Baicalein suppresses non small cell lung cancer cell proliferation, invasion and Notch signaling pathway

Cancer Biomark. 2018;22(1):13-18. doi: 10.3233/CBM-170673.


Background: Baicalein is an important Chinese herbal medicine and has multiple pharmacological activities. However, the biological mechanisms of the anti-tumor effects of Baicalein on non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) still need to be understood.

Methods: Human NSCLC A549 and H1299 cells were pretreated with Baicalein or DMSO. Cells viability and transwell cell invasion assays were performed to assess cell proliferation and invasion. QRT-PCR assay was used to analyze mRNA expression levels of Twist1, E-cadhertin, Vimentin, Notch1 and hes-1. Western blot analysis was also performed to determine protein expression.

Results: In the study, we found that Baicalein had a significantly inhibited effect on proliferation ability of A549 and H1299 cells. Cells treated with Baicalein showed a down-regulated expression of CyclinD1 and CDK1 in A549 and H1299 cells. Furthermore, we found that Baicalein significantly inhibited cell invasion and Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition (EMT) by up-regulating the mRNA and protein expression of E-cadherin and down-regulated the Twist1 and Vimentin expression, Moreover, Treatment of Baicalein down-regulated Notch1 and hes-1 expression in A549 and H1299 cells, which indicated that Baicalein could suppress the Notch signaling pathway.

Conclusion: Our studies suggest that Baicalein may be a potential phytochemical flavonoid for therapeutics of NSCLC and serve as a molecular target for NSCLC.

Keywords: Baicalein; cell proliferation; epithelial-mesenchymal transition; non small cell lung cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung / drug therapy*
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung / pathology
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / pharmacology
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / therapeutic use*
  • Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition / genetics*
  • Flavanones / pharmacology
  • Flavanones / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Receptor, Notch1 / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction


  • Antioxidants
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • Flavanones
  • Receptor, Notch1
  • baicalein