Identification of Phytochemical-Based beta-Catenin Nuclear Localization Inhibitor in NSCLC: Differential Targeting Population from Member of Isothiocyanates

Win Sen Heng, Shiau-Chuen Cheah*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)
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    Decades of research has convinced us that phytochemical compounds contained within the plant products are the real deal, and they provide benefits such as health maintenance an d cure to illnesses. One of the deadliest noncommunicable diseases today is lung cancer, hence its disease management still deserves attention. Wnt/beta-catenin pathway activation conferring cancer stem cell (CSC) activities to non-small cell lung carcinomas (NSCLCs) may explain why the disease is still difficult to cure. In the present study, we assessed several representatives of phytochemical categories consisting of alkaloids, chalcones and isothiocyanates for their inhibitory activity to nuclear localization of beta-catenin-an important event for Wnt/beta-catenin pathway activation, in lung cancer cell lines. Real-time cell analyzer confirmed that evodiamine (EVO), chelidonine (CHE), isoliquiritigenin (ISO), licochalcone-A (LICO), benzyl isothiocyanate (BI) and phenethylisothiocyanate (PI) exhibited anti-proliferative activities and cytotoxicities to adenocarcinoma cell line SK-LU-1 and human lung CSC primary cell line (HLCSC). Immunofluorescence assay identified that CHE, ISO, LICO, BI and PI were capable of reducing the number of cells harboring beta-catenin within the nuclei of these cells. We extended the characterizations of BI and PI in Wnt-dependent squamous cell carcinoma cell line NCI-H1703 on several CSC functions and found that BI was better at inhibiting soft agar colony formation as an output of self-renewal ability, whereas PI was more effective in inhibiting the growth of multicellular tumor spheroid model mimicking micrometastases. Both however were not able to inhibit migration and invasion of NCI-H1703. In conclusion, BI could potentially be used as a safer alternative to target undifferentiated CSCs as adjuvant therapy, whereas PI could be used as chemotherapy to remove bulk tumor.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number399
    Number of pages17
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Jan-2021


    • alternative medicine
    • natural compound
    • lung cancer
    • &#946
    • -catenin nuclear localization inhibitor
    • alkaloid
    • chalcone
    • isothiocyanate

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