IMR Press / FBE / Volume 3 / Issue 2 / DOI: 10.2741/E266

Frontiers in Bioscience-Elite (FBE) is published by IMR Press from Volume 13 Issue 2 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.

Open Access Article
Sulforaphane synergizes with quercetin to inhibit self-renewal capacity of pancreatic cancer stem cells
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1 Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Therapeutics, and Medicine, The University of Kansas Cancer Center, The University of Kansas Medical Center, 3901 Rainbow Boulevard, Kansas City, KS, 66160, USA
2 Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, The University of Kansas Cancer Center, The University of Kansas Medical Center, 3901 Rainbow Boulevard, Kansas City, KS, 66160, USA
Academic Editor:Rakesh Srivastava
Front. Biosci. (Elite Ed) 2011, 3(2), 515–528; https://doi.org/10.2741/E266
Published: 1 January 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer chemoprevention - 2)
Abstract

According to the cancer stem cell hypothesis, the aggressive growth and early metastasis of cancer may arise through dysregulation of self-renewal of stem cells. The objectives of this study were to examine the molecular mechanisms by which sulforaphane (SFN, an active compound in cruciferous vegetables) inhibits self-renewal capacity of pancreatic cancer stem cells (CSCs), and synergizes with quercetin, a major polyphenol and flavonoid commonly detected in many fruits and vegetables. Our data demonstrated that SFN inhibited self-renewal capacity of pancreatic CSCs. Inhibition of Nanog by lentiviral-mediated shRNA expression enhanced the inhibitory effects of sulforaphane on self-renewal capacity of CSCs. SFN induced apoptosis by inhibiting the expression of Bcl-2 and XIAP, phosphorylation of FKHR, and activating caspase-3. Moreover, SFN inhibited expression of proteins involved in the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (β-catenin, vimentin, twist-1, and ZEB1), suggesting the blockade of signaling involved in early metastasis. Furthermore, the combination of quercetin with SFN had synergistic effects on self-renewal capacity of pancreatic CSCs. These data suggest that SFN either alone or in combination with quercetin can eliminate cancer stem cell-characteristics.

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