Melusova M, Slamenova D, Kozics K, Jantova S, Horvathova E
For several thousand years natural products were successfully used to treat a variety of diseases and to maintain health in humans, but until now it is not fully known what causes these medicinal effects. In our study we assessed the cytotoxic, DNA-protective and pro-apoptotic effect of two frequently occurring natural compounds, carvacrol and rosemary essential oil, on human hepatoma HepG2 cells. In addition we examined the in vitro incision repair activity of liver cell extracts prepared from hepatocytes isolated from Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats fed with water containing carvacrol or rosemary oil. Using conventional and modified single cell gel electrophoresis we proved that incubation of HepG2 cells with selected concentrations of carvacrol and rosemary oil significantly protected cellular DNA against two dangerous oxidative agents, hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and 2,3-dimethoxy-1,4-naphthoquinone (DMNQ). It is interesting that despite this DNA protection, the addition of both volatiles to the drinking water of SD rats had no effect on incision repair capacity of hepatocyte extracts. In this paper we also showed that carvacrol and rosemary oil can trigger apoptotic cell death pathways in HepG2 cells, which is probably connected with their cytotoxicity.
Melusova M, Slamenova D, Kozics K, et al. Carvacrol and rosemary essential oil manifest cytotoxic, DNA-protective and pro-apoptotic effect having no effect on DNA repair. Neoplasma. 2014;61(6):690-699.