Menthol regulates TRPM8-independent processes in PC-3 prostate cancer cells.
Biochim Biophys Acta. 2007 Apr;1770(4):659-65. Epub 2006 Nov 23. PMID: 18955132
Department of Physiology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, 28 Yongon-Dong, Chongno-Gu, Seoul 110-799, Korea.
Menthol, a naturally occurring compound from peppermint oil, binds and activates the TRPM8 Ca(2+)-permeable channel that exhibits abnormal expression patterns in prostate cancer, suggesting that TRPM8 links Ca(2+) transport pathways to tumor biology. We thus investigated the cellular responses of prostate cancer cells to menthol. Here we found that menthol increases [Ca(2+)](i) via Ca(2+) influx mechanism(s) independent of TRPM8 in PC-3 cells. We demonstrated that menthol induces cell death at supramillimolar concentrations in PC-3 cells and the cell death is not suppressed by low extracellular Ca(2+) condition which indicates that menthol-induced cell death is not associated with Ca(2+) influx pathways. In addition, we showed that menthol increases a phosphorylated form of c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) in PC-3 cells through TRPM8-independent mechanisms. Thus, our data indicate that there is an apparent lack of causality between TRPM8 activation and menthol-induced cell death and that menthol can regulate TRPM8-independent Ca(2+)-transport and cellular processes.