Steamed American Ginseng Berry: Ginsenoside Analyses and Anticancer Activities
This study was designed to determine the changes in saponin content in American ginseng berries after treatment by heating and to assess the anticancer effects of the extracts. After steaming treatment (100-120 °C for 1 h, and 120 °C for 0.5-4 h), the content of seven ginsenosides, Rg1, Re, Rb1, Rc, Rb2, Rb3, and Rd, decreased; the content of five ginsenosides, Rh1, Rg2, 20R-Rg2, Rg3, and Rh2, increased. Rg3, a previously identified anticancer ginsenoside, increased significantly. Two hours of steaming at 120 °C increased the content of ginsenoside Rg3 to a greater degree than other tested ginsenosides. When human colorectal cancer cells were treated with 0.5 mg/mL steamed berry extract (120 °C 2 h), the antiproliferation effects were 97.8% for HCT-116 and 99.6% for SW-480 cells. At the same treatment concentration, the effects of unsteamed berry extract were 34.1% for HCT-116 and 4.9% for SW-480 cells. After staining with Hoechst 33258, apoptotic cells increased significantly by treatment with steamed berry extract compared with unheated extracts. Induction of apoptosis activity was confirmed by flow cytometry after staining with annexin V/PI. The steaming of American ginseng berries augments ginsenoside Rg3 content and increases the antiproliferative effects on two human colorectal cancer cell lines.
Steamed American ginseng berry extracts also induced cancer cell apoptosis. Studies found that cell apoptosis is mediated by many factors. P53 is a transcription factor placed at the nexus of a number of pathways that mediate apoptosis in response to a wide range of cellular stresses. HCT-116 cells are p53 wildtype, while SW-480 cells are mutant in the p53 tumor suppressor gene. The differences of chemosensitivity of the two types of cell lines may provide some information such as whether or not the induction of apoptosis of steamed American ginseng berry extract is dependent on p53.
Dose of 0.5 mg/mL with berry extract steamed for 2 h, antiproliferation was 97.8% for HCT-116 and 99.6% for SW-480 cells. At 0.25 mg/mL, the antiproliferative effect of steamed berry extracts was 45.8% (steamed for 1 h) and 89.9% (2 h) on HCT-116 cells, and 31.3% (1 h) and 47.0% (2 h) on SW-480 cells (Figure 3). Steaming increased the anticancer effect of American ginseng berries significantly.
Source: Wang CZ, Zhang B, Song WX, Wang A, Ni M, Luo X, Aung HH, Xie JT, Tong R, He TC, and Yuan CS. Journal of agricultural and food chemistry. 2006, 54 (26), Pp. 9936-42
American ginseng berry extract and ginsenoside Re attenuate cisplatin-induced kaolin intake in rats
Cisplatin, a chemotherapeutic agent, causes significant nausea and vomiting. It is postulated that cisplatin-induced oxidant stress may be responsible for these symptoms. We tested whether pretreatment with American ginseng berry extract (AGBE), an herb with potent antioxidant capacity, and one of its active antioxidant constituents, ginsenoside Re, could counter cisplatin-induced emesis using a rat pica model.
In rats, exposure to emetic stimuli such as cisplatin causes significant kaolin (clay) intake, a phenomenon called pica. We therefore measured cisplatin-induced kaolin intake as an indicator of the emetic response. Rats were pretreated with vehicle, AGBE (dose range 50–150 mg/kg, IP) or ginsenoside Re (2 and 5 mg/kg, IP). Rats were treated with cisplatin (3 mg/kg, IP) 30 min later. Kaolin intake, food intake, and body weight were measured every 24 h for 120 h. Additionally, the free radical scavenging activity of AGBE was measured in vitro using ESR spectroscopy.
A significant dose-response relationship was observed between increasing doses of pretreatment with AGBE and reduction in cisplatin-induced pica. Kaolin intake was maximally attenuated by AGBE at a dose of 100 mg/kg. Food intake also improved significantly at this dose (P<0.05). pretreatment ginsenoside (5 mg/kg) also decreased kaolin intake >P<0.05). in vitro studies demonstrated a concentration-response relationship between AGBE and its ability to scavenge superoxide and hydroxyl
Pretreatment with AGBE and its major constituent, Re, attenuated cisplatin-induced pica, and demonstrated potential for the treatment of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Significant recovery of food intake further strengthens the conclusion that AGBE may exert an antinausea/antiemetic effect.
Mehendale S, Aung H, Wang A, Yin J-J, et al. 2005 Cancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology. Volume 56, Number 1, Pp.63-9, DOI: 10.1007/s00280-004-0956-1
Extraction-dependent effects of American ginseng (Panax quinquefolium) on human breast cancer cell proliferation and estrogen receptor activation.
HYPOTHESIS: Ginseng root extracts and the biologically active ginsenosides have been shown to inhibit proliferation of human cancer cell lines, including breast cancer. However, there are conflicting data that suggest that ginseng extracts (GEs) may or may not have estrogenic action, which might be contraindicated in individuals with estrogen-dependent cancers. The current study was designed to address the hypothesis that the extraction method of American ginseng (Panax quinquefolium) root will dictate its ability to produce an estrogenic response using the estrogen receptor (ER)-positive MCF-7 human breast cancer cell model.
METHODS: MCF-7 cells were treated with a wide concentration range of either methanol-(alc-GE) or water-extracted (w-GE) ginseng root for 6 days. Cells were grown in media containing either normal or charcoal-stripped fetal calf serum to limit exposure to exogenous estrogen. Thus, an increase in MCF-7 cell proliferation by GE indicated potential estrogenicity. This was confirmed by blocking GE-induced MCF-7 cell proliferation with ER antagonists ICI 182,780 (1 nM) and 4-hydroxytamoxifen (0.1 microM). Furthermore, the ability of GE to bind ERalpha or ERbeta and stimulate estrogen-responsive genes was examined.
RESULTS: Alc-GE, but not w-GE, was able to increase MCF-7 cell proliferation at low concentrations (5-100 microg/mL) when cells were maintained under low-estrogen conditions. The stimulatory effect of alc-GE on MCF-7 cell proliferation was blocked by the ER antagonists ICI 182,780 or 4-hydroxyta-moxifen. At higher concentrations of GE, both extracts inhibited MCF-7 and ER-negative MDA-MB-231 cell proliferation regardless of media conditions. Binding assays demonstrated that alc-GE, but not w-GE, was able to bind ERalpha and ERbeta. Alc-GE (50 microg/mL) also induced an approximate 2.5-fold increase in expression of the estrogen-responsive pS2 gene, as well as progesterone receptor (PgR) gene expression, whereas w-GE was without effect.
CONCLUSION: These data indicate that low concentrations of alc-GE, but not w-GE, elicit estrogenic effects, as evidenced by increased MCF-7 cell proliferation, in a manner antagonized by ER antagonists, interactions of alc-GE with estrogen receptors, and increased expression of estrogen-responsive genes by alc-GE. Thus, discrepant results between different laboratories may be due to the type of GE being analyzed for estrogenic activity.
King ML, Adler SR, Murphy LL. Integr Cancer Ther. 2006 Sep;5(3):236-43.