M.Sc Thesis


M.Sc StudentNonna Dinevich
SubjectEffect of medicinal plant extracts on proliferation of
prostate cancer cells
DepartmentDepartment of Biotechnology and Food Engineering
Supervisors Professor Emeritus Cogan Uri
Assistant Professor Fares Fuad
Full Professors Machluf Marcelle


Abstract

Prostate cancer is a prevalent cancer diagnosed among men in Western countries. Zizyphus spina-christi L. (ZS) is one of the plants commonly used in traditional Arabic medicine in Israel for various medicinal purposes, including the treatment of cancer.

The aim of the present study was the characterization of ZS extract for its effect on LNCaP and DU145 prostate cancer cell lines. An aqueous extract of ZS was used for all treatments.

The treatment resulted in dose- and time-dependent inhibition of cell growth in both LNCaP and DU145 cells, as well as in dose-dependent inhibition of DNA synthesis in both cell types. In addition the treatment of prostate cancer cells and normal cells with the extract resulted in a dose-dependent inhibition of cell growth and DNA synthesis in both cell types. As evident by DNA ladder assay, light microscopy and flow cytometry, the treatment of both DU145 and LNCaP cells induced time-dependent apoptosis. Moreover, the study demonstrated S phase-cell-cycle arrest of DU145 cells and G1 phase-cell-cycle arrest of LNCaP cells. When two anticancer compounds commonly used in cancer therapy, namely, camptothecin and etoposide, were tested for the sake of comparison, it was observed that the treatment of the prostate cancer cells and normal cells also resulted in a dose-dependent inhibition of cell growth in both cell types, although to a lesser extent with the normal cells. The ZS extract seems to impose its effects on dividing cells, without selectivity to cancer cell. There is no available data about the nature or concentration of potential anticancer compounds in ZS. More detailed studies are needed in order to isolate and separately evaluate such anticancer compounds.