Amani A Mahbub, Christine L. Le Maitre, Sarah L. Haywood-Small, Gordon J. McDougall, Neil A. Cross and Nicola Jordan-Mahy Pages 1601 - 1613 ( 13 )
Background: Mortality rates for leukemia are high despite considerable improvements in treatment. Since polyphenols exert pro-apoptotic effects in solid tumors, our study investigated the effects of polyphenols in haematological malignancies. The effect of eight polyphenols (quercetin, chrysin, apigenin, emodin, aloe-emodin, rhein, cis-stilbene and trans-stilbene) were studied on cell proliferation, cell cycle and apoptosis in four lymphoid and four myeloid leukemic cells lines, together with normal haematopoietic control cells.
Methods: Cellular proliferation was measured by CellTiter-Glo® luminescent assay; and cell cycle arrest was assessed using flow cytometry of propidium iodide stained cells. Apoptosis was investigated by caspase-3 activity assay using flow cytometry and apoptotic morphology was confirmed by Hoescht 33342 staining.
Results: Emodin, quercetin, and cis-stilbene were the most effective polyphenols at decreasing cell viability (IC50 values of 5-22 μM, 8-33 μM, and 25-85 μM respectively) and inducing apoptosis (AP50 values (the concentration which 50% of cells undergo apoptosis) of 2-27 μM, 19-50 μM, and 8-50 μM respectively). Generally, lymphoid cell lines were more sensitive to polyphenol treatment compared to myeloid cell lines, however the most resistant myeloid (KG-1a and K562) cell lines were still found to respond to emodin and quercetin treatment at low micromolar levels. Non-tumor cells were less sensitive to all polyphenols compared to the leukemia cells.
Conclusions: These findings suggest that polyphenols have anti-tumor activity against leukemia cells with differential effects. Importantly, the differential sensitivity of emodin, quercetin, and cis-stilbene between leukemia and normal cells suggests that polyphenols are potential therapeutic agents for leukemia.
Apoptosis, cell cycle, cell proliferation, leukemia, polyphenols.
Sheffield Hallam University, Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, Sheffield, UK.