Document Type: Research Articles
School of Dental Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Health Campus, 16150 Kubang Kerian, Kelantan, Malaysia.
Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima University, 8-35-1 Sakuragaoka, Kagoshima, Japan.
Background: Betel quid chewing is more common among the older generation in rural areas of Malaysia. Oral cancer in Asia has been associated with the habit of chewing betel quid and areca nut. Objective: This study aims to investigate the cytotoxic effects of betel quid and areca nut extracts on the fibroblast (L929), mouth-ordinary-epithelium 1 (MOE1) and oral squamous cell carcinoma (HSC-2) cell lines. Methods: L929, MOE1 and HSC-2 cells were treated with 0.1, 0.2 and 0.4 g/ml of betel quid and areca nut extracts for 24, 48 and 72 h. MTT assay was performed to assess the cell viability. Results: Both extracts, regardless of concentration, significantly reduced the cell viability of L929 compared with the control (P<0.05). Cell viability of MOE1 was significantly enhanced by all betel quid concentrations compared with the control (P<0.05). By contrast, 0.4 g/ml of areca nut extract significantly reduced the cell viability of MOE1 at 48 and 72 h of incubation. Cell viability of HSC-2 was significantly lowered by all areca nut extracts, but 0.4 g/ml of betel quid significantly increased the cell viability of HSC-2 (P<0.05). Conclusion: Areca nut extract is cytotoxic to L929 and HSC-2, whereas the lower concentrations of areca nut extract significantly increased the cell viability of MOE1 compared to the higher concentration and control group. Although betel quid extract is cytotoxic to L929, the same effect is not observed in MOE1 and HSC-2 cell lines. Further investigations are needed to clarify the mechanism of action.