Here's a chinese herb that upregulates beta interferon and tumour necrosis factor alpha in certain breast cancer cell lines:
1: Carcinogenesis. 2005 Nov;26(11):1934-9. Epub 2005 Jun 15. Links
The extract of huanglian, a medicinal herb, induces cell growth arrest and apoptosis by upregulation of interferon-beta and TNF-alpha in human breast cancer cells.Kang JX, Liu J, Wang J, He C, Li FP.
Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02114, USA. email@example.com
Huanglian (Coptidis rhizoma), a widely used herb in traditional Chinese medicine, has been shown recently to possess anticancer activities. However, the molecular mechanism underlying the anticancer effect of the herb is poorly understood. Specifically, whether huanglian extract affects the expression of cancer-related genes has not been defined. This study used DNA microarray technology to examine the effect of the herbal extract on expression of the common genes involved in carcinogenesis in two human breast cancer cell lines, the ER-positive MCF-7 and ER-negative MDA-MB-231 cells. Treatment of the cancer cells with huanglian extract markedly inhibited their proliferation in a dose- and time-dependent manner. The growth inhibitory effect was much more profound in MCF-7 cell line than that in MDA-MB-231 cells. DNA microarray assay revealed that treatment with huanglian dramatically increased the mRNA expression of interferon-beta (IFN-beta) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha in MCF-7 cells
. Quantitative analysis by real-time PCR or western blotting confirmed the upregulation of the two genes (especially IFN-beta) in MCF-7 cells, but not in MDA-MB-231 cells. Addition of neutralizing antibody against IFN-beta to culture medium markedly inhibited the huanglian-induced antiproliferative effect, confirming the involvement of IFN-beta in the huanglian's effect and also suggesting an autocrine pathway for the action of IFN-beta in this setting. Given that IFN-beta is among the most important anticancer cytokines, the upregulation of this gene by huanglian is, at least in part, responsible for its antiproliferative effect. The results of this study implicate huanglian as a promising herb for chemoprevention and chemotherapy of certain cancers.
1: Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2004 Sep 24;322(3):751-8. Links
Action of solamargine on TNFs and cisplatin-resistant human lung cancer cells.Liang CH, Liu LF, Shiu LY, Huang YS, Chang LC, Kuo KW.
Department of Biochemistry, School of Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Taiwan, ROC.
A loss of TNF receptors expression has been found in advanced lung cancers, and human A549 lung adenocarcinoma cells are resistant to the cytotoxic effects of TNF-alpha and cisplatin. Here, the mechanisms of the drug resistance of A549 were extensively studied by gene modulation of the cells by solamargine (SM) which was isolated from Solanum incanum herb. SM induced morphological changes of chromatin condensation, DNA fragmentation, and sub-G(1) peak in a DNA histogram of A549 cells, indicating cell death by apoptosis. SM elevated the expressions of TNF-R1 and -R2 and overcame the resistance of A549 cells to TNF-alpha and -beta. The recruitment of TRADD, FADD, and activation of caspase-8 and -3 in SM-treated A549 cells evidenced the activation of TNFRs signal transduction. In addition, release of cytochrome c from mitochondria, down-expression of Bcl-2 and Bcl-x(L), up-regulation of Bax, and caspase-9 activities were observed in SM-treated A549 cells. Combinational treatment of SM and cisplatin synergistically enhanced caspase-8, -9, and -3 activities in A549 cells. Thus, SM sensitizes A549 cells through TNFRs and mitochondria-mediated pathways and may have anticancer potential against TNFs- and cisplatin-resistance lung cancer cells.