Growth inhibitory and apoptosis induction effects of all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) on cervical cancer cell line (HeLa)

Published on Monday, 26 October 2015


Background: All-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) is known to regulate cell growth, differentiation and apoptosis in human. However, its action on cancer cell proliferation is not clear whether it act through regulatory molecules at gene level or directly acts on the cells by inducing apoptosis and delaying cell growth. To analyze the effect of ATRA on the proliferation of cervical cancer cell line HeLa.

Materials and methods: The growth inhibitory effect was analyzed by MTT and Trypan blue assay. The morphology of HeLa cell lines after treatment with ATRA was also studied with the help of Haematoxyline and Eosin staining which showed an improved shape for the cells. This inhibition may be due to growth arrest or due to cell death by apoptosis and measured by TUNEL assay.

Results: The percentage inhibition of ATRA on HeLa cells were found to be in a dose dependent manner and a 78% of inhibition was observed for ATRA at 10-3mM concentration at 48 hours of treatment. The TUNEL assay result has shown higher percentage apoptotic cells (67 cells) per field for 10-3 mM ATRA treatment.

Conclusions: The study indicates that the ATRA has a very good growth inhibitory effect on HeLa cell line with an induction of apoptosis at significant level.



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See also All-Trans-Retinoic Acid (ATRA - analogues and/or derivatives).