Lu-Do-Huang (Pracparatum mungo) is a fermented mung beans (Vigna radiata) and has long been used as a traditional and functional food in Traditional Chinese Medicine, especially for treating a variety of liver disorders. The present study aimed to evaluate the apoptotic effects of Lu-Do-Huang ethanol extract (LDHE) on Hep3B cells, a human hepatoma cell line. A variety of cellular assays, flow cytometry and immunoblotting were used. Our results showed that LDHE significantly inhibited Hep3B cells growth. Additionally, the cell cycle assay showed that LDHE prevented Hep3B cell entry into S phase and led to an arrest of Hep3B cells in the G 0 /G 1 phase. LDHE induced Hep3B cells to undergo apoptosis as determined through Hep3B cell morphology changes, increase of apoptotic bodies, apoptotic cells, DNA fragmentations and caspase activity. We further examined the protein expression of TRADD, FADD, and Bax to verify the possible apoptotic pathways. The results indicated that LDHE-induced apoptosis in Hep3B cells might mediate by an extrinsic signaling pathway leading to an induction of apoptosis in Hep3B cells. In conclusion, LDHE induced apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in Hep3B cells. Our data provide the evidences regarding the anti-hepatoma potential of LDHE in Hep3B cells.
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