The current mechanistic study was conducted to explore the effects of increased lipophilicity of binuclear silver(I)-NHC complexes on cytotoxicity. Two new silver(I)-N-Heterocyclic Carbene (NHC) complexes (3 and 4), having lypophilic terminal alkyl chains (Octyl and Decyl), were derived from meta-xylyl linked bis-benzimidazolium salts (1 and 2). Each of the synthesized compounds was characterized by microanalysis and spectroscopic techniques. The complexes were tested for their cytotoxicity against a panel of human cancer c as well normal cell lines using MTT assay. Based on MTT assay results, complex 4 was found to be selectively toxic towards human colorectal carcinoma cell line (HCT 116). Complex 4 was further studied in detail to explore the mechanism of cell death and findings of the study revealed that complex 4 has promising pro-apoptotic and anti-metastatic activities against HCT 116 cells. Furthermore, it showed pronounced cytostatic effects in HCT 116 multicellular spheroid model. Hence, binuclear silver(I)-NHC complexes with longer terminal aliphatic chains have worth to be further studied against human colon cancer for the purpose of drug development.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.