Cucurbitacin B inhibited breast cancer metastasis and angiogenesis. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Cucurbitacin B inhibits breast cancer metastasis and angiogenesis through VEGF-mediated suppression of FAK/MMP-9 signaling axis.
Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2016 May 19 ;77(Pt A):41-56. Epub 2016 May 19. PMID: 27210504
Available breast cancer therapeutic strategies largely target the primary tumor but are ineffective against tumor metastasis and angiogenesis. In our current study, we determined the effect of Cucurbitacin B (CuB), a plant triterpenoid, on the metastatic and angiogenic potential of breast cancer cells. CuB was found to inhibit cellular proliferation and induce apoptosis in breast cancer cells in a time- and dose-dependent manner. Further, CuB-treatment significantly inhibited the migratory and invasive potential of highly metastatic breast cancer MDA-MB-231 and 4T1 cells at sub-IC50 concentrations, where no significant apoptosis was observed. CuB was also found to inhibit migratory, invasive and tube-forming capacities of HUVECs in vitro. In addition, inhibition of pre-existing vasculature in chick embryo chorioallantoic membrane ex vivo further supports the anti-angiogenic effect of CuB. CuB-mediated anti-metastatic and anti-angiogenic effects were associated with the downregulation of VEGF/FAK/MMP-9 signaling, which has been validated by using FAK-inhibitor (FI-14). CuB-treatment resulted in a significant inhibition of VEGF-induced phosphorylation of FAK and MMP-9 expressions similar to the action of FI-14. CuB was also found to decrease the micro-vessel density as evidenced by the decreased expression of CD31, a marker for neovasculature. Further, CuB-treatment inhibited tumor growth, lung metastasis and angiogenesis in a highly metastatic 4T1-syngeneic mouse mammary cancer. Collectively, our findings suggest that CuB inhibited breast cancer metastasis and angiogenesis, at least in part, through the downregulation of VEGF/FAK/MMP-9 signaling.