Oncotarget . 2015 6(15):13049-59. (IF:6.359).

Wedelolactone disrupts the interaction of EZH2-EED complex and inhibits PRC2-dependent cancer

Huiming Chen  1   2 Shijuan Gao  1 Jiandong Li  1 Dong Liu  1 Chunjie Sheng  1 Chen Yao  1   2 Wei Jiang  1 Jiaoxiang Wu  1   2 Shuai Chen  1   3 Wenlin Huang  1   3   4

  • 1 CAS Key Laboratory of Pathogenic Microbiology and Immunology, Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China.
  • 2 School of Life Sciences, Anhui University, Hefei 230039, China.
  • 3 Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Guangzhou 510060, China.
  • 4 The Key Laboratory of Tumor Targeted Medicine in Guangdong Province, Guangzhou Double Bio-product Inc., Guangzhou 510663, China.


Polycomb repressive complex 2 (PRC2), which is responsible for the trimethylation of H3K27 (H3K27me3), plays a part in tumorigenesis, development and/or maintenance of adult tissue specificity. The pivotal role of PRC2 in cancer makes it a therapeutic target for epigenetic cancer therapy. However, natural compounds targeting the enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2) – embryonic ectoderm development (EED) interaction to disable PRC2 complex are scarcely reported. Here, we reported the screening and identification of natural compounds which could disrupt the EZH2-EED interaction. One of these compounds, wedelolactone, binds to EED with a high affinity (KD = 2.82 μM), blocks the EZH2-EED interaction in vitro, induces the degradation of PRC2 core components and modulates the expression of detected PRC2 downstream targets and cancer-related genes. Furthermore, some PRC2-dependent cancer cells undergone growth arrest upon treatment with wedelolactone. Thus, wedelolactone and its derivatives which target the EZH2-EED interaction could be candidates for the treatment of PRC2-dependent cancer.

Keywords: apoptosis; cell cycle; cell migration; epigenetic cancer therapy; surface plasmon resonance.