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Int J Mol Med. 2015 Jan;35(1):218-26. doi: 10.3892/ijmm.2014.2002. Epub 2014 Nov 13.

Taurine induces the apoptosis of breast cancer cells by regulating apoptosis-related proteins of mitochondria.

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Department of Laboratory Animal Science, Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, P.R. China.
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Basic Medical College, Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, P.R. China.
Institute of Urology, the First Affiliated Hospital, Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, P.R. China.
Clinical Laboratory of Jiangxi University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, P.R. China.


Taurine (Tau), the most abundant free amino acid in humans has numerous potential health benefits through its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. However, limited studies have assessed its effect on tumors and the antitumor mechanism remains unknown. The present study investigated the cellular and molecular changes induced by Tau, leading to the induction of apoptosis in human breast cancer cell lines MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231. MCF-7 is p53 proļ¬cient (p53+/+) and MDA-MB-231 is a p53 null mutant (p53-/-). Cell proliferation and viability were assessed by MTT. Flow cytometry and hoechst33342 fluorescent staining were employed to detect apoptosis. Spectrophotometry was used to detect caspase-3 activity. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and western blot analysis were used to detect the levels of mRNA and proteins of p53-upregulated modulator of apoptosis (PUMA), Bax and Bcl-2. Finally, the affect of Tau on the growth of MDA-MB-231-cell-nude mice xenografts was examined. In the study, Tau inhibited growth and induced apoptosis of the two cell lines in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. Notably, the inhibitory effect of Tau on p53-/- cancer cells was clearly significant compared to the p53+/+ cancer cells. Further studies showed that Tau promoted apoptosis in human breast cancer cells and inhibited the growth of tumor in nude mice by inducing the expression of PUMA, which further up- and downregulated the expression of Bax and Bcl-2 protein, giving rise to increased activation of caspase-3. Collectively, these results indicate that Tau is a potent candidate for the chemotherapy of breast cancer through increasing the PUMA expression independent of p53 status.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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