Purpose: Sea macroalgae are an important source of biologically highly valuable compounds. The main aim of this study was to investigate the in vitro anticancer properties and chemical composition of the dichloromethane-methanol extract and three fractions of the Fucus spiralis from coastline of Morocco.
Methods: Fractions were made from dichloromethane:methanol (1:1) extract of Fucus spiralis: petroleum-ether, ethyl-acetate and n-butanol. Extract and fractions were screened for in vitro cytotoxicity by MTT assay against human cervical adenocarcinoma (HeLa), colorectal adenocarcinoma (LS-174T), lung carcinoma (A549), and normal human lung fibroblasts (MRC-5). Cell cycle distribution of the HeLa cells was evaluated using flow cytometry. Acridine orange (AO)-ethidium bromide (EB) staining was used to assess morphological changes of HeLa cells under fluorescence microscope. Anti-migration and anti-angiogenic properties were investigated using scratch and tube formation assays against human endothelium-derived permanent EA.hy926 cell line. Antidiabetic activity was tested using anti-α-glucosidase assay. Antimicrobial effect was tested using micro- dilution method.
Results: Petroleum-ether fraction оf Fucus spiralis rich in fatty acids exerted the highest cytotoxicity against HeLa cells. Ethyl-acetate and petroleum-ether fractions induced the highest accumulation of the HeLa cells in sub-G1 and G2/M phases. Extract and fractions showed proapoptotic effect on HeLa cells under fluorescent microscope. They exhibited antimigratory and antiangiogenic effects in vitro. IC50 value for α-glucosidase inhibitory activity was much stronger than standard acarbose. n-Butanol fraction exerted the highest antibacterial and antifungal activity.
Conclusions: The investigation of various biological activities of the extract and fractions obtained from Fucus spiralis may suggest a promising anticancer and pharmacological potential of this edible macroalga.