Induction of apoptosis by D-limonene is mediated by inactivation of Akt in LS174T human colon cancer cells.
Oncol Rep. 2013 Jan ;29(1):349-54. Epub 2012 Oct 19. PMID: 23117412
D-limonene is recognized as a potential chemotherapeutic agent, however, the details of this mechanism remain unclear. In this study, we investigated the effects of d-limonene on colon cancer cell viability and its potential mechanism of action in vitro. After 48 h of treatment, d-limonene suppressed the viability of LS174T cells in a dose-dependent manner and caused a dose-dependent apoptotic cell death. D-limonene activated caspase-3 and -9 and PARP cleavage in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, an increase in Bax protein and cytosol cytochrome c from mitochondria and a decrease in bcl-2 protein were observed following treatment with d-limonene. In addition, d-limonene decreased the levels of p-Akt (Ser473), p-Akt (Thr308) and p-GSK-3β (Ser9), suggesting thatd-limonene induced apoptosis via the mitochondrial death pathway and the suppression of the PI3K/Akt pathway.