Mutation research. Genetic toxicology and environmental mutagenesis

Genotoxic and cytostatic effects of 6-pentadecyl salicylic anacardic acid in transformed cell lines and peripheral blood mononuclear cells.

PMID 25726174


In Mexico, as in many other countries, traditional medicine is used for the treatment of several diseases. In particular, Amphipterygium adstringens infusion is used for gastritis, gastric ulcers, and gastric cancer. Extracts from this tree have microbicidal effects against Helicobacter pylori, an important risk factor for gastric cancer development. Anacardic acids are constituents of A. adstringens, and 6-pentadecyl salicylic acid (6-PSA) is the most abundant. However, there is a lack of information regarding the effects of 6-PSA on cancer cells. Therefore, we investigated whether 6-PSA has differential effects on the induction of genotoxicity, cytostaticity, and apoptosis in normal human peripheral blood mononucleated cells (PBMCs), bone marrow polychromatic erythrocytes of Balb/c mice, and human transformed cell lines derived from both gastric cancer (AGS cells) and leukaemia (K562 cells). Treatment with 6-PSA (30-150 μM) reduced the viability of AGS and K562 cells together with a moderate, but significant, increase in the frequency of micronucleated cells and the induction of DNA breakage (Comet Assay). Moreover, 6-PSA increased the apoptosis rate in both the AGS and K562 cell lines in a caspase 8-dependent manner. In contrast, neither cytotoxicity nor genotoxicity were observed in PBMCs or bone marrow polychromatic erythrocytes of Balb/c mice after treatment with low doses of 6-PSA (0.2-2.0 mg/Kg). Instead, 6-PSA treatment resulted in the inhibition of PBMC proliferation, which was reversible after the compound was removed. Additionally, 6-PSA treatments (2-20 mg/Kg) increased the frequency of mature polychromatic erythrocytes in the bone marrow, suggesting a possible effect on the differentiation process of immune cells. The present results indicate that 6-PSA induces cytotoxicity and moderate genotoxicity, together with an increase in the apoptosis rate, in a caspase 8-dependent manner in gastric cancer cells. In contrast, a low toxicity was observed when PBMCs were exposed to 6-PSA.