Roles of p53 and Caspases in Induction of Apoptosis in MCF-7 Breast Cancer Cells Treated with a Methanolic Extract of Nigella Sativa Seeds

Mohammed I. Alhazmi, Tarique N. Hasan, Gowhar Shafi, Abdullah H. Al-Assaf, Mohammed A. Alfawaz, Ali A. Alshatwi
2014 Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention  
Nigella Sativa (NS) is an herb from the Ranunculaceae family that exhibits numerous medicinal properties and has been used as important constituent of many complementary and alternative medicines (CAMs). The ability of NS to kill cancer cells such as PC3, HeLa and hepatoma cells is well established. However, our understanding of the mode of death caused by NS remains nebulous. The objective of this study was to gain further insight into the mode and mechanism of death caused by NS in breast
more » ... by NS in breast cancer MCF-7 cells. Materials and Methods: Human breast cancer cells (MCF-7) were treated with a methanolic extract of NS, and a dose-and time-dependent study was performed. The IC 50 was calculated using a Cell Titer Blue ® viability assay assay, and evidence for DNA fragmentation was obtained by fluorescence microscopy TUNEL assay. Gene expression was also profiled for a number of apoptosis-related genes (Caspase-3, -8, -9 and p53 genes) through qPCR. Results: The IC 50 of MCF-7 cells was 62.8µL/mL. When MCF-7 cells were exposed to 50 µL/mL and 100 µL/mL NS for 24h, 48h and 72h, microscopic examination (TUNEL assay) revealed a dose-and time-dependent increase in apoptosis. Similarly, the expression of the Caspase-3, -8, -9 and p53 genes increased significantly according to the dose and time. Conclusions: NS induced apoptosis in MCF-7 cells through both the p53 and caspase pathways. NS could potentially represent an alternative source of medicine for breast cancer therapy.
doi:10.7314/apjcp.2014.15.22.9655 fatcat:nmbmdle3cfcn5fuxoqd7a2pop4