Proteome signature of breast cancer cells treated with fucoidan
Breast cancer is responsible for a large portion of cancer-related deaths. Worldwide, incidence is increasing. Routinely-used treatments for breast cancer are invasive and are associated with a range of side-effects which may affect quality of life. Fucoidan, a marine bioactive compound, found primarily in brown seaweed, has various medicinal qualities. Among its bioactivities studied, it has potent anticancer activity. Despite numerous studies, the mechanism of action of fucoidan on cancer cells remains unclear. This project aims to shed light on the mechanism of action of fucoidan by studying its effect on the MCF7 breast cancer cell proteome. The IC50 obtained for fucoidan treated MCF7 cells was 0.2 mg/ml. Decrease in expression of XIAP and phosphorylation of ERK1/2 was observed, indicating a decrease in inhibition of apoptosis and increased sensitivity to apoptosis, respectively. Literature reports activation of several caspases, including caspase-3, in various cell lines after to fucoidan treatment. Taken together, with data from the current study it can be said that fucoidan treatment led to cell death by apoptosis. SILAC analysis identified over 2000 proteins with more than 1700 at 95% confidence. STRING analysis of enriched proteins revealed 19 cell death related proteins. However, SILAC results were ambiguous with regards to differential protein regulation and should be repeated with lower electrospray ionization flow rates, pairwise and single sample runs, and validation with Western blot analysis of various apoptosis related proteins and biochemical assays.