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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Selective enhancement by menadiol of in vitro drug activity in human lymphatic neoplasms.

The effect of menadiol (vitamin K3) on fresh specimens of human lymphatic neoplasms (HLN) was tested by means of the differential staining cytotoxicity assay. Menadiol was tested alone and in combination with standard antineoplastic agents. Drug effects were then compared with the effects of the same drugs in normal human lymphocytes and in fresh specimens of human non-small cell lung cancer. By itself, menadiol was moderately toxic to HLN, but not to normal lymphocytes or non-small cell lung cancer. Menadiol, menadione, and two structurally related congeners were equitoxic to HLN cells, but sodium metabisulfite (present in menadiol solutions as a preservative) was nontoxic. Menadiol increased the cytotoxic effects of a number of standard agents in HLN but not in normal lymphocytes. Cell survival times with mechlorethamine, vincristine, and dexamethasone were converted from a range characteristic of drug resistance (ie, range observed in relapsed patients) to a range characteristic of drug sensitivity (ie, range observed in untreated patients) in the presence of menadiol. These effects occurred at a concentration (2.0 micrograms/ml; 4.7 microM) of menadiol which is probably clinically achievable and which did not deplete intracellular glutathione. Menadiol should receive clinical testing as a chemosensitizing agent in HLN.[1]


  1. Selective enhancement by menadiol of in vitro drug activity in human lymphatic neoplasms. Su, Y.Z., Duarte, T.E., Dill, P.L., Weisenthal, L.M. Cancer treatment reports. (1987) [Pubmed]
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