Ethanolic extract of the Goldenseal, Hydrastis canadensis, has demonstrable chemopreventive effects on HeLa cells in vitro: Drug-DNA interaction with calf thymus DNA as target

Environ Toxicol Pharmacol. 2013 Jul;36(1):202-14. doi: 10.1016/j.etap.2013.03.023. Epub 2013 Apr 8.


This study tested chemotherapeutic potential of Hydrastis canadensis (HC) extract in HeLa cells in vitro, with emphasis on its drug-DNA interaction and apoptosis induction ability. Nuclear uptake of HC by DAPI, Ao/Eb staining and internucleosomal DNA damage by comet assay was studied through fluorescence microscopy. Possible changes in MMP and apoptotic signalling events were critically analyzed. Cell cycle progression studied through FACS and fragmented DNA through "TUNEL" assay were critically analyzed. RT-PCR studies were conducted for analyzing Cyt-C and Bax translocation in mitochondrial and cytosolic extracts, and Caspase 3 in whole cell lysate. Role of p53-mediated regulation of NF-κβ and TNF-α was elucidated by Western blot analysis. Data of CD and Tm profile of CT-DNA were analyzed. Overall results indicated anti-cancer potential of HC through its ability to induce apoptosis, and interaction with CT-DNA that changed structural conformation of DNA, proving HC to be a promising candidate for chemoprevention.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Cell Cycle / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Comet Assay
  • Cytochromes c / metabolism
  • DNA / metabolism
  • DNA Damage
  • Ethanol / chemistry
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • Hydrastis*
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase / metabolism
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Roots
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-2 / metabolism
  • Solvents / chemistry
  • bcl-2-Associated X Protein / metabolism


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • BAX protein, human
  • Plant Extracts
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-2
  • Solvents
  • bcl-2-Associated X Protein
  • Ethanol
  • Cytochromes c
  • DNA
  • calf thymus DNA
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase