School of Medicine Publications and Presentations

Document Type


Publication Date



Aberrant regulation of β-catenin signaling is strongly linked with cancer proliferation, invasion, migration, and metastasis, thus, small molecules that can inhibit this pathway might have great clinical significance. Our molecular modeling studies suggest that ormeloxifene (ORM), a triphenylethylene molecule that docks with β-catenin, and its brominated analogue (Br-ORM) bind more effectively with relatively less energy (−7.6 kcal/mol) to the active site of β-catenin as compared to parent ORM. Herein, we report the synthesis and characterization of a Br-ORM by NMR and FTIR, as well as its anticancer activity in cervical cancer models. Br-ORM treatment effectively inhibited tumorigenic features (cell proliferation and colony-forming ability, etc.) and induced apoptotic death, as evident by pronounced PARP cleavage. Furthermore, Br-ORM treatment caused cell cycle arrest at the G1-S phase. Mechanistic investigation revealed that Br-ORM targets the key proteins involved in promoting epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT), as demonstrated by upregulation of E-cadherin and repression of N-cadherin, Vimentin, Snail, MMP-2, and MMP-9 expression. Br-ORM also represses the expression and nuclear subcellular localization of β-catenin. Consequently, Br-ORM treatment effectively inhibited tumor growth in an orthotopic cervical cancer xenograft mouse model along with EMT associated changes as compared to vehicle control-treated mice. Altogether, experimental findings suggest that Br-ORM is a novel, promising β-catenin inhibitor and therefore can be harnessed as a potent anticancer small molecule for cervical cancer treatment.


© 2023 The Authors.This publication is licensed under CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0.

Publication Title

ACS Omega



Academic Level


Mentor/PI Department

Immunology and Microbiology



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.