The Effect of Theaflavins and EGCG on the HT-3 Cervical Cancer Cell Line
University of Wales Institute Cardiff
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The health benefits of tea and its constituents have been reported, many being related to the flavonoid content of the tea, with green and black teas containing different types. The theaflavins in black tea are of particular interest, and there is evidence from in vitro studies to suggest that theaflavins have the potential to decrease proliferation of neoplastic cells. The hypothesis to be tested is that both EGCG from green tea and theaflavins will inhibit growth of HT-3 cervical cancer cells, and this inhibition will involve the induction of apoptosis. MTS assays were carried out on HT-3 cells exposed to different concentrations of both EGCG, and theaflavins, in DMSO or PBS, to establish the degree of inhibition. A FITC-conjugated annexin V apoptosis assay was also carried out to establish the nature of the inhibitory effect. Both EGCG and theaflavins were found to promote cell growth at lower concentrations, and inhibit cell proliferation at higher concentrations, with the general trend showing greater percentage inhibition for EGCG than theaflavins. Fluorescent visualisation showed that cells treated with polyphenols had undergone apoptosis, indicating that induction of apoptosis was the mechanism by which cell growth was inhibited. These data support the evidence suggesting that tea extracts may have the potential to be used as a treatment for cervical cancer, and further research is important for the investigation into the mechanism of action of polyphenols on cervical cancer cells.
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