Potential Cytotoxic Activity of Galegine on Human Melanoma Cells

Document Type : Original paper


1 Clinical Biochemistry Research Center, Basic Health Sciences Institute, Shahrekord University of Medical Sciences, Shahrekord, Iran.

2 Department of Medical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.

3 Department of Medical Genetics, Faculty of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, ‎Tehran, Iran.

4 Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences, Mashhad Branch, Islamic Azad University, Mashhad, Iran.

5 Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

6 Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, North Khorasan University of Medical Sciences, Bojnurd, Iran.


Background and objectives: Melanoma, the most lethal type of skin cancer, has a high recurrence rate within one year in melanoma patients following treatment by chemotherapy or immunotherapy. In an effort toward reducing this event, the present study aimed to investigate whether galegine has inhibitory effects on human melanoma cell lines. Galegine is a natural active compound found in Galega officinalis which was known and used in Europe for medicinal purposes for centuries.  Methods: Cell viability by MTT assay was conducted to measure the 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) of galegine on DFW and SK-MEL-5 cells. Also, apoptosis level was determined using Annexin V/FITC-propidium iodide (PI) flow cytometry. In addition, quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) for Bax, Bcl2, and p53 genes was performed with specific primers to evaluate their expression pattern in each group. Results: The experimental results indicated that galegine induced cytotoxicity in a concentration-dependent manner with IC50 of 630 µM and 3300 µM in DFW and SK-MEL-5 cells, respectively. Also, apoptosis induction occurred in both melanoma cell lines, in a way that 12.4% of the DFW cells and 41.8% of SK-MEL-5 were detected in the apoptotic phase. Furthermore, it was found that the Bax/Bcl-2 ratio was upregulated in both melanoma cells. An upregulation in p53 gene expression was observed in SK-MEL-5 cells, as well. Conclusion: The results of the present study revealed that galegine induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis in human melanoma cells with the potential toward more research as a novel therapeutic candidate for melanoma treatment.


Main Subjects

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