Evaluation of Potential Cytotoxic and Genotoxic Effects of Propolis in CHO-K1 Cells Using an in vitro Version of the Micronucleus Assay

University essay from Uppsala universitet/Institutionen för farmaceutisk biovetenskap

Abstract: Background Evaluating potential genotoxicity of pharmaceutical drug candidates is important during drug development. A method that can be used for this purpose is the micronucleus assay (MN- assay) which can identify agents that induce chromosomal damage. One of the most commonly used cell lines in an in vitro MN-assay is Chinese Hamster Ovarian K1 (CHO-K1) cells. Propolis, a natural substance produced by honeybees from exudates of different types of plant, is used in folk medicine to improve health and prevent diseases and was the evaluated substance in this study. Aim The major aim of this thesis project was to evaluate the potential cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of propolis in CHO-K1 cells by in vitro MN-assay. Method Two solutions of propolis were prepared in different ways and CHO-K1 cells were cultured. The two different ethanolic extracts of propolis were evaluated with the cytochalasin B protocol of the MN-assay, using mitomycin C as a positive control. Results Ethanolic extract number 1 had a statistically significant increase of genotoxicity at 50 μg/ml and 100 μg/ml. It was also found to induce a statistically significant increase of cytotoxicity at all concentrations tested (5-100 μg/ml). Ethanolic extract number 2 had a statistically significant increase of genotoxicity at 50 μg/ml but no statistically significant increase of cytotoxicity. General conclusion Rather surprisingly, the present study showed that propolis induced chromosomal damage in CHO-K1 cells, and one of the extracts tested was also found to be cytotoxic using the cytochalasin B version of the in vitro MN-assay.

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