Phytol isolated from watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) sprouts induces cell death in human T-lymphoid cell line Jurkat cells via S-phase cell cycle arrest.
Food Chem Toxicol. 2018 May ;115:425-435. Epub 2018 Mar 30. PMID: 29608981
The phytol isolated from watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) sprouts inhibited the growth of a human T-cell leukemia line Jurkat cell and suppressed tumor progression in a xenograft model of human lung adenocarcinoma epithelial cell line A549 in nude mice. To elucidate the mechanisms underlying the phytol-induced cell death in the present study, we examined the changes in cell morphology, DNA fragmentation, and intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels and performed flow cytometric analysis to evaluate cell cycle stage. There were no significant changes in apoptosis, autophagy, and necrosis marker in cells treated with the phytol. But, we found, for the first time, that phytol remarkably induced S-phase cell cycle arrest accompanied with intracellular ROS production. Western blot analyses showed that phytolinduced S-phase cell cycle arrest was mediated through the decreased expression of cyclins A and D and the downregulations of MAPK and PI3K/Akt. The tumor volume levels in mice treated with phytol were lower than those of non-treatment groups, and it showed very similar suppression compared with those of mice treated with cyclophosphamide. Based on the data of in vitro and in vivo studies and previous studies, we suggest phytol as a potential therapeutic compound for cancer.