation of TGF-β1 receptor I, Smad3 phosphorylation and transcription of collagen genes. WF-A also inhibited in vitro activation of primary hepatic stellate cells and decreased their type I collagen expression. In mice, administration of 4 mg/kg WF-A daily for 2 weeks reduced isoproterenol-induced myocardial fibrosis by 50%.
Our findings provide strong evidence that Withaferin-A could act as an anti-fibrotic compound against fibroproliferative diseases, including, but not limited to, cardiac interstitial fibrosis.
Exp Cell Res. 2013 Nov 1;319(18):2822-34.
Production of reactive oxygen species by withaferin A causes loss of type collagen expression and COX-2 expression through the PI3K/Akt, p38, and JNK pathways in rabbit articular chondrocytes.[Pubmed: 24016823
Withaferin A (WFA) is a major chemical constituent of Withania somnifera, also known as Indian ginseng. Many recent reports have provided evidence of its anti-tumor, anti-inflammation, anti-oxidant, and immune modulatory activities. Although the compound appears to have a large number of effects, its defined mechanisms of action have not yet been determined.
METHODS AND RESULTS:
We investigated the effects of WFA on loss of type collagen expression and inflammation in rabbit articular chondrocytes. WFA increased the production of reactive oxygen species, suggesting the induction of oxidative stress, in a dose-dependent manner. Also, we confirmed that WFA causes loss of type collagen expression and inflammation as determined by a decrease of type II collagen expression and an increase of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression via western blot analysis in a dose- and time- dependent manner. WFA also reduced the synthesis of sulfated proteoglycan via Alcian blue staining and caused the synthesis of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) via assay kit in dose- and time-dependent manners. Treatment with N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC), an antioxidant, inhibited WFA-induced loss of type II collagen expression and increase in COX-2 expression, accompanied by inhibition of reactive oxygen species production. WFA increased phosphorylation of both Akt and p38. Inhibition of PI3K/Akt, p38, and JNK with LY294002 (LY), SB203580 (SB), or SP600125 (SP) in WFA-treated cells rescued the expression of type II collagen and suppressed the expression of COX-2.
These results demonstrate that WFA induces loss of type collagen expression and inflammation via PI3K/Akt, p38, and JNK by generating reactive oxygen species in rabbit articular chondrocytes.
Cell Death & Disease, 2013, 4(8):e778.
Withaferin A: A proteasomal inhibitor promotes healing after injury and exerts anabolic effect on osteoporotic bone[Reference: WebLink
Withania somnifera or Ashwagandha is a medicinal herb of Ayurveda. Though the extract and purified molecules, withanolides, from this plant have been shown to have different pharmacological activities, their effect on bone formation has not been studied.
METHODS AND RESULTS:
Here, we show that one of the withanolide, Withaferin A (WFA) acts as a proteasomal inhibitor (PI) and binds to specific catalytic β subunit of the 20S proteasome. It exerts positive effect on osteoblast by increasing osteoblast proliferation and differentiation. WFA increased expression of osteoblast-specific transcription factor and mineralizing genes, promoted osteoblast survival and suppressed inflammatory cytokines. In osteoclast, WFA treatment decreased osteoclast number directly by decreasing expression of tartarate-resistant acid phosphatase and receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B (RANK) and indirectly by decreasing osteoprotegrin/RANK ligand ratio. Our data show that in vitro treatment of WFA to calvarial osteoblast cells decreased expression of E3 ubiquitin ligase, Smad ubiquitin regulatory factor 2 (Smurf2), preventing degradation of Runt-related transcription factor 2 (RunX2) and relevant Smad proteins, which are phosphorylated by bone morphogenetic protein 2. Increased Smurf2 expression due to exogenous treatment of tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) to primary osteoblast cells was decreased by WFA treatment. This was corroborated by using small interfering RNA against Smurf2. Further, WFA also blocked nuclear factor kappa-B (NF-kB) signaling as assessed by tumor necrosis factor stimulated nuclear translocation of p65-subunit of NF-kB. Overall data show that in vitro proteasome inhibition by WFA simultaneously promoted osteoblastogenesis by stabilizing RunX2 and suppressed osteoclast differentiation, by inhibiting osteoclastogenesis. Oral administration of WFA to osteopenic ovariectomized mice increased osteoprogenitor cells in the bone marrow and increased expression of osteogenic genes. WFA supplementation improved trabecular micro-architecture of the long bones, increased biomechanical strength parameters of the vertebra and femur, decreased bone turnover markers (osteocalcin and TNFα) and expression of skeletal osteoclastogenic genes. It also increased new bone formation and expression of osteogenic genes in the femur bone as compared with vehicle groups (Sham) and ovariectomy (OVx), Bortezomib (known PI), injectible parathyroid hormone and alendronate (FDA approved drugs). WFA promoted the process of cortical bone regeneration at drill-holes site in the femur mid-diaphysis region and cortical gap was bridged with woven bone within 11 days of both estrogen sufficient and deficient (ovariectomized, Ovx) mice.
Together our data suggest that WFA stimulates bone formation by abrogating proteasomal machinery and provides knowledge base for its clinical evaluation as a bone anabolic agent.
Vascul Pharmacol. 2014 Mar;60(3):120-6.
Antiplatelet, anticoagulant, and profibrinolytic activities of withaferin A.[Pubmed: 24534482
Withaferin A (WFA), an active compound from Withania somnifera, is widely researched for its anti-inflammatory, cardioactive and central nervous system effects. However, antiplatelet, anticoagulant, and profibrinolytic properties of WFA have not been studied.
METHODS AND RESULTS:
In this study, the anticoagulant activities of WFA were measured by monitoring activated partial thromboplastin-time (aPTT), prothrombin time (PT), fibrin polymerization, platelet aggregation, thrombus formation, and the activities of cell-based thrombin and activated factor X (FXa). The effects of WFA on the expressions of plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1) and tissue-type plasminogen activator (t-PA) were also tested in tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) activated human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Our data showed that WFA inhibited thrombin-catalyzed fibrin polymerization and platelet aggregation, FeCl3-induced thrombus formation, prolonged aPTT and PT significantly and inhibited the activities and production of thrombin and FXa. WFA prolonged in vivo and ex vivo bleeding time and inhibited TNF-α induced PAI-1 production. Furthermore, PAI-1/t-PA ratio was significantly decreased by WFA.
Collectively, these results indicate that WFA possesses antithrombotic activities and suggest that the current study could provide bases for the development of new anticoagulant agents.