Curcumin induces apoptosis in human neuroblastoma cells via inhibition of AKT and Foxo3a nuclear translocation.
Free Radic Res. 2014 Dec ;48(12):1397-408. Epub 2014 Oct 6. PMID: 25179440
Neuroblastoma (NB) is one of the most frequent extracranial solid tumors in children. It accounts for 8-10% of all childhood cancer deaths, and there is a need for development of new drugs for its treatment. Curcumin (diferuloylmethane), a major active component of turmeric (Curcuma longa), has been shown to exert anti-tumor activity on NB, but the specific mechanism by which curcumin inhibits cancer cells proliferation remains unclear. In the present study, we investigated the anti-proliferative effect of curcumin in human LAN5 NB cells. Curcumin treatment causes a rapid increase in reactive oxygen species and a decrease in the mitochondrial membrane potential-events leading to apoptosis activation. Furthermore, curcumin induces decrease in haet shock protein (Hsp)60 and hexokinase II mitochondrial protein levels and increase in the pro-apoptotic protein, bcl-2 associated death promoter (BAD). Moreover, we demonstrate that curcumin modulates anti-tumor activity through modulation of phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome 10 and consequential inhibition of the survival Akt cell-signaling pathway. Inhibition of Akt causes its translocation into the cytoplasm and import of Foxo3a into the nucleus where it activates the expression of p27, Bim, and Fas-L pro-apoptotic genes. Together, these results take evidence for considering curcumin as a potential therapeutic agent for patients with NB.