Cell cycle inhibition and apoptosis induced by curcumin in Ewing sarcoma cell line SK-NEP-1
Curcumin is a naturally occurring polyphenolic compound found in the turmeric, which is used as food additive in Indian cooking and as a therapeutic agent in traditional Indian medicine. Curcumin is currently under investigation as a chemotherapeutic and chemopreventive agent in adult cancer models at both pre-clinical and clinical levels. In this preliminary study, we show that curcumin is effective in causing cell cycle arrest, inducing apoptosis, and suppressing colony formation in the Ewing sarcoma cell line SK-NEP-1. Curcumin causes upregulation of cleaved caspase 3 and downregulation of phospho-Akt, producing apoptosis in Ewing sarcoma cells at an inhibitory concentration 50% (IC50) of approximately 4 μM. Our findings indicate a need for further evaluation of curcumin in chemotherapy and chemoprevention of Ewing sarcoma.