Accumulating evidence indicates that aged black garlic extract (ABGE) may prove beneficial in preventing or inhibiting oncogenesis; however, the underlying mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. The present study aimed to investigate the effects of ABGE on the proliferation and apoptosis of HT29 colon cancer cells. Our results demonstrated that ABGE inhibited HT29 cell growth via the induction of apoptosis and cell cycle arrest. We further investigated the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/protein kinase B (PI3K/Akt) signal transduction pathway and the molecular mechanisms underlying the ABGE-induced inhibition of HT29 cell proliferation. We observed that ABGE may regulate the function of the PI3K/Akt pathway through upregulating PTEN and downregulating Akt and p-Akt expression, as well as suppressing its downstream target, 70-kDa ribosomal protein S6 kinase 1, at the mRNA and protein levels. In conclusion, these findings suggest that the PI3K/Akt signal transduction pathway is crucial for the development of colon cancer. ABGE inhibited the growth and induced apoptosis in HT29 cells through the inhibition of the PI3K/Akt pathway, suggesting that ABGE may be effective in the prevention and treatment of colon cancer in humans.
Keywords: HT29 colon cancer cells; PI3K/Akt signaling pathway; aged black garlic extract; growth.