Berberine complexes with DNA in the berberine-induced apoptosis in human leukemic HL-60 cells

Chi L. Kuo, Chih C. Chou, Yat Ming Yung

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

188 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Berberine, an alkaloid initially isolated from Chinese herbal medicine exhibited the ability to induce morphological changes and internucleosomal DNA fragmentation, characteristic of apoptosis in promyelocytic leukemia HL-60 cells. Cell cycle studies showed that only about 20% of the cells underwent apoptosis at the early time (6 h) of berberine (25 μg/ml) treatment; these appeared to be cells in S phase at the time of berberine treatment. At extended time (6-48 h), cells were cell cycle arrested, the number of cells of each phase, particularly the cells of S phase decreased and much more (> 50%) of the cells appeared with DNA content less than G1. Attempts were also made to isolate possible berberine-DNA complexes from cell cultures treated with berberine (25 μg/ml; 2-24 h). Shifts of absorption maxima of berberine in the direction of longer wavelengths were observed in the isolated berberine-DNA complexes. Palmatine, an analog of berberine, which was not able to induce apoptosis, also complexed with DNA in cells treated with palmatine (25 μg/ml; 2-24 h). Our results suggest that some important cellular processes other than the intracellular DNA-interacting action of berberine may be involved in the berberine-induced apoptosis in HL-60 cells.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-200
Number of pages8
JournalCancer Letters
Volume93
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jul 1995
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Apoptosis
  • Berberine-DNA complex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology
  • Molecular Biology

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