BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: 5alpha,8alpha-Epidioxy-22E-ergosta-6, 22-dien-3beta-ol (ergosterol peroxide) is a major antitumour sterol produced by edible or medicinal mushrooms. However, its molecular mechanism of action has yet to be determined. Here, we examine the anticancer and anti-inflammatory effects of ergosterol peroxide.
EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: After treating RAW264.7 macrophages with LPS and purified ergosterol peroxide or ergosterol, we determined LPS-induced inflammatory cytokines, nuclear DNA binding activity of transcription factors and phosphorylation of MAP kinases (MAPKs). HT29 colorectal adenocarcinoma cells were treated with ergosterol peroxide for 5 days. To investigate the antitumour properties of ergosterol peroxide, we performed DNA microarray and RT-PCR analyses and determined the reactive oxygen species (ROS) in HT29 cells.
KEY RESULTS: Ergosterol peroxide suppressed LPS-induced TNF-alpha secretion and IL-1alpha/beta expression in RAW264.7 cells. Ergosterol peroxide and ergosterol suppressed LPS-induced DNA binding activity of NF-kappaB and C/EBPbeta, and inhibited the phosphorylation of p38, JNK and ERK MAPKs. Ergosterol peroxide down-regulated the expression of low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR) regulated by C/EBP, and HMG-CoA reductase (HMGCR) in RAW264.7 cells. In addition, ergosterol peroxide showed cytostatic effects on HT29 cells and increased intracellular ROS. Furthermore, ergosterol peroxide induced the expression of oxidative stress-inducible genes, and the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor CDKN1A, and suppressed STAT1 and interferon-inducible genes.
CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATION: Our results suggest that ergosterol peroxide and ergosterol suppress LPS-induced inflammatory responses through inhibition of NF-kappaB and C/EBPbeta transcriptional activity, and phosphorylation of MAPKs. Moreover, ergosterol peroxide appears to suppress cell growth and STAT1 mediated inflammatory responses by altering the redox state in HT29 cells.
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