Fufang Kushen injection inhibits sarcoma growth and tumor-induced hyperalgesia via TRPV1 signaling pathways

Cancer Lett. 2014 Dec 28;355(2):232-41. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2014.08.037. Epub 2014 Sep 19.


Cancer pain is a deleterious consequence of tumor growth and related inflammation. Opioids and anti-inflammatory drugs provide first line treatment for cancer pain, but both are limited by side effects. Fufang Kushen injection (FKI) is GMP produced, traditional Chinese medicine used alone or with chemotherapy to reduce cancer-associated pain. FKI limited mouse sarcoma growth both in vivo and in vitro, in part, by reducing the phosphorylation of ERK and AKT kinases and BAD. FKI inhibited TRPV1 mediated capsaicin-induced ERK phosphorylation and reduced tumor-induced proinflammatory cytokine production. Thus, FKI limited cancer pain both directly by blocking TRPV1 signaling and indirectly by reducing tumor growth.

Keywords: ERK; Fufang Kushen injection; Hyperalgesia; Sarcoma; TRPV1.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Capsaicin / metabolism
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Hyperalgesia / drug therapy*
  • Hyperalgesia / metabolism
  • MAP Kinase Signaling System / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Phosphorylation / drug effects
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt / metabolism
  • Sarcoma / complications*
  • Sarcoma / drug therapy*
  • Sarcoma / enzymology
  • Sarcoma / metabolism
  • TRPV Cation Channels / metabolism*


  • Cytokines
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • TRPV Cation Channels
  • TRPV1 protein, mouse
  • fufangkushen
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt
  • Capsaicin