Thymoquinone inhibits LoVo cancer cell growth and migration. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Thymoquinone suppresses migration of LoVo human colon cancer cells by reducing prostaglandin E2 induced COX-2 activation.
World J Gastroenterol. 2017 Feb 21 ;23(7):1171-1179. PMID: 28275297
AIM: To identify potential anti-cancer constituents in natural extracts that inhibit cancer cell growth and migration.
METHODS: Our experiments used high dose thymoquinone (TQ) as an inhibitor to arrest LoVo (a human colon adenocarcinoma cell line) cancer cell growth, which was detected by cell proliferation assay and immunoblotting assay. Low dose TQ did not significantly reduce LoVo cancer cell growth. Cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) is an enzyme that is involved in the conversion of arachidonic acid into prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) in humans. PGE2 can promote COX-2 protein expression and tumor cell proliferation and was used as a control.
RESULTS: Our results showed that 20μmol/L TQ significantly reduced human LoVo colon cancer cell proliferation. TQ treatment reduced the levels of p-PI3K, p-Akt, p-GSK3β, and β-catenin and thereby inhibited the downstream COX-2 expression. Results also showed that the reduction in COX-2 expression resulted in a reduction in PGE2 levels and the suppression of EP2 and EP4 activation. Further analysis showed that TG treatment inhibited the nuclear translocation of β-catenin in LoVo cancer cells. The levels of the cofactors LEF-1 and TCF-4 were also decreased in the nucleus following TQ treatment in a dose-dependent manner. Treatment with low dose TQ inhibited the COX-2 expression at the transcriptional level and the regulation of COX-2 expression efficiently reduced LoVo cell migration. The results were further verified in vivo by confirming the effects of TQ and/or PGE2 using tumor xenografts in nude mice.
CONCLUSION: TQ inhibits LoVo cancer cell growth and migration, and this result highlights the therapeutic advantage of using TQ in combination therapy against colorectal cancer.