Open Access Research article

Ethanol extract of Gleditsia sinensis thorn suppresses angiogenesis in vitro and in vivo

Jin-Mu Yi, Jong-Shik Park, Se-Mi Oh, Jun Lee, Jinhee Kim, Dal-Seok Oh, Ok-Sun Bang and No Soo Kim*

Author affiliations

KM-Based Herbal Drug Research Group, Herbal Medicine Research Division, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, 1672 Yuseong-daero, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-811, Republic of Korea

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Citation and License

BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2012, 12:243  doi:10.1186/1472-6882-12-243

Published: 4 December 2012

Abstract

Background

Gleditsia sinensis thorns have been widely used in traditional Korean medicine for the treatment of several diseases, including obesity, thrombosis, and tumor-related diseases. The aim of the study is to determine the antiangiogenic effect of Gleditsia sinensis thorns in vitro and in vivo in a bid to evaluate its potential as an anticancer drug.

Methods

Ethanol extract of Gleditsia sinensis thorns (EEGS) were prepared and used for in vitro and in vivo assays. In vitro antiangiogenic effect of EEGS was determined in HUVEC primary cells by cell migration and tube formation assays. In vivo antiangiogenic effect of EEGS was determined by measuring vessel formation and vascular endothelial cells migrating into the implanted matrigels in nude mice. The angiogenesis-related proteins of which expression levels were altered by EEGS were identified by proteomic analysis.

Results

EEGS exerted a dose-dependent antiproliferative effect on HUVEC cells without significant cytotoxicity. Angiogenic properties, such as cell migration and tube formation, were significantly inhibited by EEGS in a dose-dependent manner. New vessel formation was also suppressed by EEGS, as determined by the directed in vivo angiogenesis assays in nude mice. EEGS reduced the expression of proangiogenic proteins, endothelin 1 and matrix metallopeptidase 2, in HUVEC cells.

Conclusions

Our findings suggest that EEGS can inhibit angiogenesis by down-regulating proangiogenic proteins, and therefore it should be considered as a potential anticancer drug targeting tumor-derived angiogenesis.

Keywords:
Gleditsia sinensis thorn; Antiangiogenesis; Anticancer; Gene expression; Medicinal herb