Multiple modulatory activities of Andrographis paniculata on immune responses and xenograft growth in esophageal cancer preclinical models.
Phytomedicine. 2019 Mar 12:152886. Epub 2019 Mar 12. PMID: 30910259
Grace Gar-Lee Yue
BACKGROUND: Esophageal cancer (EC) is a malignant gastrointestinal cancer with high morbidity worldwide and is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related deaths in China. Even though surgery and/or chemotherapy/chemoradiation might achieve good therapeutic response, recurrence rate is high due to cancer metastasis. Hence, the use of alternative adjuvant treatments, such as herbal medicines, for metastatic EC remains a great desire of the patients. Our previous studies have demonstrated the anti-metastatic efficacy of hot water extract of Andrographis paniculata (APW) in human esophageal cancer cells and tumor-bearing nude mice.
PURPOSE: In the present study, the immunomodulatory activities of APW were further evaluated in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and in a carcinogen-induced esophageal tumorigenesis model using immune-competent C57BL/6 mice. Besides, the inhibitory effects of APW on esophageal cancer cell line-based xenografts and patient-derived xenografts (PDX) were examined so as to illustrate the potential multi-targeted efficacies of APW in esophageal cancer in pre-clinical models.
RESULTS: In vitro results showed that APW could stimulate proliferation of PBMCs, as well as TNF-α and IFN-γproductions. In mice with 4-nitroquinoline 1-oxide-induced tumorigenesis, 21-day oral treatment with APW (1600 mg/kg) decreased the level of dysplasia in esophagus and significantly modulated the population of regulatory T cells. The cytokines productions by spleen lymphocytes of APW-treated mice were shifted towards normal resting state (i.e. unchallenged with carcinogen). Furthermore, APW treatment suppressed the growth of cell line-based xenografts by significantly increasing apoptosis in tumors, without causing severe body weight loss as chemotherapeutics did. Most importantly, the inhibitory effects of APW treatment on esophageal patient-derived xenografts growth were demonstrated for the first time. Besides, several diterpenes were detected in the plasma after oral administration of APW in mice, suggesting that multi-components of APW were bioavailable and might havecontributed towards the varied pharmacological activities demonstrated in our studies.
CONCLUSION: APW was shown to possess anti-tumor, anti-metastatic and immunomodulatory activities in esophageal cancer cell-based and animal models, including immunocompromised mice model and clinically relevant PDX model. Our findings illustrated the potential multi-targeted efficacies of APW in esophageal cancer management.