Crocins, the Active Constituents of Crocus Sativus L. Stigmas, Exert Significant Cytotoxicity on Tumor Cells In Vitro

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Author(s): Kyriaki Hatziagapiou, Eleni Kakouri, George I. Lambrou*, Eleni Koniari, Charalabos Kanakis, Olti Alexandra Nikola, Margarita Theodorakidou, Konstantinos Bethanis, Petros A. Tarantilis.

Journal Name: Current Cancer Therapy Reviews

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Background: Tumors of the childhood are considered to be grave and devastating pathologies, with high mortality rates. Current therapeutic options like cytotoxic drugs and radiotherapy target both healthy and malignant cells, thus resulting in long-term neurological and intellectual sequelae and endocrinological disorders. Objectives: In this study, we focused on the anticancer potency of crocins, the main constituents of Crocus sativus L, stigmas. Crocins were first extracted using organic solvents from the dried stigmas and then were identified using the HPLC analysis. Materials and Methods: TE-671 cells were treated with the extract of crocins using a range of concentrations between 0.25-mg/ mL and 16 mg/mL. Viability of the cells was measured at 24h, 48h, 72h and 96h. In addition, we have examined the expression levels of the p53 gene using Real-Time Reverse Transcription PCR. Results: Results showed that crocins exerted significant cytotoxic and anti-proliferative effects in a concentration and time - dependent-manner on TE-671 cells. Furthermore, p53 manifested similar expression pattern as the anti-proliferative effect of crocin. Conclusion: Our data demonstrate that crocins could be a novel promising agent for the improvement of tumor treatment.

Keywords: saffron, crocins, cytotoxicity, anti-proliferation, medulloblastoma, CNS tumors, TE671

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(E-pub Ahead of Print)
DOI: 10.2174/1573394714666181029120446
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