Investigation of role of aspartame on apoptosis process in HeLa cells -->.
Saudi J Biol Sci. 2016 Jul ;23(4):503-6. Epub 2015 Jun 15. PMID: 27298583
Aspartame is an artificial sweetener used as an alternate for sugar in several foods and beverages. The study reports that consumption of aspartame containing product could lead to cancer. However, the effect of aspartame on apoptosis process in cancer is not yet understood clearly. HeLa cells were exposed to different concentrations (0.01-0.05 mg/ml) of aspartame for 48 h. Cytotoxicity of aspartame on cancer cells was determined by SRB assay. The result indicates no significant changes on cell viability. Aspartame suppresses apoptosis process in cancer cells by down-regulation of mRNA expression of tumor suppressor gene p53, and pro-apoptotic gene bax. It up-regulates anti-apoptotic gene bcl-2 mRNA expression. In addition, Ki 67 and PCNA mRNA, and protein expressions were determined. Taking all these together, we conclude that aspartame may be a potent substance to slow-down the apoptosis process in HeLa cells. Further works areongoing to understand the biochemical and molecular mechanism of aspartame in cancer cells.