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Inhibitory effect of Bowman–Birk protease inhibitor on autophagy in MDAMB231 breast cancer cell line

1 Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Razi University, Kermanshah, Iran
2 Medical Biology Research Center, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Hassan Akrami,
Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Razi University, Kermanshah
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jcrt.JCRT_622_18

Background: Autophagy has an essential role in cellular energetic balance, cell cycle, and cell death, so the change in autophagy level is crucial in many human diseases such as cancer. Herbal medicine has been widely used to treat cancer. Bowman–Birk protease inhibitor (BBI), a protease inhibitor extracted from soybean, has antitumorigenic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-angiogenic activities. In this study, we evaluated the effect of BBI on the growth of breast cancer cell line and transcript level of autophagy and apoptosis-related genes. Materials and Methods: BBI was purified from soybean by ion-exchange chromatography method. The viability of MDA-MB-231 cells that were treated with BBI was measured by MTT assay, and the transcript level of genes involved in autophagy and apoptosis was measured by real-time–polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique. Results: The results of BBI purification showed that 100 g of the ethanolic fraction yielded 300-mg BBI with more than 95% purity. MTT results revealed that BBI inhibited the cell growth of MDA-MB-231 cell line in a dose-dependent manner, with an IC50 of 200 μg/mL. The results of real-time reverse transcription-PCR exhibited that BBI altered the expression of Atg5, Beclin1, light chain 3-II, and sequestosome1 and increased the Bax/Bcl2 ratio in MDA-MB-231 cell line. Conclusion: According to our results, BBI could inhibit autophagy and induce apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 cell line. Thus, BBI may be used as a therapeutic drug in the treatment of breast cancer whether alone or with chemotherapeutic drugs.

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