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Open Access Research article

The centella asiatica juice effects on DNA damage, apoptosis and gene expression in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC)

Faridah Hussin1, Sima Ataollahi Eshkoor2, Asmah Rahmat1*, Fauziah Othman1 and Abdah Akim1

Author Affiliations

1 Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

2 Institute of Gerontology, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

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BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2014, 14:32  doi:10.1186/1472-6882-14-32

Published: 20 January 2014

Abstract

Background

This paper is to investigate the effects of Centella asiatica on HepG2 (human hepatocellular liver carcinoma cell line). Centella asiatica is native to the Southeast Asia that is used as a traditional medicine. This study aims to determine the chemopreventive effects of the Centella asiatica juice on human HepG2 cell line.

Methods

Different methods including flow cytometry, comet assay and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) were used to show the effects of juice exposure on the level of DNA damage and the reduction of cancerous cells. MTT assay is a colorimetric method applied to measure the toxic effects of juice on cells.

Results

The Centella asiatica juice was not toxic to normal cells. It showed cytotoxic effects on tumor cells in a dose dependent manner. Apoptosis in cells was started after being exposed for 72 hr of dose dependent. It was found that the higher percentage of apoptotic cell death and DNA damage was at the concentration above 0.1%. In addition, the juice exposure caused the reduction of c-myc gene expression and the enhancement of c-fos and c-erbB2 gene expressions in tumor cells.

Conclusions

It was concluded that the Centella asiatica juice reduced liver tumor cells. Thus, it has the potential to be used as a chemopreventive agent to prevent and treat liver cancer.

Keywords:
Centella asiatica juice; DNA damage; Apoptosis; Gene expression; Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC)