Oleanolic acid potentiates the antitumor activity of 5-fluorouracil in pancreatic cancer cells

Jianteng Wei, Haizhou Liu, Ming Liu, Ning Wu, Jin Zhao, Lin Xiao, Lijun Han, Edward Chu, Xiukun Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


The antitumor activity of oleanolic (OA) has attracted attention due to its marked antitumor effects and pharmacological safety. In the present study, the effects of the combination of OA and 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) on Panc-28 human pancreatic cells were studied. The results showed that combined use of OA and 5-FU synergistically potentiated cell death effects on Panc-28 cells, and the pro-apoptotic effects were also increased. Further study revealed that the combined treatment could enhance mitochondrial depolarization, lysosomal membrane permeabilization (LMP) and leakage of cathepin D, while the release of cytochrome C did not display significant changes. The expression of apoptosis related proteins was also affected in cells treated with the combination of OA and 5-FU, including activation of caspases-3 and the expression of Bcl-2/Bax, survivin and NF-κB. Our results provide evidence that combination of OA and 5-FU may serve as a novel strategy for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1339-1345
Number of pages7
JournalOncology reports
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • 5-fluorouracil
  • Apoptosis
  • Oleanolic acid
  • Pancreatic cancer cells
  • Synergism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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