Indeno[1,2-c]isoquinolines as enhancing agents on all-trans retinoic acid-mediated differentiation of human myeloid leukemia cells

Seung Hyun Kim, Sang Mi Oh, Ju Han Song, Daeho Cho, Quynh Manh Le, Suh Hee Lee, Won Jea Cho, Tae Sung Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Induction of differentiation is a new and promising approach to cancer therapy, well illustrated by the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia with all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). Using combination of ATRA and chemotherapy, adverse effects such as retinoic acid syndrome have decreased, and long-term survival has improved. In this study, we demonstrated that the indeno[1,2-c]isoquinolines markedly enhanced differentiation of human myeloid leukemia HL-60 and NB4 cells when simultaneously combined with a low dose of ATRA. Of the tested compounds, 6-(4-methoxybenzyl)-2,11-dimethyl-6H,11H-indeno[1,2-c]isoquinolin-5-one (IIQ-16), an indeno[1,2-c]isoquinoline derivative, showed the highest differentiation-enhancing activity via a pathway involved with protein kinase C, extracellular signal-regulated kinase, and c-Jun N-terminal kinase. The ability to enhance the differentiation potential of ATRA by IIQ-16 may improve outcomes in the therapy of acute promyelocytic leukemia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1125-1132
Number of pages8
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Feb 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by grants from the Korea Health 21 R&D Project, Ministry of Health and Welfare (01-PJ10-PG6-01GN16-0005) and the Seoul Research and Business Program (10582) to T.S. Kim, and a grant from the Korea Research Foundation (KRF-2004-C00325) to W.-J. Cho.


  • All-trans retinoic acid
  • Differentiation
  • Indenoisoquinoline
  • Leukemia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


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