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Bifunctional ruthenium(ii) polypyridyl complexes of curcumin as potential anticancer agents

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Abstract

Ru(II)-polypyridyl complexes have been widely studied and well established for their antitumor properties. Modifications of the coordination environment around the Ru atom through a proper choice of the ligand can lead to different modes of action and result in greatly improved anticancer efficacy. Herein, two Ru(II)-polypyridyl complexes of curcumin were synthesized and characterized as potential anticancer agents. In vitro tests indicated that complexes 1 and 2 displayed excellent antiproliferative activity against the tested cancer cell lines, especially complex 2, which exhibited superior cytotoxicity compared to curcumin and cisplatin. Further biological evaluations demonstrated that complexes 1 and 2 can cause cell apoptosis via DNA interaction and MEK/ERK signaling pathway, which is the first example of a Ru(II)-polypyridyl complex inhibiting the MEK/ERK signaling pathway and DNA intercalation. Overall, this work suggests that coordination with bioactive agents may endow Ru(II)-polypyridyl complexes with improved pharmaceutical properties and synergistic effects for cancer therapy.

Graphical abstract: Bifunctional ruthenium(ii) polypyridyl complexes of curcumin as potential anticancer agents

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
19 Mar 2020
Accepted
18 Jun 2020
First published
18 Jun 2020

Dalton Trans., 2020, Advance Article
Article type
Paper

Bifunctional ruthenium(II) polypyridyl complexes of curcumin as potential anticancer agents

S. Li, G. Xu, Y. Zhu, J. Zhao and S. Gou, Dalton Trans., 2020, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/D0DT01040E

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