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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 415231, 13 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/415231
Research Article

Apoptosis Induction in Primary Human Colorectal Cancer Cell Lines and Retarded Tumor Growth in SCID Mice by Sulforaphane

1Division of Traumatology, Department of Surgery, Chi Mei Medical Center, Tainan, Taiwan
2Graduate Institute of Medical Science, College of Health Sciences, Chang Jung Christian University, No. 396, Sec. 1, Changrong Road, Gueiren District, Tainan City 71101, Taiwan
3Department of Nutrition and Health Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Chang Jung Christian University, No. 396, Sec. 1, Changrong Road, Gueiren District, Tainan City 71101, Taiwan
4Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Institute of Clinical Medicine, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan
5Innovative Research Center of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Chang Jung Christian University, No. 396, Sec. 1, Changrong Road, Gueiren District, Tainan City 71101, Taiwan

Received 20 January 2011; Revised 28 April 2011; Accepted 2 May 2011

Academic Editor: Jae Youl Cho

Copyright © 2012 Ming-Jenn Chen 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.

Abstract

We have investigated the anticancer effects of the dietary isothiocyanate sulforaphane (SFN) on colorectal cancer (CRC), using primary cancer cells lines isolated from five Taiwanese colorectal cancer patients as the model for colorectal cancer. SFN-treated cells accumulated in metaphase (SFN 6.25 μM) and subG1 (SFN 12.5 and 25 μM) as determined by flow cytometry. In addition, treated cells showed nuclear apoptotic morphology that coincided with an activation of caspase-3, and loss of mitochondrial membrane potential . Incubations at higher SFN doses (12.5 and 25 μM) resulted in cleavage of procaspase-3 and elevated caspase-2, -3, -8, and -9 activity, suggesting that the induction of apoptosis and the sulforaphane-induced mitosis delay at the lower dose are independently regulated. Daily SFN s.c. injections (400 micromol/kg/d for 3 weeks) in severe combined immunodeficient mice with primary human CRC (CP1 to CP5) s.c. tumors resulted in a decrease of mean tumor weight by 70% compared with vehicle-treated controls. Our findings suggest that, in addition to the known effects on cancer prevention, sulforaphane may have antitumor activity in established colorectal cancer.