Brazilian red propolis induces apoptosis-like cell death and decreases migration potential in bladder cancer cells

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:639856. doi: 10.1155/2014/639856. Epub 2014 Nov 3.


Natural products continue to be an invaluable resource of anticancer drug discovery in recent years. Propolis is known for its biological activities such as antimicrobial and antitumor effects. This study assessed the effects of Brazilian red propolis (BRP) on apoptosis and migration potential in human bladder cancer cells. The effect of BRP ethanolic extract (25, 50, and 100 μg/mL) on 5637 cells was determined by MTT, LIVE/DEAD, and migration (scratch assay) assays. Apoptosis induction was investigated through flow cytometry and gene expression profile was investigated by qRT-PCR. Results showed cytotoxicity on MTT and LIVE/DEAD assays, with IC50 values of 95 μg/mL in 24 h of treatment. Cellular migration of 5637 cells was significantly inhibited through lower doses of BRP ethanolic extract (25 and 50 μg/mL). Flow cytometry analyses showed that BRP induced cytotoxicity through apoptosis-like mechanisms in 5637 cells and qRT-PCR revealed increased levels of Bax/Bcl-2 ratio, p53, AIF, and antioxidant enzymes genes. Data suggest that BRP may be a potential source of drugs to bladder cancer treatment.