Yonsei Med J.  1994 Mar;35(1):62-71. 10.3349/ymj.1994.35.1.62.

The mechanism of antiproliferative effect of desferrioxamine on human hepatoma cell lines

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Ewha Womans University Medical College, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Internal Medicine, Clinical Pathology, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


We investigated the effect of desferrioxamine (DFO), an iron chelator, on the DNA synthesis and the cell cycle of cultured hepatoma cells. Using Hep 3B cells as the hepatoma cell lines, DNA synthesis was measured by [3H] thymidine incorporation, and the cell cycle analysis was performed by flow cytometry including bivariate DNA/BrdU analysis. [3H] thymidine uptake was decreased by DFO in a dose dependent manner. The proportion of S phase cells increased and that of G0/G1 phase cells decreased after the addition of DFO in the culture media in a dose dependent manner up to 20 micrograms/ml of DFO. The S phase duration of the exponentially proliferating Hep 3B cells was 9.9 hours when cultured without DFO, but it was markedly prolonged (54.1 hours) after the addition of 20 micrograms/ml of DFO. After removal of DFO from the culture media following 24 hours of incubation with 20 micrograms/ml of DFO, a sequential increase from early through mid and late-S to G2/M phase was observed. In conclusion, the antiproliferative effect of DFO on cultured human hepatoma cell lines was caused by the inhibition of DNA synthesis which was related to a block in the early-mid S interface or mid S phase of the cell cycle.


Hepatoma cell lines; desferrioxamine; cell cycle

MeSH Terms

Bromodeoxyuridine/diagnostic use
Carcinoma, Hepatocellular/*pathology
Cell Cycle/drug effects
Cell Division/drug effects
Flow Cytometry
Liver Neoplasms/*pathology
Tumor Cells, Cultured/drug effects
Full Text Links
  • YMJ
export Copy
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
Similar articles
Copyright © 2023 by Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors. All rights reserved.     E-mail: koreamed@kamje.or.kr