Artocarpus heterophyllus is an evergreen tree distributed in tropical regions, and its fruit (jackfruit) is well-known as the world's largest tree-borne fruit. Although A. heterophyllus has been widely used in folk medicines against inflammation, its potential in cancer chemoprevention remains unclear. Herein we identified artocarpin from A. heterophyllus as a promising colorectal cancer chemopreventive agent by targeting Akt kinase. Phenotypically, artocarpin exhibited selective cytotoxicity against human colon cancer cells. Artocarpin impaired the anchorage-independent growth capability, suppressed colon cancer cell growth, and induced a G1 phase cell cycle arrest which was followed by apoptotic as well as autophagic cell death. Mechanistic studies revealed that artocarpin directly targeted Akt 1 and 2 kinase activity evidenced by in vitro kinase assay, ex vivo binding assay as well as Akt downstream cellular signal transduction. Importantly, oral administration of artocarpin attenuated colitis-associated colorectal tumorigenesis in mice. Taken together, artocarpin, a bioactive component of A. heterophyllus, might merit investigation as a potential colorectal cancer chemopreventive agent.
- Artocarpus heterophyllus
- colorectal cancer