Oleuropein, a non-toxic olive iridoid, is an anti-tumor agent and cytoskeleton disruptor

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2005 Sep 2;334(3):769-78. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2005.06.161.

Abstract

Oleuropein, a non-toxic secoiridoid derived from the olive tree, is a powerful antioxidant and anti-angiogenic agent. Here, we show it to be a potent anti-cancer compound, directly disrupting actin filaments in cells and in a cell-free assay. Oleuropein inhibited the proliferation and migration of advanced-grade tumor cell lines in a dose-responsive manner. In a novel tube-disruption assay, Oleuropein irreversibly rounded cancer cells, preventing their replication, motility, and invasiveness; these effects were reversible in normal cells. When administered orally to mice that developed spontaneous tumors, Oleuropein completely regressed tumors in 9-12 days. When tumors were resected prior to complete regression, they lacked cohesiveness and had a crumbly consistency. No viable cells could be recovered from these tumors. These observations elevate Oleuropein from a non-toxic antioxidant into a potent anti-tumor agent with direct effects against tumor cells. Our data may also explain the cancer-protective effects of the olive-rich Mediterranean diet.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actins / drug effects
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / pharmacology*
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Cell Migration Inhibition
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Cytoskeleton / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Iridoids
  • Mice
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Olea
  • Pyrans / metabolism
  • Pyrans / pharmacology*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • beta-Glucosidase / metabolism

Substances

  • Actins
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Antioxidants
  • Iridoids
  • Pyrans
  • oleuropein
  • beta-Glucosidase