Network pharmacology uncovers anti-cancer activity of vibsane-type diterpenes from Viburnum odoratissimum

Vibsane-type diterpenes, the characteristic compounds of Viburnum odoratissimum, exhibited significant cytotoxicity in many cancer cells. To search for the potential target of vibsane-type diterpenes on lung cancer, we combined methods of network pharmacology prediction and experimental verification. 80 active ingredients, 23 potential targets and 39 related pathways were analyzed through constructing the compound-target network and target-pathway network, and the potential target (EGFR) and key pathway (PI3K/Akt) were identified. Vibsanol C, an isolated vibsane-type diterpene with excellent cytotoxicity against lung cancer cells was chosen for further confirmation. Molecular docking study and drug affinity responsive target stability (DARTS) approach further indicated that EGFR is a direct target of Vibsanol C. Moreover, mechanistic studies revealed Vibsanol C might affect PI3K/Akt pathway by Western blot analysis. In conclusion, this study successfully predicted and confirmed the potential target of Vibsane-type diterpenes on lung cancer.