Bee Venom Suppresses PMA-Mediated MMP-9 Gene Activation via JNK/p38 and NF-κB- Dependent Mechanisms
Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Article in Press, Accepted Manuscript
Bee venom has been used for the treatment of inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and for the relief of pain in traditional oriental medicine.
Aim of the study: The purpose of this study is to elucidate the effects of bee venom on MMP-9 expression and determine possible mechanisms by which bee venom relieves or prevents the expression of MMP-9 during invasion and metastasis of breast cancer cells. We examined the expression and activity of MMP-9 and possible signaling pathway affected in PMA-induced MCF-7 cells.
Material and methods: Bee venom was obtained from the National Institute of Agricultural Science and Technology of Korea. Matrigel invasion assay, wound healing assay, zymography assay, western blot assay, electrophoretic mobility shift assay and luciferase gene assay were used for assessment.
Results: Bee venom inhibited cell invasion and migration, and also suppressed MMP-9 activity and expression, processes related to tumor invasion and metastasis, in PMA-induced MCF-7 cells. Bee venom specifically suppressed the phosphorylation of p38/JNK and at the same time, suppressed the protein expression, DNA binding and promoter activity of NF-κB. The levels of phosphorylated ERK1/2 and c-Jun did not change. We also investigated MMP-9 inhibition by melittin, apamin and PLA2, representative single component of bee venom. We confirmed that PMA-induced MMP-9 activity was significantly decreased by melittin, but not by apamin and phospholipase A2. These data demonstrated that the expression of MMP-9 was abolished by melittin, the main component of bee venom.
Conclusion: Bee venom inhibits PMA-induced MMP-9 expression and activity by inhibition of NF-κB via p38 MAPK and JNK signaling pathways in MCF-7 cells. These results indicate that bee venom can be a potential anti-metastatic and anti-invasive agent. This useful effect may lead to future clinical research on the anticancer properties of bee venom.