A Novel Combination of Withaferin A and Sulforaphane Inhibits Epigenetic Machinery, Cellular Viability and Induces Apoptosis of Breast Cancer Cells.

08:00 EDT 19th May 2017 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "A Novel Combination of Withaferin A and Sulforaphane Inhibits Epigenetic Machinery, Cellular Viability and Induces Apoptosis of Breast Cancer Cells."

With cancer often classified as a disease that has an important epigenetic component, natural compounds that have the ability to regulate the epigenome become ideal candidates for study. Humans have a complex diet, which illustrates the need to elucidate the mechanisms of interaction between these bioactive compounds in combination. The natural compounds withaferin A (WA), from the Indian winter cherry, and sulforaphane (SFN), from cruciferous vegetables, have numerous anti-cancer effects and some report their ability to regulate epigenetic processes. Our study is the first to investigate the combinatorial effects of low physiologically achievable concentrations of WA and SFN on breast cancer cell proliferation, histone deacetylase1 (HDAC1) and DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs). No adverse effects were observed on control cells at optimal concentrations. There was synergistic inhibition of cellular viability in MCF-7 cells and a greater induction of apoptosis with the combinatorial approach than with either compound administered alone in both MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 cells. HDAC expression was down-regulated at multiple levels. Lastly, we determined the combined effects of these bioactive compounds on the pro-apoptotic BAX and anti-apoptotic BCL-2 and found decreases in BCL-2 and increases in BAX. Taken together, our findings demonstrate the ability of low concentrations of combinatorial WA and SFN to promote cancer cell death and regulate key epigenetic modifiers in human breast cancer cells.


Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: International journal of molecular sciences
ISSN: 1422-0067


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The development and maintenance of an organism is orchestrated by a set of chemical reactions that switch parts of the genome off and on at strategic times and locations. Epigenetics is the study of these reactions and the factors that influence them. ...

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