IJMS, Vol. 20, Pages 1464: Growth and Proliferation of Renal Cell Carcinoma Cells Is Blocked by Low Curcumin Concentrations Combined with Visible Light Irradiation (International Journal of Molecular Sciences)
The anti-cancer properties of curcumin in vitro have been documented. However, its clinical use is limited due to rapid metabolization. Since irradiation of curcumin has been found to increase its anti-cancer effect on several tumor types, this investigation was designed to determine whether irradiation with visible light may enhance the anti-tumor effects of low-dosed curcumin on renal cell carcinoma (RCC) cell growth and proliferation. A498, Caki1, and KTCTL-26 cells were incubated with curcumin (0.1–0.4 µg/mL) and irradiated with 1.65 J/cm2 visible light for 5 min. Controls were exposed to curcumin or light alone or remained untreated. Curcumin plus light, but not curcumin or light exposure alone altered growth, proliferation, and apoptosis of all three RCC tumor cell lines. Cells were arrested in the G0/G1 phase of the cell cycle. Phosphorylated (p) CDK1 and pCDK2, along with their counter-receptors Cyclin B and A decreased, whereas p27 increased. Akt-mTOR-signaling was suppressed, the pro-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 became elevated, and the anti-apoptotic protein Bax diminished. H3 acetylation was elevated when cells were treated with curcumin plus light, pointing to an epigenetic mechanism. The present findings substantiate the potential of combining low curcumin concentrations and light as a new therapeutic concept to increase the efficacy of curcumin in RCC.