Olive oil compounds inhibit the paracrine regulation of TNF-α-induced endothelial cell migration through reduced glioblastoma cell cyclooxygenase-2 expression

J Nutr Biochem. 2016 Jan;27:136-45. doi: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2015.08.026. Epub 2015 Sep 1.


The established causal relationship between the chronic inflammatory microenvironment, tumor development and cancer recurrence has provided leads for developing novel preventive strategies. Accumulating experimental, clinical and epidemiological data has provided support for the chemopreventive properties of olive oil compounds traditionally found within the Mediterranean diet. In this study, we investigated whether tyrosol (Tyr), hydroxytyrosol, oleuropein and oleic acid (OA), four compounds contained in extra virgin olive oil, can prevent tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α-induced expression of cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 (an inflammation biomarker) in a human glioblastoma cell (U-87 MG) model. We found that Tyr and OA significantly inhibited TNF-α-induced COX-2 gene and protein expression, as well as PGE2 secretion. Both compounds also inhibited TNF-α-induced JNK and ERK phosphorylation, whereas only Tyr inhibited TNF-α-induced NF-κB phosphorylation. Paracrine-regulated migration of human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMECs) was assessed using growth factor-enriched conditioned media (CM) isolated from U-87 MG cells. We found that while PGE2 triggered HBMEC migration, the CM isolated from U-87 MG cells, where either COX-2 or NF-κB had been silenced or had been treated with Tyr or OA, exhibited decreased chemotactic properties. These observations demonstrate that olive oil compounds inhibit the effect of the chronic inflammatory microenvironment on glioblastoma progression through TNF-α actions and may be useful in cancer chemoprevention.

Keywords: COX-2; Endothelial cells; Glioblastoma; Olive oil; PGE(2); TNF-α.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brain Neoplasms / enzymology
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 / genetics
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 / metabolism*
  • Dinoprostone / metabolism
  • Endothelium / pathology*
  • Glioblastoma / enzymology
  • Glioblastoma / pathology*
  • Humans
  • NF-kappa B / metabolism
  • Olive Oil / pharmacology*
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / antagonists & inhibitors*


  • NF-kappa B
  • Olive Oil
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Cyclooxygenase 2
  • Dinoprostone