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Cancer Lett. 2008 Oct 8;269(2):315-25. Epub 2008 May 7.

Multitargeted cancer prevention by quercetin.

Murakami A, Ashida H, Terao J.

Division of Food Science and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8502, Japan.

Quercetin is an anti-oxidative flavonoid widely distributed in the plant kingdom. Phenolic hydroxyl groups at the B-ring and the 3-position are responsible for its free radical-scavenging activity. Quercetin is commonly present as a glycoside and is converted to glucuronide/sulfate conjugates during intestinal absorption and only conjugated metabolites are therefore found in circulating blood. Although metabolic conversion attenuates its biological effects, active aglycone may be generated from the glucuronide conjugates by enhanced beta-glucuronidase activity during inflammation. With respect to its relationship with molecular targets relevant to cancer prevention, quercetin aglycone has been shown to interact with some receptors, particularly an aryl hydrocarbon receptor, which is involved in the development of cancers induced by certain chemicals. Quercetin aglycone has also been shown to modulate several signal transduction pathways involving MEK/ERK and Nrf2/keap1, which are associated with the processes of inflammation and carcinogenesis. Rodent studies have demonstrated that dietary administration of this flavonol prevents chemically induced carcinogenesis, especially in the colon, whilst epidemiological studies have indicated that an intake of quercetin may be associated with the prevention of lung cancer. Dietary quercetin is, therefore, a promising agent for cancer prevention and further research is warranted.

Source: PubMed



Mol Cell Biochem. 2010 Feb 11.

Suppression of the androgen receptor function by quercetin through protein-protein interactions of Sp1, c-Jun, and the androgen receptor in human prostate cancer cells.

Yuan H, Young CY, Tian Y, Liu Z, Zhang M, Lou H.

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Medicine, Shandong University, 44 Wenhua westroad, 250012, Jinan, China, [email protected]

We have previously reported that the increase in c-Jun expression induced by quercetin inhibited androgen receptor (AR) transactivation, and Sp1 was involved in quercetin-mediated downregulation of AR activity. Transient transfection assays in this work revealed that co-expression of c-Jun quenched Sp1-induced production of luciferase activity driven by AR promoter or three copies of Sp1 binding elements in the AR promoter. Moreover, c-Jun repressed AR-mediated luciferase activity via androgen-response elements (AREs) of the hK2 gene, while this suppression could be restored partially by cotransfection of Sp1 expression plasmid. The physical associations of c-Jun, Sp1, and AR induced by quercetin were further demonstrated by co-immunoprecipitation experiments. In addition, quercetin-mediated repression of AR expression and activity was partially reversed by blocking of JNK signaling pathway. These results suggested that c-Jun might play an important role in the suppression of AR expression and activity in the presence of quercetin, and association of a c-Jun/Sp1/AR protein complex induced by quercetin represented a novel mechanism that was involved in down-regulation of the AR function in prostate cancer cells.

Source: PubMed



J Agric Food Chem. 2010 Apr 8.

Protective Effect of Quercetin against Arsenite-Induced COX-2 Expression by Targeting PI3K in Rat Liver Epithelial Cells.

Lee KM, Hwang MK, Lee DE, Lee KW, Lee HJ.

Major in Biomodulation, WCU, Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-921, Republic of Korea.

Abnormal expression of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and prostaglandin (PG)E(2) is an important mediator in inflammation and tumor promotion. Arsenite is a well-known metalloid carcinogen that is strongly associated with increased risk of liver cancer, but the underlying mechanism remains to be clarified. The present study demonstrates that COX-2 expression and PGE(2) secretion are up-regulated by arsenite in rat liver epithelial (RLE) cells. The possible inhibitory effect of quercetin, a naturally occurring dietary flavonol, on arsenite-induced COX-2 expression and PGE(2) production was investigated. Pretreatment with quercetin resulted in the reduction of arsenite-induced expression of COX-2 and production of PGE(2). The arsenite-induced phosphorylation of Akt, p70S6K, and extracellular signal-regulated protein kinases (ERKs), but not p38, was inhibited by quercetin treatment. An ex vivo kinase assay revealed that quercetin suppressed arsenite-induced phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) activity upstream of Akt in RLE cell lysates. Ex vivo pull-down assays demonstrated that quercetin directly bound with PI3K to inhibit PI3K activity. Moreover, LY294002 (a PI3K inhibitor) significantly attenuated COX-2 expression and PGE(2) production in arsenite-treated RLE cells. These results suggest that quercetin suppresses arsenite-induced COX-2 expression mainly by blocking the activation of the PI3K signaling pathway, which may contribute to its chemopreventive potential.

Source: PubMed