Ascorbic acid induces apoptosis in adult T-cell leukemia

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S. Harakeh, M. Diab-Assaf, J.C. Khalife, K.A. Abu-el-Ardat, E. Baydoun, A. Niedzwiecki, M.E. El-Sabban, M. Rath
Anticancer Research 2007; 27: 289-298

Adult T-cell leukemia (ATL) is an acute malignancy of activated T-cells caused by the human T-cell lymphotrophic virus type-1 (HTLV-1). The effects of non-cytotoxic concentrations of ascorbic acid (AA) were evaluated against HTLV-1 positive and negative cells. The effect of AA on apoptosis and proliferation was evaluated by cell cycle analysis.

The role of p53, p21 Bax and Bcl-2a on cell cycle modulation and apoptosis was also assessed. The anti-proliferative effects were tested by determining the changes in the expression of transforming growth factors (TGF-α, TGF-β1 and TGF-β2). Ascorbic acid was found to reduce the proliferation of cells and induce apoptosis by the modulation of p53, p21, Bcl-2 and Bax. In conclusion, the results of this study show the anitproliferative effects of AA against leukemic cells.

Key Words:
Apoptosis, HTLV-1, ascorbic acid, Bcl-2a, Bax

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