Curcumin induces programmed cell death in breast cancer. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Curcumin induces apoptosis in human breast cancer cells through p53-dependent Bax induction.
FEBS Lett. 2002 Feb 13;512(1-3):334-40. PMID: 11852106
Animal Physiology Section, Bose Institute, P-1/12 CIT Scheme VII M, 700 054, Kolkata, India.
The aim of this study was to determine the mechanisms of curcumin-induced human breast cancer cell apoptosis. From quantitative image analysis data showing an increase in the percentage of cells with a sub-G0/G1 DNA content, we demonstrated curcumin-induced apoptosis in the breast cancer cell line MCF-7, in which expression of wild-type p53 could be induced. Apoptosis was accompanied by an increase in p53 level as well as its DNA-binding activity followed by Bax expression at the protein level. Further experiments using p53-null MDAH041 cell as well as low and high p53-expressing TR9-7 cell, in which p53 expression is under tight control of tetracycline, established that curcumin induced apoptosis in tumor cells via a p53-dependent pathway in which Bax is the downstream effector of p53. This property of curcumin suggests that this molecule could have a possible therapeutic potential in breast cancer patients.