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Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 2017 Nov 24;17(11):1519-1525. doi: 10.2174/1871520617666170327152026.

Anti-cancer Effect of Cyanidin-3-glucoside from Mulberry via Caspase-3 Cleavage and DNA Fragmentation in vitro and in vivo.

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Department of Biochemistry and Institute of Cardiovascular Research, Chonbuk National University Medical School, Jeonju, 54896, Korea
Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine,Bucheon St. Mary’s Hospital, the Catholic University of Korea, Bucheon 14647, Korea
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Chonbuk National University Medical School, Jeonju, 54896, Korea
Department of Companion and Laboratory Animal Science, Konju National University, Yesan, 32439, Korea
Department of Life Science and Graduate School of Energy Storage/Conversion Engineering, Chonbuk National University, Jeonju, 54896, Korea
Department of Oriental Pharmaceutical Development, Nambu University, Gwangju, 62271, Korea



Fruits of Morus alba L. (mulberry) have various bioactive compounds such as polyphenols and anthocyanins and used as a herbal medicine. However, the anti-cancer effects and molecular basis have not been elucidated.


We isolated the cyanidin-3-glucoside in various cultivar of mulberry by acidified-methanol extraction methods. This molecule were compared mass spectroscopic properties by LC-MS/MS and analyzed by 1H and 13C NMR. We examined the anti-cancer effect with molecular mechanisms of the cyanidin-3-glucoside on MDA-MB-453 human breast cancer cells and xenograft animal model.


The treatment with the mulberry cyanidin-3-glucoside decreased cell viability in a dose-dependent manner with alteration of apoptotic protein contents, and DNA fragmentation, suggesting that cells undergo apoptosis. Supporting the observations, Treatment with the cyanidin-3-glucoside showed active apoptosis by caspase-3 cleavage and DNA fragmentation through Bcl-2 and Bax pathway. Indeed, cyanidin-3-glucoside inhibits tumor growth in MDA-MB-453 cells-inoculated nude mice. Tumor growth of xenograft nude mouse was significantly reduced compared to the control group by the cyanidin-3-glucoside.


The data demonstrate that cyanidin-3-glucoside isolated from mulberry induced apoptosis in breast cancer (MDA-MB-453) cells, and therefore, has a potential as an anti-cancer agent. These results show that mulberry cyanidin-3-glucoside inhibit the proliferation and growth in vitro and in vivo model and, indicating the inhibition of tumor progression.


Cyanidin-3-glucoside; DNA fragmentation; Morus alba L.; anti-cancer; caspase-3; mulberry; nude mice.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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