Antroquinonol Targets FAK-Signaling Pathway Suppressed Cell Migration, Invasion, and Tumor Growth of C6 Glioma

PLoS One. 2015 Oct 30;10(10):e0141285. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0141285. eCollection 2015.


Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) is a non-receptor protein tyrosine that is overexpressed in many types of tumors and plays a pivotal role in multiple cell signaling pathways involved in cell survival, migration, and proliferation. This study attempts to determine the effect of synthesized antroquinonol on the modulation of FAK signaling pathways and explore their underlying mechanisms. Antroquinonol significantly inhibits cell viability with an MTT assay in both N18 neuroblastoma and C6 glioma cell lines, which exhibits sub G1 phase cell cycle, and further induction of apoptosis is confirmed by a TUNEL assay. Antroquinonol decreases anti-apoptotic proteins, whereas it increases p53 and pro-apoptotic proteins. Alterations of cell morphology are observed after treatment by atomic force microscopy. Molecular docking results reveal that antroquinonol has an H-bond with the Arg 86 residue of FAK. The protein levels of Src, pSrc, FAK, pFAK, Rac1, and cdc42 are decreased after antroquinonol treatment. Additionally, antroquinonol also regulates the expression of epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) proteins. Furthermore, antroquinonol suppresses the C6 glioma growth in xenograft studies. Together, these results suggest that antroquinonol is a potential anti-tumorigenesis and anti-metastasis inhibitor of FAK.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Antineoplastic Agents / chemistry
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Movement / drug effects
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Focal Adhesion Kinase 1 / metabolism*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic / drug effects
  • Glioma / drug therapy*
  • Glioma / enzymology
  • Mice
  • Molecular Docking Simulation
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Rats
  • Signal Transduction / drug effects*
  • Ubiquinone / administration & dosage
  • Ubiquinone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Ubiquinone / chemistry
  • Ubiquinone / pharmacology
  • Xenograft Model Antitumor Assays


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Ubiquinone
  • antroquinonol
  • Focal Adhesion Kinase 1

Associated data

  • figshare/10.6084/M9.FIGSHARE.1507154

Grant support

The authors received no specific funding for this work.