Combined Treatment of Nitrated [6,6,6]Tricycles Derivative (SK2)/Ultraviolet C Highly Inhibits Proliferation in Oral Cancer Cells In Vitro

Sheng Chieh Wang, Ching Yu Yen, Jun Ping Shiau, Meng Yang Chang, Ming Feng Hou, Jen Yang Tang, Hsueh Wei Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Combined treatment is an effective strategy to improve anticancer therapy, but severe side effects frequently limit this application. Drugs inhibiting the proliferation of cancer cells, but not normal cells, display preferential antiproliferation to cancer cells. It shows the benefits of avoiding side effects and enhancing antiproliferation for combined treatment. Nitrated [6,6,6]tricycles derivative (SK2), a novel chemical exhibiting benzo-fused dioxabicyclo[3.3.1]nonane core with an n-butyloxy substituent, exhibiting preferential antiproliferation, was chosen to evaluate its potential antioral cancer effect in vitro by combining it with ultraviolet C (UVC) irradiation. Combination treatment (UVC/SK2) caused lower viability in oral cancer cells (Ca9-22 and OC-2) than single treatment (20 J/m2 UVC or 10 µg/mL SK2), i.e., 42.3%/41.1% vs. 81.6%/69.2%, and 89.5%/79.6%, respectively. In contrast, it showed a minor effect on cell viability of normal oral cells (HGF-1), ranging from 82.2 to 90.6%. Moreover, UVC/SK2 caused higher oxidative stress in oral cancer cells than normal cells through the examination of reactive oxygen species, mitochondrial superoxide, and mitochondrial membrane potential. UVC/SK2 also caused subG1 increment associated with apoptosis detections by assessing annexin V; panaspase; and caspases 3, 8, and 9. The antiproliferation and oxidative stress were reverted by N-acetylcysteine, validating the involvement of oxidative stress in antioral cancer cells. UVC/SK2 also caused DNA damage by detecting γH2AX and 8-hydroxy-2-deoxyguanosine in oral cancer cells. In conclusion, SK2 is an effective enhancer for improving the UVC-caused antipro-liferation against oral cancer cells in vitro. UVC/SK2 demonstrated a preferential and synergistic antiproliferation ability towards oral cancer cells with little adverse effects on normal cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1196
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2022


  • apoptosis
  • dioxabicyclo[3.3.1]nonane core
  • DNA damage
  • oral cancer
  • synergy
  • ultraviolet C

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology


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