5-Fluorouracil-induced mitochondrial oxidative cytotoxicity and apoptosis are increased in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells by TRPV1 channel activation but not Hypericum perforatum treatment

Deveci H. A. , NAZIROĞLU M. , Nur G.

MOLECULAR AND CELLULAR BIOCHEMISTRY, vol.439, pp.189-198, 2018 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 439
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s11010-017-3147-1
  • Page Numbers: pp.189-198


5-Fluorouracil (5-FU) is a widely used chemotherapy agent for breast cancer, although drug resistance is a critical issue regarding the use of this agent in the disease. Calcium signaling is a well-known main cause of proliferation and apoptosis in breast cancer cells. Although previous studies have implicated TRPV1 inhibitor, anticancer, and apoptotic roles of Hypericum perforatum (HPer) in several cells, the synergistic inhibition effects of HPer and 5-FU in cancer and the stimulation of ongoing apoptosis have not yet been clarified in MCF-7 cells. Therefore, we investigated the apoptotic and antioxidant properties of 5-FU with/without HPer through activation of TRPV1 in MCF-7 cells. The MCF-7 cells were divided into four groups: the control group, the HPer-treated group (0.3 mM), the 5-FU-treated group (25 mu M), and the 5-FU+HPer-treated group. The intracellular free calcium ion concentration ([Ca2+](i)) increased with 5-FU treatments, but they decreased with the HPer and HPer+5-FU treatments. The [Ca2+](i) is further decreased in the four groups by TRPV1 channel antagonist (capsazepine and 0.01 mM) treatments. However, mitochondrial membrane depolarization and apoptosis levels, and the PARP1, caspase 3, and caspase 9 expression levels were increased by 5-FU treatment, although the values were decreased by the HPer and 5-FU+HPer treatments. Cell viability level was also decreased by 5-FU treatment. In conclusion, antitumor and apoptosis effects of 5-FU are up-regulated by activation of TRPV1 channels, but its action was down-regulated by HPer treatment. It seems that HPer cannot be used for increasing the antitumor effect of 5-FU through modulation of the TRPV1.