CIL-102 (1-[4-(furo[2,3-b]quinolin-4-ylamino)phenyl]ethanone), the major active agent of the alkaloid derivative, has been demonstrated to exert anticancer effects. Herein, we present an investigation focused on the identification of the target(s) of CIL-102's action and the mechanism of its action in apoptotic and anti-invasive pathways. Proteomic approaches were used to purify and identify the protein substrates using 2D difference gel electrophoresis (2D SDS-PAGE) to assess changes in the expression of relevant protein treatment with CIL-102 that resulted in the inhibition of viability and invasion. Our results demonstrate that CIL-102 treatment of U87 cells decreased cell proliferation and invasiveness. CIL-102 dose-dependent induction of apoptosis and inhibitory invasiveness were accompanied by sustained phosphorylation of JNK1/2 and p70S6K as well as generation of the reactive oxygen species. In addition, differential proteins displayed between CIL-102-treated and untreated U87 were determined and validated. There were 11 differentially expressed proteins between the CIL-102-treated and untreated groups. Furthermore, we demonstrated that CIL-102 inhibited cancer cell proliferation and reduced anti-invasion properties by up-regulating the levels of FUMH (Fumarate hydratase). The investigation demonstrated that there was an increase in the cellular levels of FUMH in the CIL-102 reduction in viability and invasion via the activation of JNK1/2 and mTOR signaling modules. NAC administration and shRNA FUMH conferred resistance to CIL-102-inhibited HIF1α and MMP-2 levels via inhibition of JNK1/2 and mTOR activation. We concluded that CIL-102-induced an apoptosis cascade and decreased aggressiveness in astrocytoma cells by modulation of mitochondria function, providing a new mechanism for CIL-102 treatment.
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