Low intensity-pulsed ultrasound induced apoptosis of human hepatocellular carcinoma cells in vitro.
Ultrasonics. 2015 Jul 26. Epub 2015 Jul 26. PMID: 26231998
The present study was conducted to determine whether low intensity-pulsed ultrasound (LIPUS) could induce apoptosis of human hepatocellular carcinoma cells, SMMC-7721, and to define the mechanism of ultrasound-induced apoptosis, in vitro. MTT assay was used to measure cell proliferation. Apoptosis was investigated by multiple methods such as flow cytometry, DNA fragmentation, Ca(2+) mobilizations, pro- and anti-apoptotic protein expression, and light as well as ultramicroscopic morphology. The results provide evidence that LIPUS induced a dose-dependent effect on cell viability and apoptosis of SMMC-7721 cells. Specifically, exposure of cells to>0.5W/cm(2) intensity significantly increased cell apoptosis, caused shifts in cell cycle phase, and induced structural changes. Ultrasound significantly increased intracellular Ca(2+) concentrations and modulated expression of caspase-3, Bcl-2 and Bax. The findings suggest that this novel technology can be used to induce SMMC-7721 apoptosis via the Ca(2+)/mitochondrial pathway and could potentially be of clinical use for the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (SMMC-7721 cell line) and other cancers.