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April 2004

LE Magazine April 2004

Cancer chemopreventive activity of resveratrol, a natural product derived from grapes.
Resveratrol, a phytoalexin found in grapes and other food products, was purified and shown to have cancer chemopreventive activity in assays representing three major stages of carcinogenesis. Resveratrol was found to act as an antioxidant and antimutagen and to induce phase II drug-metabolizing enzymes (anti-initiation activity); it mediated anti-inflammatory effects and inhibited cyclooxygenase and hydroperoxidase functions (antipromotion activity); and it induced human promyelocytic leukemia cell differentiation (antiprogression activity). In addition, it inhibited the development of preneoplastic lesions in carcinogen-treated mouse mammary glands in culture and inhibited tumorigenesis in a mouse skin cancer model. These data suggest that resveratrol, a common constituent of the human diet, merits investigation as a potential cancer chemopreventive agent in humans.

Science . 1997 Jan 10;275(5297):218-20

Resveratrol: a candidate nutritional substance for prostate cancer prevention.
The dietary stilbene resveratrol is a major constituent of a variety of edible plant products, including grapes and peanuts. Resveratrol has been identified as an excellent candidate cancer chemopreventive, based on its safety and efficacy in animal models of carcinogenesis. Resveratrol is a prototype of a plethora of bioactive polyphenols in the food supply that has just begun to be mined for cancer preventive agents. For example, polyphenolic grapeseed fractions were shown recently to potently antagonize chemical carcinogenesis. Taking into consideration that the identification of resveratrol as a cancer preventive agent is largely owed to its high abundance in nature (e.g., it accounts for 5-10% of the grapeskin biomass), it is logical to expect that naturally occurring stilbenes that are superior to resveratrol in their cancer preventive properties await identification. Thus, resveratrol may represent the tip of the iceberg of a broad class of stilbene and related polyphenolic natural products that include safe and highly effective agents for cancer prevention. We hypothesize that resveratrol may be especially suitable as a lead agent for prostate cancer prevention given its ability to: 1) inhibit each stage of multistage carcinogenesis, 2) scavenge incipient populations of androgen-dependent prostate cancer cells through androgen receptor antagonism, and 3) scavenge incipient populations of androgen-independent prostate cancer cells by short-circuiting the epidermal growth factor-receptor (EGFR)-dependent autocrine loops in the cancer cells.

J Nutr . 2003 Jul;133(7 Suppl):2440S-2443S

Inhibition of NF-kappaB pathway in grape seed extract-induced apoptotic death of human prostate carcinoma DU145 cells.
The alarmingly high rate of prostate cancer (PCA) mortality as well as the limited success in the treatment of advanced PCA suggest that additional approaches are needed to control PCA growth and its metastatic potential. A constitutive activation of NF-kappaB family of transcription factors is known to play a major role in chemotherapy resistance in advanced PCA. In recent studies we showed that grape seed extract (GSE) inhibits advanced human PCA growth and induces apoptosis in cell culture and in nude mice. Accordingly, here we assessed the effect of GSE on constitutive and TNFalpha-induced NF-kappaB DNA binding activity and apoptotic death in advanced human prostate carcinoma DU145 cells. Constitutive and TNFalpha-induced NF-kappaB DNA binding activity was inhibited by GSE at doses > or =50 microg/ml and treatments for > or =12 h. This was accompanied by inhibition of IkappaBalpha phosphorylation and IKKalpha kinase activity. A strong induction of apoptosis (P<0.01) was also observed following GSE treatment, while a combination with TNFalpha strongly potentiated apoptosis induction. Our results indicate the potential of developing GSE as an effective cancer therapeutic agent, both alone and in combination with TNFalpha-based chemotherapy of advanced human prostate carcinoma that might prove to be a more effective and less toxic alternative in clinical therapy of PCA.

Int J Oncol . 2003 Sep;23(3):721-7

Cancer chemoprevention by resveratrol: in vitro and in vivo studies and the underlying mechanisms (review).
Cancer, next only to heart diseases, is the second leading cause of deaths in the United States of America and many other nations in the world. The prognosis for a patient with metastatic carcinoma of the lung, colon, breast, or prostate (four of the most common and lethal forms of cancer, which together account for more than half of all deaths from cancer in the USA ), remains dismal. Conventional therapeutic and surgical approaches have not been able to control the incidence of most of the cancer types. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop mechanism-based approaches for the management of cancer. Chemoprevention via non-toxic agents could be one such approach. Many naturally occurring agents have shown cancer chemopreventive potential in a variety of bioassay systems and animal models, having relevance to human disease. It is appreciated that an effective and acceptable chemopreventive agent should have certain properties: (a), little or no toxic effects in normal and healthy cells; (b), high efficacy against multiple sites; (c), capability of oral consumption; (d), known mechanism of action; (e), low cost; and (f), acceptance by human population. Resveratrol is one such agent. A naturally occurring polyphenolic antioxidant compound present in grapes, berries, peanuts and red wine. In some bioassay systems resveratrol has been shown to afford protection against several cancer types. The mechanisms of resveratrol's broad cancer chemopreventive effects are not completely understood. In this review, we present the cancer chemopreventive effects of resveratrol in an organ-specific manner. The mechanisms of the antiproliferative/cancer chemopreventive effects of resveratrol are also presented. We believe that continued efforts are needed, especially well-designed pre-clinical studies in the animal models that closely mimic/represent human disease, to establish the usefulness of resveratrol as cancer chemopreventive agent. This should be followed by human clinical trials in appropriate cancer types in suitable populations.

Int J Oncol . 2003 Jul;23(1):17-28

Glucuronidation of resveratrol, a natural product present in grape and wine, in the human liver.
1. Resveratrol, a polyphenolic compound present in grape and wine, has beneficial effects against cancer and protective effects on the cardiovascular system. It has been shown that the compound is sulphated in human liver and the aims of the present investigation were to study resveratrol glucuronidation in human liver microsomes and to determine whether flavonoids inhibit resveratrol glucuronidation. 2. A simple and reproducible radiometric assay for resveratrol glucuronidation was developed. The assay employed uridine-5'-diphosphoglucuronic acid-[14C] and unlabelled resveratrol. Resveratrol-glucuronide was isolated by TLC. The intra- and interassays variabilities were 1 and 1.5%, respectively. 3. The rate of resveratrol glucuronidation was measured in 10 liver samples. The mean +/- SD and median of resveratrol glucuronidation rate were 0.69 +/- 0.34 and 0.80 nmol/min/mg, respectively. Resveratrol glucuronosyl transferase followed Michaelis-Menten kinetics and the Km and Vmax (mean +/- SD; n = 5) were 0.15 +/- 0.09 mM and 1.3 +/- 0.3 nmol/min/mg, respectively. The intrinsic clearance was 11 +/- 4 x 10(-3) ml/ 4. The flavonoid quercetin inhibited resveratrol glucuronidation and its IC50 (mean +/- SD; n = 3) was 10 +/- 1 microM. Myricetin, catechin, kaempferol, fisetin and apigenin (all at 20 microM) inhibited resveratrol glucuronidation and the percent of control ranged between 46% (catechin) to 72% (apigenin). 5. The present results show that resveratrol is glucuronated in the human liver. Glucuronidation may reduce the bioavailability of this compound however, flavonoids inhibit resveratrol glucuronidation and such an inhibition might improve the bioavailability of resveratrol.

Xenobiotica. 2000 Nov;30(11):1047-54

Modulating effect of resveratrol and quercetin on oral cancer cell growth and proliferation.
Resveratrol and quercetin are polyphenols which have been detected in significant amounts in green vegetables, citrus fruits and red grape wines. Beneficial effects attributed to these compounds include anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antitumor properties. The effect of resveratrol and quercetin on growth of human oral cancer cells is unknown. Resveratrol and quercetin, in concentrations of 1 to 100 microM, were incubated in triplicates with human oral squamous carcinoma cells SCC-25 in DMEM-HAM's F-12 supplemented with fetal calf serum and antibiotics in an atmosphere of 5% CO2 in air at 37 degrees C for 72 h. Cell growth was determined by counting the number of viable cells with a hemocytometer. Cell proliferation was measured by means of incorporation of [3H]thymidine in nuclear DNA. Resveratrol at 10 and 100 microM induced significant dose-dependent inhibition in cell growth as well as in DNA synthesis. Quercetin exhibited a biphasic effect, stimulation at 1 and 10 microM, and minimal inhibition at 100 microM in cell growth and DNA synthesis. Combining 50 microM of resveratrol with 10, 25 and 50 microM of quercetin resulted in a gradual and significant increase in the inhibitory effect of quercetin on cell growth and DNA synthesis. We conclude that resveratrol or a combination of resveratrol and quercetin, in concentrations equivalent to that present in red wines, are effective inhibitors of oral squamous carcinoma cell (SCC-25) growth and proliferation, and warrant further investigation as cancer chemopreventive agents.

Anticancer Drugs . 1999 Feb;10(2):187-93

Indole-3-carbinol (I3C) induced cell growth inhibition, G1 cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in prostate cancer cells.
Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in men and it is the second leading cause of cancer related death in men in the United States . Recent dietary and epidemiological studies have suggested the benefit of dietary intake of fruits and vegetables in lowering the incidence of prostate cancer. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables provides phytochemicals, particularly indole-3-carbinol (I3C), which may be responsible for the prevention of many types of cancer, including hormone-related cancers such as prostate. Studies to elucidate the role and the molecular mechanism(s) of action of I3C in prostate cancer, however, have not been conducted. In the current study, we investigated whether I3C had any effect against prostate cancer cells and, if so, attempts were made to identify the potential molecular mechanism(s) by which I3C elicits its biological effects on prostate cancer cells. Here we report for the first time that I3C inhibits the growth of PC-3 prostate cancer cells. Induction of G1 cell cycle arrest was also observed in PC-3 cells treated with I3C, which may be due to the observed effects of I3C in the up-regulation of p21(WAF1) and p27(Kip1) CDK inhibitors, followed by their association with cyclin D1 and E and down-regulation of CDK6 protein kinase levels and activity. The induction of p21(WAF1) appears to be transcriptionally upregulated and independent of the p53 responsive element. In addition, I3C inhibited the hyperpohosphorylation of the Retinoblastoma (Rb) protein in PC-3 cells. Induction of apoptosis was also observed in this cell line when treated with I3C, as measured by DNA laddering and poly (ADP-ribose) polymersae (PARP) cleavage. We also found an up-regulation of Bax, and down-regulation of Bcl-2 in I3C-treated cells. These effects may also be mediated by the down-regulation of NF-kappaB observed in I3C treated PC-3 cells. From these results, we conclude that I3C inhibits the growth of PC-3 prostate cancer cells by inducing G1 cell cycle arrest leading to apoptosis, and regulates the expression of apoptosis-related genes. These findings suggest that I3C may be an effective chemopreventive or therapeutic agent against prostate cancer.

Oncogene. 2001 May 24;20(23):2927-36

Grape seed extract inhibits EGF-induced and constitutively active mitogenic signaling but activates JNK in human prostate carcinoma DU145 cells: possible role in antiproliferation and apoptosis.
A loss of functional androgen receptor and an enhanced expression of growth factor receptors and associated ligands are causal genetic events in prostate cancer (PCA) progression. These genetic alterations lead to an epigenetic mechanism where a feedback autocrine loop between membrane receptor and ligand (e.g. EGFR-TGFalpha) results in a constitutive activation of MAPK-Elk1-AP1-mediated mitogenic signaling in human PCA at an advanced and androgen-independent stage. We rationalized that inhibiting these epigenetic events could be useful in controlling advanced PCA growth. Recently, we found that grape seed extract (GSE), a dietary supplement rich in flavonoid procyanidins, inhibits advanced and androgen-independent human PCA DU145 cell growth in culture and nude mice. Here, we performed detailed mechanistic studies to define the effect of GSE on EGFR-Shc-MAPK-Elk1-AP1-mediated mitogenic signaling in DU145 cells. Pretreatment of serum-starved cells with GSE resulted in 70% to almost complete inhibition of EGF-induced EGFR activation and 50% to complete inhibition of Shc activation, which corroborated with a comparable decrease in EGF-induced Shc binding to EGFR. Conversely, EGF-induced ERK1/2 phosphorylation was inhibited only by lower doses of GSE; in fact, higher doses showed an increase. Additional studies showed that GSE alone causes a dose- and time-dependent increase in ERK1/2 phosphorylation in starved DU145 cells that is inhibited by an MEK1 inhibitor PD98059. Independent of this increase in ERK1/2 phosphorylation, GSE showed a strong inhibition of ERK1/2 kinase activity to Elk1 in both cellular and cell-free systems. GSE treatment of cells also inhibited both EGF-induced and constitutively active Elk1 phosphorylation and AP1 activation. GSE treatment also showed DNA synthesis inhibition in starved and EGF-stimulated cells as well as loss of cell viability and apoptotic death that was further increased by adding MEK1 inhibitor. Since GSE strongly induced apoptosis independent of its affect on an increase in phospho-ERK1/2, we hypothesized that apoptotic effect of GSE could be by other mechanism(s) including its effect on stress-associated MAPK, the JNK. Indeed, GSE-treated cells showed a strong and sustained increase in phospho-JNK1/JNK2 levels, JNK activity and phospho-cJun levels. An inhibition of GSE-induced JNK activation by a novel JNK inhibitor SP600125 resulted in a significant reversal of GSE-induced apoptotic death suggesting the involvement of JNK activation by GSE in its apoptosis response. Together, these results suggest that anticancer effects of GSE in PCA be mediated via impairment of EGFR-ERK1/2-Elk1-AP1-mediated mitogenic signaling and activation of JNK causing growth inhibition and apoptosis, respectively.

Oncogene. 2003 Mar 6;22(9):1302-16  

Quercetin inhibits the expression and function of the androgen receptor in LNCaP prostate cancer cells.
The androgen receptor (AR) is involved in the development and progression of prostate cancer. In order to find new compounds that may present novel mechanisms to attenuate the function of AR, we investigated the effect of a natural flavonoid chemical, quercetin, on androgen action in an androgen-responsive LNCaP prostate cancer cell line. Western blot analysis showed that AR protein expression was inhibited by quercetin in a dose-dependent manner. To demonstrate that the repression effects on AR expression can actually reduce its function, we found that quercetin inhibited the secretion of the prostate-specific, androgen-regulated tumor markers, PSA and hK2. The mRNA levels of androgen-regulated genes such as PSA, NKX3.1 as well as ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) were down-regulated by quercetin. Transient transfections further showed that quercetin inhibited AR-mediated PSA expression at the transcription level. Finally, it was demonstrated that quercetin could repress the expression of the AR gene at the transcription level. Our result suggests that quercetin can attenuate the function of AR by repressing its expression and has the potential to become a chemopreventive and/or chemotherapeutic agent for prostate cancer.

Carcinogenesis . 2001 Mar;22(3):409-1

Wine antioxidant polyphenols inhibit the proliferation of human prostate cancer cell lines.
The effect of different wine antioxidant polyphenols (catechin, epicatechin, quercetin, and resveratrol) on the growth of three prostate cancer cell lines (LNCaP, PC3, and DU145) was investigated. A dose- and time-dependent inhibition of cell growth by polyphenols was found at nanomolar concentrations. The proliferation of LNCaP and PC3 cells was preferentially inhibited by flavonoids (catechin, epicatechin, and quercetin), whereas resveratrol was the most potent inhibitor of DU145 cell growth. Possible mechanisms of action were investigated: 1) The competition of polyphenols for androgen binding in LNCaP cells revealed significant interaction only in the case of high concentrations of quercetin, at least at five orders of magnitude higher than the concentrations needed for cell growth inhibition. All other phenols showed low interactions. 2) Oxygen species production after mitogen stimulation and H2O2 sensitivity of these cell lines did not correlate with the observed antiproliferative effects, ruling out such a mode of action. 3) NO production revealed two different patterns: LNCaP and DU145 cells produced high concentrations of NO, whereas PC3 cells produced low concentrations. Phorbol ester stimulation of cells did not reveal any additional effect in LNCaP and DU145 cells, whereas it enhanced the secretion of NO in PC3 cells. Polyphenols decreased NO secretion. This effect correlates with their antiproliferative action and the inhibition of inducible NO synthase. It is therefore proposed that the antiproliferative effect of polyphenols is mediated through the modulation of NO production. In conclusion, our data show a direct inhibitory effect of low concentrations of antioxidant wine phenols on the proliferation of human prostate cancer cell lines mediated by the production of NO, further suggesting potential beneficial effects of wine and other phenol-containing foods or drinks for the control of prostate cancer cell growth.

Nutr Cancer . 2000;37(2):223-33

Resveratrol pretreatment desensitizes AHTO-7 human osteoblasts to growth stimulation in response to carcinoma cell supernatants.
Resveratrol, a natural phytoestrogen, has been reported to promote differentiation of murine MC3T3-E1 osteoblasts and to inhibit proliferation of prostate cancer cell lines. In the present study we tested the effects of resveratrol on the increased proliferation of human AHTO-7 osteoblastic cell line induced by conditioned media (CM) from a panel of carcinoma cell lines. This compound was found to modulate AHTO-7 proliferation in a tamoxifen-sensitive mechanism at lower concentrations, but failed to induce the osteoblast differentiation marker alkaline phosphatase (ALP) in contrast to vitamin D3. The proliferative response of AHTO-7 cells to conditioned media from carcinoma cell lines was diminished (30-71.4% inhibition) upon pretreatment with 0.5 microM resveratrol. Highest inhibition was demonstrated for pancreas (BxPC3, Panc-1), breast (ZR75-1) and renal (ACHN) carcinoma cell line supernatants whereas the effect on colon carcinoma (SW620, Colo320DM) cell CM and prostate cancer (PC3, DU145 and LNCaP) CM was less pronounced. Direct addition of resveratrol affected only supernatants of cell lines (<25% inhibition) exhibiting growth stimulatory activity for normal WI-38 lung fibroblasts. Resveratrol inhibited proliferation of DU145 and LNCaP cells in concentrations exceeding 5 microM, altered cell cycle distribution of all prostate cancer cell lines in concentrations as low as 0.5 microM, but did not inhibit the production of osteoblastic factors by these lines. In conclusion, resveratrol failed to induce ALP activity as marker of osteoblast differentiation in human osteoblastic AHTO-7 cells, however, inhibited their response to osteoblastic carcinoma-derived growth factors in concentrations significantly lower than those to reduce growth of cancer cells, thus effectively modulating tumor - osteoblast interaction.

Int J Oncol . 1999 Nov;15(5):955-9

Indole-3-carbinol is a negative regulator of estrogen receptor-alpha signaling in human tumor cells.
Estrogen, via its binding to the estrogen receptor (ER), plays an important role in breast cancer cell proliferation and tumor development. Indole-3-carbinol (I3C), a compound occurring naturally in cruciferous vegetables, exhibits a potent antitumor activity via its regulation of estrogen activity and metabolism. This study was designed to determine the effect of I3C on the potential to inhibit the ER-alpha. Using a reporter gene driven by the estrogen receptor, I3C (10-125 micromol/L) significantly repressed the 17ss-estradiol (E2)-activated ER-alpha signaling in a dose-dependent manner. I3C and breast cancer susceptibility gene 1 (BRCA1) synergistically inhibited transcriptional activity of ER-alpha. Moreover, I3C down-regulated the expression of the estrogen-responsive genes, pS2 and cathepsin-D, and up-regulated BRCA1. The inhibitory effects of I3C did not contribute to its cytotoxic effects because these activities were observed at less than toxic concentrations. These results further suggest that antitumor activities of I3C are associated not only with its regulation of estrogen activity and metabolism, but also its modulation of ER transcription activity.

J Nutr . 2000 Dec;130(12):2927-31

Cytostatic and antiestrogenic effects of 2-(indol-3-ylmethyl)-3,3'-diindolylmethane, a major in vivo product of dietary indole-3-carbinol.
Under acidic conditions, indole-3-carbinol (13C) is converted to a series of oligomeric products thought to be responsible for the biological effects of dietary 13C. Chromatographic separation of the crude acid mixture of 13C, guided by cell proliferation assay in human MCF-7 cells, resulted in the isolation of 2-(indol-3-ylmethyl)-3,3'-diindolylmethane (LTr-1) as a major antiproliferative component. LTr-1 inhibited the growth of both estrogen-dependent (MCF-7) and -independent (MDA-MB-231) breast cancer cells by approximately 60% at a non-lethal concentration of 25 microM. LTr-1 had no apparent effect on the proliferation of MCF-7 cells in the absence of estrogen. LTr-1 was a weak ligand for the estrogen receptor (ER) (IC50 70 microM) and efficiently inhibited the estradiol (E2)-induced binding of the ER to its cognate DNA responsive element. The antagonist effects of LTr-1 also were exhibited in assays of endogenous pS2 gene expression and in cells transiently transfected with an estrogen-responsive reporter construct (pERE-vit-CAT). LTr-1 activated both binding of the aryl hydrocarbon (Ah) receptor to its cognate DNA responsive element and expression of the Ah receptor-responsive gene CYP1A1. LTr-1 was a competitive inhibitor of CYP1A1-dependent ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) activity. In summary, these results demonstrated that LTr-1, a major in vivo product of I3C, could inhibit the proliferation of both estrogen-dependent and -independent breast tumor cells and that LTr-1 is an antagonist of estrogen receptor function and a weak agonist of Ah receptor function.

Biochem Pharmacol . 1999 Sep 1;58(5):825-34

Plant-derived 3,3'-Diindolylmethane is a strong androgen antagonist in human prostate cancer cells.
3,3'-Diindolylmethane (DIM) is a major digestive product of indole-3-carbinol, a potential anticancer component of cruciferous vegetables. Our results indicate that DIM exhibits potent antiproliferative and antiandrogenic properties in androgen-dependent human prostate cancer cells. DIM suppresses cell proliferation of LNCaP cells and inhibits dihydrotestosterone (DHT) stimulation of DNA synthesis. These activities were not produced in androgen-independent PC-3 cells. Moreover, DIM inhibited endogenous PSA transcription and reduced intracellular and secreted PSA protein levels induced by DHT in LNCaP cells. Also, DIM inhibited, in a concentration-dependent manner, the DHT-induced expression of a prostate-specific antigen promoter-regulated reporter gene construct in transiently transfected LNCaP cells. Similar effects of DIM were observed in PC-3 cells only when these cells were co-transfected with a wild-type androgen receptor expression plasmid. Using fluorescence imaging with green fluorescent protein androgen receptor and Western blot analysis, we demonstrated that DIM inhibited androgen-induced androgen receptor (AR) translocation into the nucleus. Results of receptor binding assays indicated further that DIM is a strong competitive inhibitor of DHT binding to the AR. Results of structural modeling studies showed that DIM is remarkably similar in conformational geometry and surface charge distribution to an established synthetic AR antagonist, although the atomic compositions of the two substances are quite different. Taken together with our published reports of the estrogen agonist activities of DIM, the present results establish DIM as a unique bifunctional hormone disrupter. To our knowledge, DIM is the first example of a pure androgen receptor antagonist from plants.

J Biol Chem . 2003 Jun 6;278(23):21136-45. Epub 2003 Mar 27.

Distinct forms of hepatic androgen 6 beta-hydroxylase induced in the rat by indole-3-carbinol and pregnenolone carbonitrile.
The ability of indole-3-carbinol (IC), an anticarcinogen present in cruciferous vegetables, to induce CYP1A1, CYP1A2, CYP2B1/2, CYP2E1 and CYP3A1/2 in female rat liver was determined by Western analysis using monoclonal antibodies and compared to effects produced by pregnenolone carbonitrile in animals of both sexes. The ontogeny of induction of these cytochrome P450 isozymes in response to oral administration of IC was also investigated. An inverse correlation was observed between the 6 beta-hydroxylation of androsterone (A) and the induction by IC of CYP3A1/2, the P450 isozyme responsible for the bulk of hepatic 6 beta-hydroxylation of 4-androstenedione (AD). The effect of inhibitors on the formation of 6 beta-OHA from A or AD was also determined and shown to differ from their action on the P450 isozymes involved in the formation of the 6 beta-hydroxylated derivatives of AD or lithocholic acid. The results indicate that the enzyme induced by IC is distinct from the CYP3A1/2 which catalyzes hydroxylations at position 6 beta, allylic in AD but not in the fully saturated ring system of A. The increased hepatic conversion of A to its biologically less active 6 beta-OHA metabolite after treatment of female rats with IC could possibly contribute to the anticarcinogenic action of indole carbinols. It is also proposed that the action of multiple inducers present in cruciferous and other vegetables might produce androgen metabolic profiles very different from those produced by individual components isolated from them.

J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol . 1994 Nov;51(3-4):219-25

Acid reaction products of indole-3-carbinol and their effects on cytochrome P450 and phase II enzymes in rat and monkey hepatocytes.
The effects of three acid condensation products of indole-3-carbinol (I3C), i.e. 3,3'-diindolylmethane (DIM), 5,6,11,12,17,18-hexahydrocyclonona[1,2-b:4,5-b':7,8-b"]tri-indole (CTI) and 2,3-bis[3-indolylmethyl]indole (BII), on cytochrome P450 and phase II enzymes were studied in primary cultures of rat and cynomolgus monkey liver cells. In rat hepatocytes all three indole derivatives dose-relatedly induced the ethoxyresorufin O-dealkylation (EROD) activity (to 24-fold) and 7 alpha-hydroxylation of testosterone (to 4-fold), whereas all three decreased the 16 alpha- and 2 alpha-testosterone hydroxylation (DIM to 60%, CTI and BII to a mere 5% of the control cells). Treatment of monkey hepatocytes with DIM and BII enhanced the EROD activity to 6- and 9-fold, respectively. Furthermore, BII decreased the 6 beta-hydroxylation of testosterone (to 60% of the untreated cultures) in monkey cells. Phase II enzymes were also affected. In rat hepatocytes DIM, CTI and BII enhanced DT-diaphorase (DTD) (= NAD(P)H-quinone reductase) activity, and DIM and BII the glucuronidation of 1-naphthol. In monkey cells BII only enhanced DTD, and no changes were observed in the glucuronidation of 1-naphthol after treatment with either DIM or BII. The indole derivatives did not affect glutathione S-transferase activity and sulfation of 1-naphthol in either rat or monkey hepatocytes. These results identify two novel acid condensation products of I3C, CTI and BII, as potent compounds in affecting biotransformation in rat as well as in monkey hepatocytes.

Biochem Pharmacol . 1992 Apr 1;43(7):1439-47

Resveratrol, a natural product derived from grape, exhibits antiestrogenic activity and inhibits the growth of human breast cancer cells.
Resveratrol is a natural phytoalexin compound found in grapes and other food products. In this study, the effect of resveratrol on the growth of human breast cancer cells was examined. Results show that resveratrol inhibits the growth of estrogen receptor(ER)-positive MCF-7 cells in a dose-dependent fashion. Detailed studies with MCF-7 cells demonstrate that resveratrol antagonized the growth-promoting effect of 17-beta-estradiol (E2) in a dose-dependent fashion at both the cellular (cell growth) and the molecular (gene activation) levels. At 5 x 10(-6) M, resveratrol abolished the growth-stimulatory effect mediated by concentrations of E2 up to 10(-9) M. The antiestrogenic effect of resveratrol could be observed at a concentration of 10(-6) M and above. The antiestrogenic effect of resveratrol was also demonstrated at the molecular level. Resveratrol in a dose-dependent fashion antagonized the stimulation by E2 of progesterone receptor gene expression in MCF-7 cells. Moreover, expression of transforming growth factor-alpha and insulin-like growth factor I receptor mRNA was inhibited while the expression of transforming growth factor beta2 mRNA was significantly elevated in MCF-7 cells cultivated in the presence of resveratrol (10(-5) M). In summary, our results show that resveratrol, a partial ER agonist itself, acts as an ER antagonist in the presence of estrogen leading to inhibition of human breast cancer cells.

J Cell Physiol . 1999 Jun;179(3):297-304