Antiproliferative effect of pineal indoles on cultured tumor cell lines

J Pineal Res. 1993 Jan;14(1):27-33. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-079x.1993.tb00481.x.


The in vitro antiproliferative action of pineal indoles on several tumor cell lines including melanoma (B16), sarcoma (S180), macrophage-like cell line (PU5), fibroblasts (3T3), and choriocarcinoma (JAr) was examined by measuring the incorporation of 3H-thymidine by the tumor cells, and, in the case of melanoma cells, by also measuring the incorporation of 3H-leucine and 3H-uridine. Uptake of crystal violet was used to assess the viability of the tumor cells. The order of inhibitory potency of the indoles was found to be methoxytryptamine > melatonin, methoxytryptophol, hydroxytryptophol, and methoxyindoleacetic acid > serotonin and hydroxyindoleacetic acid. The possibility of an adverse effect of the indoles on the viability of normal cells was also investigated by employing a primary culture of rat hepatocytes. The release of glutamate-oxaloacetate transaminase by hepatocytes was not affected by the indoles, although the release of glutamate-pyruvate transaminase was increased to a small extent and the uptake of crystal violet was slightly inhibited.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • 3T3 Cells
  • Alanine Transaminase / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Aspartate Aminotransferases / metabolism
  • Cell Division / drug effects
  • Cell Survival
  • Cells, Cultured
  • DNA Replication / drug effects
  • Gentian Violet / metabolism
  • Indoles / isolation & purification
  • Indoles / pharmacology*
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Liver / enzymology
  • Macrophages / drug effects*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Pineal Gland / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Lew
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Indoles
  • Aspartate Aminotransferases
  • Alanine Transaminase
  • Gentian Violet