Bufadienolides from the Eggs of the Toad Bufo bufo gargarizans and Their Antimelanoma Activities

Shi Wen Zhou, Jing Yu Quan, Zi Wei Li, Ge Ye, Zhuo Shang, Ze Ping Chen, Lei Wang, Xin Yuan Li, Xiao Qi Zhang, Jie Li, Jun Shan Liu, Hai Yan Tian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Toads produce potent toxins, named bufadienolides, to defend against their predators. Pharmacological research has revealed that bufadienolides are potential anticancer drugs. In this research, we reported nine bufadienolides from the eggs of the toad Bufo bufo gargarizans, including two new compounds (1 and 3). The chemical structures of 1 and 3, as well as of one previously reported semisynthesized compound (2), were elucidated on the basis of extensive spectroscopic data interpretation, chemical methods, and X-ray diffraction analysis. Compound 1 is an unusual 19-norbufadienolide with rearranged A/B rings. A biological test revealed that compounds 2 and 4-8 showed potent cytotoxic activities toward human melanoma cell line SK-MEL-1 with IC50 values less than 1.0 μM. A preliminary mechanism investigation revealed that the most potent compound, 8, could induce apoptosis via PARP cleavage, while 5 and 6 significantly suppressed angiogenesis in zebrafish. Furthermore, an in vivo biological study showed that 5, 6, and 8 inhibit SK-MEL-1 cell growth significantly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1425-1433
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Natural Products
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 28 May 2021
Externally publishedYes


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