Resveratrol confers resistance against taxol via induction of cell cycle arrest in human cancer cell lines

Mol Nutr Food Res. 2010 Nov;54(11):1574-84. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.200900392.


Resveratrol, which is highly concentrated in the skin of grapes and is abundant in red wine, has been demonstrated to account for several beneficial properties, including antioxidant, anticoagulant, anti-inflammatory and anticancer effects. Taxol is a microtubule-stabilizing drug that has been extensively used as effective chemotherapeutic agents in the treatment of solid tumors. Here, we investigated whether the combination of the two compounds would yield increased antitumor efficacy in human cancer cells. Unexpectedly, resveratrol effectively prevented tumor cell death induced by taxol in 5637 bladder cancer cells. This pronounced antagonistic function of resveratrol against taxol was associated with changes in multiple signal transduction pathways, but not with tubulin polymerization. Importantly, cell cycle analysis showed that resveratrol prevented the cells from entering into mitosis, the phase in which taxol exerts its action. Furthermore, resveratrol blocked the cytotoxic effects of vinblastine but not cisplatin in 5637 cells. Interestingly, resveratrol pre-treatment followed by taxol resulted in synergistic cytotoxicity. Finally, we extended our studies to various human cancer cell lines. Taken together, our results indicate that resveratrol may have the potential to negate the therapeutic efficacy of taxol and suggest that consumption of resveratrol-related products may be contraindicated during cancer therapy with taxol.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / pharmacology*
  • Apoptosis*
  • Cell Cycle / drug effects*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cisplatin / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Mitosis / drug effects
  • Paclitaxel / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Polymerization
  • Resveratrol
  • Signal Transduction
  • Stilbenes / pharmacology*
  • Vinblastine / antagonists & inhibitors


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Stilbenes
  • Vinblastine
  • Paclitaxel
  • Cisplatin
  • Resveratrol