Geraniol attenuates 4NQO-induced tongue carcinogenesis through downregulating the activation of NF-κB in rats.
Mol Cell Biochem. 2017 Oct ;434(1-2):7-15. Epub 2017 Apr 10. PMID: 28397014
Geraniol, an acyclic monoterpene found in lemon grass and aromatic herb oil, has been shown to exert antitumor and antioxidant activities against various cancer types. The objective of this study was to investigate the potential chemoprotective role of geraniol against 4-nitroquinoline-1-oxide (4NQO)-induced oral carcinogenesis in male Wistar rats and furthermore to study anti-inflammatory mechanisms of action through possible NF-κB signaling. 4NQO was administered to rats at the dose of 50 ppm through drinking water to induce tongue cancer in 20 weeks. 4NQO provoked inflammation by upregulating the expressions of the p65 subunit nuclear factor kappa-β (NF-κB) in the nucleus, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS). Additionally, staining for immature and mature mast cells in cancer niche by toluidine blue staining and alcian blue-safranin staining showed more accumulation. Co-treatment of geraniol 200 mg/kg b.w. showed a significant decrease in the level of p65 NF-κB in the nucleus, and this might be due to the inhibition of NF-κB activation/translocation into nucleus, which was further confirmed by decreased immature and mature mast cell density and the expression of inflammatory downstream mediators such as TNF-α, IL-1β, COX-2, and iNOS. Collectively, our results suggested that geraniol as a potential anti-inflammatory agent having the capability to obstruct 4NQO initiated NF-κB activation and modulated the expression of inflammatory mediators.