β-Carotene Induces Apoptosis in Human Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinoma Cell Lines via the Cav-1/AKT/NF-κB Signaling Pathway

Xiangzhan Zhu, Yanting Zhang, Qinghua Li, Lu Yang, Nannan Zhang, Shanshan Ma, Kun Zhang, Jishi Song, Fangxia Guan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

β-carotene, a type of terpenoid, has many metabolic and physiological functions. In particular, β-carotene has an antitumor effect. However, the efficacy of β-carotene against esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) remains unclear. In our study, β-carotene inhibited the growth of ESCC cells and downregulated expression of the Caveolin-1 (Cav-1) protein. Cav-1 protein was expressed only in ESCC cells, not in Het-1A cells. Moreover, β-carotene triggered apoptosis, induced cell cycle G0/G1 phase arrest, and inhibited cell migration. To explore the mechanism involved in these processes, we further examined the effect of β-carotene on the Cav-1-mediated AKT/NF-κB pathway. The results showed that the level of AKT and NF-κB phosphorylation was dramatically inhibited, which led to an increase in the Bax/Bcl-2 ratio. Correspondingly, the activity of Caspase-3 was also enhanced. These data suggest that β-carotene has an antiproliferative role in ESCC cells and may be a promising chemotherapeutic agent for use against ESCC cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)148-157
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Biochemical and Molecular Toxicology
Volume30
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

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Keywords

  • AKT/NF-κB
  • Apoptosis
  • Caveolin-1
  • Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinoma
  • Proliferation
  • β-Carotene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Toxicology
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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