Partial protection of paclitaxel-induced neurotoxicity by antioxidants

Yaeko Hara, Hiroshi Sakagami, Haixia Shi, Tomoyuki Abe, Nobuaki Tamura, Hiroshi Takeshima, Norio Horie, Takahiro Kaneko, Hiroshi Shiratsuchi, Tadayoshi Kaneko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Background/Aim: In order to search for substances that reduce the neurotoxicity of paclitaxel, the sensitivity of differentiated rat neuronal PC12 cells to paclitaxel was compared to that of malignant and nonmalignant cells, and the extent to which four antioxidants can alleviate paclitaxel-induced neurotoxicity was investigated. Materials and Methods: Viability of cells was determined by the MTT method. Cytotoxicity was evaluated as the concentration that reduced cell viability by 50% (CC50). Tumor specificity of paclitaxel was determined as the ratio of CC50 against non-malignant cells to that against malignant cells. Results: Paclitaxel was three-fold more cytotoxic towards human oral squamous cell carcinoma cell lines (Ca9-22, HSC-2, HSC-3. HSC-4) than human normal epithelial and mesenchymal (human gingival fibroblast, human periodontal ligament fibroblast, human pulp cell) normal cells, confirming its antitumor potential. However, paclitaxel at as low a concentration as 5 ng/ml significantly reduced neurite formation in nerve growth factor-induced differentiated PC12 cells, although complete killing of cells was not achieved even at 2,000-fold higher concentration (10 μM). Paclitaxel-induced neurotoxicity was enhanced with the prolongation of incubation time and reduction of inoculation cell density. Four antioxidants, namely docosahexaenoic acid, acetyl-L-carnitine hydrochloride, N-acetyl-L-cysteine and sodium ascorbate, only partially protected PC12 cells from paclitaxel-induced toxicity. Conclusion: The present study suggests the involvement of both oxidative and other mechanisms in paclitaxel-induced neurotoxicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)745-752
Number of pages8
JournalIn vivo (Athens, Greece)
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018


  • Anticancer drug
  • Differentiation stage
  • Neurotoxicity
  • NGF
  • PC12


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