In this study, we examined the cytotoxic effects of seven ent-labdane derivatives 1-7 (0-100 μM) in different human cancer cell lines. Our results showed that compounds 1-3 exhibited significant dose-dependent inhibition on the growth of the three different human cell lines, according to the sulphorhodamine B assay and produced morphological changes consistent with apoptosis, as confirmed by Hoestch 3342 staining analysis. They induced apoptosis in various cancer cell lines, as shown by nuclear condensation and fragmentation and caspase 3 activation. Such induction was associated with the depletion of mitochondrial membrane potential. These activities led to the cleavage of caspases and the trigger of cell death process. Overall, the compounds showed potent proapoptotic effects on the two different cancer cell lines, suggesting that the compounds deserve more extensive investigation of their potential medicinal applications.
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