Litchi seed extracts diminish prostate cancer progression via induction of apoptosis and attenuation of EMT through Akt/GSK-3β signaling.
Sci Rep. 2017 Jan 30 ;7:41656. Epub 2017 Jan 30. PMID: 28134352
Litchi (Litchi chinensisSonnnerat, Sapindaceae), known as Chinese Cherry, is a subtropical fruit tree originating from southern China. Litchi seed extracts have diverse pharmacological effects, including anticancer. However, its anticancer effects and mechanisms on prostate cancer have not been determined. In this study, we used n-butyl alcohol extract of Litchi seed (NLS) to treat prostate cancer PC3, DU145, RM1 and C4-2B cells. NLS induced a significant decrease in cell viability and clonogenic growth in a dose-dependent manner. NLS induced cell apoptosis and cell cycle G1/S phase arrest by inactivating Akt signaling pathway, which were associated with activation of mitochondrial caspase-dependent apoptotic cascades, up-regulation of cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) inhibitors p21 and p27, and inhibition of correlated cyclin/CDK network. In addition, NLS treatment significantly decreased cell migration and invasion via phenotypic inversion of EMT, correlated with increased expression of E-cadherin andβ-catenin, and decreased expression of vimentin and snail, which is partially attributed to inhibiting Akt/GSK-3β signaling pathway. Finally, PC3 xenograft nude mice treated with NLS in vivo showed a significant decrease in tumor size without toxicity. These findings suggest that NLS has potentialfor development into a safe and potent alternative therapy for prostate cancer patients.