Background: In Saudi Arabia, the incidence and mortality rates of breast cancer are high. Although current treatments have proven their efficacy, breast cancer cells can gain resistance against these treatments, leading to multifaceted complications. Numerous studies have demonstrated that plant phytochemicals and active compounds can counteract cancer. Rosmarinic acid (RA), a phenolic compound abundant in the family Lamiaceae, has been shown to have anticancer properties.
Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the anticancer properties of methanolic crude extracts of seedlings and calli of Coleus hybridus and Rosmarinus officinalis, two Lamiaceae species.
Methods: MCF-7 human breast cancer cells wear treated with RA-rich methanolic crude extracts obtained from plant calli and seedlings generated in vitro, and we subjected the cells to proliferation assays. Transcriptional profiling of the seedling and callus tissues was also conducted.
Results: mRNA expression levels of RA genes were higher in C. hybridus seedlings than in R. officinalis seedlings, and, except for TAT and C4H, in C. hybridus calli than in R. officinalis calli. These findings were in agreement with the anti-proliferative effects of seedling and callus extracts of both R. officinalis and C. hybridus in MCF-7 cells after 24 or 48 h of exposure. C. hybridus callus extracts with RA concentrations of 100 µg/mL and 200 µg/mL showed the most significant anti-proliferative effect after 48 h of exposure (p < 0.001) when compared to R. officinalis callus extracts. Similarly, C. hybridus seedling extracts with RA concentrations of 90 µg/mL and 150 µg/mL exhibited significant anti-proliferative effects after 48 h of exposure (p < 0.001). R. officinalis seedling extract with 150 µg RA/ml also had a significant effect after 48 h of treatment (p < 0.001).
Conclusion: Methanolic extracts of C. hybridus and R. officinalis provide a potentially valuable option for breast cancer treatment.