Metastasis contributes to the escalating mortality rate among cancer patients worldwide. The search for novel and more effective anti-metastatic agent is crucial owing to the lack of anticancer drugs that can successfully combat metastasis. Hence, this study aims to examine the effects of 2-Methoxy-1,4-Naphthoquinone (MNQ) towards the metastasis of MDA-MB-231 cells. In invasion assays, the number of cells permeating across a Matrigel barrier was found to be decreased in a dose-dependent manner upon treatment with MNQ (0-7.5 μM). In wound-healing migration assays, MNQ exhibited dose-dependent inhibition of cell migration in which significant reduction in the zone of closure was observed as compared to untreated controls. Furthermore, the proteolytic activity of a pivotal metastatic mediator, matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) was also downregulated by MNQ as determined by gelatin zymography. This study reports for the first time, the ability of MNQ to inhibit the invasion and migration characteristics of a highly metastatic MDA-MB-231 cancer cell line.
Thymoquinone (TQ), the active constituent of Nigella sativa or black cumin exhibited cytotoxic effects in several cancer cell lines. In this study, the cytotoxicity of TQ in human cervical squamous carcinoma cells (SiHa) was investigated. TQ was cytotoxic towards SiHa cells with IC50 values of 10.67 ± 0.12 and 9.33 ± 0.19 μg/mL as determined by MTT assay and trypan blue dye exclusion test, respectively, after 72 h of incubation. TQ was more cytotoxic towards SiHa cells compared to cisplatin. Interestingly, TQ was less cytotoxic towards the normal cells (3T3-L1 and Vero). Cell cycle analysis performed by flowcytometer showed a significant increase in the accumulation of TQ-treated cells at sub-G1 phase, indicating induction of apoptosis by the compound. Apoptosis induction by TQ was further confirmed by Annexin V/PI and AO/PI staining. Significant elevation of p53 and down-regulation of the anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 protein was found in the treated cells, without any changes in the expression of the pro-apoptotic Bax protein. In conclusion, thymoquinone from N. sativa was more potent than cisplatin in elimination of SiHa cells via apoptosis with down-regulation of Bcl-2 protein.
The chromosomal aberrations (CA) assay and micronucleus (MN) test were employed to investigate the effect in vitro of zerumbone (ZER) on human chromosomes. ZER is a sesquiterpene compound isolated from the rhizomes of wild ginger, Zingiber zerumbet Smith. The rhizomes of the plant are employed as a traditional medicine for some ailments and as condiments. ZER has been shown to have anti-cancer and apoptosis-inducing properties against various human tumour cells. It has also been shown to be active in vivo against a number of induced malignancies. Studies on ZER genotoxicity in cultured human peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL) have not been reported so far. Therefore, the present study was undertaken to investigate the ability of ZER to induce chromosomal aberrations and micronuclei formation in human lymphocytes in vitro. Human blood samples were obtained from four healthy, non-smoking males aged 25-35years. Cultures were exposed to the drug for 48h at four final concentrations: 10, 20, 40 and 80 microM. Mitomycin C (MMC) was used as a positive control. The results of chromosomal aberrations assay showed that ZER was not clastogenic, when compared to untreated control, meanwhile MN test results showed a dose-dependent increase in MN formation. The overall clastogenic effect of ZER on human PBL was statistically not significant. In conclusion, ZER is a cytotoxic but not a clastogenic substance in human PBL.
Biopolymer chitosan (beta-1,4-d-glucosamine) comprises the copolymer mixture of N-acetylglucosamine and glucosamine. The natural biocompatibility and biodegradability of chitosan have recently highlighted its potential use for applications in wound management. Chemical and physical modifications of chitosan influence its biocompatibility and biodegradability, but it is unknown as to what degree. Hence, the biocompatibility of the chitosan porous skin regenerating templates (PSRT 82, 87 and 108) was determined using an in vitro toxicology model at the cellular and molecular level on primary normal human epidermal keratinocytes (pNHEK). Cytocompatibility was accessed by using a 3-[4,5-dimethyl-2-thiazolyl]-2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay from 24 to 72h. To assess the genotoxicity of the PSRTs, DNA damage to the pNHEK was evaluated by using the Comet assay following direct contact with the various PSRTs. Furthermore, the skin pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-alpha and IL-8 were examined to evaluate the tendency of the PSRTs to provoke inflammatory responses. All PSRTs were found to be cytocompatible, but only PSRT 108 was capable of stimulating cell proliferation. While all of the PSRTs showed some DNA damage, PSRT 108 showed the least DNA damage followed by PSRT 87 and 82. PSRT 87 and 82 induced a higher secretion of TNF-alpha and IL-8 in the pNHEK cultures than did PSRT 108. Hence, based on our experiments, PSRT 108 is the most biocompatible wound dressing of the three tested.
The aim of this study was to determine the genotoxicity of a locally produced dental porcelain (Universiti Sains Malaysia, Malaysia) using the Ames and Comet assays. In the Ames assay, four genotypic variants of the Salmonella strains (TA98, TA100, TA1537 and TA1535) carrying mutations in several genes were used. The dental porcelain was incubated with these four strains in five different doses both in the presence and absence of metabolic activation (S9) and the result was assessed based on the number of revertant colonies. Concurrently, appropriate positive controls were used so as to validate the test. The average number of revertant colonies per plate treated with locally produced dental porcelain was less than double as compared to that of negative control. In the Comet assay, L929 (CCL-1 ATCC, USA) mouse fibroblast cells were treated with the dental porcelain in three different concentrations along with concurrent negative and positive controls. The tail moment which was used as a measurement of DNA damage was almost equal to that of the negative control, suggesting that the locally produced dental porcelain did not induce any DNA damage. The results indicated that the locally produced dental porcelain is non-genotoxic under the present test conditions.
The aims of this study are to determine the mutagenicity of a locally produced polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) using Salmonella mutagenicity test and to find out if PHB altered the expression of p53 and c-myc proto-oncogenes and bcl-xl and bcl-xs anti-apoptotic genes in the human fibroblast cell line, MRC-5. Different concentrations of PHB were incubated with special genotypic variants of Salmonella strains (TA1535, TA1537, TA1538, TA98 and TA100) carrying mutations in several genes both with and without metabolic activation (S9) and the test was assessed based on the number of revertant colonies. The average number of revertant colonies per plate treated with PHB was less than double as compared to that of negative control. For the gene expression analyses, fibroblast cell lines were treated with PHB at different concentrations and incubated for 1, 12, 24 and 48 h separately. The total RNA was isolated and analysed for the expression of p53, c-myc, bcl-xl and bcl-xs genes. The PHB did not show over or under expression of the genes studied. The above tests indicate that the locally produced PHB is non-genotoxic and does not alter the expression of the proto-oncogenes and anti-apoptotic genes considered in this study.
CYP450 enzymes are key determinants in drug toxicities, reduced pharmacological effect and adverse drug reactions. Mitragynine, an euphoric compound was evaluated for its effects on the expression of mRNAs encoding CYP1A2, CYP2D6 and CYP3A4 and protein expression and resultant enzymatic activity. The mRNA and protein expression of CYP450 isoforms were carried out using an optimized multiplex qRT-PCR assay and Western blot analysis. CYP1A2 and CYP3A4 enzyme activities were evaluated using P450-Glo™ assays. The effects of mitragynine on human CYP3A4 protein expression were determined using an optimized hCYP3A4-HepG2 cell-based assay. An in silico computational method to predict the binding conformation of mitragynine to the active site of the CYP3A4 enzyme was performed and further validated using in vitro CYP3A4 inhibition assays. Mitragynine was found to induce mRNA and protein expression of CYP1A2. For the highest concentration of 25 μM, induction of mRNA was approximately 70% that of the positive control and was consistent with the increased CYP1A2 enzymatic activity. Thus, mitragynine is a significant in vitro CYP1A2 inducer. However, it appeared to be a weak CYP3A4 inducer at the transcriptional level and a weak CYP3A4 enzyme inhibitor. It is therefore, unlikely to have any significant clinical effects on CYP3A4 activity.
Styryl-lactones such as goniothalamin represent a new class of compounds with potential anti-cancer properties. In this study, we investigated the mechanisms of goniothalamin (GTN), a plant styryl-lactone induced apoptosis in human promyelocytic leukemia HL-60 cells. This plant extract resulted in apoptosis in HL-60 cells as assessed by the externalisation of phosphatidylserine. Using the mitochondrial membrane dye (DIOC(6)) in conjunction with flow cytometry, we found that GTN treated HL-60 cells demonstrated a loss of mitochondrial transmembrane potential (Deltapsi(m)). Further immunoblotting on these cells showed activation of initiator caspase-9 and the executioner caspases-3 and -7. Pretreatment with the pharmacological caspase inhibitor, benzyloxycarbonyl-Val-Ala-Asp fluoromethyl ketone (Z-VAD.FMK) abrogated apoptosis as assessed by all of the apoptotic features in this study. In summary, our results demonstrate that goniothalamin-induced apoptosis occurs via the mitochondrial pathway in a caspase dependent manner.
Application of silver nanoparticles serves as a new approach in cancer treatment due to its unique features. Biosynthesis of silver nanoparticles using plant is advantageous since they are easily accessible, nontoxic and produce quicker reaction compared to other methods. To evaluate the cytotoxicity, mechanism of cell death and DNA damage of biosynthesized Catharanthus roseus-silver nanoparticles on human liver cancer (HepG2) cells. The antiproliferative activity of Catharanthus roseus‑silver nanoparticles was measured using MTT assay. The cytotoxic effects were further evaluated by measuring nitric oxide and reactive oxygen species (ROS). The mechanism of cell death was determined by annexin-FITC/propidium iodide, mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) and cell cycle assays. The assessment of DNA damage was evaluated using Comet assay method. The uptake of the nanoparticles were evaluated by Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM). Catharanthus roseus‑silver nanoparticles has inhibited the proliferation of HepG2 cells in a time-dependent manner with a median IC50 value of 3.871 ± 0.18 μg/mL. The concentration of nitrite and ROS were significantly higher than control. The cell death was due to apoptosis associated with MMP loss, cell cycle arrest, and extensive DNA damage. TEM analysis indicated the presence of free nanoparticles and endosomes containing the nanoparticles. The findings show that Catharanthus roseus‑silver nanoparticles have produced cytotoxic effects on HepG2 cells and thus may have a potential to be used as an anticancer treatment, particularly for hepatocellular carcinoma.
Airway inflammation and infections are the primary causes of damage in the airway epithelium, that lead to hypersecretion of mucus and airway hyper-responsiveness. The role of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and their components in the pathophysiological mechanisms of airway inflammation have been well-studied and emphasized for the past several decades. Rutin, a potent bioflavonoid, is well-known for its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, especially in bronchial inflammation. However, poor solubility and rapid metabolism have led to its low bioavailability in biological systems, and hence limit its application. The present study aims to investigate the beneficial effects of rutin-loaded liquid crystalline nanoparticles (LCNs) against lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced oxidative damage in human bronchial epithelial cell line (BEAS-2-B) cells in vitro. LPS was used to stimulate BEAS-2-B cells, causing the generation of nitric oxide (NO) and other reactive oxygen species (ROS) that had led to cellular apoptosis. The levels of NO and ROS were detected by, Griess reagent kit and dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate (DCFH-DA) respectively, whereas, cell apoptosis was studied by Annexin V-FITC and PI staining. The findings revealed that rutin-loaded LCNs significantly reduced NO, ROS levels and prevented apoptosis in BEAS-2B cells. The observations and findings provide a mechanistic understanding of the effectiveness of rutin-loaded LCNs in protecting the bronchial cells against airway inflammation, thus possessing a promising therapeutic option for the management of airway diseases.
Despite of reports on hematotoxic and leukemogenic evidences related to benzene exposure, the mechanism of benzene toxicity affecting the hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) fate remains unclear. This study aims to elucidate the benzene's effect on the lineages-committed progenitors and genes-regulating self-renewal and differentiation of HSPCs. Isolated mouse bone marrow (BM) cells were exposed to the benzene metabolite, 1,4-benzoquinone (1,4-BQ) at 1.25, 2.5, and 5μM for 24h. The clonogenic potency of erythroid, myeloid, and Pre-B lymphoid progenitors was evaluated through colony-forming-cell assay. Quantitative real time-PCR was used to analyze the self-renewal (Bmi-1, HoxB4, and Wnt3) and differentiation (GATA1, GATA2, and GATA3)-related genes' expression levels. 1,4-BQ exposure significantly lowered the clonogenicity of the myeloid progenitor at 1.25 and 2.5μM (p<0.05), but affected neither the erythroid nor Pre-B lymphoid progenitors. Furthermore, significant upregulation of HoxB4 expression level was observed at all concentrations. GATA3 and Bmi-1 expressions were also significant upregulated at 2.5 and 5μM 1,4-BQ, respectively. In conclusion, 1,4-BQ could modulate the fate of HSPCs by altering the self-renewal and differentiation related genes. The definite role of lineages specificity and responsive genes in governing the hematotoxicity and leukemogenicity of 1,4-BQ should be further investigated.
Biphasic Calcium Phosphate (BCP) with a ratio of 20/80 Hydroxyapatite (HA)/Beta-tricalcium phosphate (β-TCP) promotes the differentiation of human dental pulp cells (HDPCs). In the current study, the genotoxicity of locally produced BCP of modified porosity (65%) with a mean pore size of 300micrometer (μm) was assessed using Comet and Ames assays. HDPCs were treated with BCP extract at three different inhibitory concentrations which were obtained based on cytotoxicity test conducted with concurrent negative and positive controls. The tail moment of HDPCs treated with BCP extract at all three concentrations showed no significant difference compared to negative control (p>0.05), indicating that BCP did not induce DNA damage to HDPCs. The BCP was evaluated using five tester strains of Salmonella typhimurium TA98, TA100, TA102, TA1537 and TA1538. Each strain was incubated with BCP extract with five different concentrations in the presence and absence of metabolic activation system (S9) mix. Concurrently, negative and positive controls were included. The average number of revertant colonies per plate treated with the BCP extract was less than double as compared to the number of revertant colonies in negative control plate and no dose-related increase was observed. Results from both assays suggested that the BCP of modified porosity did not exhibit any genotoxic effect under the present test conditions.
Airway remodelling occurs in chronic respiratory diseases (CRDs) such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). It is characterized by aberrant activation of epithelial reparation, excessive extracellular matrix (ECM) deposition, epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), and airway obstruction. The master regulator is Transforming Growth Factor-β (TGF-β), which activates tissue repair, release of growth factors, EMT, increased cell proliferation, and reduced nitric oxide (NO) secretion. Due to its fundamental role in remodelling, TGF-β is an emerging target in the treatment of CRDs. Berberine is a benzylisoquinoline alkaloid with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-fibrotic activities whose clinical application is hampered by poor permeability. To overcome these limitations, in this study, berberine was encapsulated in monoolein-based liquid crystalline nanoparticles (BM-LCNs). The potential of BM-LCNs in inhibiting TGF-β-induced remodelling features in human bronchial epithelial cells (BEAS-2B) was tested. BM-LCNs significantly inhibited TGF-β-induced migration, reducing the levels of proteins upregulated by TGF-β including endoglin, thrombospondin-1, basic fibroblast growth factor, vascular-endothelial growth factor, and myeloperoxidase, and increasing the levels of cystatin C, a protein whose expression was downregulated by TGF-β. Furthermore, BM-LCNs restored baseline NO levels downregulated by TGF-β. The results prove the in vitro therapeutic efficacy of BM-LCNs in counteracting TGF-β-induced remodelling features. This study supports the suitability of berberine-loaded drug delivery systems to counteract airway remodelling, with potential application as a treatment strategy against CRDs.