A series of studies have demonstrated that Chrysanthemum indicum possesses antimicrobial, antiinflammatory, immunomodulatory, and neuroprotective effects. Recently, much attention has been devoted to the anticancer activity of Chrysanthemum indicum, especially in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, its anticancer mechanism of action is still not clear and needs further investigation.
A research article to be published on September 28, 2009 in the World Journal of Gastroenterology addresses this question. The research team, led by Prof. Zong-fang Li from the Second Affiliated Hospital, School of Medicine, Xi'an Jiaotong University, investigated the effects of Chrysanthemum indicum extract (CIE) on inhibition of proliferation and on apoptosis, and the underlying mechanisms, in a human HCC MHCC97H cell line.
They examined viable rat hepatocytes and human endothelial ECV304 cells by trypan blue exclusion and MTT assay, respectively, as normal controls. The proliferation of MHCC97H cells was determined by MTT assay. The cellular morphology of MHCC97H cells was observed by phase contrast microscopy. Flow cytometry was performed to analyze cell apoptosis with annexin V/propidium iodide (PI), mitochondrial membrane potential with rhodamine 123 and cell cycle with PI in MHCC97H cells. Apoptotic proteins such as cytochrome C, caspase-9, caspase-3 and cell cycle proteins, including P21 and CDK4, were measured by Western blotting.
The results showed CIE inhibited proliferation of MHCC97H cells in a time- and dose-dependent manner without cytotoxicity in rat hepatocytes and human endothelial cells. CIE induced apoptosis of MHCC97H cells in a concentration-dependent manner, as determined by flow cytometry. The apoptosis was accompanied by a decrease in mitochondrial membrane potential, release of cytochrome C and activation of caspase-9 and caspase-3. CIE arrested the cell cycle in the S phase by increasing P21 and decreasing CDK4 protein expression.
The researchers drew a conclusion that CIE exerted a significant apoptotic effect through a mitochondrial pathway and arrested the cell cycle by regulation of cell cycle-related proteins in MHCC97H cells without an effect on normal cells. The cancer-specific selectivity shown in their study suggests that the plant extract could be a promising novel treatment for human cancer.
Reference: Li ZF, Wang ZD, Ji YY, Zhang S, Huang C, Li J, Xia XM. Induction of apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in human HCC MHCC97H cells with Chrysanthemum indicum extract. World J Gastroenterol 2009; 15(36): 4538-4546
Correspondence to: Zong-Fang Li, Professor, Department of General Surgery, The Second Affiliated Hospital, School of Medicine, Xi'an Jiaotong University, No. 157, West 5th Road, Xi'an 710004, Shaanxi Province, China.
About World Journal of Gastroenterology
World Journal of Gastroenterology (WJG), a leading international journal in gastroenterology and hepatology, has established a reputation for publishing first class research on esophageal cancer, gastric cancer, liver cancer, viral hepatitis, colorectal cancer, and H pylori infection and provides a forum for both clinicians and scientists. WJG has been indexed and abstracted in Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, Science Citation Index Expanded (also known as SciSearch) and Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, Index Medicus, MEDLINE and PubMed, Chemical Abstracts, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, Abstracts Journals, Nature Clinical Practice Gastroenterology and Hepatology, CAB Abstracts and Global Health. ISI JCR 2008 IF: 2.081. WJG is a weekly journal published by WJG Press. The publication dates are the 7th, 14th, 21st, and 28th day of every month. WJG is supported by The National Natural Science Foundation of China, No. 30224801 and No. 30424812, and was founded with the name of China National Journal of New Gastroenterology on October 1, 1995, and renamed WJG on January 25, 1998.