tanshinone Â or tanshinone IIA
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Tanshinone IIA (TSN) is a monomer extracted from the Chinese herb Danshen. In this study, we examined the effect of Tanshinone IIA on adriamycin (ADR) -induced apoptosis in neonatal rat cardiomyocytes and underlying molecular mechanisms. Primary cultured cardiomyocytes were treated with 1 micromol/L of adriamycin for 24 h with or without pretreatment with Tanshinone IIA (0.5-2 micromol/L) for 2 h. 3-(4,5-dimethyl thiazol-2yl) -2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay, Hoechst staining, and flow cytometry measurement were used to assess cell viability and apoptosis. Fluorescent probes 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein diacetate and dihydroethidium were used to detect the production of reactive oxygen species. Western blotting was used to evaluate the expression of Bcl-2 and Bax proteins. Adriamycin significantly induced apoptosis in cardiomyocytes. Tanshinone IIA (0.5-2 micromol/L) ameliorated apoptosis induced by adriamycin in a dose-dependent manner. Tanshinone IIA (2 micromol/L) markedly attenuated adriamycin-induced reactive oxygen species production. Western blotting revealed that Tanshinone IIA prevented the adriamycin-mediated reduction of the ratio of Bcl-2/Bax. In conclusion, Tanshinone IIA significantly inhibits adriamycin-induced cardiomyocyte apoptosis in a dose-dependent manner, and this effect is at least partly caused by its antioxidant properties.