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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 103026, 8 pages
Research Article

Validation of the Antiproliferative Effects of Organic Extracts from the Green Husk of Juglans regia L. on PC-3 Human Prostate Cancer Cells by Assessment of Apoptosis-Related Genes

Molecular Cancer Biology Research Laboratory (MCBRL), Department of Food Science and Nutrition, College of Food and Agricultural Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2460, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia

Received 31 May 2011; Revised 28 October 2011; Accepted 28 October 2011

Academic Editor: Vincenzo De Feo

Copyright © 2012 Ali A. Alshatwi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


With the increased use of plant-based cancer chemotherapy, exploring the antiproliferative effects of phytochemicals for anticancer drug design has gained considerable attention worldwide. This study was undertaken to investigate the effect of walnut green husk extracts on cell proliferation and to determine the possible molecular mechanism of extract-induced cell death by quantifying the expression of Bcl-2, Bax, caspases-3, and Tp53. PC-3 human prostate cancer cells. In this study, we found that green husk extracts suppressed proliferation and induced apoptosis in a dose- and time-dependent manner by modulating expression of apoptosis-related genes. This involved DNA fragmentation (determined by TUNEL assay) and significant changes in levels of mRNA and the expression of corresponding proteins. An increase in expressions of Bax, caspase-3, and tp53 genes and their corresponding proteins was detected using real-time PCR and western blot analysis in PC-3 cells treated with the green husk organic extracts. In contrast, Bcl2 expression was downregulated after exposure to the extracts. Our data suggest the presence of bioactive compound(s) in walnut green husks that are capable of killing prostate carcinoma cells by inducing apoptosis and that the husks are a candidate source of anticancer drugs.