Curcumin Induces Caspase Mediated Apoptosis in JURKAT Cells by Disrupting the Redox Balance

  • Gopal, Priya Kalyan ;
  • Paul, Mausumi ;
  • Paul, Santanu
  • Published : 2014.01.15


Background: Curcumin has has been reported to exert anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidation and anti-angiogenic activity in various types of cancer. It has also been shown to induce apoptosis in leukemia cells. We aimed to unravel the role of the redox pathway in Curcumin mediated apoptosis with a panel of human leukemic cells. Materials and Methods: In this study in vitro cytotoxicity of Curcumin was measured by MTT assay and apoptotic effects were assessed by annexin V/PI, DAPI staining, cell cycle analysis, measurement of caspase activity and PARP cleavage. Effects of Curcumin on intracellular redox balance were assessed using fluorescent probes like $H_2DCFDA$, JC1 and an ApoGSH Glutathione Detection Kit respectively. Results: Curcumin showed differential anti-proliferative and apoptotic effects on different human leukemic cell lines in contrast to minimal effects on normal cells. Curcumin induced apoptosis was associated with the generation of intracellular ROS, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, intracellular GSH depletion, caspase activation. Conclusions: As Curcumin induces programmed cell death specifically in leukemic cells it holds a great promise as a future therapeutic agent in the treatment of leukemia.


Leukemia;ROS;GSH;mitochondrial membrane motential;cell cycle


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