Simvastatin potently induces calcium-dependent apoptosis of human leiomyoma cells

Mostafa Borahay, Gokhan S. Kilic, Chrasekha Yallampalli, Russell Snyder, Gary Hankins, Ayman Al-Hendy, Darren Boehning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


Statins are drugs commonly used for the treatment of high plasma cholesterol levels. Beyond these well known lipid-lowering properties, they possess broad-reaching effects in vivo, including antitumor effects. Statins inhibit the growth of multiple tumors. However, the mechanisms remain incompletely understood. Here we show that simvastatin inhibits the proliferation of human leiomyoma cells. This was associated with decreased mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling and multiple changes in cell cycle progression. Simvastatin potently stimulated leiomyoma cell apoptosis in a manner mechanistically dependent upon apoptotic calcium release from voltagegated calcium channels. Therefore, simvastatin possesses antitumor effects that are dependent upon the apoptotic calcium release machinery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35075-35086
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number51
StatePublished - Dec 19 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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