METHODS: The experimental approach in the present study was based on a bioassay-guided fractionation. The crude methanol and fractionated extracts (hexane, chloroform and water) from different parts of A. scabra (leaves, rhizomes, roots and pseudo stems) were prepared prior to the cytotoxicity evaluation against human ovarian (SKOV-3) and hormone-dependent breast (MCF7) carcinoma cells. The identified cytotoxic extracts were then subjected to chemical investigations in order to identify the active ingredients. A normal human lung fibroblast cell line (MRC-5) was used to determine the specificity for cancerous cells. The cytotoxic extracts and fractions were also subjected to morphological assessment, DNA fragmentation analysis and DAPI nuclear staining.
RESULTS: The leaf (hexane and chloroform) and rhizome (chloroform) extracts showed high inhibitory effect against the tested cells. Ten fractions (LC1-LC10) were yielded after purification of the leaf chloroform extract. Fraction LC4 which showed excellent cytotoxic activity was further purified and resulted in 17 sub-fractions (VLC1-VLC17). Sub-fraction VLC9 showed excellent cytotoxicity against MCF7 and SKOV-3 cells but not toxic against normal MRC-5 cells. Meanwhile, eighteen fractions (RC1-RC18) were obtained after purification of the rhizome chloroform extract, of which fraction RC5 showed cytotoxicity against SKOV-3 cells with high selectivity index. There were marked morphological changes when observed using phase-contrast inverted microscope, DAPI nuclear staining and also DNA fragmentations in MCF7 and SKOV-3 cells after treatment with the cytotoxic extracts and fractions which were indicative of cell apoptosis. Methyl palmitate and methyl stearate were identified in the hexane leaf extract by GC-MS analysis.
CONCLUSIONS: The data obtained from the current study demonstrated that the cell death induced by cytotoxic extracts and fractions of A. scabra may be due to apoptosis induction which was characterized by apoptotic morphological changes and DNA fragmentation. The active ingredients in the leaf sub-fraction VLC9 and rhizome fraction RC5 may lead to valuable compounds that have the ability to kill cancer cells but not normal cells.
PURPOSE: The concomitant use of therapeutic drugs may cause potential drug-drug interactions by decreasing or increasing plasma levels of the administered drugs, leading to a suboptimal clinical efficacy or a higher risk of toxicity. Thus, evaluating the inhibitory potential of a new chemical entity, and to clarify the mechanism of inhibition and kinetics in the various CYP enzymes is an important step to predict drug-drug interactions.
STUDY DESIGN: This study was designed to assess the potential inhibitory effects of Alpinia conchigera Griff. rhizomes extract and its active constituent, ACA, on nine c-DNA expressed human cytochrome P450s (CYPs) enzymes using fluorescent CYP inhibition assay.
METHODS/RESULTS: The half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of Alpinia conchigera Griff. rhizomes extract and ACA was determined for CYP1A2, CYP2A6, CYP2B6, CYP2C8, CYP2C19, CYP2D6, CYP2E1, CYP3A4 and CYP3A5. A. conchigera extract only moderately inhibits on CYP3A4 (IC50 = 6.76 ± 1.88µg/ml) whereas ACA moderately inhibits the activities of CYP1A2 (IC50 = 4.50 ± 0.10µM), CYP2D6 (IC50 = 7.50 ± 0.17µM) and CYP3A4 (IC50 = 9.50 ± 0.57µM) while other isoenzymes are weakly inhibited. In addition, mechanism-based inhibition studies reveal that CYP1A2 and CYP3A4 exhibited non-mechanism based inhibition whereas CYP2D6 showed mechanism-based inhibition. Lineweaver-Burk plots depict that ACA competitively inhibited both CYP1A2 and CYP3A4, with a Ki values of 2.36 ± 0.03 µM and 5.55 ± 0.06µM, respectively, and mixed inhibition towards CYP2D6 with a Ki value of 4.50 ± 0.08µM. Further, molecular docking studies show that ACA is bound to a few key amino acid residues in the active sites of CYP1A2 and CYP3A4, while one amino residue of CYP2D6 through predominantly Pi-Pi interactions.
CONCLUSION: Overall, ACA may demonstrate drug-drug interactions when co-administered with other therapeutic drugs that are metabolized by CYP1A2, CYP2D6 or CYP3A4 enzymes. Further in vivo studies, however, are needed to evaluate the clinical significance of these interactions.