Evaluation of Anticancer Activity of Camellia Sinensis in the Caco-2 Colorectal Cancer Cell Line

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Virology, School of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

2 Department of Medical Parasitology and Mycology, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

3 Islamic Azad University, Damghan Branch, Damghan, Iran.

4 HIV Laboratory of National Center, Vice Chancellor for Health, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

5 Razi Drug Research Center and Pharmacology Department, School of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.


Background: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is widespread across the world. While conventional anticancer treatments
can help the affected patients, cells of vital organs such as the kidney, lungs, bladder and nervous system may
suffer from side effects of chemotherapeutic drugs, so that it is necessary to search for alternatives. From ancient
times, attention has focused on medicinal plants and natural products. In the current work, Camellia sinensis, whose
leaves are used to produce green tea was evaluated for anticancer effects in cell culture. Materials and Methods:
A hydroalcoholic extract of Camellia sinensis young leaves was prepared by percolation and compared with Cisplatin
as a known anticancer drug for effects on two cell lines: Caco-2, colon carcinoma cells, and mouse normal fibroblasts
(L929). Cytotoxicity of 50, 100, 200, 400 and 800 μg/ml of Camellia sinensis extract was evaluated by MTT assay and
aquaporin 5 (AQP5), detected as a biomarker for surviving cells using immunofluorescence microscopy. Results: MTT
assays with hydroalcoholic extract of Camellia sinensis showed considerable inhibition of growth of Caco-2 cells,
significant at 800 μg/ml (P<0.05), with little effect on L929 cells. Levels of aquaporin 5 protein decreased in Caco-2
cell culture following green tea extract treatment. Conclusion: According to the results of the current study, Camellia
sinensis is a medicinal plant with potent anticancer influence which might be specific.


Main Subjects

Volume 19, Issue 6
June 2018
Pages 1697-1701
  • Receive Date: 29 January 2018
  • Revise Date: 11 April 2018
  • Accept Date: 29 May 2018
  • First Publish Date: 01 June 2018