Protective effects of apocynin on cisplatin-induced ototoxicity in an auditory cell line and in zebrafish

June Choi, Gi Jung Im, Jiwon Chang, Sung Won Chae, Seung Hoon Lee, Soon Young Kwon, Ah Young Chung, Hae Chul Park, Hak Hyun Jung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Cisplatin is a very effective anticancer drug and generates reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as superoxide anions that can deplete antioxidant protective molecules in the cochlea. These processes result in the death of cochlear hair cells by induction of apoptosis. Apocynin, which is used as a specific nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase inhibitor, has a preventive effect for intracellular ROS generation. In this study, the effect of apocynin was investigated in a cochlear organ of Corti-derived cell line, HEI-OC1 cells, and in transgenic zebrafish (Brn3C: EGFP). To investigate the protective effects of apocynin, HEI-OC1 cells were treated with various concentrations of apocynin and a 20μm concentration of cisplatin, simultaneously. An in vivo study of transgenic zebrafish (Brn3C: EGFP) was used to investigate the protective effects of apocynin on cisplatin-induced hair cell death. In an in vitro study, apocynin appeared to protect against cisplatin-induced apoptotic features on Hoechst 33258 staining in the HEI-OC1 cells. Treatment of the HEI-OC1 cells with 100μm of apocynin, significantly decreased caspase-3 activity. Treatment of the cells with a 100μm concentration of apocynin and a 20μm concentration of cisplatin significantly decreased the intracellular ROS production. In the in vivo study, apocynin significantly decreased the TUNEL reaction and prevented cisplatin-induced hair cell loss of the neuromasts in the transgenic zebrafish at low concentrations (125 and 250μm). These findings suggest that apocynin has antioxidative effects and prevents cisplatin-induced apoptotic cell death in HEI-OC1 cells as well as in zebrafish.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-133
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Applied Toxicology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Feb


  • Apocynin
  • Cisplatin
  • HEI-OC1 cells
  • Ototoxicity
  • Zebrafish

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology


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