Indole-3-carbinol enhances ultraviolet B-induced apoptosis by sensitizing human melanoma cells.
Cell Mol Life Sci. 2006 Nov;63(22):2661-8. PMID: 17086378
Indole-3-carbinol (I3C) has been found to act against several types of cancer, while ultraviolet B (UVB) is known to induce the apoptosis of human melanoma cells. Here, we investigated whether I3C can sensitize G361 human melanoma cells to UVB-induced apoptosis. We examined the effects of combined I3C and UVB (I3C/UVB) at various dosages. I3C (200 microM)/UVB (50 mJ/cm(2)) synergistically reduced melanoma cell viability, whereas I3C (200 microM) or UVB (50 mJ/cm(2)), separately, had little effect on cell viability. DNA fragmentation assays indicated that I3C/UVB induced apoptosis. Further results show that I3C/UVB activates caspase-8, -3, and Bid and causes the cleavage of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase. Moreover, I3C decreased the expression of the anti-apoptotic protein, Bcl-2, whereas UVB increased the translocation of Bax to mitochondria. Thus, an increased Bax/Bcl-2 ratio by I3C/UVB may result in melanoma apoptosis. In conclusion, our study demonstrated that I3C sensitizes human melanoma cells by down-regulating Bcl-2.