Curcumin has been investigated extensively for cancer prevention, but it has been proposed that long-term treatments may promote clonal evolution and gain of cellular resistance, potentially rendering cancer cells less sensitive to future therapeutic interventions. Here, we used long-term, low-dose treatments to determine the potential for adverse effects in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells. IC50
s for curcumin, cisplatin, and pemetrexed in A549, PC9, and PC9ER NSCLC cells were evaluated using growth curves. IC50
s were subsequently re-assessed following long-term, low-dose curcumin treatment and a three-month treatment withdrawal period, with a concurrent assessment of oncology-related protein expression. Doublet cisplatin/pemetrexed-resistant cell lines were created and the IC50
for curcumin was determined. Organotypic NSCLC-fibroblast co-culture models were used to assess the effects of curcumin on invasive capacity. Following long-term treatment/treatment withdrawal, there was no significant change in IC50
s for the chemotherapy drugs, with chemotherapy-resistant cell lines exhibiting similar sensitivity to curcumin as their non-resistant counterparts. Curcumin (0.25–0.5 µM) was able to inhibit the invasion of both native and chemo-resistant NSCLC cells in the organotypic co-culture model. In summary, long-term curcumin treatment in models of NSCLC neither resulted in the acquisition of pro-carcinogenic phenotypes nor caused resistance to chemotherapy agents.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited