2-(2-Hydroxy-ethylsulfanyl)-3-methyl-1,4-naphthoquinone or CPD-5, a K vitamin analog, was previously indicated to be a potent growth inhibitor for Hep 3B hepatoma cells in vitro. Here, we show that CPD-5 and two newly synthesized analogs, 2-(2-hydroxy-ethylsulfanyl)-3-methyl-5 nitro-1,4-naphthoquinone (PD-37) and 2-(2-hydroxy-ethylsulfanyl)-3- methyl-5-acetylamino-1,4-naphthoquinone (PD-42), are potent growth inhibitors of 13 different human cancer cell lines, with IC50 values in the range of 3-54 μM. Phospho-ERK was induced by each of three K vitamin analogs in every cell line in a dose-dependent manner, at growth inhibitory doses. ERK phosphorylation and growth inhibitory effects were strongly correlated, with p = 0.0080 for CPD-5, p = 0.0076 for PD-37 and p = 0.0251 for PD-42. The induction of phospho-ERK and growth inhibition were antagonized by thiol-containing anti-oxidants, but not by catalase, consistent with a possible arylating mechanism. The data show a novel class of growth inhibitors with a wide spectrum of action that induces ERK hyper-phosphorylation, as a possible new growth inhibitory feature.
- Cancer cell line
- Extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)
- Growth inhibition
- Novel K vitamin analog
ASJC Scopus subject areas