Background: A monoterpene, perillyl alcohol, has attracted attention in medicinal chemistry since it
exhibited chemo-preventive and therapeutic properties against a variety of cancers.
Objective: In the present work, it was aimed to obtain derivatives of perillyl alcohol through microbial biotransformation
and investigate their anticancer activities against A549 and HepG2 cancer cell lines.
Method: Biotransformation studies were carried out in a α-medium for 7 days at 25oC. XTT assay was performed
to investigate the anticancer activities of perillyl alcohol and its biotransformation metabolite, dehydroperillic
acid, against A549 and HepG2 cell lines and their selectivity using healthy cell line, NIH/3T3. Cell proliferation
ELISA, BRDU (colorimetric) assay was used for measurement of proliferation in replicative cells in which DNA
synthesis occurs. Flow cytometric analyses were also carried out for measuring apoptotic cell percentages,
caspase 3 activation and mitochondrial membrane potential.
Results: Biotransformation of perillyl alcohol with Fusarium culmorum yielded dehydroperillic acid in a yield of
20.4 %. In in vitro anticancer studies, perillyl alcohol was found to exert cytotoxicity against HepG2 cell line
with an IC50 value of 409.2 μg/mL. However, this effect was not found to be selective because of its higher IC50
(250 μg/mL) value against NIH/3T3 cell line. On the other hand, dehydroperillic acid was found to be effective
and also selective against A549 cell line with an IC50 value of 125 μg/mL and a selectivity index (SI) value of
400. Apoptosis inducing effects of dehydroperillic acid was better in A549 cell line.
Conclusion: Dehydroperillic acid may be a good candidate for therapy of lung adenocarcinoma and may show
this anticancer activity by inducing apoptosis.