Inhibition of membrane redox activity by rhein and adriamycin in human glioma cells

M. Fanciulli, F. P. Gentile, T. Bruno, M. G. Paggi, M. Benassi, A. Floridi

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The effect of the combination of adriamycin (ADM) with the anti-inflammatory drug rhein (RH) on the membrane redox activity in human glioma cells was investigated. RH, although less effective than ADM, inhibits ferricyanide reduction by human glioma cells in a dose-dependent manner as well as ferricyanide-induced proton release. The inhibition of the plasma membrane redox system might represent a further mechanism by which RH, other than ATP depletion, affects cell survival. The analysis of the interaction between ADM and RH, performed with the isobolar method, demonstrates a strong synergic response, probably due to an effect on different sites of action. The synergism of the ADM-RH association allows us to achieve a pre-established extent of inhibition with ADM concentrations much lower than with ADM alone. RH might, therefore, represent a very useful tool to improve the therapeutic index of ADM and to lower its general toxicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)615-621
Number of pages7
JournalAnti-Cancer Drugs
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1992


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology

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