Mechanisms of Panax ginseng in preventing rat pheochromocytoma cells from apoptosis

Yun Lian Lin, Chuen Lin Huang, Yi Chao Lee, Wei Chen Liao, Wen Lin Lai, Yen Ju Lin, Nai Kuei Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Aims of the study: Although ginseng root possesses dominant central therapeutic effects and has recently undergone investigations for treating different neuronal diseases, most of its mechanisms are still unknown. Therefore, the neuroprotective mechanisms of ginseng were studied. Materials and methods: The protection afforded by different methanol extracts of Panax ginseng (PG) was tested in a serum deprivation-induced apoptotic model using neuronal-like pheochromocytoma (PC12) cells. An MTT assay, annexin V-FITC staining, and Western blots were, respectively, applied to identify the viability of cells, the apoptotic form of cell death, and the activity of antiapoptotic signaling. Results: The known antiapoptotic PI3-K/Akt and MEK/ERK pathways in this system were ruled out due to failure of LY 294002 and PD 98059 to block the protection by PG. A protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor was found to block the protection by PG and PG-induced CREB phosphorylation, suggesting that the PKA/CREB pathway mediates the protective effect of PG. Downregulation of classical and novel PKCs failed to block the protection by PG, while an atypical PKC inhibitor blocked protection by PG. Conclusions: PKA and atypical PKC are important for the protection afforded by PG in preventing serum deprivation-induced PC12 cell apoptosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-15
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Ethnopharmacology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Aug 17 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Apoptosis
  • Atypical PKC
  • Panax ginseng
  • Pheochromocytoma cells
  • PKA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery


Dive into the research topics of 'Mechanisms of Panax ginseng in preventing rat pheochromocytoma cells from apoptosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this