Abstract Title:

Piperine and Celecoxib synergistically inhibit colon cancer cell proliferation via modulating Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway.

Abstract Source:

Phytomedicine. 2021 Apr ;84:153484. Epub 2021 Jan 29. PMID: 33667839

Abstract Author(s):

Sonal Srivastava, Jayant Dewangan, Sakshi Mishra, Aman Divakar, Swati Chaturvedi, Muhammad Wahajuddin, Sadan Kumar, Srikanta Kumar Rath

Article Affiliation:

Sonal Srivastava


BACKGROUND: Celecoxib (CXB), a selective COX-2 inhibitor NSAID, has exhibited prominent anti-proliferative potential against numerous cancers. However, its low bioavailability and long term exposure related cardiovascular side effects, limit its clinical application. In order to overcome these limitations, natural bioactive compounds with lower toxicity profile are used in combination with therapeutic drugs. Therfore, in this study Piperine (PIP), a natural chemo-preventive agent possessing drug bioavailability enhancing properties, was considered to be used in combination with low doses of CXB.

PURPOSE: We hypothesized that the combination of PIP with CXB will have a synergistic anti-proliferative effect on colon cancer cells.

STUDY DESIGN: The potency of PIP and CXB alone and in combination was evaluated in HT-29 human colon adenocarcinoma cells and mechanism of growth inhibition was investigated by analyzing the players in apoptotic and Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathways.

METHODS: The effect of PIP on the oral bioavailability of CXB in mice was investigated using HPLC analysis. The study investigated the synergistic anti-proliferative effect of CXB and PIP on HT-29 cells and IEC-6 non-tumorigenic rat intestinal epithelial cells by SRB cell viability assay. Further, the cellular and molecular mechanism(s) involved in the anti-proliferative combinatorial effect was extensively explored in HT-29 cells by flow cytometry and western blotting. The in vivo efficacy of this combination was studied in CT26.WT tumor syngeneic Balb/c mice model.

RESULTS: PIP as a bioenhancer increased the oral bioavailability of CXB (129%). The IC50 of CXB and PIP were evaluated to select doses for combination treatment of HT-29 cells. The drug combinations having combination index (CI) less than 1 were screened using CompuSyn software. These combinations were significantly cytotoxic to HT-29 cells but IEC-6 were least effected. Further, the mechanism behind CXB and PIP mediated cell death was explored. The co-treatment led to reactive oxygen species generation, mitochondrial dysfunction, caspase activation and enhanced apoptosis in HT-29 cells. Additionally, the combination treatment synergistically modulated Wnt/β-catenin pathway, downregulated the stemness markers and boosted therapeutic response in CT26 syngeneic Balb/c mice.

CONCLUSION: The outcomes of the study suggests that combining CXB and PIP offers a novel approach for the treatment of colon cancer.

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Sayer Ji
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