Environ Toxicol. 2020 Jul 15. Epub 2020 Jul 15. PMID: 32667124
Cytotoxicity of naringenin induces Bax-mediated mitochondrial apoptosis in human lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells.
Naringenin (NGEN), a natural flavonoid has growth inhibition and apoptosis-inducing activities in several cancer cells. However, the cytotoxicity mechanisms of NGEN in cell death of lung cancer cells have not been fully defined. In present study, treatment of human lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells with NGEN resulted in time- and dose-dependent decreases in cell viability. Moreover, NGEN significantly induced apoptosis evidenced by morphological changes, DAPI staining, TUNEL assay and sub-G1 population increase. In NGEN-treated cells, intensely upregulated Bax and down-regulated Bcl-2 proteins were detected and the Bax protein associated with the mitochondrial membrane was analyzed by subcellular fractionation. Knockdown of the Bax expression by the shRNA method dramatically protected A549 cells against NGEN-induced apoptosis. Treatment with the inhibitors of caspase-3, -8, or -9 significantly reduced NGEN-induced apoptotic deaths. Taken together, our results demonstrate that NGEN-induced apoptosis may occur via a Bax-activated mitochondrial pathway in lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells.