Vanillin prevents doxorubicin-induced apoptosis and oxidative stress in rat H9c2 cardiomyocytes

Ivana Sirangelo, Luigi Sapio, Angela Ragone, Silvio Naviglio, Clara Iannuzzi, Daniela Barone, Antonio Giordano, Margherita Borriello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Doxorubicin (doxo) is an effective anticancer compound in several tumor types. However, as a consequence of oxidative stress induction and ROS overproduction, its high cardiotoxicity demands urgent attention. Vanillin possesses antioxidant, antiproliferative, antidepressant and anti-glycating properties. Therefore, we investigated the potential vanillin protective effects against doxo-induced cardiotoxicity in H9c2 cells. Using multiparametric approach, we demonstrated that vanillin restored both cell viability and damage in response to doxo exposure. Contextually, vanillin decreased sub-G1 appearance and caspase-3 and PARP1 activation, reducing the doxo-related apoptosis induction. From a mechanistic point of view, vanillin hindered doxo-induced ROS accumulation and impaired the ERK phosphorylation. Notably, besides the cardioprotective effects, vanillin did not counteract the doxo effectiveness in osteosarcoma cells. Taken together, our results suggest that vanillin ameliorates doxo-induced toxicity in H9c2 cells, opening new avenues for developing alternative therapeutic approaches to prevent the anthracycline-related cardiotoxicity and to improve the long-term outcome of antineoplastic treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2317
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020


  • Antioxidant
  • Cardiotoxicity
  • Chemopreventive agents
  • Doxorubicin
  • H9c2 cells
  • ROS
  • Vanillin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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