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Open AccessArticle

Inhibitory Effects of Peptide Lunasin in Colorectal Cancer HCT-116 Cells and Their Tumorsphere-Derived Subpopulation

1
Instituto de Investigación en Ciencias de la Alimentación (CIAL, CSIC-UAM CEI UAM+CSIC), Nicolás Cabrera, 9, 28049 Madrid, Spain
2
Department of Food Science, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Current address: Hospital Universitario de La Princesa, Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria Princesa (IIS-IP), Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Enfermedades Hepáticas y Digestivas (CIBEREHD), 28049 Madrid, Spain.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21(2), 537; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms21020537
Received: 11 December 2019 / Revised: 7 January 2020 / Accepted: 13 January 2020 / Published: 14 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Peptides for Health Benefits 2019)
The involvement of cancer stem-like cells (CSC) in the tumor pathogenesis has profound implications for cancer therapy and chemoprevention. Lunasin is a bioactive peptide from soybean and other vegetal sources with proven protective activities against cancer and other chronic diseases. The present study focused on the cytotoxic effect of peptide lunasin in colorectal cancer HCT-116 cells, both the bulk tumor and the CSC subpopulations. Lunasin inhibited the proliferation and the tumorsphere-forming capacity of HCT-116 cells. Flow cytometry results demonstrated that the inhibitory effects were related to apoptosis induction and cell cycle-arrest at G1 phase. Moreover, lunasin caused an increase in the sub-GO/G1 phase of bulk tumor cells, linked to the apoptotic events found. Immunoblotting analysis further showed that lunasin induced apoptosis through activation of caspase-3 and cleavage of PARP, and could modulate cell cycle progress through the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21. Together, these results provide new evidence on the chemopreventive activity of peptide lunasin on colorectal cancer by modulating both the parental and the tumorsphere-derived subsets of HCT-116 cells.
Keywords: colorectal cancer; cancer stem cells; chemoprevention; bioactive peptide; lunasin colorectal cancer; cancer stem cells; chemoprevention; bioactive peptide; lunasin
MDPI and ACS Style

Fernández-Tomé, S.; Xu, F.; Han, Y.; Hernández-Ledesma, B.; Xiao, H. Inhibitory Effects of Peptide Lunasin in Colorectal Cancer HCT-116 Cells and Their Tumorsphere-Derived Subpopulation. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21, 537.

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